stolisomancer: (Default)
[personal profile] stolisomancer posting in [community profile] scans_daily
Shadowland in general is pretty hit-or-miss. It's pulling some pretty nifty characters out of relative obscurity and putting them in a prominent place, like the Shroud, Silver Sable, and Shang-Chi. It's also putting Misty and Colleen back on the map and quietly abandoning Misty's Afro That Ate New York, which only works when Khari Evans is drawing her.

On the other hand, Colleen's Daughters of the Shadow miniseries is a lazy collection of anime cliches, the main book has really inconsistent art, and then there's the whole issue of Possessed Ninja-Master Daredevil. As a crossover, it's nicely inobtrusive; as a story, it's got issues.

The bright spot in the whole thing, though, is Shadowland: Power Man, a four-issue limited series by Fred Van Lente and Mahmud Asrar. The concept in a nutshell: there's a guy in Spanish Harlem using the Power Man name and the "hero for hire" gimmick, and Luke, Danny, and the Hand would all like to know why.

You don't need to follow Shadowland to read this book, and it is in many ways a direct sequel to Luke's solo book from the '70s. It really reminds me of Dwayne McDuffie writing Static, and I mean that in the best way possible.



In issue #1, Power Man is hired to find and save a teenage runaway. (He's on Craigslist and MySpace; fifty bucks a day plus expenses, Visa and Paypal accepted.) She's wound up in the clutches of a pimp Named Slickback, and while the Hand has certain unfortunate ideas about the situation, Power Man shows up just in time.

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We find out that Power Man's real name is Victor Alvarez, whose family is Dominican. His apartment was one of the ones Bullseye blew up in Daredevil shortly before the Shadowland arc began.

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That's his mom, who's pretty sure he's sneaking out at night to sell drugs.

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And that's his dad. Poor kid.

Luke and Danny take an interest, both because the kid's using the Power Man identity and because Danny recognizes some of Victor's moves as straight-out-of-the-book K'un-L'un kung fu. Victor also, for some reason, is angry enough at Luke to attack Luke on sight.

That's when we find out that somebody else in Harlem wants to talk to Victor, and she's got an awful lot of super-villains on speed-dial:

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That's right. It's a big chunk of Luke's 1970s rogues' gallery, including Cockroach Hamilton, Comanche, and Mr. Fish. If that alone does not communicate the excellence of this limited series, I don't know what to tell you.

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These two pages are here just because they're very Silver Age in a good way.

And finally, who's the mysterious crime boss in Spanish Harlem these days?

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It's underused '70s Marvel antagonist Deadly Nightshade! And she got a better outfit!

So yeah, Power Man is pretty much the best thing coming out of Shadowland, and it's blaxploitationally awesome.

Date: 2010-11-07 11:39 pm (UTC)
icon_uk: (Default)
From: [personal profile] icon_uk
Whilst definitely a step up from her 1970's look, I'm not sure I'd call that rather... outre hairstyle a better outfit than the one she had when Mark Gruenwald used her as Doctor Nightshade, an amoral chemist and biochemist for hire in his Captain America run.

Date: 2010-11-07 11:40 pm (UTC)
icon_uk: (Default)
From: [personal profile] icon_uk
That being said, I think I rather like this Power Man (Shadowland I could mostly live without though)

Date: 2010-11-07 11:45 pm (UTC)
icon_uk: (Default)
From: [personal profile] icon_uk
True, but as Dr Nightshade she wore a white labcoat (as well as other clothes I hasten to add) and that's always cool, right?

Date: 2010-11-08 02:50 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] thandrak
It's not that outre: I've seen real people wearing it. And not ironically.

Date: 2010-11-07 11:49 pm (UTC)
bradhanon: (Serious editor)
From: [personal profile] bradhanon
You had me at "Cockroach Hamilton". Man, I loved that guy.

Date: 2010-11-08 02:32 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] tpsreports
Shouldn't Cockroach Hamilton and the rest of those guys be in their 50s by now. Oh timeline how doth thee stretch.

Date: 2010-11-08 02:50 pm (UTC)
From: [personal profile] thandrak
And his 12 barrel shotgun, Betsy. (six?)

Date: 2010-11-08 12:05 am (UTC)
lilacsigil: Daredevil: masked Man (Masked Man)
From: [personal profile] lilacsigil
Yeah, even as a long-time Daredevil fan, the only good thing coming out of Shadowland (apart from some nice cameos) is this title. It's seriously worth reading, and I love the dynamic between baby Power Man and his mother.

Date: 2010-11-08 12:18 am (UTC)
fungo_squiggly: (Default)
From: [personal profile] fungo_squiggly
Nice Minnie Mouse hairdo you got there, Deadly Nightshade.

Date: 2010-11-08 03:44 am (UTC)
lieut_kettch: (Darkwing)
From: [personal profile] lieut_kettch
Oh noes! The effects of the Disney purchase finally surface!

Date: 2010-11-08 01:44 am (UTC)
stig: "It Was A Boojum..." (Default)
From: [personal profile] stig
I'll bet DN wishes she still has the Mandarin's left rings. Who knows, maybe her friends from MODOK's 11 will turn up for support - it'd be nice to see Puma and Armadillo doing the rounds again...

Date: 2010-11-08 04:21 am (UTC)
big_daddy_d: (Default)
From: [personal profile] big_daddy_d
Let me say this...I LOVE this series. It's fun and just damn entertaining. I'm kinda getting a feel that this Power Man may end up being Marvel's answer to Blue Beetle based on what I read in issue 3. Still, I look forward to more.

Date: 2010-11-08 07:16 am (UTC)
tzipwich: ([Daredevil] Matt/Natasha)
From: [personal profile] tzipwich
As a DD fan, I don't like anything to with Shadowland, but maybe I'll check this one out.

Date: 2010-11-08 08:49 am (UTC)
kusonaga: (Default)
From: [personal profile] kusonaga
Ha! I saw the 70s rogues gallery and thought to myself: "Where's Nightshade?" Awesomeness.

Date: 2010-11-08 08:52 am (UTC)
blackruzsa: (Default)
From: [personal profile] blackruzsa
I followed it from the first and though I have no previous knowledge of Luke Cage's old enemies and chums, I have adored it from the start. Funny thing, the Spanish bits with the family, I could only understand bits and pieces because of the pidgin Spanish still present in Filipino. Can anyone translate that fully?

Date: 2010-11-08 12:06 pm (UTC)
blackruzsa: (Default)
From: [personal profile] blackruzsa
Oh, thanks XD The first speech balloon though? I mean, from the words, I understand the bits about killing, being a savior, and blood....
From the first read I did, I kinda got the bit about Daredevil being loved and getting an award, and I thought he was being compared to how the Yankees are liked. The bit about the animal, I'm not sure if I'm correct in understanding it, but what I thought was he put down Bullseye like an animal.
Basura de hippies, well I got that clearly XD Basura is the same in Filipino as it is in Spanish, and hippies was pretty obvious.

Van Lente!

Date: 2010-11-08 09:02 am (UTC)
jazzypom: (Default)
From: [personal profile] jazzypom
No lie, apart from that Spider man fail (which, I don't even) van Lente is a pretty solid writer, especially when it comes to underused characters and good side stories like this. Because I haven't been able to get the comics here, I think I might just wait on the trade.

I like the fact that for the Hispanic characters, the writers nowadays will put in a few bits in Spanish and not bother to translate (although my understanding of the language is patchy, it's good enough). Man, cheers for alerting me to this title. Good looking out.

Date: 2010-11-08 03:23 pm (UTC)
greenmask: (Default)
From: [personal profile] greenmask
I'm not enjoying the colouring method (so shiny!), but I'm enjoying everything else!

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