A continuation of the Dynamite's Flash Gordon story after the King Collection of miniseries - yes, they issued a 25-issue paperback for RRP £44.99, but even while the issue-trade ratio is very good, it's still feels too much and I'm sceptical of the binding quality, so I skipped it. It does an OK job of getting the reader up to speed, though the art starts off as bad and slowly improves over the course of the story, so not the best of starts.
The big problem is the story's central idea: Dale Arden going to the dark side, "killing" Ming by sending him into the void and taking over from him. The resolution is cheap, last-minute and there's too little in the way of consequence. What happens with the 'demon' manipulating Mandrake was quite unclear too. So, yes, it all pretty much falls apart at the end. I got this for about £9, so half price but £17.99? It ain't worth that. Also, Acker's an OK writer but he's nowhere near Jeff Parker.
Flash Gordon: King's Cross
Hey, guess who's back? More than one return actually, but let's talk about Parker. He clearly likes this material, though Hamm on the art is nowhere near Shaner who did the art for the previous Gordon tale by Parker. This is a fun read, it never takes itself too seriously and it never tries to really dispel the sense that somehow Flash and co will prevail.
Are either book essential? There's nothing here to really match the combo of King's Watch / Flash Gordon that was done a few years back. Of the two, King's Cross is the stronger, but Dynamite need to put better creative teams on this property.
Powers: OHC7: Bureau
Well, here we are, the latest duo of trades, save for the recent hardback of the whatever-volume Powers is now on, in OHC form, so that matches well with the others. So, 7 OHCs, 16 trades - how long is too long? It's a question every long running title has to eventually address or be doomed to decline. Unfortunately, on the evidence of this volume, Bendis and Oeming appear to prefer to duck the question.
The good - the interplay between Bendis and Oeming is good, the rhythms of Bendis' distinctive dialogue works well - it isn't new, but it's always been good, as is the art.
The bad - plots are introduced, developed and then resolved in a very slapdash manner that gives a sense they don't care anymore, but neither do they know how to wrap it up. The final issues suffer from this particularly badly, with revelations coming out of nowhere to sweep certain plot elements off the stage very quickly. Which is a shame because this could have been a far more effective reboot after the apocalypse of OHC6.
If there is ever a OHC8, would I consider it? Perhaps, if it was the same price point as this RRP £24.99 / $29.99 for a 12-issue OHC ain't a bad deal.
This was a fun, Ok read but that isn't really what this book was or ought to be.