Journey Into Mystery 650 is the conclusion to a so-so-Sif story but Valerio Schitti on art is the reason for the buy. Schitti's stuff ain't shitty (sorry, couldn't not do it), far from it. Kathryn Immonen wrote this but Schitti's stuff is Stuart Immonen-ish in its energy and style and underrated nature because Immonen was the most underrated penciler on the planet til he blew up Fear Itself and All New X-Men (though he was honestly the coolest kid on the block since Nextwave). Bold, fun art from someone who oughtta be on the marquis and if he continues pulling out art this good he will be.
Garth Ennis had four great comics this week, all of them war comics in some fashion, and there is no-one in the world better at war comics than Ennis.
Ennis is still the best writer to utilize the playground he created in Crossed in this week's Crossed Badlands 26. The moral quandaries of a completely screwed post-apocalyptic world in his always entertaining and thoughtful parable about man's inhumanity to man get equal play to the true horror of the situation and the visceral thrill of some really, really twisted imagery. The first double page splash had me frankly guffawing Barracuda style, the horror that followed left me quiet like an awkward silence in a crowded elevator. What's left of an English military unit have decided to bombard populated areas with biological weapons, because logically this would wipe out the Crossed. It would take out any uninfected humans, too, but that's the cost of war. The characters do not come to this plan lightly, and the arguments and counterarguments - more moral murkiness - are presented equally. We know how the characters feel, at this point in his creative career we have a pretty good inkling of what Ennis feels, but he never tells the reader what to feel and the answers are never easy. (And the art by whomever Avatar keeps locked in their basement is quite crappy but if it ain't Jacen Burrows on your Avatar comics this week you're playing Russian Roulette with your eyes.)
Red Team 2 revels in uneasy answers, though counterarguments are less as the characters are more sure of their righteousness if not the really the legality of their actions - and we know damn well where Ennis comes down here. A group of elite NYPD have taken it upon themselves to, in essence, be team Punisher. But unlike the Punisher they are more concise with the vengeance the mete out, and work out in great detail where and how they will do what they do. There is a cold, immutable logic to what they are doing. We're not troubled by their actions because their targets have it coming, but when we put ourselves in their shoes could we do the same?
Elsewhere, Guardians of the Galaxy 1 was just alright, BPRD: Vampire 1 had Moon & Ba being creepy wonderful moody MOON AND BA (muito bom!), and Age of Ultron 3 made me think of Are You My Mother and how I just wanted the comet from Asterios Polyp to show up and put both out of my misery. At least we'll always have Alias and Fun Home to remind us of what great comics can be.