Thursday, June 7, 2012

Pull List Review: Animal Man #10

For a while now, Animal Man has been sort of dragging its feet, and while in some ways this issue feels the same, it actually has a few big moments of forward progression. Cliff being taken in by the Rot and Buddy being promised a new body are the biggest two, but also Constantine alluding to a "Big Green Guy" who apparently isn't Swamp Thing felt like the seeding of significant things to come. So even though it's true that the character themselves didn't move very far, the story is beginning to pick up at least a little steam once again.

Ellen Baker continues to be a force against this progress, unfortunately, which is beginning to make me weary. I understand Jeff Lemire is giving her a strong and solid viewpoint, and it's a realistic and fully legitimate one, but she is starting to be a little bit of a one-note character, which is no fun for anyone, readers or cast.

Steve Pugh does much better and more consistent work when drawing the Red than the "real" world. His Zatanna, especially, never looked quite the same in any two panels, and both Xanadu and Constantine shifted, too. He draws the Baker family well, though, and the moment where Cliff is confronted by the Hunter in Buddy's body was actually a standout page, as unsettling for us as it was comforting for Cliff.

The rest of the really impressive artwork comes from the scenes in the Red, though. The Totems and their castle looked amazing, but it was the Warrior Class characters who ultimately stole the show. Maybe it's just because they remind me of some of my favorite Dungeons & Dragons monsters, but that panel where they charge down from the sky was by far my favorite of the issue. Pugh may not be quite as strong as Travel Foreman overall, but he's still an excellent fit for this title, so long as he can keep building the world of the Red.

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