Archive for All-New X-Men

[Comic Review] Week of 2013/05/01 Highlights

Posted in Comic Review with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 2, 2013 by Casey Hutton

I have to say…several titles of my pull list are now chalked up to Dynamite. Like any publisher, there are some series I personally feel are lacking here and there, meaning I just can’t get into them. However, the times are changing. This week alone several new releases of high caliber were released with their logo on them.

Photo Courtesy of Dynamite.

Photo Courtesy of Dynamite.

First off, let’s look at Sherlock Holmes: The Liverpool Demon #4. For anyone not following this series, we find the famous detective duo of Holmes and Watson in Liverpool (hence…the title). This particular story we found are investigators sticking around after a previous case due to murders happening about town…most of which were being chalked up to Sring-Heeled Jack. Throughout the previous three issues, suspense abounds and with each new murder, new information and twists have been added to the plot line. In this issue, we find Holmes closing in on the killer. Following up on leads concerning the death of one Tom Christian, Holmes and Watson find themselves delving into catacombs under the city.

I’ve always been a sucker for Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. The creative team (which have remained consistent so far) have done well by him. The story is intriguing and has kept my interest with each and every issue. The changes between dialect add flavor and definition to scene changes within the books pages. The artwork here is also right up my ally. It’s dark and gritty, just the way that I like them.

If you’re looking for something more Victorian but still manages to maintain that dark pulp feel, I’d say give this series a shot and see what you think. So far, 4/4 isn’t bad, and if that’s any indicator, I will be enjoying the rest of this five-part series. I just hope the final issue isn’t rushed, which in my opinion, could hurt things overall.

Photo Courtesy of Dynamite.

Photo Courtesy of Dynamite.

Next comes Dynamite’s The Black Bat #1. This is probably one of the titles I’ve been looking forward too the most. Being a fan of their The Shadow and The Spider lines, I had some seriously high hopes for this title’s release. And, I wasn’t disappointed. This is classic pulp, plain and simple and in line with most of their other titles of similar setting. In this issue, we are both introduced to and the creation of the Black Bat. We follow along with Tony Quinn, a former Mafiosi lawyer turned vigilante in the 1930’s. The character is part Daredevil, part Batman and all pulp!

In this issue we follow along with Quinn as he begins his personal vendetta to make amends to the wrongs his committed in his past defending big players in organized crime. Tracking down a police informant capture by local thugs, we find it’s the same informant used to help spread the word of ‘The Black Bat’ on the street. And, bigger fish behind the scenes obviously have more in store for this newly arrived masked vigilante.

Dynamite’s talent in putting together creative teams still astounds me. The artwork adds to the story and the combination of both leave plenty to sink your teeth into. I have a feeling that if this title can stick around, it will just add to the new resurgence of quality pulp comics out there.

Photo Courtesy of DC Comics.

Photo Courtesy of DC Comics.

Another anticipated title of the week was The Movement #1. I will be the first to admit, I’m a little late catching the Gail Simone fan bus. But, nevertheless, I’m sold. Aside from The Talon, there hasn’t been legitimate NEW New 52 characters introduced to the shelves. Although not every character involved in this series will be a fresh face, several shall be. That alone piqued my interest. As much as I love Superman, Batman, etc…sometimes…I just need something different. I found it here.

Although a lot was thrown at me in its pages, this book served as a good introduction to the organization known as The Movement and some of the characters therein. A vigilante group whose mission statement is to protect the less fortunate from those of corrupted power. They have eyes everywhere and this issue made an appoint of showing as much.

Although still only issue one…if Simone and the rest of her creative team can keep it up, this will be a staple to anyone’s pull list that favors the dark superhero. Although most are more than just masked vigilantes, it still has that feel to it. Again…it’s almost pulp-ish (notice the trend?). It’s gritty and dark. I love it!

Photo Courtesy of Marvel Comics.

Photo Courtesy of Marvel Comics.

What week wouldn’t be complete without Dan Slott’s The Superior Spider-Man. This week, I found issue #9 waiting for me in my pull box upon my arrival at my comic shop of choice.\

I waited until today (Thursday) to read this title. Why? Because, I enjoy watching the drama unfold on Twitter. There is so much love, yet so much hate for this title…I get giddy. Some weeks, it’s like a middle school cat-fight and I can’t help my self but read Tweet after Tweet of what will be in store.

That being said…love it or hate it (and, just for the record…I love it), Superior Spider-Man has been one heck of a read issue after issue. Just when I think I have things figured out, Slott and team hit one into left field. Just when I think Peter Parker is going to be making that comeback, I find myself being proven wrong. This issue…really hammers it home.

Last issue, we saw Octo-Spidey acquire a device from Cardiac that can help him rid himself of Peter Parker permanently. Now, how permanently is yet to be seen. But, for now…well…Octavius has come away victorious. Facing off in the memories of Parker, no punches are pulled. Slott honestly had me going with just who was going to come out on top and although I was left with my jaw hanging open, I certainly was not disappointed.

Photo Courtesy of Marvel Comics.

Photo Courtesy of Marvel Comics.

The last of my picks of the week can be found in All-New X-Men #11. This bi-monthly title as easily been one of the best ones to be had and one of two with Marvel (the other is The Superior Spider-Man).

Last issue we were left with one heck of a cliff hanger. My theories were abound with thoughts of just who would ‘defect’ from the old/young x-men. My first belief was that it was going to be Jean Grey. But, when I turned from the first page into the next…it was indeed Angel to cross the line and join up with Cyclops and Magneto. And honestly…I can’t think of a better character to do so.

Now, keep in mind, my reasons are purely selfish. I hate Angel with a passion. I can dig the newer incarnations…but the young and naive Angel always upset me. To see him join sides with ‘the enemy’ only made me smile. Whatever happens, whether he is doing it to aid Wolverine and company or ends up dying (yes…I am crossing my fingers) serving Cyclops…I’m just glad it’s hopefully going to be a side-story.

This event aside, the rest of the issue was primarily a Good vs. Evil X-Men standoff with not much fighting. They were on school grounds after all  Only a brief glimpse of Mystique’s plan is present (I believe via only two pages). Predominantly, this issue revolves around a life lesson for Jean Grey and several X-Men, Kitty Pryde included, hammer it into her she can’t use her metal powers when things don’t always go her way.

[Comic Review] Week of 2013/04/03 Highlights

Posted in Comic Review with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 8, 2013 by Casey Hutton

This week seemed to be a fairly heavy week as far as some titles went. Personally, I know my pull list had a little extra oomph than it normally does, and overall, most titles read well.

Photo Courtesy of Marvel Comics.

Photo Courtesy of Marvel Comics.

As always, Age of Ultron has continued to be strong with issue #4 hitting shelves. Things seem to keep getting thicker as each issue comes along. This time around, Bendis’ one-liners give the title a little something extra, as does his writing style in general. There were a couple “deaths” worth mentioning: [SPOILER] She-Hulk dies while giving Cage a chance to see what all the hubbub is about in Ultron’s ship. The end result is Cage barely making his way to a safe-haven in the Savage Lands to share what intel he gathered and then he too passes on. With all the ‘clumps’ of heroes coming together, it looks like the only way forward lies in the future…literally! If this 10-issue run can keep this up, each release is going to be a power-house on the shelves. And with the big G-Man (Gaiman) on board for Marvel’s final issue…well…let’s just say I’m excited as all get-out. Although what I’ve read is that the UA scenario is going to end in a ‘Marvel NOW’ 2.0-ish revamp, I’m looking toward seeing what all comes about.

Photo Courtesy of Marvel Comics.

Photo Courtesy of Marvel Comics.

Next on the list is, of course, The Superior Spider-Man #7. This series has read great so far. Although I haven’t written much concerning it lately (only covering Issue #2) it still remains strong. I was worried when Ryan Stegman left the art on the title, but the creative team that followed has lended their talent to the series and haven’t come up short once. Dan Slott has kept things interesting with the Octavius vs Peter Parker complication (almost in Ghost-like fashion). Each issue has Parker’s personality/memories growing stronger and his ‘voice’ being ‘heard’. Although curious to see how it all plays out, I have a feeling Parker is going to win out.

There has been much going on in previous issues as well. If you haven’t kept up (like I hadn’t…time was not on my side with my class schedule and personal life) I recommend doing so. I dig the dark and brooding mentality Octavious has brought to the character. With several characters, such as [SPOILER] the Vulture, Jester and Screwball amongst others getting severally beaten and Massacre’s life being brought to an and at the hands of Spider-Man is an interesting twist. Although I’m sure some long-time Spidey fans might disagree, I feel that this adds to the progression of the character. And, now that several parties involved are starting to see this change in the Superhero…well…it’s going to get interesting, especially with this issue lining things up for an Avengers intervention.

Photo Courtesy of Marvel Comics.

Photo Courtesy of Marvel Comics.

This week, Marvel keeps rolling out solid titles with the first issue of Thanos Rising.  I haven’t read much on previews for this story, so I hadn’t known what to expect when I picked it up. All that I know is, the end result was me being quite entertained as learning a little about the characters past…specifically his childhood. I’m not entirely sure how I feel about a being such as Thanos as a result of childhood ostracism and bullying…but hey…it’s the guilt pleasure of the week. Im looking forward to the next issue, and if anyone even has a remote urge to check the title out, I highly recommend it.

Photo Courtesy of Marvel Comics.

Photo Courtesy of Marvel Comics.

This brings us to All-New X-Men #10. This series has yet to run out of steam, and for being a bi-weekly release, that is saying quite a bit. The story keeps it fresh and engaging and this issue isn’t any different. This issue sees the induction of Mastermind’s daughter into the ranks of Mystique’s clique, whose ambitions are still rather vague other than whatever it is, is going to cost a fortune to pull off. Cyclops pays a visit to the School in an attempt to explain his side of things and even offering a hand towards those who wish to join him. I felt like this added considerably to the story, especially once you throw in a young Summers being torn as to what to do…having the character with a past mentality see what has happened and end up still straddling the fence as to what path to take…it’s great! And, throw in a climax that had me guessing and anxious for issue #11 to arrive…well…you just have to read it to find out, but I know I was like “WHO?!?” once I set eyes on the last panel!

Photo Courtesy of DC Comics.

Photo Courtesy of DC Comics.

Lastly this week, DC made my list of titles with The Flash #18. With the Gorilla Warfare story arc at an end, it’s curious to see in which direction the creative team will take things. This issue felt a little off in terms of direction. Keep in mind this wasn’t a bad thing, although I was left scratching my head.

With things returning to ‘normal’ after everything that has developed was a nice change of pace. Now, however, the Flash is left to deal with a newly introduced duo who have gotten a small taste of powers as a result of previous happenings. That seemed to be the focus, and although slightly humorous encounters ensued…I felt a little overwhelmed with how this new factor was introduced to both myself (as the reader) and to Flash (in terms of no real plot exposure).

[Comic Review] All-New X-Men #1

Posted in Comic Review with tags , on November 29, 2012 by Casey Hutton

All-New X-Men #1

I don’t know how much more “Marvel Now” of Marvel’s I can take.

Out of most of the titles rolling out under their new condensing of the universe, this was one of the few I was actually excited about. Between this, Deadpool and Superior Spider-Man…my “Marvel Now” hopes were set pretty high.

Although this title didn’t fall absurdly short of what mark I said, it still fell short.

I liked the artwork. It’s dark and it fits the theme. The panels were laid out nicely, and even though some were text heavy, it still came off as pleasing to the eye.

The story has some serious potential. Cyclops is working with the likes of Emma Frost and Magneto to round up newly developing mutants to help further the cause. It’s up to the remnants of the X-Men to stop him, as his methods aren’t the most people friendly. So, the team cooks up this idea to travel back into time to recruit the old Cyclops to help them.

The story also heavily involves one of my personally favorite X-Men: Beast. Whether or not it stays that way, I’m not entirely sure, but at least for now it made me content.

What I had problems with was how…choppy the story seemed to be. There wasn’t much flow from one actual scene to the next. It made things worse that most often, that’s where Marvel stuck the ads, and at one point this even made me skimming through the pages thinking I had missed something.

This is going to be a title I continue to follow, at least through this initial storyline. After that…well…we’ll see. But, like I said, I have hopes for this series.

Rating: 7/10 Gingered Digits.

Score: Story [Choppy] (1/2), Artwork (2/2), Character Development (1.5/2), Plot Development (1.5/2), Climax (1/2).