28 May 2012

Faster than a DC Bullet: Jessica Jones, Part IV: The Pulse: Secret War

Comic trade paperback, n.pag.
Published 2005 (contents: 2004-05)
Borrowed from the library
Read April 2012
The Pulse: Secret War

Writer: Brian Michael Bendis
Artists: Brent Anderson & Michael Lark
Inker: Stefano Gaudiano
Colorist: Peter Pantazis
Letterer: Cory Petit

I was excited to see that Michael Lark was one of the artists working on the second volume of The Pulse; he was the principal artist on Gotham Central, and judging by that series, his sensibilities ought to match that of Jessica Jones better than Mark Bagley's ever did. And indeed it does, though he's still not Michael Gaydos. (Not really his fault, admittedly.)

However, the story of Secret War might be better than that of Thin Air, but it still doesn't feel right. We get here The Pulse's perspective on a strange series of attacks across New York, and Jessica Jones is desperate when Luke Cage is kidnapped. If I bought into their relationship, I might care more. A lot of details here are purposefully withheld-- the reporters at The Pulse never find out what's going on, and so neither do we. While this fits the powerless ethos of the Alias stories, something about this never quite clicks. Maybe it's because Jessica is too close to the center of the superhero universe? Wolverine shows up for some reason.

The Pulse has a potentially interesting premise, but it keeps on squandering it. These are neither good superhero stories nor good inversions of superhero stories, leaving you with pretty much nothing.

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