"U.S.Avengers": A Guide to Marvel's New Patriotic Superhero Team
• Having offered what may become the definitive critical take on Kingdom Come, Tim O’Neil looks at Alex Ross’ follow-up project, Earth X:
So, if Kingdom Come is about the reassertion of classically Juedo-Christian concepts of morality as filtered through fifty-and-sixty-year-old superhero comics, what’s the take-away for Earth X? Essentially, the story is about what happens when the superheroes begin to realize just how much their lives have been influenced by the interference of amoral space gods – down to the very ideas of morality and ethicality.
• I don’t mean to keep linking to The Hooded Utilitarian, but they have a new contributor, “Kinukitty,” who will be doing a regular column on yaoi and BL-themed manga. She kicks things off with a look at Aya Kanno’s Blank Slate:
The boy on the cover is pretty. So pretty. All the major characters are pretty. Cool, angsty-looking pretty boys with big guns. Did I mention that they’re pretty? They really are. I’m not sure who’s who all the time. I’m not always sure what’s happening. Don’t misunderstand – we’re not talking about confusion that rips space and time. We’re talking about a series of brow-furrowing, minor WTF moments that end with a quiet snort of “Oh, I don’t care anyway.”
• While you’re there I also recommend checking out Tom Crippen’s essay on Rorschach.
• Rob Clough looks at the work of emerging artist Juliacks: “It can be a bit daunting to engage these sorts of comics; they demand that you accept them on their own terms or not at all. They can be difficult to begin and adjust to as a reader. Of course, once a reader has locked into this style, the stories become impossible to put down.”