Hey all, before I get bogged down with my end of the semester schoolwork, I wanted to make sure that I posted the review for Fear Itself #2(and to a lesser extent, Fear Itself: The Home Front #2). After this review, my posts may become a bit more sporadic, as I knuckle down and hit those books, but I'll make sure to post something, whether it's an archived piece I've yet to post, or simply a random picture. So that's what's up with me, but that's not what you guys want to read about! You want to know what happened in Fear Itself #2! Well, here we go!
Fear Itself #2(of 7):
Summary: We get started with Odin bringing the Asgardians back to Asgard-Space and building a planet for them to live on. Odin states that the Serpent was loose on Earth, and that meant the Earth was doomed. Odin tells the Asgardians that after Earth was decimated the Serpent would come after them, so they had to prepare themselves for war. Thor is disgusted that Odin was turning his back on Earth, and complains that the Asgardians should be on Earth battling the Serpent's forces and not cowering on Asgard. Odin tires of Thor and creates a prison and guards to lock his rebellious son away. On Earth, the hammers summoned by the Serpent last issue begin to crash down all over the planet, landing by those the Serpent deemed worthy. Juggernaut, Hulk, Titania(?!) and Attuma receive their hammers in this comic, with the Absorbing Man and the Grey Gargoyle being amongst the others who had been chosen. Once these characters get their hands on the hammers, they become insanely powered(and kind of crazy) god-like creatures whose sole mission was to cause as much destruction and fear as they could in the name of the Serpent. With the entire world falling apart, Steve Rogers assembles the Avengers and sends them out, dividing the world up into incident zones, with each band of Avengers responsible for trying to keep the peace while getting answers as to what the hell was going on. As for the Serpent, Sin takes him to one of the Red Skull's old bases, where she tells her lackeys to get into several of the Skull's old Nazi war machines. The Serpent tells Sin to go forth and bring the capital cities of every country in the world to their knees, and Sin naturally begins with Washington DC. Sin and her Nazis begin to destroy Washington, while Steve Rogers calls to the Avengers, telling them to Assemble in Washington, but is only to be met by silence.
Thoughts: Woooooo, THIS is how you do an event comic! You hear that DC? After the utter garbage Brightest Day was, THIS issue was SUCH a breath of fresh air! Matt Fraction perfectly set the scene within the first few pages of this comic, with Odin basically telling the Asgardians that the Earth was doomed, and that the Asgardians had to prepare for the fight of their lives. Right there, we know that the Serpent is a major threat, even though he's only been around for a grand total of ONE issue. From there we get a glimpse of several characters getting their hammers of power from the Serpent, and see that they have become unreasoning, killing machines. As for the heroes of the world, they have NO idea as to what's going on! All Steve Rogers and the Avengers know is that the Asgardians have abandoned the Earth, just before all hell broke loose. Steve does the smartest thing he could with such limited information, he sends the Avengers to the sites where these hammers had landed to gather info, but in doing so inadvertently left the door wide open for a major attack on Washington. Seriously, I loved this comic. It just did everything right. Told us who the enemy was, introduced threats, sent the heroes scurrying, and left us with a great cliffhanger! Awesome work, that'll have me eagerly anticipating June and issue #3.
Score: 10 out of 10. You know what? I was going to give this comic a score of 9 1/2 out of 10, but after some thought, I'm gonna go the full monty and give it a perfect score. There really wasn't that ONE thing I could point at and say, this comic wasn't perfect because of that.I'd urge all of you disenchanted DC fans to pick up the first two issues of this series and give them a shot, because it WILL give you something to look forward to this Summer... That is unless you want the Geoff Johns wank-fest to continue... If so, just ignore what I just typed.
Fear Itself: The Home Front #2(of 7):
Summary: Four stories here, the first one dealing with Speedball's misadventures in Stamford, Connecticut... Man, I don't know how people from Connecticut remember how to spell that word, I ALWAYS get it wrong! Anyway, a bunch of thugs attack Robbie, hoping to beat him to death for his part in the Stamford massacre during Civil War. However, they can't hurt Robbie since being physically hit simply sends him bouncing around. The dumb thugs actually do themselves damage by having their various weapons bounce off of Robbie and at one another. Quickly realizing one of these idiots would be seriously hurt if things kept up this way, Robbie bounces high into the air, and out of sight. Upon landing, he changes back into his street clothes and gets ready to leave, but is stopped by one of the men who worked with him at the charity organization Robbie had been donating his time to. The man drives Robbie back to the charity building, and the head of the charity(who lost her son during the Stanford massacre) allows Robbie to stay there, not for him, but so the goofs in the street wouldn't hurt themselves trying to hurt Robbie. News reports start rolling in about the destruction of the Raft prison in New York(which happened in Fear Itself #2 when Juggernaut received his hammer), and how escaped super-villains were taking to the streets. As luck would have it, a few escapees are running amok in Connecticut, right outside the office building Robbie was hiding in. The head of the charity tells Robbie to stay put, figuring the roving band of villains would pass by soon enough, but Robbie is worried about the kind of destruction they were leaving in their path, and jumps outside to confront them. Unfortunately for Robbie, 5 super-powered bad guys are a bit too much for him to handle on his own, and they leave him laying in the street before taking off. The wonderful citizens of Stamford come upon the prone hero and begin debating what they should do with him. One of the smarter citizens tells the others that the world was in crisis, and that they should let Robbie go so he could help out. As is usually the case though, the mob decides to listen to the biggest, loudest and dumbest person in the group, and he wants to kill Robbie. Having realized that they couldn't beat Robbie to death, the goon pulls out a plastic bag and begins to smother Robbie with it(!!!)! That's AWESOME! Unable to move, meaning he couldn't get his powers working, Robbie is rapidly losing consciousness, and looks to be the first hero done in by a plastic bag. Luckily for him though, the woman from the charity arrives on the scene with a shotgun and tells the idiots to stop what they were doing. The next story deals with The Agents of Atlas, which is a team and idea that I absolutely hate. Plus they have a talking monkey on their team, so I didn't read it. Story three was a little one page piece about the Purple Man escaping prison thanks to Juggernaut, and planning his next crime wave, all while thinking how unfair it was that Juggy got the super-powerful hammer and not him... HA! Finally we end this comic with a story about Liz Allen(really?!) saving some bank robbers on a train even after they hassled her son... Weird...
Thoughts: Okay, let's see what we've got here... First off, in honor of the impending end of the school year, I'm going to give each story from this comic a letter grade. The Speedball story was great, as are most of the things written by Christos Gage. If I was giving out letter grades, I'd easily give it an A+. The second story I only read the first few pages before just skimming the rest because I just don't like any of the Atlas characters, and I HATE talking monkeys!!! I thought that was a DC obsession! Please Marvel, you're WAY better than DC right now, don't start adopting their bad habits! For a grade, I'd give the Atlas story an I for incomplete, since I didn't actually bother to read it. Yeah, I liked it that little. The Purple Man story, although only a page long was pretty good and said a lot in a limited space. I'll give it a A-. Finally the Liz Allen story gets a B-. It wasn't terrible or anything, I just couldn't make myself care about it one way or another. So that's an A+, A-, B-, and I, which doesn't factor into the score... Hmm, those grades can be broken into numbers, if an A+ is a 10, and an F is a 0... So that would mean the numerical grades would be 10, 8, 5. After some quick addition, some averaging, and some rounding up, I can say with great confidence that this issue should get the following score!
Score: 8 out of 10. I KNEW my math skills would come in handy one day! :DMy mother always warned me about those plastic bags as a kid... Now I see why...