Predator 1 (June 1989)

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Cops, gangs and a Predator… sounds like a movie. Oh, wait, it was a movie. Only Mark Verheiden’s Predator came before Predator 2, probably when they thought Schwarzenegger would play his own brother.

But Verheiden sets the story in New York, narrated by a tired detective with a crazy huge partner (the brother of Schwarzenegger’s character from the first movie). They investigate this weird gang war, which has the general from the movie hanging around (oddly unnamed so far), and get into it with their boss.

It feels a little like Robocop in terms of urban dystopia, but Verheiden does do a fair approximation of a decent cop show. The narrator is extremely likable and there are some great lines. Verheiden has his scene pacing down.

Chris Warner’s composition is better than the actual art. There are some interesting transitions between panels and some effective angles.

It’s totally fine stuff.

CREDITS

The Heat; writer, Mark Verheiden; penciller, Chris Warner; inkers, Sam de la Rosa and Randy Emberlin; colorist, Chris Chalenor; letterer, David Jackson; editor, Randy Stradley; publisher, Dark Horse Comics.

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Bloodshot 11 (May 2013)

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I like the way Valiant–or Swierczynski in this case–is handling the Harbinger Wars crossover. He’s using this issue of Bloodshot to flush out the relevant scenes in the main book; it’s expensive if a reader buys all the issues, but it also means it doesn’t have to be expensive. Each piece of the puzzle isn’t integral to getting a story.

As for the story here? There’s not a lot. It’s an all-action issue, though Bloodshot is also arguing with the evil little boy who lives in his head and tells him what to do. The art from Kitson and Gaudiano is so downbeat, the scenes don’t even play goofy.

Speaking of the art, the savage action violence gets a lot of focus here. Swierczynski seems to go for the grossest scenes possible for Bloodshot and he’s regenerative powers.

There’s not much to the comic, but it’s fine.

CREDITS

Writer, Duane Swierczynski; penciller, Barry Kitson; inkers, Stefano Gaudiano and Kitson; colorist, Brian Reber; letterer, Rob Steen; editors, Jody LeHeup and Warren Simons; publisher, Valiant Entertainment.

Ultimate Spider-Man 125 (October 2008)

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I’ll bet the flying guy is Ben Reilly. Maybe. It’d make sense, at least in Ultimate Spider-Man.

Still not getting why Bendis thought he had a story here. Is it an adaptation of the video game or something else? I know the game’s in continuity so is it a sequel? An aside? Does it matter? No, it doesn’t, because Bendis never made Peter getting reattached to the black costume a thing when it obviously should have been a thing.

The whole approach can be filed under “dangers of complicated flashbacks”. It takes place better Kitty, which means before Harry came back, before Nick Fury disappears, but after Gwen died. I’m not reading it and remembering all the clues Bendis put into the series contemporaneously. Because he didn’t.

Even if Bendis didn’t forget he had to tie in to the game, it sure feels like it.

Pointless, but nice art.

CREDITS

Writer, Brian Michael Bendis; penciller, Stuart Immonen; inker, Wade von Grawbadger; colorist, Justin Ponsor; letterer, Cory Petit; editors, Lauren Sankovitch, Lauren Henry, Bill Rosemann and Ralph Macchio; publisher, Marvel Comics.

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