Thursday, September 30, 2010

(Not my) Weekly Pull...

Words and Pictures: Bryan Lee O'Malley

I got this mostly out of curiosity. the movie made some waves and this series of digest sized graphic novels has had a lot of attention for a long time. So I wanted to see what this was all about.
I'm a bit surprised Scott Pilgrim is considered a hero, he's something of a loser. He has no job, owns very little and contributes next to nothing in his personal life.
He's also dating a high school girl but seems to have little interest in being little more than just a friend.
You don't get the whole 'evil ex' thing until a little more than half way through although he does get and email then a letter talking about a fight that he simply ignores because he has something of a short attention span.
I'm sure there isn't much I can say about this that everyone doesn't already know but I will say this: the ONLY thing I didn't like was the digest size format. The art is fun and interesting and suffers from such a small format. The characters are, in terms of this mythical land of Canada, realistic in the way they interact and talk.
It's almost like a slacker version of Strangers in Paradise (I bet THAT comparison has never been made!)
I will be getting the second volume to see how the story goes.

The Long Box #12: Evil Ernie

Words: Brian Pulido
Pictures: Steven Hughes
December 1991-April 1992

Nearing the second year of collecting comics I was still also reading Fangoria Magazine. One issue had a cover blurb about a black and white horror comic book called Evil Ernie from publisher Eternity Comics. I wasn't much for comics outside of Marvel but had something for black and white comics even in those early days so I had to check this out.

This story introduced "Evil" Ernest Fairchild who has issues. His parents beat him horribly yet wonder why he's withdrawn. To cure this 'imbalance' they take him to Dr. Leonard Price head guy at the Clearview Mental Institution. He tries this machine called the Dream Probe in hopes of being able to work out the issues Ernest has. While under the influence of the probe, young Ernest 'meets' Lady Death, who sees in him the potential to be the biggest mass killer of all time. She tells the boy she loves him and by killing dream versions of his parents she explains to him that he can show his love for her by using the rage inside him to kill others.
After the treatment, Price pays a house call and find Ernest has killed his parents. As Price explains it, Ernest killed them at breakfast then went down his block and killed 35 more people. He was finally caught but killed 12 more people AFTER he was caught.
Since then, Price has done everything he could to keep Ernest locked away and has tried to kill him to cure him permanently on a few occasions.

Then along comes Mary Young. She has a NEW Dream Probe called Neurotech which simply removes the urge to kill. She wants to test it on Ernest.
Along with Mary we're introduced to her family, she's the elder sister and watches over her younger sibling the youngest being Billy then Heather and Rick. While they support her efforts Heather has a series of dreams in which 'Evil' Ernie kills everyone including the Young family. She just passes them off as simple dreams.
Mary's efforts are back by the rather sleazy Commissioner Stone who is hoping the success of Neurotech will make him right and famous.

The first issue is told using flashbacks showing Price's failure at curing Ernest and his obvious guilt over it, Evil Ernie's growing relationship with Lady Death and Mary Young's hopes of curing him. It all comes together very well and gives the reader all he or she needs to know to understand the concept of Evil Ernie.

In the second issue the attempt is made and, of course, it fails and gives way to the birth of Evil Ernie, harbinger of mega death. He's charged with one simple task: Kill everyone. The reason? It's the only way he and Lady Death can be together on Earth. We also get the first appearance of Smiley The Psychotic Button and learn that Evil can control the people he kills, zombies he calls his 'Friendz.'

The remaining issues of the first 5-parter cover the attempts to stop Evil's dark reign or terror forever. The body count sky rockets and things get very out of control very fast.
Finally, Evil is stopped, having reached the then current levels of power he controls and the world seems like a safer place.
For now.

So, having re-read this story for the first time in about 10 years I have to say it stands up fairly well. In some places it moves to fast and doesn't seem to have a lot of smooth flow to it but this was the first attempt at a comic book by Brian Pulido and artist Steven Hughes so I give them some space there. And speaking of the art, this is one thing that starts excellently right off the bat. Hughes art is tight and all the characters are fully formed from the first appearance of them all. It's different than the usual way of seeing a character's look evolving as the issues come out.
Overall, this is a story that stands the test of time, especially considering it started out as a small, black and white, independent comic book with a fairly small print count. It's amazing that this simple, 5 part comic book series was the foundation of one of the greatest independent publishers of the 1990's, Chaos! Comics. It introduces concepts that continued to run until the companies end: all villains and no heroes. There are no 'good guys' that will come in and save the people by stopping the monsters. No, the humans are there because we need a body count. But while the story, on the surface, is just about violence there is more. Evil Ernie is doing this because he love Lady Death. What man wouldn't offer the whole world for the woman he loves?

This Just In!

Words: Paul Kupperberg
Pictures: Curt Swan

Obviously we have Superman fighting He-Man in this issue. THAT alone makes this a cool find. But add to that the fact that this was the first comic book appearance of He-Man and the Masters of the Universe and you have a very nice find in the back issue bin of Nostalgia, Ink, my local comic shop.

Weekly Pull...?

Words: Mark Waid
Pictures: Paul Azaceta

Origin of the Species, Part 3! The all out action continues! Spidey is still trying to find a safe place for the baby of Menace and Green Goblin (scary...) and is on the run from Freak, Vulture, Tombestone, Shocker, Mysterio, and one surprise villain!
During this issue we also see the original Rhino show up who has no interest in the kid but is pissed at Spidey over the death of his wife (Amazing Spider-Man #625) and it takes Spidey literally screaming at him to make him see there is something larger going on here.
Another noticeable thing it the strain on Spider-Man, it's really beginning to show here especially when he is told the baby is dead. He just wants ONE thing to go his way, you know? (by the way, the baby isn't dead it was a ruse told to him by 'Harry' to get the baby away from him)

One nice mystery here is who is the man in the shadows talking to Doc Ock?

This is a great story, from the fast paced writing to the art, everything here is coming together very nicely.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

This Just In!

THOR #337
Words and Pictures: Walter Simonson
November 1983

I've never read this book but ever since the character Beta Ray Bill was really brought to my attention by a friend and former co-worker, Dan, I had to admit something...this has ALWAYS been a favorite cover of mine.
So, this week my local comic book store, Nostalgia Ink, is having a Back To School Sale and since back issues are on sale (and I needed to have more than a $10 sale because I was using my card) I decided to look through his recent acquisitions and I came across this for $15.
I figured it's time I owned it and it was one sale but helped me reach the $10 minimum.
Yeah, I was just looking for reasons to buy it, I admit, but come on, look at this cover! It rocks!

Weekly Pulls

Words: Brian Bendis
Pictures: John Romita, Jr.

A good title for this issue would be 'All Hell Breaks Loose!' Because, well, it kind of does.
You have some Avengers in the present fighting all kinds of odd things from Dinosaurs to WWI era fighter planes to Galactus while another group of Avengers goes into the future at the 'request' of Kang to prevent the Next Avengers from destroying everything.
Only...the Next Avengers AREN'T destroying anything, it was just a ruse to get the Avengers to go into the future.
So, the long and the short of it is Kang's mucking about in the time stream has finally destroyed it. Everything is every where it shouldn't be and Ultron is the main reason for it. The Ultron War is what Kang was fighting all this time by taking heroes from different times in an attempt at winning the war. Each time he did, he lost and went and got other heroes. Now all time is screwed and the Avengers have to figure out a way to fix it. Now, we're getting to the meat of this story which is good, I was considering dropping this title.
Also, the Marvel Universe Timeline in this issue was VERY interesting. Especially the part that reads "Galactus Seed"

Words: Jonathan Hickman
Pictures: Steve Epting

Three, Part 1: Okay, so all the stuff that's been happening that didn't seem to make much sense is starting to come together. The new civilizations and the line from #581 "All hope lies in Doom" are all coming together.
This issue serves as a recap of sorts in which Valeria finds Reeds rebuilt bridge which brought him into contact with the Council of Reeds who tasked themselves with solving...Everything but failed when the Celestials showed up and began to kill them all.
Meanwhile the FF are fighting in the High Evolutionary's city in an attempt at preventing their engine from exploding and de-evolving everyone withing a 100 mile radius.

But this all seems to take a backseat to Valeria and her 'quest' to correct her father's mistakes by seeking out the one person who may help her: Her Uncle Doom. Yeah, probably some of the most interesting pages in comics this year: Doom talking to a child that may be smarter than he is and striking a deal to help her father is she restores his brain to its pre-damaged version. Valeria is certainly becoming one of the more interesting characters in this book.
I just wish we had a different artist. Epting is a good artist he just doesn't seem to work well with this book.

Words: Jeff Parker
Pictures: Steve Sanders

Guest Starring Gorilla-Man!
Right, I have no idea who the hell Gorilla-Man is and I really don't care. One thing is for sure, this was the wrong way to follow up the Machine Man issue!
There really isn't much to say here, we have another one shot issue, which this series has been since it began, but while some issues are fun this one just falls flat for the most part.
It's probably because I really have no interest in a talking gorilla.
The only other thing here is this is the final issue I'm picking up for this series. I'm going to switch to getting it in trades which means I can wait a while, volume 3 picks up with #888 which is out next month so I won't be reading this series for another 5 or 6 months.
Now the only thing that bothers me is should I pick up another book to replace it or  just keep the 8 ongoing books I currently have...

Words: Bill Willingham
Pictures: Mark Buckingham

Rose Red, Part 5: She's back! That's right, Rose Red is back and she's taking charge of The Farm! She decides that since SHE runs things then all the garbage Geppetto had been doing, with being 'elected' Mayor of The Farm, among other things, is not valid and not happening.
She puts her foot down there and then picks a new order for things. THIS is the Rose Red I miss, take charge but take no crap.
On the Mister Dark front, Totenkinder has learned there might be one thing to stop him, possibly kill him and end his threat forever. But it won't be easy, good thing she's repowered and even takes on a younger form and older name: Bellflower. She says she's going to fight Mister Dark in a duel, one on one. VERY interesting.
This issue shows that while some may have thought Fables has lost it's punch that it hasn't. While reading this I was reminded why I love this series so much, the dialogue is very strong and the characters are rediscovering themselves after the chaos caused by the Great Fables Crossover.
Oh, and only two issues to go!!

THOR #615
Words: Matt Fraction
Pictures: Pasqual Ferry

With this issue we welcome a new creative team. Fraction has made a name for himself writing Invincible Iron Man and I was eager to see him write something I actually read. Here it is.
Picking up after Siege and the run in with Mephisto we find King Balder questioning his ability to lead the Asgardians, good thing he has Thor for a brother. The Thunderer explains to Balder that recent events are to big for him to take the blame and that he just needs to be a strong King. Wisdom comes from experience is the impression I got from his talk.
While this is going on we see the first attacks on the Nine Worlds. There is a void that must be filled. When Asgard appeared on Midgard (Earth for you DC fans) it left a void in the place where Asgard SHOULD be. This seems to have allowed a race presumably from another realm to start taking over the other 9, by killing everyone and destroying everything. This set up is great because it looks as though Thor and his fellow Asgardians will have to find a way to place Asgard in it's proper place AND defend it, along with Midgard, from these invaders. 
I was hoping Fraction would being a new level of excitement to this series and he seems to have delivered!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Weekly Pulls

Words: Mark Waid
Pictures: Paul Azaceta

Origin Of The Species, Part 2! This could be considered an 'all out action issue.' We have Spider-Man trying to save/protect the baby of Norman Osborn and Lilly Hollister aka Menace, a baby that has pure Goblin blood. That makes this baby very important to one Doctor Octopus who claims the baby can make anything he wants come true. So, to get the kid he 'hires' just about every Spider-Man villain, old and new, to get this kid and that's where the fun starts!
Spidey is able to get the baby away from Doc Ock and tries to take him someplace safe. Only problems are the other villains, like Electro and Sandman trying to get the baby and Spidey not being able to hide anywhere because everyone and their dad has a camera of sorts and no matter where Spidey tries to go he's being filmed which allows the Doc to know where he is. Great story and some very nice action!
Also, I have to say I really enjoy the art for this story.

Words: Brian Clevinger & Lee Black
Pictures: Brian Churilla

The lighter retelling of the legendary Infinity Gauntlet story continues!
With the aid of U.S. Ace, our team of Ms. Marvel, Spider-Man, hulk, Wolverine and Dr. Doom travel to the center of the Milky Way to find out what cased the disappearances of half of the people on earth and punch it. (I have to say this is almost like What If..? Nextwave had fought during the Infinity Gauntlet.
Now, I'm sure some people will STILL be crying about how these characters are acting out of character, for instance when the heroes leave earth there is a 'debate' over should should get shotgun. Doom says "As the only ruler of a sovereign nation to embark upon this journey, DOOM shall take the coveted "shotgun" seat."
Doom: "Doom...will allow this breach of protocol."
Good stuff. If you're familiar with the original story you should really be checking this out. It's the basic story without all the heavy continuity and crossovers, good for introducing your kids to the event, and the art is very light and fun.

Words: Daniel Way
Pictures: Carlo Barberi

You know...I'm really not sure what to say about this issue. It really doesn't make much sense, even for a Deadpool comic.
It starts with him in a gas station/party store trying to buy a microwave burrito with gold (he doesn't have cash) while the Middle Eastern man in a turban says no, he only takes American dollars.
From there we have the man denying he's a terrorist while a group of people show up with the same regenerative powers of DP who want the man, or what he has stored beneath his store: weapons.
After denying he's a terrorist a few more times he admits he is, but only after Steve Rogers shows up with his Secret Avengers, knocks out DP (giving us another pointless flashback).
After the guy admits he was a terrorist, DP shoots him in the head and gets offered a place in the Secret Avengers.
I'm not sure what's going on with this series but there have been to many issues like this lately. Issues that have no real purpose and offer nothing of an overall storyline.
But, at least it was funnier than some recent issues of this series have been.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

The Long Box #11: The Craptacular B-Sides

Words: Brian David-Marshall
Pictures: Brett Weldele
November 2002-January 2003

New Jersey is home to very few heroes. The Toxic Avenger comes to mind but that's about it.
This series seeks to correct a wrong by suggesting heroes can come from all over the place.
The B-Sides consists of Laura Broadbahr AKA Fateball who has a Magic Eight Ball that tells her the answer to any question she asks.
Stuart Welles AKA Mize (it's apparently short for 'demise' which helps in pronouncing it) and he has the ability to speed up the decay of any item and even can effect people. The problem is he doesn't always have control over his powers.
Jesse Metuchen AKA Jughandle who has the ability to leave the time stream which helps him see what others are doing even though they cannot see him.
They are all brought together to be the 'hottest new super team since the New Warriors' by Charley Huckle, he's basically a con man who thinks he can make it rich quick if he managed a super hero team in a city and state that doesn't have many.
Their costumes are bowling shirts and their first meeting is in a bowling alley.

They decide to be heroes for hire...I know that sounds familiar...and their first case leads them to a man who calls himself Doctor Dark, he can solidify light...or really isn't that clear but shadow makes more sense, right? Anyway, they try to take this drunk out and he's to much for them to handle. Fortunately (for them) the Fantastic Four shows up to help but also Reed is concerned about Jughandle's powers, his concern is if he uses them to many times he could end up destroying the fabric of time/space. Of course, kids being kids, they don't like 'the man' telling them what to do but Sue offers Jughandle something to drink which we later find out is something meant to help control his powers and not to damage to the time/space fabric.

After all this the B-Sides get involved in a small part of the Kree/Skrull War...right in new Jersey? Yeah...
So, apparently a Kree living in NJ is mad that his daughter is 'in love' with a Skrull. He goes on a tear and ends up in a diner with two cats in the microwave. Don't worry though, the cats are fine, Skrull are known for taking odd shapes.
So, we end up with the B-Sides actually taking some charge and stopping this from getting out of hand...MORE out of hand and while the FF are figuring things out.

The art is very 90's era independent comics style. Not bad, it's energetic. The covers, though...done my the great Sam Keith, creator of The Maxx. I still remember the first time I saw his art, it was on the cover of the series Marvel Comics Presents when Ghost Rider and Cable were teaming up in that series. I HATED his art on first sight but warmed up to it rather quickly.

This was another series I hadn't read since I finally located the third issue, it took a few years to locate though, and it's an enjoyable series to read. I can defiantly recommend it!

Friday, September 10, 2010

Weekly Pulls

Words: Joe Quesada
Pictures: Paolo Rivera, Joe Quesada, Danny Miki & Richard Isanove

One Moment in Time Concludes! I have to admit, this was a very good conclusion to a very interesting story.
Dr. Strange, Reed Richards and Tony Stark all work together to make the world forget Peter Park is Spider-Man, like they did with the Sentry.
Stark seems to think it's time for the Illuminati to stop messing around with other heroes lives though but agrees to help.
A deal is made and a spell is cast but Peter can't allow MJ to live a lie so he makes it so she is the only person who remembers Parker's secret.
This takes us to One More Day and the fallout of Peter's actions. MJ isn't happy with it, it seems, as she wanted to forget but seems willing to live with it.
Flash to the present and MJ tells Peter that basically they will always be friends but he needs to move on. Find someone else. Personally, this makes me VERY happy because I really didn't like MJ being his 'better half' Loved this story and this issue was actually worth $3.99!

Words: Mark Waid
Pictures: Paul Azaceta

Origin Of The Species, Part 1! Now, with OMIT behind us we can move on!
With the relationship of Peter Parker and Mary Jane set we can move on to, well, a major blow out it seems.
On the Life of Peter Parker Front: He's out of money, living with the room mate from Hell and needs to find a job but after JJJ blackballed him making it impossible for Parker to make money taking pictures. He also has a date with Carlie (who, by the way, I like better than MJ) which is good, he's trying to move forward.
The date becomes 'hanging out' with friends because when Peter shows up we see Carlie talking to Harry and MJ.
Meanwhile...Doctor Octopus has hired virtually all of Spider-Man's enemies to locate and bring to him a certain item with will make their dreams come true, according to the Good Doctor.
The shocker is what the prize is: Some time ago Harry was dating a hot chick who was also the villain Menace. She had taken some of Norman Osborn's goblin potion and became a maniac. After Harry found out, and still professed his love for her, she admitted she was pregnant...with NORMAN'S child! She was captured by Norman's people and hasn't been seen in some time. Now, after the Norman's fall she has escaped and is seeking Harry's help because she's in labor! And it seems the child is what Doc Ock is looking for! Why? Who knows...maybe it has something to do with the kids parents both being Goblins...

Words: Dan Abnett & Andy Lanning
Pictures: Miguel Sepulveda

In a word: DAMN! This is the best event Marvel has had since Annihilation: Conquest!
Last issue, Drax attacked and killed Thanos. Seemed like a very bad thing to do and it was, but not because Thanos was seemingly destroyed, no, he can no longer die, the problem came from Thanos killing Drax, who it turns out is an Avatar of life because of the reasons behind his creation. That death made their location known to the Revengers and their leader Captain Marvel.
On the battle front, Nova leads Beta Ray Bill, Gladiator, The Silver Surfer, Quasar and Ronan on an attack on the main ship of the Revengers and an all out battle ensues.
Surfer cracks and joke, Captain marvel takes out Nova and learns the reason he sought out Namorita. Power levels are discovered when the Cancerverse version of Mar-Vell attacks the Silver Surfer and destroys his surfboard!
This story just keeps getting bigger and better and it tops everything Marvel is putting out right now. If you aren't reading Marvel Cosmic books you need to!

THOR #614
Words: Kieron Gillen
Pictures: Doug Braithwaite

Wow! Thor taking on the Disir and fighting for the realm of Hela while in the realm of Mephisto!
When the smoke cleared and Thor wins, I won't say how, we find out Loki had his hand in more of this than we first knew.
But now, even after all of this is done, where is Loki? Hela says he isn't in her realm and Thor want sot learn more about his current whereabouts.
He learns what he doesn't want to know...
I know I'm being very vague about this but this issue has some very nice twists and turns that I can't say to much about without giving away important points in the story.
Sorry...all I can say is this is a great issue and I cannot wait to see how the upcoming creative team does starting with the next issue!

Saturday, September 04, 2010

The Long Box #10: Bloodstone

Words: Andy Lanning & Dan Abnett
Pictures: Michael Lopez
December 2001-March 2002

Before Nextwave, Else Bloodstone had to learn who she was. Her father, Ulysses Bloodstone, was the premier Monster Hunter of the Marvel Universe. He made his first appearance in Marvel Presents #1 in October 1975.
The story here begins with Elsa and her pregnant mother arriving in America to attend to the now deceased Ulysses Bloodstone. The plan was to sell off his property and return home to England, and do it all without Elsa learning her father's secret.
Else is not happy with being there and expresses it very well. Her mother simply wants to wrap things up but once in the Bloodstone home she begins to remember the plans she and Ulysses had after he planned to retire from monster hunting.

In the first issue we get these elements as well as Elsa discovering some of the secrets of her late father, secrets that her mother doesn't want her to know about. We are also introduced to Mr. Barnabas who seems to like Elsa's mother and Adam, a Frankenstein Monster type guy who knows about Ulysses and what he did. He's the one who begins to explain to Elsa what her father was about and gives her the Bloodstone which gives her some interesting powers.
She also has her first monster fight. With Dracula.

The series progresses with Elsa fighting along with The Living Mummy and, later, Dracula himself. It ends as all good miniseries do, with a cliffhanger where we know more is going to happen we just won't be able to see it.

Naturally, it's very well written.  After all, Abnett and Lanning were the guys who made Rocket Raccoon and the talking tree Groot great characters again. The pacing is nice and it never gets boring. Upon a long overdue second reading I can say this series has lost none of it's charm and has actually got me wanting more Bloodstone. Perhaps something like the Lost Adventures of Bloodstone oneshot or miniseries, something to fill in the gap between this and when she first joined H.A.T.E and the Nextwave Squad.

On the art end, no complaints there either. For a book that is nearly 10 years old the look hasn't faded at all. This series could have easily been put out today and looked just as good. I found I had no problem getting back into it.
Even the covers are fun to look at. 

A few things that I noticed appears as though Elsa isn't really British as she was depicted to be in Nextwave. I got the impression she was an American who was raised in England. she was there long enough to pick up the slang and probably the accent, she mentions this in the first issue. Also, Elsa is blond here whereas in the Nextwave she is a red head.

Overall though...Bloodstone has great re-read value to it. Sometimes you go back and re-read something you loved years ago and find you have to force yourself to read it and you end up questioning yourself as to what the hell you liked about it in the first place. Not true for this mini. I actually think I will re-read this again in a year or so.
It's just a four parter and has never, to my knowledge, been collected in a trade. If you're interested in it you should be able to find them fairly cheap and the character was never a top tier one. Sad to, because something like this should take off.

Thursday, September 02, 2010

Weekly Pulls (The Pull List)

Words: Chris Roberson
Pictures: Michael Allred

Five issues in and the story is still very compelling and getting better.
A new mystery character is introduced, we know she digs things because she has a shovel. That's all we know.
Gwen is coming to terms with the things she learned last issue and some hint that she may not have to eat brains once a month come to light...question is will she be willing to test the theory?
She also learns that the man she has a crush on is a monster hunter and would likely kill her if he knew she was a zombie.
On the vampire front, seems you can kill them to the point where they can't come back. But you should never leave your the key to your hotel room at the scene because vampire chicks are very mean when they are pissed.
A very good issue all told but the best part of this issue is the cover. Look at that gorgeous cover! In a way is reminds me of one of my favorite Tales From The Crypt covers (Feb-March 1952).
I'm sure it has nothing to do with the TFTC cover but as a fan of I, Zombie and a HUGE fan of the legendary EC Comics I would like to think that this is something of an homage to this great line of comics.
Nothing makes me happier than to find some kind of connection, even one as slim as this, between an all time favorite and a new favorite!

Words: Bill Willingham & Matthew Sturgis
Pictures: Tony Akins

The great dragon hunt begins!
This is going to be great, we have the Three Sisters looking for the book with the Original Stories in them and all they know is a Dragon has them.
Jack Frost has been hired to kill a dragon and has decided to do just that before he retires.
The only thing they don't know is they are all after the same Dragon: Jack Horner!
Also in this issue...we finally find out who the father of the mystery baby is. the good news is it doesn't seem to be Mr. Revise reborn but I would have never thought it was Sam's kid! Although after looking closer at last issue's cover I noticed the baby wasn't of the Caucasian persuasion. And Sam did come to mind because he was the only black character I recall who was of any importance to the Fables Universe. Plus, I couldn't think of a cooler character to have a kid!

R.E.B.E.L.S. #20
Words: Tony Bedard
Pictures: Claude St.Aubin

This is the third part of a story I didn't start in a series I don't read. So why did I buy it? Look at the cover, Clyde, The Main Man is in it!
It's more of the original Lobo with his complete lack of understanding that there are some things he just should not be able to fight. In this case, it's a giant star looking computer that is just as confused as to why lobo doesn't die.
At one point the star thing asks "What ARE you? Why are you not reduced to ASHES?" Lobo replies' "YER the computer--look up the word 'Czarnian.'"
The computer's only response is "oh, no."
Then Lobo proceeds to kick it's computerized ass.
There are other things going on but they don't involve Lobo so I don't care.
I also like the carry over from the recent Green Lantern issue where Lobo gets his hands on a Red Lantern Ring. He wears it on a chain around his neck and plans to sell it to the highest bidder. Here's hoping we have something of an ongoing story centering on Lobo!