Comics 411 04.24.13: Batman VS. Superman Edition!


Comics 411 04.24.13: Batman VS. Superman Edition!

Posted by Steve Gustafson on 04.24.2013

Is Batman or Superman the true face of DC Comics? Plus news and thoughts on Iron Man’s “The Stark Seven” storyline, DC revealing The Joker’s daughter and a new Green Lantern villain, a review of the latest issue of Daredevil, a preview for Teen Titans #19 and more!

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Welcome back to the Comics 411! My name is Steve Gustafson and this is a corner of 411mania reserved for those interested in talking comics! As always, I want to thank everyone who took a few minutes to read and comment last week.

Last week Reybones commented, “My local comic shop posted a massive spoiler for age of ultron #6 on their facebook page. a small spoiler tag before but there was literally no way to avoid the spoiler. Has anyone else run into this before? A shop ruining the issue on purpose? I am relatively new to reading comics and cant believe they would do something like this.”

Reybones brings up a good point. With social media rampant with spoilers for movies, TV shows, and comic books, where do we draw the line? Does a comic book shop have a responsibility to the reader? I want to visit this topic in full in the future but wanted to give you something to chew on.

And away we go…


How are we getting our comic fix? Every now and then you hear, “Single issue comic books are dying.” Are they? Are people still going to the comic book store and picking up the latest issue? From the results of the poll last week, the answer is: YES! When asked how you collected:

Wait for the graphic novel! 38%
Collect every single issue! 33.5%
On the web! 18%
I sit on the ground at the comic book store and read the whole issue like a mooch! 10.5%

Hey! You freeloaders out there…Get a job. And a haircut! In all seriousness, it was good to see that people are still picking up the issues. We also had another great week of comments and insight from the gallery. Here’s what you all were saying:

CMWolf “You honor me sir! My thanks. As for the poll, call me an old man but while digital comics might be easier to collect and store there is nothing like a trip to the local store. The smell of the newly printed books, the excitement of finding issues you may be missing or possibly a local indy comic. For me, going digital sort of removes one from the culture that has sprung up in the last few years. Plus…there are GIRLS in the comic shops now!!!!! Call me a freak but i LOVE meeting cute girls that can talk comics!!!!”

chris “I like to collect the actual comic because i love the cover art…

But, I prefer reading the stories in a graphic novel, i like to have access to the whole story at once, instead of waiting months to finish it…

Plus some story arcs go through different comic series and it can become a pain in the ass to follow them…”

roXXXas “Nothing beats going in a store and just the atmosphere inside one. Being able to see all these books at once and other cool stuff.”

I want to echo those thoughts. I love going into a comic book shop. The atmosphere, the smell, and the visual feast of both old and new covers. Yes, sometimes I encounter the cliche “comic book store worker” but isn’t that half the fun? The characters you encounter? I’m sure over time, the numbers will dwindle as more and more people download their issues online but for now, the store is still breathing!

Let’s shift gears! Had a great email debate with a reader about who’s the face of DC Comics. If someone asked you which hero do you think of when you say, DC Comics,” who do you think of? When it boils down to it, you have two choices. Batman or Superman. (Quick note: I’ve been saying for sometime that they should scrap the Justice League movie for now and focus on a World’s Finest trilogy. Since it seems they can only get these two right, it makes sense. Introduce the DC Universe slowly and THEN go into a Justice League movie. End Note!)

Where was I? Oh yeah. Batman or Superman? Which is the REAL face of DC Comics?

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Who is the “face” of DC Comics?


Are you ready? Free Comic Book Day is the first Saturday in May. It’s an International Event that celebrates comic books and the local comic shops that provide them to their communities. If you’re not sure which day that is, it’s May 4th, 2013 this year. FREE COMICS! More information at

Give you local shop a shout out if they’re participating in the comments below!

50th anniversary of Iron Man! Marvel Comics and current Iron Man ongoing writer Kieron Gillen alongside incoming artist Dale Eaglesham plan to tell a Secret Origin for the Armored Avenger. While not much is known about the story so far, the publisher released a new teaser image that features The Stark Seven, part of a major secret in Tony Stark’s past. “Secret Origin” is a caper story that takes place in Las Vegas, involving Tony’s parents Howard and Maria Stark, as well as a team of operatives.

“I wanted to do a big story that harkened back to Iron Man’s very beginning,” Gillen said in February. “Basically, this is a question of Tony discovering something that lies in the past…and fits in with everything we know about the Marvel Universe.”

Here’s the Official Press Release:

You know the origin of Iron Man, but what mysteries surround the Secret Origin of Tony Stark? It’s the biggest story to rock the life of the man behind the suit, and this April, the blockbuster creative team of Kieron Gillen and Dale Eaglesham uncover one of the secrets surrounding Tony’s past in Iron Man #10! But who are the “Stark Seven” and what do they have to do with Iron Man?

You’ve never read an Iron Man story quite like this and no fan can miss out on some of the biggest revelations that will not only impact the life of the Armored Avenger, but the entire Marvel Universe! So what are you waiting for? Head on over to your local comic shop now and reserve a copy of Iron Man #10!

Excited for the Stark Seven?

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Crazy Like a… Eisner Award winning writer Mark Waid and Emmy winning writer/artist Dean Haspiel are teaming up to launch a brand new series…The Fox! Taking place in the Red Circle universe, this exciting creative team will deliver an innovative, action-packed superhero story starring the fabled pulp hero.

This new addition is a shake up to the Red Circle lineup. The previously solicited New Crusaders: Dark Tomorrow will receive a new release date in early 2014. The critically acclaimed New Crusaders series received high praise and year-end “best of” acknowledgements, dubbed “one of the most enjoyable and surprising books on the stands” so you may want to give these a shot.

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What’s New in The New 52? DC Comics introduced a new feature on their official website Wednesday, ‘What’s New in The New 52,’ where editor-in-chief Bob Harras promises the publisher will play “show and tell.”

“New looks, new designs, new villains, new heroes… The New 52 is about trumping expectations and keeping readers on their toes. Every week, you’ll get a glimpse of that here,” wrote Harras.

The second installment of the feature rolled out Thursday and it features a character design DC refers to as “Joker’s Daughter?!”. “Something evil lurks under Gotham City and it wears the Joker’s face,” is the only text accompanying the headline and image.

We also got out first look at Relic. A new villain with the ancient-sounding name appeared as designed by incoming Green Lantern artist Billy Tan.

What do you think of this new feature of revealing characters? Thoughts on the Joker’s Daughter and Relic?

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TV VS Comics! Which would you want to work in? It’s not unusual for a TV writer to dabble in comic books, but Kevin Shinick is loving the comic book world! If you’re a fan of Robot Chicken or Cartoon Network’s MAD than you can thank Shinick’s writing and creative flow. He made his comic book debut in 2009 with a story in a Batman 80-Page Giant, and last fall wrote a two-part story in Avenging Spider-Man featuring Deadpool and the Hypno-Hustler.

Yes. Hypno-Hustler.

But starting in July, he’s writing his highest-profile story to date, five-issue miniseries Superior Carnage, illustrated by Stephen Segovia. As the title implies, it ties into the current Superior Spider-Man branding and continuity, while also offering a similarly altered version of the symbiote-powered villain.

Shinick talked to Newsarama about the project saying, “When Steve Wacker called, and said, “I’d like you to do this miniseries,” I was all on board for it. It was an exciting project, and also a challenge, I thought. I like Carnage, but he’s got his thing, and we know him for what he is. I was reading “Minimum Carnage,” and at the end of that, he’s essentially lobotomized. On one hand I thought, “He’s lobotomized, now what am I going to do with him?” On the other hand, I thought, “This is a clean slate.”

If I can, I always want to try and bring something new to anything that I approach. Of course, it’s going to be my approach, so it’s going to be new, but also something for the reader. I wanted to come up with a way that I can say, “You’re going to see Carnage like you’ve never seen him before, and experience him in a way you’ve never experienced before,” and mean it. If we’re going to do this, I really wanted it to be something new, and since he is lobotomized, start from scratch.

I came up with this idea that I thought would be really great, and then Steve jumped on board — how the Avengers took Venom and made him Agent Venom, I like how the villain world is all of a sudden like, “Screw that, we’re going to take someone who was even more badass, and make him even more wicked,” and make him, not a slave to the villain world, but another agent of evil. Stephen [Segovia] and I have been having a fun time coming up with what this new look is going to be. So I can truly say it’s a Carnage you’ve never seen before.”

What do you think of this new Carnage project?

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Do YOU want to be a reviewer for COMICS 411? Send me an email at to find out how! Take it away, Jonathan Foye and RobF!

Daredevil Issue 25 Review

By Jonathan Foye

With only some 22 pages to work with, comic books “done right” are a blink read, an exercise in brevity. If an author and his artists hit the perfect balance between exposition and action, while maintaining a high pace, the reader is constantly left wanting more.

Daredevil issue 25 is an example of one such title.This month, a new villain, clad in the ring robes belonging to Daredevil’s dead father, attacks. This mysterious figure, it turns out, has a radar sense of his own,and works for whoever is behind Murdock’s recent issues.

Series writer Mark Waid seamlessly weaves Daredevil’s ongoing issues—the mysterious force messing with Murdock’s life, and Foggy Nelson’s cancer battle—with a breakneck-speed battle. Along the way, there arepoignant, yet hilarious flashbacks to Daredevil’s early training at the hands of The Stick, and some of the most interesting uses of Murdock’s radar sense yet.

Waid’s Irredeemable co-contributor Chris Samnee continues his bold creativity on pencils and inks. This issue serves as a perfect demonstration of how an artist may experiment with page layouts, without ever sacrificing storytelling. The extended fight scene between Daredevil and his new antagonist is enthralling; the battle moves through the pages, with the characters engaging in exciting and unpredictable warfare never too cluttered to follow.As per usual, Javier Rodrigez’s bold colours mesh perfectly with Samnee’s work. With the news that Rodrigez will provide pencils for July’s issues 28 and 29, one expects to see him garner yet more praise.

While it is hard to find fault with a near-perfect issue, the ending falls somewhat flat, and readers expecting to see who exactly is behind Murdock’s woes will be disappointed; that revelation is reserved for next month’s double-sized special.The problem with a series like Daredevil, however, is also its strength; the next issue can’t arrive soon enough.

Verdict: 9 out of 10

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Superior Spider-Man Issue 8

By RobF

If you haven’t been reading Superior Spider-Man you are truly missing out. Dan Slott and Co have taken an old idea and put an original and interesting spin on it. With that being said I think this issue is a misstep along the path of greatness.

It starts out with the Avengers attacking Spider-Man for refusing their request to undergo some tests to explain his recent behavior. They subdue him and when the testing is complete
they determine he is not under any type of mind control. With that behind him Spider-Man can then focus on finding his stolen Neurolitic scanner and Cardiac.

They battle until Spidey finds out why Caridac stole the “magic helmet”. It turns out as Dr. Octopus he was the cause of this little girls malady and this helmet is the only device that can help. Guilt ridden, Spidey agrees to help Cardiac heal the girl, even performing the surgery himself. The story ends with Spidey/Doc Ock using the scanner to find the remain piece of Peter Parker so he can perform what he refers to as a “Parker-Ectomy”.

My main problem with this issue is the Avengers. They came off as so concerned over Spidey’s behavior but after running a few tests they deemed him ok and moved on. It seemed very slipshod to me, with all the resources at their disposal. No Dr.Strange? No psychics? And for all the testing they did how could they not see an anomaly in a brain scan?

In a related issue, the greatest superhero team is being fooled, but Carlie is now sure the man swinging through the world isn’t Spider-Man. Really? The Avengers know Parker’s identity, they’ve been through hell with him, why wouldn’t they sense it?

I have never been a fan of Humberto Ramos’ art and nothing up to this point has changed my mind. I don’t like the angular faces and slightly overblown sense of action. My dislike of the art in no way affects my overall enjoyment of this story arc.

Overall not a great issue but in no way am I abandoning this series. I just think some opportunities were lost in relation to plot. I look forward to where it goes next.

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What do we have to look forward to? Here’s a grab bag of coming attractions! Which one are you most excited for?

Teen Titans #19 A very cool storyline is building that asks the question, “Which new member of the Teen Titans reveals his true colors?”

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Jupiter’s Legacy #1 Wow. Don’t let this one pass you by! A huge comic-book event for 2013 from creators Mark Millar and Frank Quitely. The world’s greatest heroes have grown old and their legacy is a poisonous one to the children who will never live up to their remarkable parents. An intriguing story with great art! How can you lose?

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Cable and X-Force #8 Things keep getting worse for Cable and his team and they try to prevent his visions from coming true. Cable’s been having some crazy visions lately. Bad things are coming and he and his X-Force team are trying to prevent them. The problem is when they do, the results make them look bad. Cable X-Force #8, from writer Dennis Hopeless and artist Salvador Larroca has a lot packed in. After releasing an intergalactic war criminal from the Raft in an attempt to avoid the death of six million people, Cable and his team rush off into space to face down an Armada. But will these actions bring them toe-to-toe with the pursuers bearing down on their trail—the Uncanny Avengers?

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Cosplay. It seems like the number of people who love to dress up as their favorite superhero for conventions, comic-cons, and other events has become acceptable in culture because I see it everywhere! Which is awesome! Not only does it open doors but it gives people who normally wouldn’t be interested in comic books an angle.

And who doesn’t love the amazing female cosplayers?

What are your thoughts on cosplay?

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Do you have a web comic that you want me to push? Send it my way or mention it in the comments so I can take a look and share!

From the mind of Joel Watson comes HijiNKS Ensue HijiNKS Ensue is easy to get into because it doesn’t follow a story. It’s a web comic pinata filled with geek pop-culture, SciFi, Technology, Comic Books, Cartoons, 80?s TV, Non 80?s TV, and all around life shots. I’m pretty sure you’ll find something you like and laugh at there.

For more, head over to!

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Before I say GOODBYE!
Follow me on Twitter for random bits, news RT’s, and updates! Only at!

My Hollywood gossip (and anything else!) Hollywood 5 1!

My friend, Leola Bell is up for Playmate of the Year. Leola is an awesome person and she gets my endorsement. Click on the LINK and vote daily! Thanks!

I just interviewed Playboy’s Miss April Jaslyn Ome! A really beautiful Playmate who talks about how her life has changed, her love of sharks, and what catches her interest on TV!

I also caught up with the lovely Heidi Bivens! Heidi is one of the best costume designers in Hollywood and we talked about her latest movie, Spring Breakers!

Are you a fan of 411mania on Facebook? Keep up-to-date on news and contests!

Are you following 411mania on Twitter?

If you have some down time and are looking for a great place for great fun, check out Tiger Flash Games!

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That’s all the time I have. See you next week!


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