New 52 Power Rankings: April 2012

You know the drill. I’m here to talk about comics I like and stuff. Here are my 10 favorite books from DC’s New 52 in April. (P.S., to my non-existent loyal following, sorry for the lack of content in April, I’ll try to do better next time.)

Top 10 Books

Ranking

Title

Last Month

Total Months in Top 10

1

I, Vampire

 2

7

2

Batman

 3

7

3

OMAC

 5

4

4

Swamp Thing

 1

7

5

Green Lantern

 7

8

6

Justice League

 8

7

7

Aquaman

 4

5

8

Animal Man

 6

7

9

Wonder Woman

 9

7

10

Red Lanterns

 N/A

1

Something seemed to lock into place this month. After 8 months of reading the new 52 and publishing my top 10 favorite books, I’ve come to the point where my reading list has dwindled to the point that the same titles are reappearing month in and month out. Sure you might have an underdog book make the jump, like this month’s issue of Red Lanterns, and the order can shuffle drastically, but it’s growing pretty static for the most part. Unfortunately I don’t have the time or money to read every single book in DC’s New 52, and even if I did I’m not sure I’d want to (there are some pretty crappy books being published). Next month will see 6 new titles being added to the monthly repertoire, and I’m definitely committed to giving 3 of them a shot, but that still only a bit of new blood. I may be retooling this feature in the future, but for now, I’m gonna talk about comics.

Ok, I’m just gonna say that I’m a was(am?) a huge fan of Dragon Ball Z. So went Andrew Bennett had his Goku-esque resurrection and went Super Saiyan on Cain I definitely had a huge smile on my face. I might have giggled. This was by far the best work Andrea Sorrentino has turned in on the book since it’s launch. Now, what made this from being just a good issue that pleased my inner fanboy to my favorite issue of the month was Andrew’s status quo shaking change in vampiric worldview. I absolutely loved the scenes with Andrew and Mary. Everyone is as confused as can be about this strange new Andrew Bennett and I can’t wait to see what’s going on in this vampire’s head. I’ll go ahead and admit that the JL Dark’s inclusion, and the crossover in general, was a bit of a waste. Issue #8 of JL Dark in particular was a ginormous mess. It was a huge, awkward exposition fest that barely allowed Peter Milligan to pull one of his priced pieces off the board before he leaves the title and Jeff Lemire comes on. Considering I really wanted to like JL Dark, but just couldn’t get behind Milligan’s execution, I have high hopes for Lemire, and look forward to following Andrew in two books from now on.

You may have heard of this guy, Batman, he’s a big deal. Me and everyone else on the internet is going on and on about how good Scott Snyder’s run on Batman is. I am I huge Morrison Batman fan. I’m extremely excited about the return of Batman Inc in May and the conclusion of Morrison’s time and book spanning bat-opus. However, in the time since the last issue of Inc was published, I’m afraid that I may have come in and stole all the bat-Thunder (you can use Bat as an adjective for anything). The question is, is this town big enough for two flagship level batbooks? If not, which one is gonna leave? Anyway, this month kicked off the Night of the Owls event that has been building for so long. This issue had more good parts than I can count, and this is the coolest Alfred can get without being played by Michael Caine. You should be buying this you know. And where can I get that robo-batsuit?

This month marked the end of O.M.A.C. If you would take a moment of silence for the dearly departed……………………….thank you for your condolences. In all seriousness, this is a book that I’m really sad to see go. I admire the efforts of Dan Didio and Keith Giffen to give the book a satisfying conclusion is such a short amount of time, and I love that they left the story open ended. Here’s hoping that these concepts get revitalized later on down the line. Giffen on a Fourth World book? Yes please x1000.

Over in the Geoff Johns corner of the DCU, it’s business as usual, only maybe a little bit than usual. Green Lantern continues the unraveling of the mysterious Indigo tribe. We get confirmation that you still do not want to mess with Sinestro, the return of Black Hand and our first New 52 glimpse of the events of Blackest Night, and we see Hal Jordan not being lame. Wrap all of that up in Doug Mankhe’s art and you have a major win. Still, the story is moving a little slow, but next issue promises to bring all the answers. GL hasn’t been this interesting since the build up to Blackest Night, here’s hoping we’re experiencing a sort of renaissance. This month’s issue of Justice League is considerably more light-hearted than past issues due to the use of Green Arrow as a comedic foil, but it also is by far the best issue of the series so far. Oh, and there’s a mini Night of the Owls crossover, how cool is that?! The limiting factor for me was definitely D’Anda’s art. There’s nothing wrong with it, it’s actually quite good, I just don’t think it quite fits this book. Those Ivan Reis pages at the end though? I’ll take that over Jim Lee. The Shazam back-up feature continues, but that’s about it. Although,when the story is being drawn by Gary Frank I don’t ask for much else. Aquaman also continues to be a feast for the eyes (Reis again), but this issue is also a little light on progression. We do get to see the others in action together for the first time, but not much else is gleaned from this issue. Are you noticing a pattern in these books? I’m as big a Johns fans as anyone, his past works are some of my all time favorites, but his writing is becoming waaaaaaaaayyyyy too decompressed. I understand writing for trades, but I thought the point of the New 52 was to make people enjoy reading comics. Let’s see more 2 to 3 issue story arcs as opposed to 4 to 6. Or you know, you could just….make the comic longer, but I digress/rant end.

Animal Man is definitely the most disturbing book I’m reading. She got ripped to shreds by zombie animals and then remade herself from a fox. That’s all I have to say. Oh, Steve Pugh does a good job, but I already miss Travel Foreman. Almost enough to pick up Birds of Prey next month. It is a Night of the Owls crossover after all.

Man, am I still reading a Wonder Woman comic? Why yes I am. How about that twist of an ending, I for one didn’t see that coming. I like this book, I really do. I love the Greek mythology, and I love the almost singular quality each issue has. Somethingactually happens in each issue. Nevertheless, I still get the feeling that the story could move a little faster, but maybe I’m just impatient. I mean, obviously babies aren’t born overnight, unless you spend months in hell off panel between issues. Comics everybody!

Finally, whoa whoa whoa, how did Red Lanterns make it into my top 10? I thought I only bought that book out of a compulsion to buy anything Green Lantern related. Oh yeah, Ed Benes didn’t draw this issue. Off the top of my head I can’t remember who filled in for Benes this issue, but man oh my were they easier on the eyes. Also, this new Red Lantern from earth, Rankorr or John Moore or whatever you want to call him, is so much more interesting than the pitiful emo mess that has been Atrocitus since this series started. This issue felt like it could’ve been the first issue of the series. John Moore’s story and the poisoning of the Red Power Battery is way more interesting that watching Atrocitus monologue to Krona’s corpse for 5 issues (that’s what it felt like to me). More of this and less of that.

So there you have it! This month I think I’ll bring back my old review format to review each of the 6 books in the second wave of the New 52, and possibly bring some changes to the power rankings. Worlds will live, worlds will die, and nothing will ever be the same! Or something. See you next time!

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