If you have ever heard of the Golden Age series Crime Does Not Pay, I’d wager it’s in relation to the Wertham-era outcry in the 1950s over the content of comic books and how that content was ruining a generation of youngsters. Crime Does Not Pay was possibly the most popular comic of its kind, which put it in the line of fire despite (as you might guess from its title) the preachiness of its anti-crime message.
The newest two-issue arc of the always-entertaining Star Trek ongoing revisits one of the most classic of The Original Series' concepts with "Mirrored," a story based on the episode "Mirror, Mirror." You know, the one where Kirk finds himself in an alternate universe where Spock has a beard and everyone is evil? In case you weren't quite sure, Zachary Quinto's Spock sports a goatee on the cover, and goatees, as we all know, have been the signature of evil twins for the last four decades.
Nowhere Men appears to be the story of four men who jointly created and operate World Corp., a super successful, multinational corporation that has, presumably, changed the world through numerous revolutionary consumer products. Each of these men is a scientific genius of some kind, or purports to be so: Dade Ellis, a neurobiologist; Simon Grimshaw, a geneticist; Emerson Strange, an inventor; and Thomas Walker, a theoretical physicist. The idea that their disparate specialties can combine to do great things isn’t much of a leap, though from what we see of their personalities in this first issue, it does seem a little remarkable that they didn’t kill each other the first time they were in a room together.
In certain circles, My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic #1 is one of the most anticipated comics of the year. Springing from the animated series that has gathered legions of fans, this is a comic that IDW clearly plans on selling in droves; the number of alternate covers – some of which are quite amusing – are testament to that.
Golden Age comics can be easy to dismiss out of hand as being primitive or infantile, churned out by creators who, while skilled, really didn’t want to be in comics and for an audience that, publishers assumed, was ten years old at best. The first four issues of Forbidden Worlds, collected in this edition, do not fit this mold; many of the stories contained herein are actually quite good, and there is some outstanding art to see.
Clemens said, "In the real world, the right thing never happens in the right place and the right time." In Heath Huston's world, this is even truer. Heath is the last of the Fear Agents, a hard-drinking human from Texas who roves space scraping together exterminator work where he can. He has a dark past that haunts him, he's crude, he's misogynistic, he's reckless, and he quotes Samuel Clemens at every opportunity. He's the kind of guy you'd hate to know (unless you needed him to watch your back), but that is fun to read about. He's a coarse Han Solo who looks a little like Bruce Campbell, sometimes, and who I imagine sounds rather like him, too.
Brian Wood's The Massive has been consistently amongst my favorite new series of 2012, with the right mix of interesting characters, exciting action, sweeping scope, and a frighteningly plausible world after a global ecological disaster. This seventh issue kicks off the book's third arc, "Subcontinental," with the Kapital arriving at a rig nation called Moksha Station, an "experiment in post-Crash human social utopia."
Change is an odd bird, and by no means a simple book. Reading it gave me flashbacks to the kind of stuff I read a lot of as an English major, stuff that I knew as I was going through it that I didn't quite get. But, Change is enjoyable enough even if you don't quite get it yet. There are plot and character up front, so that the visual non sequitirs don't derail the uninitiated.