Each week we take a critical
look at some of the best books on the stands, courtesy of Big
Guy's Comics (the unofficial comic book store of FanboyPlanet.com).
If you publish a book that you want us to be covering, contact us. Or
contact Derek. He doesn't have
enough to do.
CrossGen Reviews 6-14-02
The First #20
writer: Barbara Kesel, artists: Andrea Di Vito and Rob Hunter
Trenin gets this
month's focus as he begins a hunt for Seahn. Because Trenin's hunts
have always been successful in the past, the odds are good that Seahn's
days are numbered. We also get 12 pages worth of flashback to when Trenin
went after Tulity, Seahn's mother, and we are shown the birth of Seahn.
include Persha trying to convince Pyrem to rescue Ingra, and a new mission
for Gannish. While Gannish hasn't gotten that much attention in the
past, he will become more important. He has been gathering information
about the nature of The First and the fact that they aren't quite as
godlike as they think.
The art is good
but not great, and the story is building up again. Too bad the climax
seems to be months away.
writer: Tony Bedard, artists: Fabrizio Fiorentino and Matt Ryan
its third year with an exciting new direction. Finally, Giselle has
put most of her demons behind her, both figuratively and literally.
She is beginning to learn the lesson about power and responsibility
that Spider-Man lives by. She even forgives her sister Genevieve for
stealing her boyfriend, realizing that she had no one to blame but herself
for pushing Thierry away.
The seven Eternal
Spirits have cut their contact with Giselle because they view her as
being unworthy and irresponsible. Now Giselle sets out to prove them
wrong. She embarks on a quest to learn about the seven guilds, starting
with her own Nouveau guild. She is also forced the deal with Duke Abaddon,
a local mob boss with a grudge.
Guest art is by
Al Rio and Roland Paris, and it is beautiful. Rio captures the essence
of the characters quite well. I prefer Rio's art to regular artist Fabrizio
Fiorentino (who admittedly is getting better). Bedard and Rio both do
a good job of showing us a society where magic is commonplace. In particular,
I like the gun that damages the conscience instead of doing physical
Way of the Rat #2
writer: Chuck Dixon, artists: Jeff Johnson and Tom Ryder
This second issue
improves on an already good debut. Boon is on the run from several different
groups who want the scroll and ring that he stole. Boss Tiger wants
Boon dead for what he sees as a betrayal, and Judge X'Ain wants the
artifacts for his own purposes. Fairly clueless, Boon manages to stay
alive only with the help of Po Po the monkey and later a mysterious
woman called the Silken Ghost.
The humor and action
are both strong, as illustrated by a scene where Boon gets beat up by
his monkey. He learns a bit more about the Ring of Staffs. It grants
him master-level skill with a fighting staff, but it only works for
a true staff. A wooden pole with a blade on the end doesn't qualify,
and thus doesn't help him much.
Way of the Rat
was launched as a "companion" book to The Path, and while
they do take place in the same basic setting, they could not be more
different from each other. The Path is dark and gritty, both
in the tone and the style of the art. Way of the Rat is clean
and bright and colorful and fun in the best possible sense. It is easily
Chuck Dixon's best series for CrossGen, and Johnson shines with what
must be the best work of his career.