Tuesday, October 4, 2011
Mister Terrific Really Isn't All that Terrific or Why Won't DC Let Him Be Great?
First, a word, DC. This 10 pages of comics and 20 pages of ads deal? Yeah, that… that’s not working for me. Please, fix it.
This counts at my third foray into a book from the new 52. Spoilers ahead!
I wanted to read about a character that I wasn’t familiar with from DC to begin a foundation on the character(s) based this reboot. After mulling over a couple of books featuring characters I knew nothing about, I decided on this one. And… I wasn’t too terribly impressed with what I read, but I feel it has potential—if DC will let it be great. And honestly, DC hasn’t been allowing too many of these reboots to be great (says the woman who’s only read 3 books of the new stuff so far).
Mister Terrific had a great base for an awesome story, but the storytelling was weak. An example. In that moment where we’re supposed to feel Michael’s greatest pain, it’s hard to connect with the characters because the scene is so shallow and does nothing to dig up true emotion in the reader. I felt sorry for him, but there was nothing anchoring me to the scene emotionally. There was nothing to make it haunting and gripping to me, so I moved on. I’m not saying they needed to spend much time there, but so much more could’ve been done to make that scene brilliant.
Also, total side note. I’m assuming his wife had just found out she was pregnant—if she was pregnant at all (and not randomly referencing his future son?). So… why are there two caskets at the burial? Did he already have a kid even though he says they’d been trying so long and doesn’t mention a kid? I’m confused?
But anyway, back to my point. This book has the misfortune of that superficial, rambling writing throughout it. The writer never seems to learn how to pick his words to make a captivating read, and the art did nothing to pick up his slack. There are a couple of scenes where there is way too much telling between characters who already know this information. I know the reader needs to know what was told, but there are a million other ways to subtly introduce information that the reader needs.
I did like some things about it, though. I like that he admits to being third string in the smarts department. Don’t we get tired of every superhero being the best at what they do (no Wolverine intended)? It’s such a treat when the find out that they may not be the best, but they are fully capable of finding a solution to their problems. And who can’t love this random “note-to-self” about Doctor Who while he’s trying to evade a baddie, “T-Note: Buy Jamaal season 5 on blu-ray”?
And I know that the race jokes probably made people put on their PC cap, but I thought the line he said about saying “thanks to the black guy” was snarky and well-timed. But the line from the Republican at the party? OVERKILL. And that ridiculous white woman/black woman spat? Even more ridiculous than the lines uttered by the Republican—especially since there was no real build up to that. Second of all, who are these wenches? Why should I care about them? And why was there a ridiculous need to mention that black women can handle things that white women--supposedly--can't even begin to fathom? Cheap. I'm a black woman, and I'm calling it cheap.
Oh wait… I’m supposed to be talking about the things I do like. Unfortunately, that was very little.
Bottom line, this book made it hard to care about the story. What could’ve been a superb comic that combined science and superheroes in an awesome way turned out to be very flat.