Secret Origins #8

5 Things We Learned From Secret Origins #8

Secret Origins launched back in April 2014 with three origin stories: Superman, Supergirl, and the first Robin, Dick Grayson. This last was penned by Kyle Higgins, who had already given us his take on the New 52 origin of Robin in Nightwing #0. His Secret Origin story — which I found to be poignant and lovely — turned out to be an expansion of that, in a way; continuing the #0 issue, while also correcting some of the problems readers had with it.

So I was surprised to see that Dick Grayson would getting a second go-around in Secret Origins, this time in issue #8. Ostensibly, this story is meant to be the origin of Dick as a secret agent for Spyral. In actuality, it’s more of a “stock-take” for Dick Grayson in the New 52. Written by Tim Seeley (who has yet to write a comic I have disliked – I hope he takes the lead on more Grayson stories in the coming months) and illustrated by Stephen Mooney, the conceit of this particular “secret origin” is that it’s a history of the character re-told by Helena Bertinelli to her boss at the secret spy agency Spyral.

Given that the Batfamily timelines are a bit of a mess in the reboot DC universe, getting us up to speed is no bad thing. Read on to see what we learned (and/or confirmed) in Secret Origins #8.

Secret Origins #8

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Memetic #1

COMMENTARY – Memetic #3

If you’ve been anywhere near Tumblr lately, you’ll probably been exasperated by the “crave that mineral” meme that has inexplicably and rapidly went viral, to the point where even luxury brands like Tiffany’s and Mercedes-Benz were referencing it on their social media accounts. It’s not the first meme to gain traction and it won’t be the last, but it felt particularly relevant as I caught up on Memetic, a three-part comic series published by BOOM! Studios.

Memetic, created and written by James Tynion IV (BatmanBatman Eternal), also features an animal-based image (a sloth) slowly taking over the internet. People go into a frenzy over it, as they often do with internet memes, but things take a sinister turn when said frenzy involves homicidal zombification.

I wrote a review of Memetic #3 (the final part of the mini-series) for Word of the Nerd — you can find it here, and I’ve also cross-posted it below.

 

 

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Ms. Marvel #10

COMMENTARY – Ms. Marvel #10

Ms. Marvel #10 Cover by Kris AnkaFirst of all, how amazing is this cover by Kris Anka? The composition is kept simple so that our main subject, Ms. Marvel and her large beast friend, Lockjaw, are dynamic and striking. I love Kamala’s pose: this a a hero on the go, ready to kick butt and save people. The spray-painted logo and police car fill out the rest of the picture without cluttering it. The colours keep it fun and energetic. While I’ve enjoyed the previous covers by Jamie McKelvie, I’d love to see more covers by Mr. Anka.

Anyway… Kamala is baaaaack! Woohoo! We’ve had a month-long break since issue #9 broke way back in October, but as I started this issue, it felt like it was just yesterday — this book’s look and tone is just that distinct, thanks to the combined talents of G Willow Wilson, Adrian Alphona, Ian Herring, Joe Caramagna (and of course the two editors shepherding them, Devin Lewis and Sana Amanat).

Issue #10 follows directly from where #9 ended: with some of Kamala’s peers, who she has just saved from captivity as human batteries, explaining to her that nope, the villainous Inventor wasn’t keeping them against their will. They were all there by choice. Yikes! As if the idea of kids plugged into weird machines, kept as energy incubators a la The Matrix, wasn’t horrifying enough.

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Lumberjanes #9

COMMENTARY – Lumberjanes #9

I’ve got a review of Lumberjanes #9 up at Word of the Nerd!

Noelle Stevenson and gang have done a great job with this issue, which appears to be a special “filler” before we kick off the next arc on the comic. Filler issues usually equates to guest artists, and the editorial team took advantage of the opportunity to bring an all-star cast of creators on board.

Multiple artists on the book is often a mixed bag — it’s often because the designated artist couldn’t finish the work on time, or part of a hit/miss anthology. Here, the wildly differing styles of Faith Erin Hicks, Becca Tobin et al. work to the benefit of the issue’s plot, which sees our protagonists sitting around a campfire relating ghost stories.

Here’s a quick run down of some of my favourite panels from this issue —

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Grayson #5

COMMENTARY – Grayson #5

The combination of Dick Grayson shirtless + carrying a baby from Grayson #5 is proving popular on Tumblr. Those were great aspects of the comic, definitely, but I was left more ambivalent by the issue. It was like literary fiction in comic form — and gosh, I do hate literary fiction. Which is interesting, given that most of my own fiction work seems to emulate the style of literary fiction by being character-driven, rather than plot driven.Perhaps that is why I prefer the fiction I read to be plot-driven — because it provides a form of creative expression that I, personally, struggle to create.

Regardless, have my thoughts on Grayson #5 below, taken from my write-up(s) for Graysonology & Word of the Nerd. Please do also check out my pal A.’s excellent commentary over at the Graysonology post — as always, she nails it!

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REVIEW – Gotham Academy #3

Gotham Academy is one of the breakout books of the recent Bat-renaissance. It’s got a “Hogwarts in Gotham” sort of vibe, featuring a young and diverse cast of new characters as they receive their education in the mysterious and ancient institution of Gotham Academy. Sure, they aren’t training to be witches and wizards, but there’s a definite supernatural element here, and it’s utterly fascinating. And like those wonderful Harry Potter books, the creators drop lots of hints and Easter Eggs about the wider DC/Bat world the comic inhabits. Notably, Gotham Academy is also possibly the only book within DC Comics’ main New 52 line that is suitable for younger (though perhaps not too young) audiences.

browngirlcomics is proud to present a wonderful review of Gotham Aacdemy #3, written by my close pal Zina, who also happens to be a very excellent writer and knowledgeable comics fan!

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