Want to begin this week’s edition by congratulating Mr. Damion Hendricks, who makes his Marvel Comics debut this week in the first issue of Breaking Into Comics the Marvel Way. Met Damion way back at a San Diego show (think it was 2003), when he came up to the Arcade Comics booth and showed his portfolio to Rob Liefeld. I remember Rob getting really excited about his work, and for a while we all discussed doing some Shaft back-up stories or something, but it never came together. Still, Damion and I kept in close contact and even pitched a series to Image a couple years later, so I was extra excited when I heard that C.B. named him as one of his Chesterquest finalists. And here, he teams with Marc Guggenheim on a Spider-Man short named “Street Level” that gives him a chance to draw a ton of great Marvel characters, and he’s also one of the featured artists in the interview section at the end of the book. Congrats to him again, and hope it’s just the beginning of a long and prosperous career.
Now let’s talk about a couple of notable scenes from this week’s haul, shall we?
X-MEN PIXIE STRIKES BACK #2
RED ROBIN #10
BREAKING INTO COMICS THE MARVEL WAY #1
AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #624
SECRET SIX #19
ULTIMATE COMICS SPIDER-MAN #8
BATMAN AND ROBIN #10
#1- Great little “scene within a scene” from Gail Simone here, that also builds to an incredible cliffhanger. While the initial assault on Cheshire by a group of horribly outmatched commandos is good fun, especially once she starts easily taking them apart, the true highlight is when this sequence loops around and then seamlessly connects with the Secret Six picking up the check for their latest job. Been re-watching the earlier seasons of 24 (you know, the good ones) and this would’ve reminded me of it even without the cool “tick, tock” line at the close. Is Catman supposed to be awesome? Because clearly in this book he is. (Secret Six #19)
#2- Another gem of an issue by Grant Morrison, as he starts stitching together the framework for The Return of Bruce Wayne. The notion that Wayne Manor is now “haunted” with all these obscure clues and riddles that no one has paid any attention to is a great one, but again, Damian steals the show. Some will point to his appearance at the Wayne board meeting, but I was really impressed by the conversation he has with Dick while they’re combing the mansion. His anxiety about his future as Robin if and when his father returns was a fine touch, as is the newfound respect he’s developed for both Grayson and Alfred. Wonder what he’ll have to say to his mother once he beats the “failsafe” device she obviously put in his head. Just like anything involving this character in recent months, should be very interesting. (Batman and Robin #10)
Also read: The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, Scars, Black Summer, No Hero…