Comic Book Review – The New Teen Titans Volume 8

The New Teen Titans Volume 8
Reprints Tales of the Teen Titans #49-58
Written by Marv Wolfman & George Perez
Art by George Perez, Eduardo Barretto, Rich Buckler

The wedding of Donna Troy is here, and there is a huge guest list of heroes and family in attendance. There are plenty distractions in the life of the Titans though. Doctor Light returns to menace the team and Wally West returns to help in the fight, though his powers may kill him. Suspicions arise over newest member Joseph and his connections to the mercenary Deathstroke. Jericho and his mother are attacked by the assassin Cheshire and are taken overseas. Deathstroke is put on trial for his crimes and death of Terra which leads to Changeling going rogue and choosing to take justice into his own hands. Former member Lilith meets what appears to be an angel thawed from ancient Antarctic ice. The Teen Titans are being tested to see just how much they can endure.

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Comic Book Review – The New Teen Titans Volume 7

The New Teen Titans Volume 7
Reprints Tales of the Teen Titans #42-48, Annual 3
Written by Marv Wolfman
Art by George Perez and Mice DeCarlo (with Steve Rude, Dick Giordano, and Al Gordon)

Deathstroke the Terminator is ready to make his killing blow on the Teen Titans, finally sending his mole Terra into action against the team. One by one, Cyborg, Changeling, Raven, Starfire, and Wonder Girl are taken out and delivered into the hands of the HIVE. Dick Grayson escapes capture only to run across Adelie Wilson and her mute son Joseph. Adelie is the ex-wife of Deathstroke and reveals the mercenary’s origins as well as the fate of their youngest son Joe. Grayson finds himself at a crossroads and taken on the moniker of Nightwing, joined by Joe Wilson, who as Jericho can transfer his consciousness into the bodies of others. This story is a brand new day in the history of the Titans and a moment that will resonate throughout their entire run and into contemporary comics.

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Comic Book Review – The New Teen Titans Volume 6

The New Teen Titans Volume 6
Reprints The New Teen Titans #35-40, Tales of the Teen Titans #41, Batman and the Outsiders #5
Written by Marv Wolfman (with Mike W. Barr)
Art by George Perez, Romeo Tanghal (with Keith Pollard and Jim Aparo)

The personal lives of the Titans is an ever-changing soap opera of personal conflicts and powerful villains. Cyborg’s potential love Sarah Simms becomes the target of an abusive ex-boyfriend. The team helps out mutant twins Thunder & Lightning uncovering the truth of their parentage. The Fearsome Five stage a jailbreak and this time the Titans need the help of Batman and his Outsiders, which leads to Terra being reunited with her brother Geo-Force. Dick Grayson sets out to learn the secret history of his teammate Donna Troy and help bring her closure about where she came from. Everything comes to a significant turning point when Wally West can no longer handle the ticking time bomb his powers as Kid Flash have become. Moreover, Grayson decides to abandon his identity of Robin forever.

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Comic Book Review – The New Teen Titans Volume 5

The New Teen Titans Volume 5
Reprints The New Teen Titans V1 #28-34, Annual 2
Written by Marv Wolfman & George Perez
Art by George Perez

Everything is boiling over for the Titans. It starts with the arrival of Terra, an earth shaping teen girl who is in some serious trouble. Changeling feels empathy for her and offers and helping hand to get the girl out of from under the thumb of some nasty people. The fallout from the Titans’ Zandia trip hits home when the Brotherhood of Evil arrives in New York seeking revenge. Robin is feeling growing pains as Batman takes on a new ward, Jason Todd. Wally West discovers that every time he uses his powers as Kid Flash, he’s in profound pain. Cyborg’s love interest Sarah appears to be already taken which reinforces his feelings of being a freak. Raven is struggling against growing darkness inside her. All-in-all there are clouds forming overhead which point towards darker days for these youthful heroes.

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Movie Review – Lost in America

Lost in America (1985)
Written by Albert Brooks and Monica Johnson
Directed by Albert Brooks

David and Linda are comfortably ensconced in their Southern California yuppie lifestyle with plans to buy a new home and a Mercedes-Benz. Everything changes when David fails to get an anticipated promotion at work. In a moment of passion, he quits and convinces Linda to join him in “finding themselves.” The plan is to purchase a Winnebago and travel across the United States to the East Coast where they will buy a quaint little house. Maybe it’ll be a farmhouse in Connecticut or lighthouse in Maine. David calculates they have a safety net in the form a nest egg of savings. So the couple sets off, and it doesn’t take long before they encounter their first major obstacle in making their dreams a reality.

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Movie Review – The ‘Burbs

The ‘Burbs (1989)
Written by Dana Olsen
Directed by Joe Dante

The quiet cul-de-sac of Mayfield Place has been shaken up by the arrival of the Klopeks, a reclusive family who has allowed their house and property to fall into decay. Their neighbor, Ray Peterson has the week off from work and has decided to peter around the house which allows him to fall under the influence of his friends Art and Rumsfield. They are convinced that the Klopeks are murderers, Satanists, mad scientists, or some combination of these things. Ray is continuously pulled back down to earth by his wife Carol who implies this isn’t the first time her husband has allowed himself to be carried away with wild fantasies like this. She is determined to convince him the Klopeks are perfectly reasonable people. However, then something strange happens: the homeowner at the end of the street, Walter vanishes without a trace, and all signs point to the Klopeks.

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Comic Book Review – Justice League International Volume 5

Justice League International Volume 5
Reprints Justice League International Annuals #2-3 and Justice League Europe #1-6.
Written by Keith Giffen & J.M. DeMatteis (with William Messner-Loebs)
Art by Bart Sears, Bill Willingham, Mike McKone, & Tim Gula

We open with an earlier tale of the Justice League taking on the classic Batman villain Joker. The Joker has been hired by the dictator of Bialya, Rumaan Harjavti to assassinate the JLI. The collection is capped with a team-up of the two Leagues as they visit their various embassies to get to know the staff and bond. This goes off the rails when they meet an ambassador from KooeyKooeyKooey, a rather industrious island nation that wants the League to make their land a protected embassy. In between these two over-sized annuals, we get the opening arc of the Justice League Europe as they experience an incredibly rough introduction to Paris. A Nazi war criminal dies on their steps and soon after they learn members of the now-defunct Global Guardians are out to get them.

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