We’re one week away from The Amazing Spider-Man movie opening in America so expect some Spidey comics to appear in our reviews this week. Also Justice League continues, as well as Incredible Hulk, Spider-Men and other delectable books. Let’s see how many we can fit into our ten dollar budget.
Spider-Men #2 (Marvel)
The first issue was alright, but my main gripe was the fact that Peter and Miles don’t even speak to each other once. We get plenty of that here and while this issue is largely focused on the Ultimate universe characters coming to grips with 616 Spider-Man interdimensionally traveling, it’s fun to read. It’s short though, but should we expect as much in a crossover title such as this?
The showdown begins.
After this issue most readers are going to have to admit Sara Pachelli was born to draw Spider-Man. She doesn’t use eyes to express emotion very much, but only because she doesn’t have to. Her ability to draw emotion through posture and movement is unparalleled.
Miles’ Spider Sting is used in full force here, which makes sense as a weapon that’d work on Spider-Man 616 since it’s a new one. One gripe though is Spidey’s spider-sense doesn’t seem to be working quite so well. It’s always a little annoying when Spider-Man can get cold cocked without even attempting to dodge yet in another issue can dodge 50 bullets in mid air. Creative license I guess.
Who directed this Michael Bay?!
The most fun comes with Miles’ fascination with the real Spider-Man and the confusion that comes with the interdimensional travel. This doesn’t appear to be a pointless team up, although it’s still up in the air if this book will end with mind wipes. That isn’t to say it’s not fun. Once again though, not a lot happens this issue.
Budget: $10.00-$0.00 = $10.00
Hypernaturals #1 (Boom Studios)
The basic premise of this book is very familiar. It goes like this: It’s the future, a superhero team has been put together in a world where everyone has powers, but only folks with higher levels actually fight. The team lost members in a previous battle, some have retired and we’re introduced to some newbies who want to make the team but aren’t necessarily up to snuff. Fast forward to a call of action and you have yourself the perfect blend of drama. What sets this book apart though, is the science fiction world.
I love the name Thinkwell, especially with that power of his.
A lot has gone into creating this world and its heroes as the heroes are original, the language is genuine and the science jargon makes some sense. It’s a dense book made even denser with the blue factoid bubbles above. These are used to explain what sort of power are being used or the simply listing the name of a character. It speaks to how dense this book is considering these bubbles are necessary to know what’s going on at all. Characters never stop to explain their powers so they help a lot.
It takes a Bad Mother Fucker to slap his fingerprint on a planet where he killed all life forms.
It’s this density that hinders the book at times. There are moments where I’d love to get into a character’s head, but instead we’re given a complicated explanation of what happened to someone and then it quickly cuts to them suiting up. That’s not to say what goes on in the book isn’t interesting, but as far as pacing the book could use quiet periods to allow the reader to breath a bit.
They call him Thinkwell for a reason.
If you’re a science fiction nut like myself you’ll probably like this book. Ideas are expressed here that tantalize. You certainly want to roam a bit more in this world. As far as our budget though, this is a bit steep of a price at $3.99 for a book that could be hit or miss depending on tastes.
Budget: $10.00 – $0.00 = $10.00
At the price given and a story that can be picked up by any reader and enjoyed? Who wouldn’t purchase this book? Check out a more in-depth review written earlier today.
Budget: $10.00 – $2.99 = $7.01
Eleven comics this week were either close to the mark or downright failures. Either way they can’t justifiably fit into a 10 dollar budget. Ultron will make them kneel.
Only the dire hard League of Extraordinary Gentlemen fans and folks who love easter eggs will love League of Extraordinary Gentlemen: Century: 2009. Alan Moore certainly hasn’t made it easy to understand what is going on in this book. Given, this is my first foray into this series, but after Black Dossie I’ve grown out of touch with the series. It appears Moore wants to make things overly complicated. While it’s cool to see little signs in the background which lend new meaning to the story…it’s not very easy to know what the heck is going on either way.
The strongest suit of Hell Yeah #4 is the gore. We still have yet to know what the deal is with the protagonist and there are enough annoying interdimensional plot points to make a grown man cry. Nothing is particularly wrong with the writing, it’s just unfortunate I don’t care about any of the characters at this point.
The premise in Grimm Fairy Tales: 2012 Annual is reminiscent of the Sandman series or the novel American Gods. In both cases the gods want their day in the sun once again. In this book, Venus wants to get the band back together and forces humans to worship them as they did back in Greece. Everything is set up nicely and you’ll want to check out the next installment in this story when it the meat of the action takes place. The lack of thrills and action bring this book down a notch though and the pencils, by four different artists, are hit or miss.
FF #19 is a cute done in one where the kids of the FF are off in Wakanda scoping out the animals. They run into an issue with a tribe that hates Wakanda and the kids need to work together to stop them. Since you never really believe the kids are in danger and the entire issue is a setup to simply get a Wakandan girl to join the team…it’s a bit of a pointless affair.
I really liked the first issue last week, but Beowulf #2 is hit or miss in the art department. There’s a lot less complex science fiction-ey stuff going on and a lot more punching. The use of color is inspiring here, but the story leaves a lot to be desired.
Over in Justice League #10 there’s a bad guy that can make you go through some kind of body shock by using your emotional problems against you. The art is impeccable, as it should, but there really isn’t enough story to chew on here. I get it, it’s a bad guy who reminds us of all the emotional problems of each hero. Not that inspiring.
Marvel wants us to buy comics after seeing its movies. This means villains that appear in the movie must show up in the comics relatively at the same time. So Lizard shows up in Amazing Spider-Man #688 and proceeds to get stabbed repeatedly. Seriously. Spidey and Morbius stab the shit out of him. It’s kind of a silly issue, that uses the flashback to create a sense of suspense, but once you read all the way through you realize it was a false sense. If read chronologically it’d be a nearly pointless issue. Spidey finds out Lizard is back, yells at Morbius, they take him down. Blah.
Another issue of Aquaman another extremely short read. Aquaman #10 is good, with a big reveal, but this book can be read in about 2 minutes flat. Our 10 dollar budget requires more story to chew on. Not a bad twist to the character, but this issue roughly equals a page of fighting stretched out over the 20 it’s made up of.
Fans of Gilbert Hernandez, most famous for his book Love & Rockets will most likely pick this up no matter what. His simplistic style works quite well in this zombie science fiction book, but there isn’t a lot of story besides what we’ve seen in every other zombie apocalypse tale before it. Fatima The Blood Spinners #1 is just alright and considering the same idea is being done over at Image with Alpha Girl I’m not so sure this book is even necessary.
If you’ve been following this series you’ll note Einstein has been sitting in front of some kind of monolith since issue number 1. Well we finally get an explanation for that in Manhattan Projects #4. It’s actually a nice done in one issue, but my main gripe is this series’ need to smack me over the head with the concept of duality. There’s already a character with dual personalities, and the reveal about Einstein makes you roll your eyes.
There’s some great fighting scenes in Wolverine and the X-Men #12 with the focus being Rachel and her issue with Cyclops forcing her to hunt mutants. When Thor says to Rachel, “on your feet then, mind witch” I whooped for joy. Chris Bachalo is really doing something special here too. The summer event renders this story rather inconsequential. But I guess that’s the point of these events. Allow one story element to trigger 5 tie in issues of fighting.
What better moment than this for “muahahaha!”
X-Men Legacy #269 (Marvel)
Christopher Gage has written a pretty perfect issue that explains both sides of the Avengers vs. X-Men storyline. Funnily enough, it also represents the two sides of fans on the issue of the Phoenix Five being good and bad.
Rogue using Iceman’s powers and confirming where exactly she’s from. Do I smell upset fans?
It’s clear this series is going to be all about Rogue and Ms. Marvel and their complicated relationship. More than likely it’s going to have resounding effects on Rogue and the X-Men’s understanding of the Phoenix Five as well. Ultimately though this is an issue about punching each other in the face. Luckily Gage adds just enough internal monologue to make Rogue’s development in this issue interesting.
Whenever someone asks me to listen I cold cock them. Every. Time.
It’s also a fun ride to see Ms. Marvel all powered up and ready to go. Rogue even admits her abilities have improved. It’s pretty clear Marvel is setting Ms. Marvel up to become a bigger player in the coming months.
Jab jab right!
The Phoenix Five are making Marvel fun again specifically because there are interesting character dilemmas being played with. This issue touches on the mantra of “power corrupts; absolute power corrupts absolutely” and next issue should be an interesting one. I can’t recommend this issue on a budget however, as there are some choice books that can’t be missed. Definitely check this out if you’re thumbing through the rack.
Budget: $7.01- $0.00 = $7.01
Whispers #3 (Image)
After a great first issue and a so-so second, Joshua Luna has my attention once again with the third issue. The premise is simple enough. A hypochondriac has developed the ability to leave his body at night and follow people around. Unfortunately he’s starting to see and hear pure evil.
I thought that law was the law to party?
While there isn’t quite as much relationship building in this issue, the plot is thickening and I can’t wait to see just how thick it’ll get. You do get a sense that, while the power was cool and fun, the tone is changing into a scary place. Who would have thought being invisible and floating through walls was a bad thing?
I wonder if Shadowcat ever dealt with this?
This is a slow story, but Luna’s art and sense of pacing is top notch. I’ve said it over and over in this column, but pacing is a huge part in making a single issue enjoyable. Many books use the single issue as a piece of a chapter that fits better in a collection. Others have all the talking at one end and all the action at another. This issue moves fluidly which allows the reader to turn the page and not know what could happen next.
Although I thought this after the last issue as well, I think that the next issue will reveal a lot more exciting elements concerning this evil entity he keeps seeing. Luna’s art sings and the story is back on track!
Budget: $7.01- $2.99 = $4.02
The Incredible Hulk #10 (Marvel)
I like it when an author makes me work. It makes the process of reading that much more enjoyable. It’s clear Jason Aaron has something planned at the end of this arc, even though the story is bonkers and random each issue. Last issue Hulk was in Atlantis, before that the desert and now he’s in space. Hulk and Banner are separated mentally, but it’s clear Banner is influencing Hulk to go down a certain path. What that path is and why remain to be seen. Some might see the randomness and think, “oh this is Hulk on a silly adventure” but it’s more. Plus there’s bear cyborgs to punch!
Sorry guys…the bear deserved it.
I’m not familiar with artist Tom Raney, but he does a great job with expressions and me thinks he’s best at those. The action is good too, but not as good. Hulk continues to look more human and not as wide or huge as he’s been drawn before. I like this version of Hulk. The enormous version like in the movies is cool, but this smaller version makes more sense story wise. He can have a conversation with someone and not appear silly.
Creepy yet awesome idea.
So far each issue holds additional surprises outside the locale change. For instance, this time we learn he’s on a Russian space station where super soldiers were being created. The survivors are a bunch of boys…lost boys…who just want to get out from under the foot of a bastard soldier. Luckily Hulk shows up to be their “Green Fairy”.
He’s just a jolly man. Bangorang!
This version of Hulk is the most entertaining; the one that fights Banner emotionally and mentally. It creates a much more fascinating play between brains and brawn.
He’s in there alright.
But really, you can’t complain when you get Hulk fighting cyborg bears.
They just want their honey!
Sign me up for Jason Aaron Hulk comics from now on. The story is fun and there’s always a surprise in store. Judging by the final page next issue should be just as fun.
Budget: $4.02 – $3.99 = $.03
When we end with cents left in our pocket we all know ComiX Weekly delivered some sense. Oh man I crack myself up. See you next week!