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Comic Book News

Review: Batman #1 (Snyder & Capullo)

Snyder and Capullo step up to the plate and swing for the fences in the Dark Knight's second solo book of the New 52. A totally different vibe than Tony Daniels' take on Detective, where Bruce Wayne is bathed in the shadow of the Bat, Snyder lets Bruce take center stage throughout most of the […]

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Comic Book News

Review: Red Hood and the Outlaws #1 (Lobdell & Rocafort)

If you are ready to be blown away by an exciting, action-packed, even somewhat sexy book — then you have to pick up Lobdell and Rocafort's Red Hood and the Outlaws! I am calling this one the sleeper hit of week three! Lower orders and less hype than most of the others, can't keep this book

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Comic Book News Reviews

Review: Batwoman #1

Batwoman #1 is another volume of “The New 52” that is clearly less of a reset and more of a business-as-usual day in the complex life of Kate Kane, the Batwoman who conceals her pale complexion and fire engine red hair with a costume that reveals her pale complexion and highlights her red hair even

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Comic Book News Reviews

Review: Deathstroke #1 (Higgins & Bennet)

The “New 52” is an attempt to renew, refresh and perhaps even reboot several major characters within the DC Universe to reconnect with fans, receive new ones, rejuvenate sales and rethink the overall fictional routines of super people in the comic book medium.  It’s not exactly wiping the slate clean, but it may seem like

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Comic Book News

Review: Suicide Squad #1 (Glass & Dallocchio)

Okay, Suicide Squad has been re-released more times than Batman has trounced the Joker! And every time the premise is the same thing — bad guys get picked by the government, usually Amanda Haller, to do dirty jobs no one else will. And if they just so happen to die in the line of duty —

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Comic Book News

Review: Grifter #1 (Edmonson & CAFU)

Though there are some heavy hitters in the second week of the New 52, this is the one that I have been most looking forward to. Grifter's introduction to the DCnU is finally here and I am ecstatic! I have read Grifter stories for years, from WildC.A.T.'s to the solo series, all the way to Point

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Comic Book News

Review: Green Arrow #1 (Krul & Jurgens)

Well, I knew that with changes there will inevitably be some disappointment. But I didn't think it would with this magnitude and from one of my favorite DC writers — J.T. Krul. Where to begin? Okay, I am not going to pull any punches, it's not fair to you nor me at this point and

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Comic Book News

Review: Batman: Detective Comics #1 (Daniel)

The Joker kills without prejudice. No man, woman or child is safe while the deranged murderer prowls the streets of Gotham. That's why one man takes to the streets, nightly stalking this devil, so that one day — Gotham's pain can be washed away. Besides the Flashpoint tie-in, which was AMAZING, I haven't read a

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Comic Book News

Review: Men Of War #1 (Brandon & Derenick)

After all these years — Sgt. Rock is back! But as with all the New 52 titles, it's not the Rock my daddy grew up with! Modern military, modern weapons and a modern tale await you as you wade through the most "human" of tales to emerge from the DCnU. We see Rock as a

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Comic Book News

Review: Justice League #1

I hold in my hand — the beginning. The new era at DC has emerged from the pages of Flashpoint #5, and I am torn between a feeling of loss and utter excitement. What we knew has changed with the speed of light, and what we are left with is something strangely familiar yet, curiously

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Comic Book News

Review: Flashpoint #5 (of 5)

The end is here and the CBN offices are blown away by the shocking, yet some say — confusing, end to an era of DC comics! Me? I say bring it on! Geoff Johns continual love affair with Barry Allen has turned the DC Universe on it's ear, creating one of the most creative stories

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Comic Book News

Review: Justice Society of America #54

This is it, the last hurrah, the nail in the coffin for the JSA. And I have to admit, I wish my favorite DC team book would have gone out with a bang instead of limping off into that goodnight! In no way do I blame Marc Guggenheim for the way this storyline wraps up.

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Comic Book News

Review: Flashpoint #3 (of 5)

*Warning: Spoilers*   The hair on your arms stand up as the crackle of ion fills the air. There is a storm emerging from the heavens, one that can change the fate of a world with a single bolt of lightning. But the man that awaits this miraculous gift lays broken and dying, his body

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Movie News

Just What The “DOC” Ordered: Drawing The Line At Constantine!

Just What The Doc Ordered

DC Relaunch: Drawing The Line At Constantine

(Editor’s Note: Our latest column to hit Cosmic Book News comes from Chris “DOC” Bushley who will be taking a look at the less “cosmic” characters in comic books with his “Just What The Doc Ordered”  OPED column!)

By Chris “DOC” Bushley

 

(That’s right, no matter what they called Keanu Reeves horrible movie, it’s pronounced “kon-stuhn-tahyn!” Not teen!)

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JUSTICE LEAGUE DARK #1
The DOC draws the line with Constantine!

So, how many of you out there knew who that cigarette smoking, blonde haired fellow was at the end of Brightest Day? Not many I am assuming, considering the CBN offices were at a fifty-fifty split! Everyone was either so caught up with the fact Swamp Thing was the White Lantern (is he still?–who knows!) or the horrible conclusion of a mediocre storyline to even notice that Vertigo’s longest running book was sending over their star – John Constantine! But who can blame fans for not immediately recognizing Mr. Hellblazer himself, it’s not as if everyone is a huge Alan Moore Swamp Thing fan nor was there any real hype about what was going on. It was supposed to be shocking, and it was to Hellblazer fans like myself, but it was shocking for all the wrong reasons! It was shocking because John Constantine doesn’t belong in the normal DCU and especially not on some magic super team, Justice League Dark – really?! The only “team” John Constantine was ever on was in 1999, as a member of the “Trenchcoat Brigade,” which consisted of Phantom Stranger, Mister E and Dr. Occult. It was a Vertigo mini series that made sense for the characters to all be thrown together, and at the end – they all went their separate ways! No secret team handshake, snazzy logos or magical headquarters to hang out in. Just four guys, that never trusted each other, thrust together for a single goal.

But a better reason as to why good ol’ Johnny doesn’t belong in the world of super teams, is at the core of the character, he is a genuine bastard! At the end of the day, when the doors of Hell have been shut and the dust has settled, only one thing matters to Mr. Constantine – his own survival. Though he has had plenty of friends and family over the years that have cared for him, and he in return, no one is as important to John Constantine as himself. Not that I’m saying he purposely goes out of his way to undermine those that have asked for his help, it just always seems to go that way. And each time it does, it further enriches the character, perfecting the art of self loathing to a honed edge while doing everything he can to live one more day. If he fails at saving his friends and family, what chance do a bunch of magic welding freaks stand against his skills of self preservation?

But the change that will hurt Constantine the most is the neutering of the character and his tales to fit into the DC proper. No other book at DC delves into such an array of poignant yet controversial issues the way Hellblazer does! From the very beginning, it has been a book not only revolving around such a thought provoking character, but one that pushed the limits on current political, social and economic issues. It has tackled everything from the affects of nuclear and chemical warfare, civil unrest in South Africa, the hell and splendor of America’s prison system, racism in the U.K., the hatred between both young and old, poor and wealthy, abortion, murder, gang violence, alcoholism, rape, bestiality, black magic and the bastardization of the Royal family! And let’s not forget challenging every nuance of the Catholic religion so much, that it makes Dan Brown look like the thirteenth apostle! From the Devil himself being the main villain to a conversation with a homeless man that turns out to be a de-winged Michael, Hellblazer has always challenged itself to be unique and controversial. And a lot of that controversy occurred during Garth Ennis’ amazing run, where we find out exactly how The Virgin Mary conceived a child; it wasn’t quite as immaculate as I remember from Catholic school! 

It’s not just the smoking, drinking, sex, and vulgarity that makes up John Constantine; it is the aspect of making the reader actually think about issues in the real world – things that matter and view points that may have never been perceived before. This above all else is what will have to be lost in order to conform to the regulations of a “proper” DC book. So let’s call Justice League Dark Johnny, the now defunct moniker of Johnny DC and the original Vertigo badass by his proper name – Constantine! I have drawn a line as well, and I choose to stay on the side where the shadows hide secrets we don’t want to know. A place where wives make deals with succubi to take care of cheating husbands, where technology sometimes eats your soul and where an Englishman just might be able to save you if you don’t get in his way! 

Choose Vertigo, I know Alan Moore’s head is spinning over this announcement – so yours should, too!

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Comic Book News

Review: Flashpoint: Citizen Cold #1

The crowd sends up a resounding cheer of, “Cold Snap, Cold Snap!” as Central City’s preeminent hero slides his way onto the scene. It seems Mr. Freeze has tread too far from Gotham this time, and will be taken down, once and for all, by one of the nation’s most beloved heroes – Citizen Cold!

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Comic Book News

Review: Flashpoint #2 (of 5)

Thomas Wayne tells Barry Allen,” They say lightning never strikes the same place twice.” For once I would have to say the mighty Batman is wrong! Lightning most definitely has struck again, but it’s within the pages of Geoff Johns Flashpoint that you will see this phenomenon! Though there is A LOT going on in

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Comic Book News

Review: Green Lantern Corps #60

Bedard and Kirkham hold nothing back, this is THE quintessential Lantern book! You have read the first seven issues of War Of The Green Lanterns — now read the best!  A duo of Earth Lanterns, Kyle Rayner and John Stewart, are steadfast on their mission to break Mogo free from the clutches of the fearsome

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