I've been slacking off on my comic reading as of late, opting instead for repeated viewings of Clone Wars and Vicky Cristina Barcelona (no lie). But I was able to muster the time in my hectic robot schedule to read three comics I'd very much been meaning to from one of my favorite writers, Ed Brubaker.
I was 100% behind Brubaker during his tenure at DC, but lost touch with him when he moved over to Marvel. Not because I didn't like Marvel or anything... But now that I think about it, I can't think of a single reason I didn't start picking up his Marvel books. Maybe I'm just a giant douche-bot.
Anyhow, I picked up Uncanny X-men #500 and #501 as well as Daredevil #109.
Uncanny X-Men #500 & 501 kick off a new era of X-Men that really has me interested. Part of the reason I haven't jumped on board X-Men comics before is that it's so convoluted with continuity and #500 serves as a perfect jumping on point. It has a good recap page that puts you up to speed an a bunch of X-Men continuity that really don't matter. All you need to know is that under the direction of Cyclops and The White Queen, the X-Men have changed their location to San Francisco, in order to turn that city into a haven for what mutants there are left in the world.
What's great about this run is that it's reminiscent in all the right ways of two of my favorite runs of X-Men: The Dark Phoenix Saga and the Grant Morrison run.
There's a group of thugs roaming the streets, brutally attacking mutants. The cool thing about them? They wear masks like all the goons from the Hellfire Club in the Dark Phoenix saga.
It's just really well written stuff. Brubaker (and Matt Fraction, his co-writer on this) has a really good ear for boxes of narration that are simultaneously hard boiled and beautiful. (Praticularly the stuff about Pixie after she stood victim to a savage attack on her life.)
All in all, I think I'm going to keep up with this book and see where it goes.
Moving on to the highlight of my comics pleasure last night:
Dardevil #109 was a rare treat indeed. I haven't read Daredevil with any consistency since Kevin Smith's relaunch (I read the stray issue here and there of Bendis' run, but not a lot) and it's been years since I've read any single issue of Daredevil at all. Which was why this issue really took me off guard.
This book plays to all of Brubakers stregnths. Gritty crime drama, legal maneuvering, Raymond Chandler-like narration and a story that sinks its hooks into you from the get go. This is part 3 of a 4 part arc and I was blown away with how into it I was. This is Brubaker at his best and it makes me sad he isn't working on our favorite Gotham Knight anymore. But this book makes up for that in spades. You see, Matt Murdock is trying to save an innocent mans life. He's on deathrow, and everyone is pretty sure he's innocent, but he's scared to death of telling the truth, the PI Matt Murdock hired to investigate is getting threatened in the name of National Security and the clock is ticking on this mans life.
Daredevil realizes it's a race against time so they try a 3 pronged attack, 1) find out why the government wants this innocent man dead, 2) find the real perpetrator of the crimes he's been convicted of, and 3) follow the money of his finances and see where it leads.
This makes those cop and lawyer shows on TV look like they were written by pre-schoolers. (Which is a case I'll make time and time again that, with those lawyer shows so hot and popular, get guys like Brubaker in on a Daredevil show and introduce the Law and Order and CSI fans to a costumed vigilante. It'll work. Seriously. Read this comic and you'll beleive me.)
Anyhow, after reading this, I was genuinely angered that I haven't been reading it before and will pick up with the Marvel Digital comics free offering that Arse-Bot informed us all about yesterday.
Also, I think I might be adding this to my hold.
(UPDATE: It should be noted and I forgot to mention it, Brubaker is co-writing Daredevil with Greg Rucka, who rounds out the team nicely and has since their days on GCPD)