Weekly Hit (and Miss) List: 9/26/2011

by Ben Peirce

The Weekly Hit (and Miss) List is a rundown of the best and worst things I read this week regardless of their original publication date. It doesn’t have to be new – just new to me.

2 and 2 this week and while I’d planned to spotlight 3 leading women of the New 52, I decided to throw in a Marvel #1 to balance things out. 

THE HITS

Batwoman #1 | DC | J.H. Williams III (w/a) & W. Haden Blackman (w)

It should come as no surprise that this book made the hit list. I’ve only been eagerly awaiting it’s arrival since oh … April of 2010. We spoke with J.H. Williams III when this series was announced over a year ago but since then we got only a #0 issue before the book was shelved (presumably in preparation for the DC relaunch).  Well, I’m here to tell you today that it was worth the wait! Fans of Kate Kane’s adventures in Detective Comics will be very pleased to see her story pick up right where it left off and Williams’ art is an absolute thing of beauty.

Ultimate Spider-Man #1 | Marvel | Brian Bendis (w), Sarah Pichelli (a)

OK, I’ll admit it, I bought the hype and tried out Ultimate Spider-Man #1 – the debut of new Ultimate web-slinger, Miles Morales.  And you know what?  I didn’t hate it.  In fact, after checking out on the Ultimate Universe a few years ago, this really recaptured my interest.  My chief criticism of the Ultimate-U has been that it built up so much continuity so quickly, that it began to compete with the “real” Marvel Universe.  But having a completely new character in the costume injects some much-needed originality into the line and brings with it the same sense of “newness” that I’m getting from the New 52.  I won’t commit to diving back into the Ultimate-U but I’ll pick up the next issue and give young Miles a chance. BUY IT

THE MISSES

Batgirl #1 | DC | Gail Simone (w), Ardian Syaf (a)

Admitedly, I approached this book like one might approach a car wreck at the end of a 2-mile backup.  Taking Barbara Gordon out of the wheelchair and nullifying not only The Killing Joke, but also the interesting and diverse character she’d become as Oracle was going to be a hard sell for me, but I had to watch them try.  The only thing they could’ve possibly done to make matters worst was to not do that.  In Batgirl #1, we find out that the post-flashpoint version of Babs did in fact get shot by the Joker and did spend time in a wheelchair but thanks to “a miracle” she’s all better now.  Really?!  In an absolutely-wretched attempt to have their cake and eat it too, DC has sent a clear message to all those disabled people who’ve been inspired by Oracle for the last 20 years: A) Even a 3rd-teir hero who (as this issue points out) is pretty unnecessary with a Batman, a Batwoman and 4 Robins running around Gotham is more interesting than one who’s in a wheelchair.  B) Don’t be too concerned about that paralysis you’ve been dealing with your whole life because there’s always a chance you’ll just get better.  Ugly.

Catwoman #1 | DC | Judd Winnick (w), Guillem March (a)

Fanfic anyone?  The dynamic between Catwoman and Batman has always been an interesting one because of the implied sexual tension between the charachters.  We know that Bruce and Selina have been intimately involved even if we’ve never seen the spandex crumpled up on the rooftop and we let our imaginations run wild.  This was … um … NOT that.

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