Impulse Buy – Week 05/22/2013

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While we may have pull lists, most of us comic addicts scan the shelves to see what else is in store. For arbitrary reasons, we sometimes pick up a random issue in the midst of a run. It could be because of good word of mouth, a guest artist, the presence of a certain character on the cover or…just ’cause.

Impulse Buy looks at a handful of issues I picked up each week, that I wouldn’t normally get month-to-month. This column answers whether or not I’ve been convinced to start reading the series.

Journey Into Mystery #652

Journey Into Mystery #652

Why did I buy it? 

It’s a special event when Beta Ray Bill shows up in any comic (seriously, a way bigger deal than Age of Ultron). I haven’t really read anything recently with Beta Ray Bill since Omega Flight, which didn’t do the character justice.

Was it worth it?

Definitely. Not because of Beta Ray Bill though. I was pleasantly surprised by Lady Sif, a character who never really grabbed me before. I started reading Thor during JMS’ excellent run, which didn’t include much Sif overall. This made me used to the Asgardians without her, and I have to say, this issue convinced me that she is an empowered character, very worthy of her own series. Also, that Captain America “I WANT YOU – To Eat Right And Exercise” poster was one hell of a visual gag.

Buy Next Issue?

Again, definitely. Most of the Beta Ray goodness is to come, and you better believe there’s much to look forward to in upcoming Sif/Beta Ray Bill interactions. Immonen has both voices down exceptionally.

Verdict

I’ll be back.

A+X #8

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Why did I buy it?

As a fan that got into mainstream comics in around 2004, Whedon’s Astonishing X-Men and Bendis’ New Avengers reigned supreme on my pull list. Due to that, both Kitty Pryde and Jessica Drew have a special place in my heart. Even though Jessica was technically a skrull at the time. She looks the same, so whatever.

Was it worth it?

Yes and no. Not so much for the first feature, but surprisingly, I enjoyed the second feature with Hawkeye and Deadpool. Christopher Hastings did a great job writing Deadpool, in that he was the right amount of meta, and the right amount of not annoying. It’s ironic because Deadpool writer Gerry Duggan wrote the first feature sans Deadpool, enabling Hastings to prove he writes the character better than Duggan. While the Pryde/Drew story had some charming banter, the plot did little to draw me in. It doesn’t help that Absorbing Man is a lame villain. This issue did little to make him less lame. Hats off to penciller Reilly Brown who clocked in some gorgeous visuals.

Buy Next Issue?

Probably not. I can see myself getting the odd A+X issue out of interest in the starring characters, but the inconsistency in creative teams doesn’t make me certain that my $3.99 is put to good use. And while the stories are charming, they don’t reach the kind of depth I’m now used to in comics.

Verdict

Just this once.

Green Lantern: New Guardians #20

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Why did I buy it?

Ron Marz’s Green Lantern run starring Kyle Rayner is one of my all-time favourites. Having said that, Johns’ run (note: my review for Green Lantern #20 will be up tomorrow) made me an unapologetic Hal Jordan supporter, while Bedard’s GL: NG series did little to interest me in Rayner anymore. In light (Get it?!) of Wrath of The First Lantern, I thought it would be nice to give the character another chance with this personal character aftermath issue.

Was it worth it?

Mostly, yes. The first chunk of the issue was a whole lot of recap on events that literally occured on the same release day. Unnecessary, no? But after those pages, we got to the good Kyle stuff. Really good stuff. Bedard got Kyle right in this issue, as the GL that doesn’t know where to fit in. This vulnerability in Kyle always drew me to him, and it continued to in this issue. Kyle continues to struggle with his place in the universe, yet manages to face his fears and forge his own destiny. The interaction between him and his estranged father lacked substance, but I trust that this will be further explored in Justin Jordan’s upcoming run.

Buy Next Issue?

Certainly. While this story fit as a standalone Kyle Rayner character piece, it excites me for the possibilities the character has, with his powers that he’s yet to master, and destiny that is now his own, now that he is no longer chained to his team.

Verdict

I’ll be back.

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