Batman: Detective Comics (Volume 4) Intelligence (Rebirth) by James Tynion IV

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“The Holy Sword of Dumas no longer needs to be wielded by an imperfect man. It can be the weapon all on its own. Faith given body in shining metal. It does not doubt. It does not waver.”

— James Tynion IV, Batman: Detective Comics (Volume 4) Intelligence

    After a slightly messy and tumultuous story arc, James Tynion IV comes back strong with Batman: Detective Comics (Volume 4) IntelligenceCollecting issues #957 to #961, this volume kicks things off with a quick reminder of Spoiler’s solo adventure and then dives into a solid and well-executed story around Jean-Paul Valley, also know as Azrael, as well as Zatanna. While there has yet to be an update on the subject, issue #962 is actually the finale to the Intelligence story arc, but seems to have been excluded so far in the collected edition’s blurb. I doubt this is an intentional and cleverly thought-out marketing ploy by DC Comics since you’d be left with no closure and a huge cliffhanger if you end things at issue #961; the logical way to go will be to include issue #962, the final part of Intelligence into this trade paperback. In this volume, James Tynion IV explores the lore behind Azrael and his infamous sword and armour as science bursts through the front gates of religion. Reinventing Azrael by adding a technological explanation to the sword and suit of Azrael in order to explain his radical beliefs and his enhanced combat, James Tynion IV brings forth an original story that blends science and religion in a very riveting compound. The story is also enhanced with a touch of magic and nice past and present narrative as Zatanna is finally introduced into this universe.
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Batman: Detective Comics (Volume 3) Leagues of Shadows (Rebirth) by James Tynion IV

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“She is Cassandra Cain. She is Orphan. And she knows that ghosts are very real.”

— James Tynion IV, Batman: Detective Comics (Volume 3) League of Shadows

    If I had to bet money on the Batman-related Rebirth series that would thrive first between James Tynion IV’s Detective Comics run and Tom King’s Batman run, I would’ve thought Tynion IV was on track to delivering the better content. While his run is still highly entertaining and generally much more intriguing than what Tom King has to offer, there just seems to be roof that his run can’t seem to burst out off in order to place a mind-blowing story arc out in the market. Batman: Detective Comics (Volume 3) League of Shadows is the third main story arc by James Tynion IV within the Rebirth era. Collecting issues #950 to #956, the story explores one of the most well-known group of villains within the Batman universe: the league of shadows. Unfortunately, this secret organization remains a myth to the eyes of most individuals until now. Presenting us a rabid introduction of the league of shadows, James Tynion IV also places Cassandra Cain, also known as Orphan, at center stage and dives into her origin story with sheer brutality.
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Batman/The Flash: The Button (Rebirth) by Tom King

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“And the moment I saw you… I knew every choice I’d ever made had been the right ones… Because they led to you.”

— Tom King, Batman/The Flash: The Button

    The crossover events are back with Batman and The Flash teaming up to pursue one of the greatest mystery to hit the DC Universe in the Rebirth era. With Batman/The Flash: The Button, fans are presented with a highly anticipated story that continues things right where DC Universe: Rebirth #1 by Geoff Johns left off. This four-part crossover, collecting Batman #21-22 and Flash #21-22, presents us with a couple of fantastic cameos of classic DC characters as well as a thorough recapitulation of one of the most important event that took place in the DC Universe: Flashpoint by Geoff Johns. With the hunting yellow smile button and its little smudge of blood, both the World’s Greatest Detective and the World’s Fastest Man look to decipher its eerie origin and meaning. This storyarc kicks things off with the arrival of another character who sees something devastating in this enigmatic button and propels our favourite heroes on an adventure through time that will surely leave lasting scars, both physically and mentally.
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The Complete Maus by Art Spiegelman

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“No, darling! To die it’s easy… But you have to struggle for life!”

— Art Spiegelman, The Complete Maus

    This is a dreadfully moving narrative that shines through the many dichotomies of life. The Complete Maus is not like anything you’ve read before. Containing both Maus I: A Survivor’s Tale: My Father Bleeds History as well as Maus II: A Survivor’s Tale: And Here My Troubles Began, this volume recounts the story of Vladek Spiegelman and his wife’s perseverance and ruthless ordeal through one of the darkest times in history: the Holocaust. Art Spiegelman also interweaves his own story as the son of a survivor and the impact of a dark and twisted historical event on his generation. While exploring the comic medium in all its subtleties, The Complete Maus dives deep into the struggles of every day life and sheds light on the complexity of trust, of survival, of fear and of guilt. It is a inter-generational look into the heart-wrenching and horrendous events pertaining to World War II and the weight that individuals carry since its end.
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Guardians of The Galaxy Vol.2 – Cinedote

MY RATING: ★ (3.4) /5

There’s this unspoken myth that the sequels can never top the first movie? But somehow, Marvel succeeds to eradicate that myth because in some of their movies, the sequels were actually better or vice versa. It’s hard to tell for me when I finished watching the vol.2 of the Guardians of The Galaxy. It was better in a way but also less amazing in another way. Let me explain.

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My first thoughts when I come out of the movie:  I LOVE IT. I mean wow, BABY GROOT?! I think this CGI alone can win everyone’s heart. Marvel knew it and even the villains couldn’t get pass his adorable face. It’s a family friendly experience and they did right by their target. I couldn’t stop laughing and giggling about how adorable Baby Groot was, because omg I don’t want to spoil anything but he was so precious in the opening scene. 

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Batman (Volume 3) I Am Bane (Rebirth) by Tom King

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“I am Bane.”

— Tom King, Batman (Volume 3) I Am Bane

    I really wanted to love this volume. I thought this would be the moment where Tom King finally has a decent grasp on how to write a Batman story arc through a bi-weekly 25-page-long comic issue business structure. With the way things have been getting better (yet always flawed), I thought volume 3, I Am Bane, would be a game-changer. In fact, the way Bane was introduced in volume 2, I Am Suicide, I could only imagine that the Bane-centric story to come would blow things out of the water, or in this case, out of Gotham.

I guess I was wrong.

    This volume contains issues #16 to 20 as well as #23 and #24.
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Batman: Detective Comics (Volume 2) The Victim Syndicate (Rebirth) by James Tynion IV

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“You destroyed my life. You destroyed all of our lives. We are the victim syndicate. We’re here to return the favor.”

— James Tynion IV, Batman: Detective Comics (Volume 2) The Victim Syndicate

    James Tynion IV continues his unexpectedly entertaining run of Detective Comics with volume 2, The Victim Syndicate. Taking place directly after the unfortunate events in Detective Comics (Volume 1) Rise of the Batmen, the story starts off by serving us an aftermath assessment for each character in the newly formed squad under Batman and Batwoman’s wings. Inevitably, the events that lead to the loss of a comrade have taken a huge toll on every one—some more than others—and things seem to be a lot more fragile for everyone. Questions about their purposes in life and their motivations on a daily basis are put through the blender and mixed in with a hefty amount of doubt. There’s nothing like a new group of freaky and shady characters to make matters a bit more dark and complicated. This story arc introduces fans to a brand new set of villains who have had a grudge for quite some time and are ready to react in order to see change in Gotham.
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Batman: Night of the Monster Men (Rebirth) by Steve Orlando

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“People need to see we’re all in this together. No matter what uniform we wear.”

— Steve Orlando, Batman: Night of the Monster Men

    You know what I despise the most about these crossover events nowadays? It’s this tingling feeling that I get every time I jump into them. That feeling that screams that one of their biggest intentions isn’t to deliver a series-wide major event that remains solid both in story and artwork, but a cash-grab attempt to get people to check out the other series that they might not be following. Night of the Monster Men is a crossover event that has its repercussions felt throughout Detective Comics (Rebirth) , Nightwing (Rebirth) and Batman (Rebirth) runs. Being the first crossover event part of the Rebirth era of DC Comics, hope for amelioration in regards of quality was much expected, yet failure was all that rose from this chaos.

    It was unquestionably scheduled to be spread around Halloween to get people in that childish horror vibe, but it also remains a retelling of the original Matt Wagner story of the Monster Men. This crossover event takes place between Batman: I am Gotham (Volume 1) and Batman: I am Suicide (Volume 2), between Detective Comics: Rise of the Batmen (Volume 1) and Detective Comics: The Victim Syndicate (Volume 2), and between Nightwing: Better Than Batman (Volume 1) and Nightwing: Bludhaven (Volume 2). Stretching over 6 issues, two from each of these series, Batman: Night of the Monster Men brings Batman, his friends and Gotham together in a fight against the supernatural.
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Batman: Detective Comics (Volume 1) Rise of the Batmen (Rebirth) by James Tynion IV

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“Welcome to boot camp. Keep up if you can.”

— James Tynion IV, Batman: Detective Comics (Volume 1) Rise of the Batmen

    James Tynion IV did a great job in making this first volume in his Rebirth series worthwhile. While Rise of the Batmen wasn’t the most brilliant and never-before-seen story, it still managed to deliver something that made some sense and shows a creative team that wisely utilizes the quicker release of these shorter Rebirth comic issues. Containing issues #934 to #940, this volume sets things clear regarding its direction. It is far from being focused on just Batman, it is the story of a whole new Batman family while putting the spotlight on a specific character for each volume. I felt like this first volume was essentially more focused on Batwoman by relaying a sort-of origin story for the character. In fact, the story explored her character a lot more and solidified her position in the squad. Having plenty of occasions to shine, her character is set as the new leader to a group of individuals that will trained under her wings in order to face an enemy that they have yet to uncover.
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Batman (Volume 2) I Am Suicide by Tom King (Rebirth)

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“You are happy. You are brave. You can always stop.”

— Tom King, Batman Rebirth (Volume 2) I Am Suicide

    Following the events of I Am Gotham, this volume builds itself around the formation of a Suicide Squad and its task of capturing a certain person of interest that can save Gotham Girl from her predicament. The last two issues also features a special two-part story that embarks in the love-hate, and very complex, relationship between Batman and Catwoman. I solemnly swear that this is a step-up from Tom King’s first volume, but I still feel like the story had issues at several moments, hence dragging my overall enjoyment downhill. Although every official website indicates that issues 9 to 15 are the only ones included in this volume, I thought I might as well throw in the Annual #1 that was released midway throughout this storyarc. I’ll rectify this, if it ends up being wrong, when Annual #1 gets integrated in a future collection (if ever).
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The Wicked + The Divine by Kieron Gillen (Vol.1)

MY RATING: ★

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‘ I don’t understand a word she’s saying. Nobody does. All we know is that it means everything. She’s been doing this for an hour, and it’s been all climax. Every second is the best of my life so far. ”

The artwork alone can steal all the stars from my rating. But not only  the drawings are great, the storyline is astonishing.

Imagine a world where your idols are Gods. Littereally Gods. They are selected in a particular way and they have 2 years of stardom, after that they have to die. The first volume introduces us to a young fan who got caught up with one of the wildest God of the gang : Luci… Lucifer 😉  Continue reading

Justice League (Volume 1) Origin by Geoff Johns

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“Too many people believe that. That’s the problem here. The world belongs to no one. And everyone.”

— Geoff Johns, Justice League (Volume 1) Origin

    The birth of the Justice League. Who wouldn’t want to check out one of, if not THE most epic superhero team out there? Who am I kidding, as a DC fanboy, the Justice League will always remain the BEST superhero team ever. Of course, with Batman among the club, that’s a no-brainer. As part of the New 52 reboot by DC Comics, fans are served with a brand new and completely modern take of this superhero team. Written by Geoff Johns and illustrated by Jim Lee, these two legends bring together a blockbuster retelling with one of DC’s most powerful villain soon to appear on the big screen. Collecting issues 1 to 6, Justice League (Volume 1) Origin glues together seven of the most powerful heroes on Earth (and from beyond?) and delivers a brilliant introduction to DC’s almighty squad. It kicks things of with the arrival of some new and mysterious creatures lurking around the shadows, preparing something that could potentially leave a nasty scar on the world. As matters get out of hands, a series of events lead our heroes to cross paths and unite to smooth out the chaos.
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Batman: Noël by Lee Bermejo

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“’Cuz for this story to make sense… for it to mean anything… you have to believe in something. Something very important. You have to believe people can change.”

— Lee Bermejo, Batman: Noël

    This is a gift dropped off by Santa when no comic book fan expected it under their trees. With a foreword by the great Jim Lee—another artist whose reputation precedes him—we quickly find out that Lee Bermejo’s Gotham City Christmas Carol is a tale that will go down—I’d say it has—as a classic in Batman’s universe. Batman: Noël is by far one of the best takes on the original Christmas story written by Charles Dickens. While billions of adaptations were done on Scrooge’s famous story, there’s nothing like A Christmas Carol perfectly knitted around the dark and gloomy Gotham City. Written and drawn by Lee Bermejo himself, this exquisite artistic creation presents fans with an opportunity to visit Batman’s most famous villains and friends on one of his darkest days. Struggling with his own health condition, Batman wanders building by building to capture a criminal has as escaped the grasps of the law.
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Batman (Volume 1) I Am Gotham by Tom King (Rebirth)

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“Everyone gets a chance to be brave.”

— Tom King, Batman (Volume 1): I Am Gotham

    What a poor, poor storyarc to start things off. If you didn’t have time to check out my review of DC Universe: Rebirth #1 where I explain the new beginning for DC Comics after New 52, you should definitely do so now. Batman (Volume 1) – I Am Gotham is the very first storyarc to kickstart the Rebirth run for Batman and includes issues 1 to 6. I can’t stress enough how disappointing this was, especially when you’ve got your hands on one of the biggest superhero series to work with. Of course, plenty of fans would easily love to jump at this opportunity to compare this debut to the Scott Snyder era that has blown more minds than we can count. But even without doing so, I still found plenty of reasons to be sadened and remain in awe at how many steps backwards this took the Batman name. Tom King’s first story arc, I Am Gotham, is a pot of random ideas that simply didn’t stir well.
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DC Universe: Rebirth #1 by Geoff Johns

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“Every second is a gift.”

— Geoff Johns, DC Universe: Rebirth #1

    Hey Lashaan, is this another reboot by DC? No, my friend. This is far from being a reboot. We don’t start from scratch. We aren’t about to re-explore all the origin stories of our beloved superheroes. We will not be looking looking at rehashed stories from the past. Wait. Are we? DC Universe Rebirth is a new step by DC Comics. You can gladly say goodbye to all the New 52 tags that you’ve been seeing for the past couple years. DC even changed their logo to mark their brand new beginning. While some people are probably lost and completely disoriented by all the things that happened during the New 52 era, others just jumped into anything that tickled their curiosity. More often than not, people found the New 52 a real big mess, even if some series had some really amazing runs here and there. Rebirth is probably something that was much needed by the company. I’m all in for a completely new management, new creative teams, new series and new numbering. Continue reading

The Dark Knight Returns: The Last Crusade by Frank Miller

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“It doesn’t matter how fast you are… If your opponent knows what you’re going to do.”

— Frank Miller, Dark Knight Returns: The Last Crusade

    A prequel to a classic masterpiece. Necessary? Definite not. Substantial? Not really. Entertaining? Sure was. This one-shot comic with Frank Miller, Brian Azzarello, John Romita Jr. and Peter Steigerwald does a fine job in creating a short and sweet story for fans of The Dark Knight Returns. The Last Crusade is essentially a past event that comes illustrates events that were only quickly mentioned in Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns. Instead of leaving it to the reader’s imagination, this creative team decided that a prequel story would be a fun idea; and they didn’t think twice about it. After all, wouldn’t it be wrong to drop something that would otherwise bring more attention and money to you by simply slapping the “The Dark Knight” name onto it?

    A huge focus is on the relationship between Batman (Bruce Wayne) and Robin (Jason Todd); and anyone who knows what happens to the boy wonder—based on the story in The Dark Knight Returns—should know by now what exactly The Last Crusade is all about. And, in all honestly, without diving into huge comparisons with past comics, I actually enjoyed this sort-of “retelling” of SPOILER HERE: Hover over text to read. . It didn’t need to dive into crazy details to understand what pushed the relationship between the dynamic duo to this end, and it felt sufficient for readers to understand the ending that is to be expected. By taking away the whole hunt for a mother and the goose chase outside of Gotham, this story felt neatly condensed and interesting. Continue reading

Outcast (Volume 1) – A Darkness Surrounds Him by Robert Kirkman

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“Seems like they’ve been trying to hurt me my whole life… I need to find out why.”

— Robert Kirkman, Outcast (Volume 1)

    This is actually the first series I’ve started that’s written by Robert Kirkman. Don’t hurt me! I’m up to date with the Walking Dead TV show (who’s ready for season 7’s big reveal?) and I do plan on checking out the very comics that brought the show to life (in some twisted way). While Robert Kirkman is a tour de force in the comic sphere, it’s not far-fetched to wonder if he can continue strive in the business by delivering new and exciting stories. Outcast, instead of visiting zombies, is actually something unusual from his part. Here, he preferred checking out the upside-down world of exorcism. In a rather small village, quite a few (a lot more than one would wish in his own town) are possessed and end up doing some really nasty things. Nasty enough for Kyle Barnes to help understand. Why him? Because he was one of the first to actually fight off a demon who inhabited his close ones. After a huge period of seclusion, he finally decided that it was time to find answers to all this. Among others, one particular question drives this man. “Why him?” Continue reading

Descender (Volume 1: Tin Stars) by Jeff Lemire

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“But if it wasn’t a dream—then—where was I?”

— Jeff Lemire, Descender (Volume 1: Tin Stars)

    Image comics is known to set loose some very potential comic series. Descender is Jeff Lemire’s creator-owned projet, illustrated by Dustin Nguyen, and is another ongoing series that Image comics can proudly talk about. The first time I ran across this collected edition of the series, I was intrigued by the cover art. It didn’t take long before I started seeing the series pretty much everywhere. The story follows TIM-21. A young robot who’s artificial intelligence is as close to human’s as possible. While the first couple issues attempts to setup the story, readers will be thrown left and right to understand a unique universe where men clash with machine. Even if TIM-21 remains a crucial and important individual in the plot, a man who’s claimed to have invented the very technology behind artificial intelligence, bounty hunters, androids and various rulers are introduced. However, the plot makes sure to tie them all together as the first volume comes to an end. It is no simple task to talk about the story that unfolds since this is an adventure that is triggered from the moment you crack open the book. Continue reading

DC Comics Bombshells Vol.1 : Enlisted by Marguerite Bennett

MY RATING: ★★★★

Honestly, I didn’t have much expectations when starting this comic because you know.. it’s DC comics. HAHA JOKE. Don’t hate on me guys! I LOVEE THIS COMIC. I mean I didn’t have much expectations because I had no idea how they are  going to rock these superheroes in the 50’s. BUT THEY DID.

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World War II fought by super women ! YUP. It’s that awesome 🙂 At first, we follow the story of Batwoman, Wonder Woman, Supergirl and Stargirl.They all have different backup stories in different countries but they are all affected by the same war.  It’s an alternate universe where the heroines came first.

One of the main scenes that indicate this element is where Batwoman rescues the Wayne’s family by knocking out the shooter who is supposed to murder Bruce’s parents, making it impossible for him to become Batman.

It’s how this series start and a way to tell people the girls are in charge now! 

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Batman: Knightfall (Part One: Broken Bat) by Doug Moench

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“A community cowers behind locked doors. I have created darkness that chills their very souls. I have made a city injured to its own horrors know fear. Can you feel it? And it has only just begun.”

— Chuck Dixon, Batman: Knightfall (Part 1: Broken Bat)

    If you’ve seen The Dark Knight Rises, then know that what you see here is one of the many comics that inspired some of the great scenes that Christopher Nolan translated onto the big screen. As much as this volume is known as an absolute classic in Batman’s universe, it however struggles to survive the test of time. Published in the 90s, written by both Chuck Dixon and Doug Moench, illustrated by Jim Aparo, Jim Balent, Norm Breyfogle and Graham Nolan, Knightfall is only the first part of a trilogy, and essentially the most memorable story arc. The great writers behind this volume introduces readers to Bane and his ultimate plan to take control of Gotham by first getting rid of the one and only Batman. While Bane manipulates the whole orchestra and devises a painful and exhausting trial for Batman, the story essentially leads to the one and only highlight hinted in the title of the volume. Is Bane’s plan truly flawless? Will he be able to take down the Dark Knight? The crusader that no other villain has yet been able to put an end to? Continue reading