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Mojo reviews comics: January 30, 2008

Y the Last Man #60: This is the final issue. There will be no more Yorick Brown. No more Beth(s). No more Dr. Mann. No more 355. No more Ampersand the monkey. I've been following this comic excitedly from day one. I've talked many friends whose only comics experience was Sandman into reading Y. They've all loved it. It's been a beautiful run. It highlights exactly what Vertigo does better than anyone else: long-form, character-driven sci-fi pieces. I'm not going to spoil anything here. No one should have this spoiled. What I will say is that by the end I was crying. I'm crying a bit now, even as I type this. It's my Irish blood; what can I do? Let me just say this: these characters feel real. That's what Brian K Vaughan and Pia Guerra have done here. In the guise of a coming-of-age, sci-fi, post-apocalyptic travelogue epic they have sneakily created some nuanced characters with real emotional resonance.

Ultimate Spider-Man #118: Peter, MJ, Kitty Pryde, that bald guy, the Human Torch, Iceman and MJ's best friend Liz deal with Harry's death by going to the beach and letting themselves act like teenagers for a few hours. It's a nice pause after the relentless Osborn-action of the past issues. The ending scene (and the spoilerific cover) pay cutesy homage to the Spider-Man & His Amazing Friends cartoon of the early 80s. Bendis, when he writes USM, is just on.

New Avengers Annual #2: Contrast the confident, well-paced Bendis of USM with this Bendis. The Avengers Bendis. The flailing, throwing every idea against the wall to see what sticks Bendis. It's fun at times, but the Avengers has been so decompressed across this run that any action at all that moves the plot forward is welcome. Continuity wise, I have no idea where this fits in with One More Day and Messiah Complex and Iron Fist's own series and everything else. The Avengers, like Billy Pilgrim, have become unstuck in time. There are fun moments scattered throughout however, and it's always fun to look at The Hood's army of super-villains and try to name as many as you can (seriously, the Mandrill?). But I have no idea why I keep buying this comic. It's just not that good.