In this installment, I review Mighty Avengers #12, Witchblade #117, Spawn: Godslayer #8, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic #27, and Thor #8.
MIGHTY AVENGERS #12
When Bendis is on his game, he is very good. He is definitely on for this issue. This is the best issue of this series to date. Gone are the thought bubbles that Bendis never figured out how to use effectively (they were more annoying than anything). Gone are the double page spreads of things exploding and the pages with no dialogue. This was a well written issue with an excellent balance of intrigue and action. However, it was only tangentially related to the team we've been seeing in this book. It was more of a one shot tying Secret War to Secret Invasion starring Nick Fury with an appearance by Spider-Woman. Not really what you'd expect from this book. Despite that, it was enjoyable read. Alex Maleev's artwork doesn't do much for me, but it was solid here and was very
effective at setting the tone of the story.
Month after month, Ron Marz makes this book a very compelling read. He's taken what had been a Bad Girl book and turned it into an intelligent supernatural crime book. The antagonists in this book are truly creepy and this issue continues Sara's investigation of the murders that are reenactments of how the Twelve Apostles were killed. Meanwhile, it seems Dani's gotten in over her head with the guy she'd been seeing and we just knew there was something off about him. It seems the two storylines are linked somehow and the reveal of that should be quite interesting. Stjepan Sejic turned in another gorgeous issue. That he can turn in painted work like this on a monthly basis is astounding.
SPAWN: GODSLAYER #8
This is the final issue of this book. Apparently, sales weren't sufficient to continue publishing it. There is no closure to any of the storylines that had been going on. The book is left mid-story and I suppose we'll never find out what was to happen. Not only that, but they actually introduced some new plot elements. How craptastic. Being the fantasy fanatic that I am, I enjoyed this book quite a bit. It wasn't the best fantasy I'd ever read, but it took the quest story and gave it an interesting twist. Gorgeous artwork from Philip Tan (I look forward to seeing what he's got lined up at DC) made for some amazing eye candy. Unfortunately, none of that saved this particular issue. If they knew they were going to cancel the book, it would have been nice if they could have wrapped up at least one or two storylines. Ending it like they did left a bad taste in my mouth.
STAR WARS: KNIGHTS OF OLD REPUBLIC #27
I've enjoyed this book since the beginning. A lot of that enjoyment had to do with Brian Ching's artwork. Since he left, the art in the book has been going downhill. For the last few months, it's been solid if not spectacular, but this month it got downright ugly. Not that Scott Hepburn is a bad artist per se, but his style does not fit at all with this book. It's way too cartoony and exaggerated. Looking past the art, however, the story introduces a couple of new twists that
promise to take the book an interesting directions. A character introduced in the last issue seems to question her allegiance to The Covenant and then the last page shows us something that my drastically change the direction of her life.
I like the covers Marko Djurdjevic has done for various books, but his pencil work on the interiors of this issue and the previous one is gorgeous. He lends a visceral sense of power and violence to the battle between Thor, Odin, and Surtur. While not as effective in the quiet moments between Donald Blake and Jane Foster, he still does solid work. I may even like his stuff better than Oliver Coipel, of whom I am a big fan. On top of the gorgeous artwork, we have JMS's excellent writing. His prose lends a sense of grand drama to the book and his dialogue captures the inherent nobility of the Asgardians (though I do miss the Shakespearean English that previous writers have utilized). While the action in this issue was anchored to the battle, the plot itself was driven more by the scenes between Blake and Foster. Plus, those scenes introduced an element I am sure will drive the book in future issues.