First off, congrats to the US men's Olympic hockey team for picking up their first win today against Switzerland. While comic books are my passion, hockey ranks very high amongst my favorite things. Sure, nobody is giving Team USA a chance in the Olympic tournament, with powerhouses Canada and Russia the big favorites, but as a proud American, and a feral hockey fan, I'm one of the few who believes the young American team can make some waves in this tourney. Next up for the American team is Team Norway, which was spanked today by Canada, and then it's the big game against those Canadians... But since this blog isn't called X-Man's Hockey Blog, I think I should get to what this blog is supposed to be about, and that would be comics. I'll be checking out two books tonight, one I will probably hate, while the other one should be solid.
Dark Avengers #13: Writer: BENDIS!!! Artist: Mike Deodato.
For some reason we start in ancient Egypt where some guys are smearing lamb's blood onto the doors of their homes so their firstborn children will be spared from an angry and vengeful god... Oh boy, this is going to be a real BENDIS of a comic book, isn't it... We then go to a few months ago where we discover that Norman Osborn has been able to recreate the formula that gave the Sentry his powers. Osborn presents a thankful Sentry with the vial, and he drinks it, releasing the Void. Osborn then calls the Void his secret weapon, which means it looks like I was correct when I guessed the Void was Osborn's weapon for keeping the Cabal under control. After that scene, we head to right after the Sentry's wife blows his head off with a weapon left for her by Marvel Boy a few issues back. Sentry's wife reveals that before he became the Sentry, Robert Reynolds was a simple junkie, and that he gained his powers by breaking into a laboratory and drinking the formula which ultimately turned him into the Sentry. After this revelation, the Sentry returns to life as the Void, and announces that he is going to kill Sentry's wife for her actions. Before he can follow through on his threat, Sentry retakes control and demands that the Void leaves his wife alone. The two argue for a while, and the Sentry ultimately leaves Avengers Tower and races towards the sun with the hope that he'd burn up and die. Of course that doesn't happen, and the Void ultimately convinces him that if he just gives in to the Void, good things will happen, which is apparently what Sentry decides to do as this issue ends.
Well, the Dread Lord BENDIS strikes again! I wonder if he's contractually obligated to alter character's origins and personas, because it sure as hell seems that way! I've never seen a writer radically change as many characters as BENDIS has during his time with Marvel... It's really crazy. The Scarlet Witch, Hawkeye, the Hood, Osborn, and now the Sentry, have faced radical changes at the hands of BENDIS, just to name a few. Now, I know what you're thinking, "He must have REALLY hated this comic!"... However, to be honest, this comic wasn't that bad. Sure, it annoyed me that yet another character has been radically changed by BENDIS, but it was the Sentry, and I really don't care about him anyway. To me, he's always been a poor man's Thor/Superman. If I was a Sentry fan, I'm sure I'd be pretty pissed, but as it is, I'm apathetic towards these changes to the Sentry's origin. That's a good way to describe how I felt about this comic actually, apathetic.
Score: 6 out of 10.So wait, now the Void is Galactus, and the Sentry is a junkie??? OOOOOOK...
Wolverine Origins #44: Writer: Daniel Way. Pencils: Doug Braithwaite.
We open this issue with Wolverine breaking Ruby Thursday out of her cell at the Raft prison. It seems that Ruby is an integral part of Wolvie's plan to finally bring Romulus down, and he explains to her that he'll set her free provided she assists him, which Ruby is all to happy to do. The warden at the Raft locks down that section of the Raft and puts the power dampeners on, which prevents Cloak from teleporting Wolvie and Ruby to safety. The warden receives a call from Romulus, who informs him that he'll assist the warden in taking Wolvie out, provided the Warden tells Romulus who Wolvie went in there to break out. Meanwhile, Wolvie steals clothing from a few guards and along with Ruby and Cloak, disguises himself as a guard. This only gets them so far before the warden realizes what Wolvie did, and calls HAMMER for assistance. Skaar shows up, and the warden mistakenly believes he was sent by HAMMER, so he tells Skaar what was going on, and that when he makes contact with Wolvie, he'll give the signal to return the superhuman powers to the occupants of the Raft. Skaar finds Wolvie and reports that he's made contact just as Ares of the Dark Avengers(who was the guy HAMMER sent), arrives on the scene and attacks Skaar. Since the warden shut down the power dampeners, Wovie has Cloak teleport Ruby out of the Raft, while he tries to convince Skaar that there is no reason to battle Ares, since Wolvie got what he came for. Upon getting out of the Raft, Cloak tells Ruby to lay low and await further instruction from Wolvie, so she leaves. Back in the Raft, Wolvie finally convinces Skaar to stop fighting Ares, and the two make an escape. This issue ends with Romulus catching up to Ruby and knocking her around, while demanding to know exactly what Wolvie was planning.
As usual, this was another solid outing for this series. Sure, I could care less about Ares, Skaar, Cloak and Rudy Thursday(what a bizarre character to bring back...), but even with all of that deadwood hanging around, Daniel STILL managed to make this comic book interesting. That's the sign of a great writer, being able to take a bunch of characters that I would normally avoid reading about and making the comic they're in readable. On top of that, and I NEVER thought I'd say this, the whole Romulus story has really grown on me... Now, when Jeph Loeb first introduced the idea of Romulus, I thought it was one of the most idiotic story ideas I'd read in quite some time... I'm supposed to believe that this one figure(Romulus)has been secretly manipulating Wolverine for nearly 100 years now, and nobody, not Wolvie, not Professor X, not SHIELD, nobody knew about him? Come on! But then, a miraculous thing happened, Daniel Way took the idea and really ran with it... He made it almost believable(almost), plus he managed to work Romulus into many of his stories, which helped make Romulus look like some kind of serious threat. Plus, unlike BENDIS, he was able to work Romulus into Wolvie's(and a lot of other character's)mythos without dramatically changing the characters. I know I'll be eagerly anticipating the next issue to see what happens next in the thus far highly entertaining Woloverine/Romulus battle.
Score: 7 1/2 out of 10.Yeah that's right, Romulus has managed to grow on me!