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Review of The Twelve 6 (3.5 stars) June 26, 2008

Posted by lotrking in Comic Book Reviews.
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Overall rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars

This series really seems to be slowing down, the last few issues have all been the same thing: we learn more about the characters, but nothing major happens. While these characters are extremely interesting, and Straczynski is to be praised for bringing life to one-dimensional sixty-year-old characters, I really wish he advance the story just a bit more. Consider for a moment that this series is half over. We still do not have a villain, no further information has been given on Blue Blade’s foreshadowed death, and Electro is still inactive. So far, this has been all foreshadowing and no “come to pass”ing. If this were LOST, it’d be like getting to the season finale of season three, but knowing nothing more than what had been learned in season one. (In other words, it would have taken three seasons just to open “the hatch.”)

Nonetheless, these characters still save the series from falling apart, because they are so darn fascinating. In this one issue, we see the strength and resilience of Laughing Mask as he fearlessly faces the horrors of prison. We learn the reason that Black Widow isn’t interested in Phantom Reporter may not have to do with her “line of work,” but rather she may not “like boys.” Conversely, Dynamic Man who dropped more than one hint that he may “like boys” stumbles into a gay bar and is extremely offended when its patrons get a bit too playful. We see more foreshadowing as Master Mind Excello calls Phantom Reporter and warns of something ominous on the horizon. Captain Wonder still has yet to cope with his situation, and is lost in his work. Blue Blade’s television acts are being panned. And perhaps the most interesting of all, we finally learn that Rockman’s origin is not how he told it, rather he lived in a mining town which saw a tragedy, killing all of its inhabitants, except him because he gained his powers in the process. The loss of his beloved wife and daughter drove him mad, and caused him to believe his earlier told tale of “Abyssia.” I also have to comment here, in addition to Weston’s continually astounding artwork, I loved how every frame in Rockman’s “true” origin story echoed the artwork from his “imaginary” origin story. Finally, at the very end, Phantom Reporter, experiencing writer’s block for the first time, and frustrated with the fact that he has no powers, decides to once again fight crime and prove himself.

So as you can see, we get more extremely good characterization. I just wish Straczynski would hurry up and move the story forward, and the upcoming publishing delays don’t improve my mood. I’m fairly certain that I’ll just wait to get the last six issues as a TPB. So if you don’t see a review of issue seven here in August, you’ll know why. However, I will continue to review this series at WCBR, regardless of whether or not I continue to buy the individual issues. My recommendation: to anyone who absolutely loves this series, keep picking it up. To anyone who feels it is slowing down, like myself, pick up this issue and wait for 7-12 in TPB. To anyone who is interested in this series, but is not yet reading it, buy 1-6 in TPB when it comes out in September, and 7-12 in TPB when the series is over.




1. Sae - June 26, 2008

Check this out! it seems like something you’d like http://bushleague.tv/2008/06/25/pulp-addiction-week-june-25th/

2. Casual Saturdays: To Return Next Month « LOTRKing’s Comic Book Reviews and Other Random Stuff - July 5, 2008

[…] Saturdays will return next month. Until then, here is a new announcement: seeing as I’ve dropped The Twelve (I’ll get the second TPB for 7-12), I’m picking up Astonishing X-Men. I hadn’t originally […]

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