Thursday, July 19, 2007

The Nitpicker #31.

DISCLAIMER (angry creators, please read)

[[WARNING! THIS COLUMN MIGHT CONTAIN SPOILERS!]]

Alright, so I'm back from my vacations... well, I'm still on vacation from work; I have until the 30th off... so, enjoying myself. I am, however, back from the trip I took with the wife and kid. Wife and kid who have already started job and school, so I'll have a week on my own during daytime.

I'll miss them, but I'll catch up on some stuff I had to watch. Believe it or not, I had not been hooked by "Heroes", even though I had the first eleven episodes in a DVD, and I had watched half of the first episode. I finished that episode, and I was hooked. Really good show, not only because of the good plot and acting, but because of the fact that it homes in us comic book geeks with a lot of clichés that make you feel all warm and fuzzy inside.

Well, sorry for rambling, let's get on with this week's nits! Actually, I was going to comment on how awful Star Trek: The Next Generation: The Space Between's ending had been, with more awful character faces, and a rushed plot that felt like it was missing several pages... but never mind...
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"IT DOESN'T COUNT, HE CAME BACK TO LIFE."

TITLE: Countdown.

ISSUE: 43 of 52 (y'know?).

CULPRIT: Paul Dini (head writer) and/or Jimmy Palmiotti & Justin Gray (writers).

NIT-TO-PICK: Page 3, actually, the double spread of pages 3 and 4... Jimmy Olsen says about Bart Allen's wake "(...) public... on a scale I've never witnessed before."

Uhm... Jimmy... what about your pal Superman's funeral?

NIT-O-METER: 6 Bazzars.
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"IT KINDA GROWS ON YOU... THEN IT RECEDES... AND GROWS... AND SO ON..."

TITLE: Countdown.

ISSUE: 43 of 52 (yes, yes...).

CULPRIT: Manuel García and David Lopéz.

NIT-TO-PICK: Soooo... this book's art is so irregular, it makes 52 look like it was done by a single artist. Not only it is irregular, but in this issue, it also sucked ass, to put it in technical terms. Look at these:


Is Ravager holding a dildo? Has Batman been replaced by Dick Tracy villain Prune Face? Is Jay Garrick played an elderly Nicholas Cage? Luckily, it gets kind of better by next issue, and Keith Giffen's first issue doing the layouts is soon, I think.

But that's not the nit, although it is related to the irregularity of the art. Look at Holly Robinson, feeling some deja vu?


Yes, exactly. From left to right, issue 45, with short hair, then issue 44, with long hair, then issue 43, with short hair again. People, please!

NIT-O-METER: 8 Bazzars, due to repetition.
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"I DON'T THINK HE'LL ACTUALLY SAY SOMETHING IMPORTANT..."

TITLE: Countdown.

ISSUE: 43 of 52 (a-yup!).

CULPRIT: Paul Dini (head writer) and/or Jimmy Palmiotti & Justin Gray (writers).

NIT-TO-PICK: Bart Allen's funeral, a funeral like only a Flash (or Superman) can get, and Robin plays a video Bart left him in case he died... but he never watched it before, so he does not know if it reveals anybody's secret id. Good job Robin!

NIT-O-METER: 8 Bazzars.
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"I'VE BEEN USING THAT SAME CREAM THE JOKER USES IN THE BATMAN MOVIE."

TITLE: Countdown.

ISSUE: 43 of 52 (a-yup!).

CULPRIT: Pete Pantazis (colorist), Mike Marts & Mike Carlin (editors) and Jeanine Schaefer & Elisabeth Gehrlein (assistant editors).

NIT-TO-PICK: On page 21, Monarch removes his mask, and his skin is human-colored, not the silver hue of Captain Atom, who supposedly wears the Monarch armor to contain his breached quantum armor, since he can't turn human or he'll die from his injuries.

Mike Carlin confessed in Newsarama: "Yes, folks... It takes four editors to make a color error of such magnitude.", so I'll credit the editors and the colorist.

NIT-O-METER: 8 Bazzars.
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SHE'S SO BADASS SHE BREAKS HER BOOTS KICKING ASS!"

TITLE: Countdown.

ISSUE: 42 of 52 (si!).

CULPRIT: Carlos Magno (penciller).

NIT-TO-PICK: Two issues ago, Mary Marvel's boots have heels, almost stilettos (as you can see in the picture on the left), and this issue the boots have no heels... granted, in issue 44, on some panels, you can't see the heels very well, or you can doubt they're actually there, but in this case, it's very clear they're absent.


NIT-O-METER: 7 Bazzars.
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"THIS ONE HAS ME STUMPED."

TITLE: Countdown.

ISSUE: 42 of 52 (mhm).

CULPRIT: Dan Jurgens (artist) and/or Norm Rapmund (finished art).

NIT-TO-PICK: Look at the image below... on the right, you have Superboy's death from Infinite Crisis #6, and on the left, you have the History Of The Multiverse backup in Countdown, page 25 of the book.


This is like the third time they do this, and the second Jurgens is involved... I'm not gonna talk about the poses, the rips in the uniforms, or the bruises on Superboy's face and body... but this is once more a double nit.

First, and for this entry, it's the right hand. In the original image, it's obvious he lost it, it's a stump... but he has the hand in the retelling?

NIT-O-METER: 10 Bazzars.
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"LEAVE ME ALONE, I'M IN MOURNING!"

TITLE: Countdown.

ISSUE: 42 of 52 (da!).

CULPRIT: Dan Jurgens (artist) and/or Norm Rapmund (finished art), and maybe even David Baron (colorist).

NIT-TO-PICK: Same image shown above, originally, Wonder Girl is depicted in her all red costume, but in the retelling, she wears her jeans and t-shirt costume, which she did not debut until after Infinite Crisis.

NIT-O-METER: 10 Bazzars.
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"ROSES ARE RED, VIOLETS ARE NOT BLUE..."

TITLE: Exiles

ISSUE: 96.

CULPRIT: Wil Quintana (colorist), who I renamed "Will" on column #29. Sorry Wil!

NIT-TO-PICK: No Brecht, I'm not going to bitch about Spider-Man 2099's mask.... but about Psylocke's eyes again. In each and every page you can see them, they're blue, instead of purple, as they should be.

NIT-O-METER: 10 Bazzars, for repeat nit.
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"A.G.A.I.N."

TITLE: Omega Flight.

ISSUE: 4 of 6.

CULPRIT: Andy Schmidt & John Barber (editors) and/or Will Panzo (assistant editor), or whoever writes the recap pages.

NIT-TO-PICK: USAgent no, it's U.S.Agent, I've said it about each issue of this otherwise good book.

NIT-O-METER: 8 Bazzars, it keeps growing.
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"ZOMG! IT'S A KNOCK-OFF!"

TITLE: Omega Flight.

ISSUE: 4 of 6.

CULPRIT: Michael Avon Oeming (writer) and/or Scott Kolins (artist).

NIT-TO-PICK: On page 24, panel one, U.S.Agent's shield rebounds and crumples on Sasquatch's head... yes, Sasquatch is mystically turbocharged and possessed by some evil creature... but a Vibranium shield (like U.S.Agent usually carries) should not crumple on his head.

NIT-O-METER: 6 Bazzars.
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"THE BOOTS DON'T FIT WELL, I KEEP HAVING TO TAKE THEM OFF..."

TITLE: Sub-Mariner V2.

ISSUE: Phil Briones (artist).

CULPRIT:

NIT-TO-PICK: Last issue, Namor dons a costume (thank you for not going around naked), actually a sort of armor, which includes boots, with openings for his ankle-wings.

During this issue, there's no boots on his feet, yet on the preview for the next issue, he's wearing boots again!

NIT-O-METER: 8 Bazzars.
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We barely made it to the 10 nit minimum, in fact, there's only 11 nits up there; which is sad, since this column has the nits gathered over the past two weeks, instead of the usual one. Actually, it's not sad, it's a sign that people are paying more attention to their work...

However, what caught my eye was, and I had to triple check my math to be completely sure, the fact that this week's average was 8.1 Bazzars!!! That's the highest average ever, topping column #20, which had a 7.8 Bazzars average.

Like I said, I triple checked my math, and then I went over the nits again, to see if I could take the rating on some of them down, but I kept wanting to actually up the ratings on some of them, so I left it alone... That's it for now, until next week, I'll be on the outlook for more nits, because (almost) nothing escapes...

THE NITPICKER!

6 comments:

"The Guvnor" Paul C said...

Good stuff as usual man, thanks. Wow there were some pretty ridiculous nits in this weeks column. The only book I had that was mentioned was Omega Flight and you would think they would learn to spell U.S.Agent's name correctly by now.

I don't read DC, but is Countdown really that bad or is it shoddy/sloppy work as it always seems to crop up?

MaGnUs said...

Guvnor, my man, I was begining to miss ya! The U.S.Agent thing makes me believe they just don't care about it, I mean, somebody might have realized it by now in the Bullpen.

Countdown is not bad, artistically it does suffer from lack of cohesivenss (which will change when the Giffen stuff start to appear); and story-wise, it does try to tell too many things at the same time.

Many people dislike it because they expected it to be like 52, when the only thing the two books have in common is the weekly schedule (and well, Giffen soon). 52 was meant to tell the story of the missing year, as you know, and it was a self-contained story, with certain things touching the rest of the DC universe. You could have read 52 and not read anything else, and it was a satyisfying story.

Countdown, on the other hand, has several central plots that branch into the DC universe, while plot points from other books branch into Countdown. It is designed, and it was said so from the start, as a spine to the rest of the DCU, something that's not suppossed to be a self-contained read.

As for the nits, well, not having a single team of writers like 52 had (even though it has a head writer in Paul Dini), and not having Giffen to provide the layouts from the start, will obviously cause problems. Also, continuity-wise, since it ties into what's going on right now in the DCU (as opposed to 52, which lead up and hinted to stories already well underway), it's bound to have some lag or mistakes.

It's been an acceptable read up to now, but only 7 or 8 issues have been released, so it can get better. Still, I hope the sloppy/shoddy work (you know the keywords around here :P) decreases.

Dragon Comics said...

Stop with the U.S.Agent already!
They changed his name!! They update to USAgent. Deal with it.

Roy

MaGnUs said...

No, they haven't change the name, on its own website Marvel still has him as U.S.Agent, so until Marvel, either in story, or as an editorial retcon, says that his name has been changed, I'll keep it up.

Anonymous said...

In the FF #550 you are right, she is not a goddess. But like Dr. Strange, she has an affinity for magic. She comes from a long line of magic users in Kenya, that is why she has the white hair and blue eyes (although in the past it was believed she had those features because she was a mutant). She just has not turned to that part of her heritage yet, although an alternate reality Ororo did in the Magick Limited Series - took place in the 80's.

MaGnUs said...

Anonymous, you're talking about column #44, but this is the section for column #31. See my answer to this at this link.