GeekMom: Comic Book Corner — X-Files, An Independent Detective, and a Grim Future for DC

Panel from Lost and Found: An Amy Devlin Mystery, via Oni Press
Panel from Lost and Found: An Amy Devlin Mystery, via Oni Press.

Happy Comic Release Day! Welcome to another installment of GeekMom Comic Book Corner, where we recap our adventures in comics for the week. This week, Corrina gives us a look into the grim future of DC Comics, while Sophie continues her journey through The X-Files.

Corrina Lawson— 

Lost and Found: Amy Devlin Mysteries Vol 3 written by Christina Weir, Nunzio DeFilippis, and T.J. Kirsch

I’ve been searching more afield from the big two of DC and Marvel for my comic fix and found this private detective story among the latest offerings from the independent Oni Press.

From the cover, I expected a badass female private eye and a noir-like story. What I got was an enjoyable mystery starring a very modern sleuth, Amy Devlin, who relies on her intelligence rather than any physical force, and has the normal problems of 20-somethings: significant other trouble, parent trouble, and just making enough money trouble.

The mystery surrounds the hidden past of a runaway who asks Amy for help, but (naturally) can’t afford to pay. From there, Amy gets involved in investigating the past sins of a very Scientology-like group. It’s involving, but complicated. I read it on my iPad and I wished several times for a physical copy, so I could flip back and refresh my memory of who was what to whom. This is volume three of Amy’s stories. I’m going to look for the other two.

Futures End #4 written by Brian Azzarello, Keith Giffen, Dan Jurgens, Jeff Lemire, Aaron Lopresti, and Art Thibert

All you need to know about the current direction of DC Comics is summed up in the appearance of a scarred, grim, gritty, and now-limb-chopping happy Amethyst, Princess of Gemworld. Once Amethyst headlined a fun fantasy, then she was revived as a more young adult heir to magic, and now she’s a grim uber-warrior. This is not a good progression.

It’s true, Amethyst’s revival didn’t last long because of low sales, but that’s more due to a marketing failure of bringing possible new readers to DC than the book itself. Other stuff happens in this fourth installment of a year-long weekly series that’s all about how the DCU became grim (well, even grimmer) in five years. Batman Beyond, the main star of the story, doesn’t really appear, but a bearded Tim Drake does with a new girlfriend—who you just know is going to die horribly. That’s probably because everyone seems to have died horribly so far, especially the disguised random aliens that Grifter is hell-bent on killing and whose deaths are depicted in the most gory fashion. There’s so much talent being wasted on this series, which is quite obviously not for me.

Nightwing #30 written by Tim Seeley, Tom King, Javier Garron, Jorge Lucas, Mikel Janin, and Guillermo Ortego

This is the last issue of the rebooted Nightwing series and takes place after the events of Forever Evil, in which Dick Grayson died, if only for a few minutes. So the point of this tale is to set up the status quo where Dick is still presumed dead, but is a spy able to become “whoever you want me to be” for an international espionage agency. The reasoning of Dick staying dead is…well, it all depends on him beating up Batman and proving, well, I’m not sure. That he can stop people from killing him in the future? That he can keep secrets? None of the reasons are very convincing. In any case, Dick agrees to stay dead. Stay tuned for the new adventures of Grayson, secret agent in his new book.

There’s a short glimpse of what that might be and it looks more promising than the end of this one was, especially with the re-appearance of Helena Bertinelli, once the Huntress and now, apparently, an international spy. She’s also African-American rather than white, a nice change to a more diverse Gotham.

Batman #31 written by Scott Snyder, Greg Capullo, and Danny Miki

Futures End is set five years in the future. Nightwing is set in the DC present. Batman, still doing a Year Zero story, is four years in the past. Riddler has taken over Gotham, which is overgrown with greenery and has the citizens cowed because no one can pose a riddle that the criminal mastermind can’t answer. If you ask wrong, you die. If you don’t ask wrong, well, you might die anyway. Batman tries posing the riddle this issue, but the real goal is to find Riddler’s location. Batman fights lions (presumably escaped from the Gotham Zoo) in an attempt to stall Riddler, while Jim Gordon and Lucius Fox track Riddler’s electronic signature. The lions lose, by the way, and it seems that Batman’s team is finally on their way to winning one when Year Zero ends. I hope they call Poison Ivy as caretaker for all that extra greenery.

Sophie Brown — The X-Files Season 10 #12 written by Joe Harris and art by Matthew Dow Smith and Francesco Francavilla

The X-Files Season 10 #12  Image IDW Publishing
The X-Files Season 10 #12 Image IDW Publishing

Previously on The X-Files… Last month, we saw the return of Alex Krycek; hardly a surprise given that previews gave that particular plot point away months ago, but a welcome return of a fan favorite nonetheless. Season 10 #12 gives everyone’s favorite backstabbing mercenary-for-hire (OK, besides Jayne Cobb) the opportunity to speak, and what he has to say makes for interesting reading.

Unlike the other characters who have returned from the dead at the hands of so-far mysterious figures, Krycek is actually talking, but it’s what he’s not saying that’s really interesting. We’ve known for some time that these “Returnees” are being kept in the dark themselves, but the extent of that is really hammered home by Krycek. He doesn’t know what’s going on, but we do quickly establish one thing: he’s afraid. Whatever “they” did to get him back, Krycek doesn’t want to end up back in their hands. He wants answers just like Mulder, but unlike the Smoking Man and Mr X who seem more-or-less content to work with their new bosses, Krycek is back to his old self and only willing to work with those who can get him what he wants. This time, that’s answers.

Sadly, Krycek doesn’t get much time to seek his truths. Pretty soon, we’re back with Mulder and Scully, who are both in the process of causing international incidents. That kind of behavior is to be expected of Mulder, but the fact that Scully manages to find herself in the middle as well is testament to how much she has learned from him over the years. The issue ends with scenes reminiscent of Season Six’s “Dreamland,” with Mulder and Scully once again tearing up the desert in a rented car on the hunt for UFOs. Only this time rather than a body-swap, one of our intrepid agents goes missing yet again.

I get that this was a trope on the show, but I hope that not every mythology arc is going to involve one or the other being mysteriously kidnapped part way through. As any parent can tell you, repetition does have a tendency of becoming old, fast.

However, everything has not been as it seems, as the big reveal at the end of the issue shows us. We were introduced to Mulder and Scully’s new supervisor A.D. Morales early in Season 10, but this time out we begin to see a little bit behind the woman now charged with controlling the FBI’s most troublesome agents. Specifically, we get a hint as to who she’s really working for and though again, it’s not the most shocking of revelations, but it certainly changes the way I’ll be viewing upcoming issues.

Looking for something else, readers? Check out this week’s listed books:

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Adventures Of Superman #13
All-Star Western #31
Aquaman #31
Batman #31
Batman Eternal #8
Catwoman #31
Catwoman Vol. 4 Gotham Underground TP
Dead Boy Detectives #6
Fairest Vol. 3 The Return Of The Maharaja TP
Flash #31
Girl Who Played With Fire HC
He-Man And The Masters Of The Universe #13 GM
Injustice Gods Among Us Year Two #5
Justice League Dark #31
Larfleeze #11
New 52 Futures End #4 Weekly Series 
Nightwing #30 Final Issue
Red Lanterns #31
Red Lanterns Vol. 4 Blood Brothers TP
Sandman Overture Special Edition #2
Secret Origins #2 New Series
Shazam Vol. 1 TP
Suicide Squad #30 Final Issue
Superman #31
Tales Of The Batman Carmine Infantino HC
All-New Invaders #5
Avengers #30
Avengers Assemble The Forgeries Of Jealousy TP
Cataclysm The Ultimates’ Last Stand HC
Deadpool #29
Deadpool Vs Carnage #2 (Of 4)
Devil Dinosaur By Jack Kirby The Complete Collection TP
Dexter Down Under #4 (Of 5)
Disney Kingdoms Seekers Of The Weird #5 (Of 5) Final Issue
Fantastic Four #5
Giant-Size Spider-Man #1
Guardians Of The Galaxy #15 GM
Guardians Of The Galaxy All-New X-Men: The Trial Of Jean Grey HC
Inhuman #2 New Series
Iron Man #26
Iron Patriot #3 New Series
Marvel Boy TP
Marvel Firsts The 1980s Vol. 2 TP
Marvel Masterworks The Invincible Iron Man Vol. 3 TP
Marvel Previews #130 (June 2014 For Products On-Sale August 2014)
Marvel Universe Ultimate Spider-Man #26 Kid Friendly
Marvel Universe Ultimate Spider-Man Vol. 6 Digest TP Kid Friendly
Marvel’s Guardians Of The Galaxy Prelude #2 (Of 2)
Mighty Avengers #10
Miracleman Vol. 1 A Dream Of Flying HC
Ms. Marvel #4 New Series
Oz Ozma Of Oz TP Kid Friendly
Revolutionary War TP
She-Hulk #3 New Series
Thanos Annual #1
Thunderbolts #26
Uncanny Avengers #20
Winter Soldier The Bitter March #4 (Of 5)
Wolverine #7
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24 #2 New Series
City The Mind In The Machine #4 (Of 4) Final Issue
Complete Little Orphan Annie Vol. 10 HC
Ghostbusters #16
Godzilla Rulers Of Earth #12
Locke And Key Head Games Deluxe HC
Monster And Madman #1 (Of 3) New Mini Series
My Little Pony Friendship Is Magic #19
Samurai Jack #8 Kid Friendly
Star Trek #33
Star Trek Vol. 2 Operation Annihilate HC
Transformers Robots In Disguise #29
X-Files Season 10 #12 GM
Captain Midnight #11
Captain Midnight Vol. 2 Brave Old World TP
Conan The Avenger #2 New Series
Eerie Archives Vol. 16 HC
ElfQuest The Final Quest #3 New Series
Furious #5 (Of 5) Final Issue
Halo Escalation #6
King Conan The Conqueror #4 (Of 6)
Mass Effect Foundation #11
Massive #23
Mind MGMT #22
Pariah #4 (Of 8)
Resident Alien Vol. 2 The Suicide Blonde TP
Serenity Leaves On The Wind #5 (Of 6)
Sledgehammer 44 Vol. 1 TP
Star Wars #8 (Of 8)(Lucas Draft) Final Issue
Star Wars Legacy II #15
Star Wars Rebel Heist #2 (Of 4)
Tomb Raider #4
Vandroid #4 (Of 5)

Acronym Key: VC = Variant Cover / HC = Hard Cover / TP = Trade Paperback / GM = GeekMom Recommended Reading

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Dakster Sullivan is a network administrator by day and a cosplayer by night. She loves discovering new books to read, tech to play with, and ways to express her herself. She has anxiety and depression and strives to educate others about these invisible illnesses.