Saturday, June 30, 2012

JT's Take: The Amazing Spider-Man #688

Hey Todd Squad, JT here again and I decided to continue our Spider-Man theme from yesterday, and jump right into things with the next arc of Amazing Spider-Man! After the Ends of the Earth storyline, I'd expect some fallout from that, plus the Lizard takes center stage for the first time since "Shed" if I'm not mistaken. So let's get to it!

The Amazing Spider-Man #688

Summary: Things start off in a big way, as we immediately jump into a sewer fight with Spidey and The Lizard. The Lizard claims he and Spidey had an agreement, which Spidey recalls, the last time he fought the Lizard, he was so spent that he couldn't pursue him, as The Lizard and his drones of followers escaped to the sewers, Ninja Turtle style! Spidey eventually pursued but could never find The Lizard and his followers, and it turns out The Lizard eventually ate every one of his followers, something that enrages Spider-Man even more.  We then jump to eight hours earlier, and see Max Modell and his employee's celebrating for helping Spidey save the world, when Peter is given an invite to Mary Jane's new club. Peter, clearly shocked that MJ now owns a club, heads over and has a talk with MJ. She tells him this party is for him, and he tells her he failed by letting Silver Sable die. He also tells her about his vow, and she says it's the stupidest thing he's ever said, he can't save everyone, he may be super but he's still human. The conversation is cut short when Carlie Cooper calls and says she has something Spidey needs to see, so Peter heads off to meet with her. Upon arriving at the cemetery, Peter see's that Billy Connor's grave has been dug up, and from what a groundskeeper witness said, the description matches Michael Morbius. An enraged Spider-Man heads to Horizon Labs and demands Modell to take him to see Morbius, and he does so. They enter and see Morbius cutting open Billy Connors and Spider-Man attacks Morbius. Morbius explains that he needs Connors DNA to perfect a cure for the Lizard, for good. Modell says that Michael's actions will not stand, and he's no longer welcome at Horizon Labs, but his serum can still be used for good to save Curt Connors. Spidey agrees and he, Morbius and Modell and two other people for some reason head into the sewers. Back in current time, Spidey and Morbius have injected The Lizard with the serum, and Modell and his scientists blast Connors with sonic blasts to start the cure, which actually works and turns him back into Curt Connors. The issue comes to a close as everyone tries to help Connors, but we see that Curt's mind is gone, and while Human, he still has the psyche of The Lizard, but seems to be playing along for now.

Thoughts: Hot Damn! This was a great comic! The twist at the end with The Lizard totally caught me off guard, and I'm a sucker for Michael Morbius, probably because he reminds me of my good buddy Vampire X! This storyline kicked things off with a bang, and I'm wondering what will happen with Curt "The Lizard" Connors does decide to strike and how Spidey will take it. I also really enjoyed the chat with Peter and MJ, it helped him realize he can't do everything and he will make mistakes, and I like the role MJ has taken as supportive best friend over love interest. All in all there's nothing about the comic I didn't enjoy. Also, the art was phenomenal. Props definitely go to Giuseppe Camuncoli for his work on this issue, the way he drew the look on Spidey's face, with one eye showing, when he found out The Lizard ate his drones was chilling. Perfect issue all around. Here's hoping the rest of this storyline is at least half as good as this issue was.

Score:  10/10

Spider-Man : Too many dead because I didn't make you a priority, Lizard! That ends here!

Friday, June 29, 2012

JT's Take: Spider-Men #2

Hey guys and gals, today we're gonna continue with Marvel's Universal cross-over featuring Spider-Man and... well, Spider-Man. After the last issue was a bit lackluster, here's hoping this issue kicks things up a bit, so let's see how it fared.

Spider-Men #2

Summary: We start off with Mysterio regaining consciousness and then sending a lifelike avatar through his portal to get rid of Spider-Man once and for all, because... closing the portal doesn't seem like a good enough idea I guess. Or maybe stealing while you know Spidey isn't in this Universe... but yeah... I'm no evil genius. Over in the Ultimate Universe, the two Spidey's question one another until Miles asks if Spidey is Peter Parker, obviously thinking of the Ultimate Version. Peter is confused so goes on the offensive, cause... yeah. Miles eventually catches Peter off guard with his Venom Sting maneuver and starts to unmask him but Peter recovers and the fight continues. The two go back and forth until Peter removes Miles mask, thankful that he isn't a younger clone of him. Miles gets defensive without his mask, since they're out in broad daylight and uses his Venom Sting again, this time knocking Spidey out cold. Peter wakes up in a holding cell met by Nick Fury, and after a long Bendis-ian explanation, Fury releases Peter Parker and formerly introduces him to Miles Morales. Fury decides to look into the time rift and sends Miles and Peter out to explain what happened to the younger Peter Parker. While flying on a helicopter, Peter asks Miles if his Universe's Peter Parker is dead, but before he can answer the Helicopter is blasted by a rocket launcher. The Spider-Men escape, and are met by the avatar of Mysterio as the issue ends.

Thoughts: Okay, so first things first, this issue was not without it's faults. I mean, Mysterio seems like a kind of lame choice to fight two Spider-Men... and Peter just attacking seemed weird, especially considering how many times he's been attacked by heroes due to a misunderstanding, but we can chalk that up to him thinking this may be a Mysterio illusion. That said, the stuff with Miles and Peter was really enjoyable. The banter while fighting, Miles being still likable, Peter wondering if Miles was a clone was funny, plus the fact Peter said Miles had a cooler costume was a nice line. Overall, I enjoyed this comic enough to continue reading it, and that's a hell of a plus after that slow first issue.

Score:  8/10

Spider-Man (Peter): And what's with your costume being cooler than mine?

Thursday, June 28, 2012

JT's Take: Justice League #10 with Brightest Day Rules?

Hey X-Maniacs, JT here with the first review of the next few days, requested by you readers, a review of Justice League #10 using Brightest Day Rules! What are Brightest Day Rules you ask? Refresh your memory anyway by clicking here. Now that you're all caught up, let's get things started!

Justice League #10

Summary:  We start off with a flashback from three years ago, seeing David Graves find Mount Sumeru, which can only be found if you're near death... alrighty. In the present we catch up with Aquaman, who saves a bunch of people but is still a joke, since he's asked by reporters why he was asked to join the league, when some people have greater credentials, like Vibe. BURN! Aquaman ignores them and goes to meet up at the watchtower with the rest of the League. After finding out from Batman that a bunch of villains have been attacked, tortured and interrogated by someone named Graves, and basically knows all of their weaknesses. The team starts to implode when they find out that Batman and Superman work together outside of the league, and learn that some people, Bats, Cyborg and Superman, know the teams secrets, and others are kept in the dark. The conversation is cut short when Graves shows up at the watchtower, using Steve Trevor's access code. Wonder Woman attacks Graves asking where Steve is, but Graves basically eats her emotions when yelling "Feed me Your Loss!" Wonder Woman has visions of her mother, turned to stone, and she passes out, eyes dilated and seemingly drained of life. Superman tends to Wonder Woman as Aquaman, Flash, Lantern, Cyborg and Batman attack Graves. Graves easily disposes of the League, as he does so, we see what happened while he went to that land of the dead. He's infused with the souls of his wife and dead children and changes into the monster like being he is now, while proclaiming that the League killed his family and the world will know it. The issue comes to a close with the Justice League, taken out and knocked out by Graves.

Thoughts:  So something weird happened... I read this issue of Justice League, and I actually liked it. The last few issues have been horrible, and you can read my past reviews to see, but this one, with the evil origin of Graves, seeing Aquaman get burned by reporters, seeing the League's trust problems, I just enjoyed it. This issue honestly doesn't deserve Brightest Day Rules. Now I could try to review it with BDR, but the score would be pretty damn high, and we all know that's kinda the opposite effect of BDR. So instead I'm going to give this a straight up review... believe me, I'm kinda disappointed I didn't get to rip this comic. With all the reasons I mentioned above, added with how bad ass Graves looked, this was a pretty good comic. Now regardless of how Graves was able to live long enough to find that Land of the Dead, when he was barely able to fire a gun in the last issue, I didn't have too many problems here. I would've liked to see what flashed through the rest of the team's mind when Graves blasted them though. I did enjoy the smug look on Superman's face when he said he hangs out with Batman, but I hated how Cyborg was just spilling everyone's business. Like damn dude... I know you know everything but put a firewall up on all those secrets you're saying!

Score: Surprisingly, I'll give this issue of Justice League a 7/10!

Reporter: Why'd they pick you as a member of the Justice League? Was it right place, right time?

Well this was interesting... feel free to let me know what you guys thought in the comments, was this a really good issue of Justice League or am I just becoming soft in my old age? Until tomorrow, JT out!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

New Comic Day! June 27th Edition

Hey Todd Squad, It's Wednesday so you know what that means, it's New Comic Day! Before we jump into things I wanna make an announcement. Thanks to you guys being so welcoming of me replacing that guy who used to post here, plus me cranking out reviews like I'm not some lazy guy, which I am, you'll be seeing a lot more of ol' JT, since I was recently promoted by X-Man75 to an Admin! (Pause for applause) So basically, half of this blog is MINE! BWAHAHAHA! How's that for a patsy! It's like in Lion King, everything the son touches is mine... or something. But, yeah, just letting you guys know that since I appreciate you all being so welcoming.

Also, before I get into my books I wanna apologize for not getting a review up for Walking Dead #99 but I was pretty busy during the last few days, I'm sure ya all understand. With that said, let's get into this week's books that I'm picking up. Aquaman #10, Batman: The Dark Knight #10, Justice League #10, Amazing Spider-Man #668, and Spider-Men #2. There you have it, if you ever needed proof that I'm not X-Man, there ya go, only five comics. I'll probably end up reviewing all five of those, but still let me know in the comments what you'd like to see, and whatever has the most votes I'll get up first. And yes, Justice League will still be reviewed with Brightest Day Rules!  So that's it for me guys, until tomorrow, I'm your friendly co-owner (trying it out), JT, signing off!

Monday, June 25, 2012

JT's Take: Venom #19

Hey guys and gals, today we're gonna tackle the most recent issue of Venom, which is probably the most consistently good series I've read since Bryan Q. Miller's Batgirl, so let's see if this issue stands up to all the hype.

Venom #19

Summary: We pick things up where we left off, with Flash revealing himself to Betty, who is pissed about his double life. Flash tells Betty people are after his family, and grabs Betty then web-slings off to his sister's house. He arrives there to find his Brother-In-Law, has been killed and illuminated by Jack O'Lantern, and his sister is missing. Flash drops off Betty on a rooftop to keep her safe and heads after Jack O'Lantern, who leads him to his sister. An enraged Flash attacks Jack, who manages to subdue Flash long enough to throw his sister off the top of the building, Gwen Stacy style, even mentioning how Spidey couldn't save a woman this same way. Flash gets there in time to save his sister, but Jack O'Lantern asks him if he can do a repeat performance. Venom looks up to see Betty is being held by Toxin, who jumps off with her. Flash, not wanting to leave his sister but wanting to pursue Betty is then asked by Jack O'Lantern if he's visited his mom recently. The issue closes as we see Flash's mother being wrapped up by The Human Fly.

Thoughts: Damn this issue was amazing, and there was so much action in it, it seemed like it just flew by. Just when things seem like they can't get worse for Flash Thompson, the Savage Six seem to take it even further. It looks like Venom is going to have to call in the Avengers or get help from Spidey, which may piss off the symbiote, but it's issues like this that are what comic books are all about. I've said it once, I'll say it again, if you're not reading Venom then you should be, simple as that. 

Score:  9/10

Venom: No matter what happens to me, Jack doesn't walk away from this. He'll never touch my sister... Never touch Betty...

Sunday, June 24, 2012

JT's Take: Avengers Academy #32

Hey guys, after my rant the other day on Red Hood and the Outlaws, I figured I may as well review something with a writer I always seem to enjoy, so let's look at issue number thirty-two or Christos Gage's Avengers Academy!

Avengers Academy #32

Summary: Things get underway with Juston, fixing his Sentinel, when he's approached by X-23, who's trying her hardest to make me not like her. Just like in the other issues, she's having a ton of thoughts on things that don't really concern her, and this time she's telling Juston he needs to shut down his Sentinel. Juston defends his Sentinel, saying he won't hurt anyone, and how it's his best friend, at some times, his only friend. X-23 mentions how it always says Destroy all Mutants, but Juston said he can't erase that from his memory without clearing the memory, which he doesn't wanna do to his friend. X-23 says he should shut it down, and Juston says that Avengers Academy is where you get a chance to be good, not judged for what you might do wrong, and if X-23 doesn't get that then she's the one that should leave. X-23 storms off and is met by White Tiger, who asks if she has a thing with Juston, because White Tiger has a crush on him. X-23 talks about how he treats the killing Machine like a pet, and Tiger asks if X-23 has ever had a pet, she says as a child she was given a puppy, grew attached to it, then was made to kill it or she'd have to watch as it was killed slowly in front of her. White Tiger asks what she did, but X-23 doesn't answer, and walks away saying it's not the same, as a Sentinel is not alive. X-23 is them summoned by Hank Pym, who tells her if she wishes to leave and join the X-Men, she may, since the Phoenix Five have been doing good around the world, but she says she will stay, she has no place in Utopia. X-23 then runs into Hazmat, who asks her if she thinks the Phoenix Five would be able to cure her, but before she can answer, Striker runs in and yells that somethings happening with the Sentinel. They rush outside to find the Sentinel powering up and telling Juston and his friends to get to a secure area, as a Phoenix powered Emma Frost shows up. She states that she is melting all the Sentinel's on the planet and this is the last one, but Juston pleads with her not to destroy his friend. After much talk, she says she'll simply erase the Sentinel's memory and they can redesign and paint it, so no one knows what it was. Juston says it's horrible, they wanna erase his mind and who he was, and the Sentinel has done nothing but try to be good, which I agreed with. Emma says she tried, but she's going to do what she has to. Pym tries to tell Juston that the Sentinel is just a machine, to which Striker replies that so is Jocasta. Hank says he's responsible for the kids and he can't let them risk getting hurt fighting a Phoenix powered being, as Juston cries that the Sentinel is his friend and he loves him. X-23 sees this and has flashbacks to her puppy and becomes enraged and attacks Emma Frost. Hank Pym says, what the hell, and stands alongside the Avengers Academy crew, telling Emma if she wants the Sentinel, she'll have to go through them, as the issue closes.

Thoughts: If you would've told me, I'd enjoy an issue about X-23 and a boy who loves a Sentinel, I'd probably have called you a liar, but damn I liked this issue. Christos Gage has been writing some excellent stories and this is no exception. Seeing X-23 change her mind when she saw how much Juston loved his Sentinel was great, as well as how he defended his friend, even when given another choice by Emma. Add that in with Striker's line about Jocasta and the fact Hazmat may try to get the Phoenix Five to cure her and this was a fun issue. I'm really looking forward to the conclusion of this two-issue story arc, as well as what's next for the Avengers Academy crew.

Score:  9/10

Hank Pym: Striker,  it's just a machine.
Striker: Jocasta's "Just a machine." Now I see why she left.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

JT's Take: Avenging Spider-Man #8

Hey Todd Squad, Today's review features the epilogue of the recently ended "Ends of the Earth" storyline from Amazing Spider-Man, so needless to say, they'll be spoilers from that if you haven't finished reading. Now let's get to it.

Avenging Spider-Man #8

Summary: We kick things off with Spider-Man underwater in a scuba suit, looking for Silver Sable's body with the Avengers. Spidey is called up to talk to Captain America, who says he needs him with them while they transport Doc Ock to S.H.I.E.L.D. From there we get a quick flashback of Spidey and Sable working together to stop Dr. Doom from marrying a local princess and moving her to Latveria. Turns out Spider-Man was summoned by Sable and Doctor Strange to marry the young woman who was set to marry Doom. Turns out the woman may be the next Sorcerer Supreme, or give birth to it, so they can't allow her to marry Doom, but she was offered by her Father to Dr. Doom, cause apparently he can do that. Turns out she needs to be married to someone she genuinely loves, and she's had a crush on Spidey for years. Silver Sable offers to compensate Spidey well, but Spider-Man says he has a girlfriend. Suddenly, Spider-Man, Sable, Doc Strange and the bride-to-be are met Dr. Doom, who demands his fiancee. After a fight, Strange teleports everyone across the town away from Doom, and Spidey's admirer seems to think he's not so great anymore after seeing him get knocked around by Doom. Turns out she really loves a guy named Marek, who wants to marry her to save her, but she doesn't want him to get killed by Doom for doing so, which is why she picked Spidey, since she thought he could take Doom. They end up talking her into getting with Marek, so Spidey goes to get him and bring him to her. The two get married while Strange, Sable and Spidey hold off Doctor Doom, but when Spidey and Strange are incapacitated, Sable manages to hold off Doom on her own, long enough for Marek and the Princess to consummate the marriage, thus ending Doom's hold on her. Doom, sensing that he no longer has a use for this bride, leaves before attracting the attention of the Fantastic Four, as Spidey recounted how Silver Sable, a woman with no powers, stood toe to toe with Doom and stalled him long enough to save the day. As they drop off Doc Ock at S.H.I.E.L.D., Spidey states that they've stopped his reign of terror, and his dying legacy will be that of a crazy old man who was stopped by Spider-Man. The issue ends as Black Widow continues to search below the sea for Silver Sable and Rhino, but hasn't found either. As she continues her search we see an Octo-bot surface from underwater.

Thoughts: This issue was pretty fun, and there were a LOT of lines that almost got line of the issue, Strange, Sable, Doom, Spidey, were all written excellently in this issue, Avenging Spidey is quickly becoming a highpoint of my comic collection each month. I really enjoyed this story, It fit well in past continuity, there was comedy, it was a great send-off to Sable is she is in fact gone for good, which I doubt since they couldn't find her or Rhino, plus pretty much anytime I get to see Doom and Spidey together I'm happy. Even Doctor Strange was funny here which was enjoyable. This was nothing amazing, but it was, in the words of my buddy X, a Perfectly Acceptable Comic.

Score:  7.5/10

Dr. Doom: Doom does not bargain for what is already his.

Friday, June 22, 2012

JT's Take: Red Hood and The Outlaws #10

Hey Todd Squad, today we're gonna see what's going on with Red Hood and the Outlaws. Jason's appearance in Batman and Robin reminded me how he should be written, so let's see if we got more of that in this issue.

Red Hood and The Outlaws #10

Summary: We start things off with some big monster dude standing over a sleeping Starfire and Arsenal in a hotel room. From there we see Jason coming home from a date with some chick. Suddenly, the big monster flies through the wall of the hotel, and Jason and his date leap out of the way. Jason puts his mask on and starts shooting at the monster, cause fuck a Secret Identity apparently. Turns out the monster dude is an alien and works for Starfire and is there to get her to come back to her planet of Tamaran for help. She agrees, but only if Jason and Roy join her, so they all get teleported to a ship by her people, who also bring Jason's date. Sigh.... I can't even pretend I care... this comic... which was 2.99... was TEN PAGES LONG. The actual Red Hood story, was 10 pages long... and the comic had a back-up about Essence that was six pages long.

Thoughts: What the fuck, Lobdell? You have Jason Todd, Former Robin, Snarky character, full of potential, Roy Harper, excellent character, potential comedy character, and a hell of a fighter, and Starfire, who has ties to both and is an alien powerhouse. You can also probably pick up any other characters you want, DC isn't using Cass Cain, Wally, Grace Choi, and other great characters that are free, so.... HOW DO YOU CONTINUE TO FUCK UP THIS BOOK?! If Bryan Q. Miller or Judd Winick were writing this book, it would be the best team book coming out of DC. Instead, we get this. Stories about a magic group called the All Caste, The Unwritten, and stories where Jason Todd is either killing police officers with no mask on in front of towns people, or opening fire in the middle of a city and putting a mask on. Did you forget he's fucking famous?! Did you forget he was Bruce's ward, so he's PROBABLY been on TV with Bruce a few times. I've forgiven some of the stupid shit you've done with Jason pulling a sword out of nowhere, the Killer Croc incident with Roy, the stupid storyline with Cruz or whatever the guy who hated Starfire's name was, and everything else, but I'm done with it. You've sucessfully taken a team I was excited for, that had two of my favorite characters in the DC Universe, even when they were a red-headed pimply jerk thanks to Morrison, and a one armed Junkie thanks to Robinson and Krul, and you've made me not want to read about them.

Seeing how well Jason was written by Tomasi last week showed me how horrible he's been written since the reboot started, and to top it off, after ruining this book, as well as Teen Titans, which i dropped months ago, they've reward Lobdell by having him write Superman?! I'm done. As much as I want to support a Jason Todd series, as well as Arsenal, I'm done. I hated this story, and I won't see how it, or any of that All-Caste shit ends. I'm done reading Red Hood and the Outlaws, until they get a new, more competent writer.

Score:  N/A

Me: Fuck you, Scott Lobdell.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

JT's Take: Avengers Vs. X-Men #6

Hey guys and gals, AVS part two starts with this issue, Avengers vs. X-Men #6, and after the last issue's Debut of the Phoenix Five, to say this comic should be a game changer is a bit of an understatement, so let's get right to it.

Avengers vs. X-Men #6

Summary: This issue starts off ten days after the last issue, with Magneto welcoming Charles Xavier to the new and improved Utopia. Magneto leads Charles to Cyclops, and they speak about the Phoenix Five, (Cyclops, Emma, Colossus, Magik and Namor) scaring society because they have so much power. Cyclops mentions that they've done nothing with their powers but make the world a better place, not just for mutants but humans as well. Xavier says this world is like cheating, and it cost nothing, but Cyclops says this is Xavier's dream world, and he's given it to him. Next we check with the Avengers and see that Iron Fist, Luke Cage, and Soder-Woman were in a fight with the Electric Legion and in danger of losing, until Colossus showed up and saved them by talking to the villains, and convincing them to power a large portion of Eastern Europe. During the fight, we do hear Iron Fist saying that when Colossus showed up, Danny's hands started burning. From there, Captain America, Iron Man, Black Panther, Beast and Wolverine have a conversation about stopping the Phoenix Five. Black Panther states they've done nothing wrong and are advocating a world without war, and Beast says he's done trying to help them think of ways to hurt and/or kill his friends when they've done nothing wrong. On Utopia, Cyclops tells Hope she can leave if she likes, and offers her the power of the Phoenix, which she says she wants, he then rescinds his offer, saying she didn't want it before and she doesn't deserve it now. After that we see Lei Kung meet up with some old dude and asks for the Book of the Fallen, which reveals that in 1596, the Phoenix was defeated by Iron Fist, and tells Lei Kung he needs Iron Fist. From there we see a vision of the Avengers, with Ironman, Ant-Man and Wasp (?!) killed by the Phoenix Entity. We then see Scarlet Witch sweating and saying "This is what comes next." From there we see that the Avengers hope to use Hope as a weapon against the Phoenix Five, so break into Utopia to rescue/kidnap her. They are stopped by Cyclops and Emma Frost, who blast them all away, except Iron Fist who manages to block the blast by mistake with some kind of force field. Cyclops destroys Stark's suit and is about to take down Thor, until Scarlet Witch shows up and says this is over, and the Avengers are leaving, and also that she's taking Hope, since Hope wants to leave with her. Cyclops grabs Scarlet Witch's arm but releases her immediately and states that he "felt that." The Avengers, Hope and Scarlet Witch leaves, as Scott states to Emma that people will keep fighting what's good for them as long as the Avengers are around as their "Heroes", so he states that from now on it changes, No More Avengers.

Thoughts: So, I'm not gonna lie. The first time I read this issue, I didn't enjoy i, but reading it again for my review, it was much better than I remembered. Xavier showing up was kind of a waste, I'd like to say they were planting seeds, but they did so much of it, with Iron Fist's force field, Scarlet Witch hurting Cyclops, and the stuff with Lei Kung, that Charles showing up was kind of forgettable. I also liked the scene with Beast saying each day he and Wolverine seem to be closer to not having a home, since they're stuck in the middle of both camps. While this issue wasn't as big as I expected, and was very dialogue heavy, it set up a lot of questions, and another war, this time with the X-Men on offensive, which will be interesting.

Score:  7.5/10

Cyclops: But you turned it down. It was yours... and you rejected it. And now I know that you don't deserve it.

JT's Take: Saga #4

Alright guys, this first review just happens to be for one of the best new comic series of the year so far in my opinion, Saga. You can also expect a review for Avengers vs. X-Men #6 later today. But first, there's Saga, So without any further chattering by me, let's get to it!

Saga #4

Summary: We start things off with Intergalactic Bounty Hunter, The Will, arriving at a place/planet(?) known as Sextillon. Clearly he's there to get into some, things, but they inform him that his sidekick, The Lying Cat, isn't welcome and will have to stay below or return to the ship, so The Will sends him back (along with The Will's weapons as well) because he really needs to be in the Sextillon. We then check in with our formerly happy couple, Alana and a still unconscious Marko, their baby Hazel, and a one half of a floating ghost babysitter, Izabel. Marko finally regains consciousness, and has questions about Izabel, but is met with questions from Alana, about his fiance, Gwendolyn. Marko explains that they were to be married after the war but things started to sour before then, and then he met Alana who he loves now. He mentions that technically he and Gwendolyn are still engaged, and he also has their wedding rings. The rings belonged to her grandparents, but Marko used them for he and Alana because they are enchanted by a translator spell, which allows to people who speak different native tongues to understand one another. It's a lot to get over but Alana eventually forgives Marko for keeping the stuff with Gwendolyn secret. Back at the Sextillon, The Will, not interested in any of the kinky stuff they offer, is led to a room where he will be offered a slave girl. When the man in charge brings out the slave girl for The Will, The Will asks how old the girl is, and she replies she's six years old. The Will tells her to close her eyes and claps his hands together on the head of the owner, making his head explode. The small girl hugs The Will and thanks him, as he stands there staring off, face splattered in blood. Back with Marko and Alana, they are found by a ship from Alana's home planet. She suggests trying to talk with them, since she worked with some of the soldiers, but Marko says the last time they tried to talk it out they were almost killed, he says there's only one thing to do, and that's fight. The issue closes as Marko unsheathes his sword and steps in front of his wife and child.

Thoughts: This was a pretty good issue. I'm wondering if Gwen is going to come into play down the road, maybe looking for her family heirloom rings. Besides that, I love the chemistry that BKV is writing for Marko and Alanna, they seem like a real couple, emotionally, which is a hard thing to convey, and he's done a damn well job in only four issues. And The Will, I love that we're seeing different sides of this guy, you'd think he was a heartless bounty hunter, but he's been funny, he's been hurt from his past relationship, and he has morals, as we saw when he freed the little girl in the Sextillon. It really makes me wonder what's going to happen when he meets up with Alanna and Marko.

Score:  8/10

Alanna: Just tell me you weren't lying when you said I'm the hottest chick you ever slept with.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

New Comic Day! June 20th Edition

Hey everyone, JT here, and I think I have Deja Vu, because it's that time of the week again, it's New Comic Day! I talked to X a few days ago and it seems he's been spoiled with time off, so who knows when he'll start reviewing stuff again, but hey, the guy deserves a break. Plus, since you guys have been so accommodating to me, and awesome with your comments, I figured I'd keep the reins of the blog for a bit longer, if that's cool with you X-Maniacs.

I figure we'll do things just like last week, let me know what comics you guys would like a review for and I'll do my damndest to get it done for you, plus if I enjoy something I'll throw that up as well. For this week's haul, I'll be picking up Catwoman #10, Red Hood and the Outlaws #10, Saga #4, Walking Dead #99, Avengers Academy #32, Avengers vs. X-Men #6, Avenging Spider-Man #8, and Venom #19. I'd say my pick of the litter is probably a toss up between Saga, which I've loved, and Venom, which has been great since day one, and really heated up with the last issue. My runt of the litter is probably Avenging Spider-Man, if only because everything else seems to be pretty high on my list. But, whatever you guys want reviews on, feel free to comment and let me know. Expect a post tomorrow and until then, I'm your your Interim Vampire X, Jason Todd, signing off!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

JT's Take: Scarlet Spider #6

Hey X-Todd Squad-Maniacs or something...Man, that was a fast week! Seven reviews later from your truly while our good buddy X enjoyed his break, here we are. Make sure you comment how I deserve a raise in pay or something for picking up X's slack. Anyway, our final review for the week is none other than Scarlet Spider, the man who does whatever a Spider-Man won't. So let's get to it, shall we?

Scarlet Spider #6

Summary: This issue starts off with a bunch of news reports with most people praising Houston's new hero, the Scarlet Spider, who may have a bit of a temper but is still appreciated by many H-Town residents. From there we see Kaine getting a tattoo on his arm for some reason, and after that we see he's a bit peeved being called the Scarlet Spider, a name that was attributed to his "brother", Ben Reilly. He's then approached by the young woman he saved a few issues ago, Aracely, and they go to dinner, although unknown to them, their being watched by a shadowy figure. At dinner, Kaine has a few questions, like how Aracely always knows where to find Kaine, and how she can suddenly speak English. She claims it's because he speaks English, and he gives off a certain vibe, methinks we're dealing with a psychic type. Kaine eventually asks Aracely where Annabelle is, to which she replies church. Kaine heads down to the church, which has been rented out for a concert apparently... cause churches do that I guess. While there, Kaine is confronted by Ana Kraivinoff, daughter of Kraven the Hunter, and one of the people that helped kill Kaine a few years ago. She immediately attacks Kaine with a blade, which was tipped with poison and slows down Kaine as he pursues her. She then torches the church, killing some people who aren't able to escape, as Kaine is too slow to save them due to the poison in his bloodstream. Ana continues to attack Kaine, but he's much stronger than her, which gives him a slight edge, until they fall through the ceiling of the roof to the ground below. Ana, much more serious than before, states that Kaine will die again, as she's killed her own brother and will kill Kaine too. The ceiling then caves in over Ana, and surprisingly Kaine leaps in and saves her. She claims Kaine is becoming weak like Spider-Man and she escapes, but not before telling Kaine that Kraven is coming for him and will eat his heart. Kaine escapes the burned wreckage, wondering why he saved someone that was trying to kill him. Maybe he is a bit more like Peter than he though.

As the issue comes to a close we see four epilogues; the first with Kaine asking a priest for help, wondering why he's alive but not his brother who was a much better man. Basically this is a wake up call for Kaine to try to live to the standard that Reilly set. The second epilogue shows us The Salamander, a villain from a few issues ago, awaken by a mysterious man who tells him he is needed at home with "The Mexica", and that the wolves will deal with the girl. The third epilogue shows us Julia Carpenter, Madame Web, with her daughter when Madame Web suddenly falls to the ground screaming that "She's coming back, she's coming back for Kaine." And the final epilogue shows us Ana alongside her father Kraven, telling Kraven all the information she has on Kaine, about Aracely, Annabelle, his Cop and Doctor friends, and where he lives, as well that he saved her life, and playing Hero has made him soft. The issue ends as Kraven proclaims that he and Ana have hunting to do.

Thoughts: Man, this issue flew by. This, like the last issue, seemed to be more of a set up issue than anything, but it did set up a lot. We've got Kraven and Ana coming for Kaine, Kaine's questioning of if he can live up the Ben Reilly is an interesting turn, plus giving Kaine a love interest in Annabelle. Add in the fact we've got the mystery of Aracely and the Mexica and we should have some great stories down the line. Oh, and Chris Yost, don't be an ass and name a wine after yourself in a comic. Or do, do whatever you want as long as you keep Scarlet Spider better than your Red Robin run.

Score:  7/10

Aracely: I saw a commercial on tee-vee for bar-b-que. I want to eat bar-b-que with you.
Kaine: You are so weird.
Aracely: Bar-b-que!

Monday, June 18, 2012

JT's Take: Batman and Robin #10

Hey X-Maniacs, JT here once again, hell if I do any more reviews we're gonna have to change the URL of this place! As much as I wanna say this is because I'm filling in for our buddy X, we all know that I would NEVER miss an opportunity to review a book with my namesake, Jason Todd, in it, especially when he's being written by someone who isn't Scott Lobdell or Grant Morrison. So let's see what trouble we can get into in this issue of Batman and Robin(s).

Batman and Robin #10

Summary: Things get underway with us seeing a group of villains that all have grudges with Batman, including a guy who threw Batman's Batarang at Bats and somehow got it lodged in his own head, a girl who has one of Batman's forearm spikes lodged in her ear, a guy who was kicked in the face by Batman while he was wielding flames and has Batman's boot print permanently on his face, and three guys that were in a fire together (I believe when Damian sabotaged their escape vehicle a few issues back) and somehow melted into one person with three faces. This Motley crew of misfits are lead by a man calling himself Terminus, who simply wants to watch Batman die. From there we jump over to Wayne Manor to see the boys getting a Wayne family portrait painted, we see Bruce, Dick, Tim, Damian, Alfred and even Damian's dog Titus. No Jason for those counting. After a bunch of bickering between Tim and Damian, Bruce tells the boys to stop arguing, and that everyone has honored their time as Robin, even Jason, and the fact they were Robin's should be a bond, not a wedge, which causes Damian and Tim to storm off.

We then jump back to Terminus, who literally seems to be falling apart, but he uses some machine to keep himself from dying until his plan can be followed through. From there we quite randomly jump to a scene that has to be during Night of Owls, as Red Hood, Nightwing and Red Robin all meet on a rooftop, and were apparently summoned (unbeknownst to them) by Robin. He tells the former Robins that he's putting them on notice, that soon he will defeat each of them in something they feel unbeatable at. This of course leaves Dick confused, Jason face-palming, and Tim sighing. Damian states he's doing this to prove he's the best Robin, to himself, to them, and to Batman. Nightwing says Damian has nothing to prove, but Damian says forewarned is forearmed and takes off, leaving Nightwing, Red Hood, and Red Robin to ponder his threat. We then jump over to Bruce and Alfred, Alfred discovers that Bruce hasn't told Dick and Tim about Damian killing Nobody, as Bruce says knowing would only divide them even more, and Damian doesn't even know Alfred knows. The conversation is cut short as the Bat-Signal alarm goes off causing Bruce to spring into action. Later, Tim heads to the cave to tell Bruce about Damian's threats but is met by Damian. Damian plays video of Tim almost killing Fist Point after he murdered Artemis in the Teen Titans Annual. Tim yells that he's nothing like Damian, as he stopped himself from killing Fist Point (horrible name) and attacks Robin. The two beat the hell out of one another until Tim asks Damian what he wants from him, as he admits he thought about killing Fist Point. Damian says he wants Tim to accept him for what he is, a Wayne and a Robin. Tim stares at Damian before leaving, and as the issue comes to a close we see Terminus, now seemingly in perfect health for the moment, ready to take on Batman and destroy him and the city of Gotham with a giant nuke.

Thoughts: First things first, no disrespect to Kenneth Rocafort, but THAT is how Jason's mask should be drawn. Man, Patrick Gleason made me legit smile when I saw that shot of Jason's mask. Anyway, this issue was really fun. The Jason fan in me was happy to see him get to interact with Tim, Dick and Damian all at once, but I really loved Damian here. Challenging the other Robin's to prove he's the best is SO something he would do. I'm interested to see if the four Robins will have to team up to save the city or save Batman. And I really have to commend Tomasi on his work here, everyone had their own characteristics as they should. They all seemed like themselves and how they would interact, which is something we don't always see when you get a lot of characters together, this felt like how a Robin Reunion would. As for the villains, I think they have potential, none are really heavy-hitters but seeing their grudges with Batman was interesting. This was a great start to this storyline, I hope it continues to be this good since the next issue is billed as Damian/Jason.

Score:  8.5/10

Nightwing: You've got nothing to prove, none of us do, well maybe actually you (Jason) still do. But you heard what he said at the portrait sitting.

Red Hood: Portrait Sitting? Guess my invitation got lost in the mail.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

JT's Take: The Amazing Spider-Man #687

Hey, X-Maniacs, Vampire X here... wait no, my mistake, JT here again with another review. Since I'm sure you guys are getting tired of these intro's, let's just get right to it, shall we?

The Amazing Spider-Man #687

Summary: Picking up where the last issue left off, Spidey, Mysterio, Black Widow and Silver Sable take on a mind-controlled team of Avengers. It turns out Doc Ock can assume the body of each Avenger, but doing so makes them a bit more sluggish which leads to Spidey and pals taking out Earth's Mightest Heroes, but not before losing the aid of Black Widow, who takes a blast from an Doc Ock controlled Ironman. After losing control of the Avengers, Ock launches his missiles into orbit to continue his plan, so Hulk, Thor and Ironman try to cut them off by destroying the missiles. With Cap, Widow and Hawkeye out of commission from the fight, and Mysterio leaving like a spineless villain would, Spider-Man and Silver Sable head into Doctor Octopus' base. Sable says they should bring Sandman to help, since he won't let the world get destroyed since it would kill his daughter, but Spider-Man says they can't trust him. They finally get near Doc's control room and find the Rhino waiting. He says he has nothing to live for without his wife and they won't pass him, Sable says he can't stop them both but Rhino says he doesn't have to, as he grabs Silver Sable by the neck and holds her barely above the rapidly rising water flooding Doc Ock's base. He says he's not moving, he will hold Sable there until she drowns, and he will stay there until he drowns as well. Spider-Man tries to free Silver Sable but Rhino is too strong, she tells Spider-Man to go on, stop Doctor Octopus before everyone dies. Spider-Man has no choice but to leave her and goes after Octopus, who almost continues his plan and allows himself to drown as well, before he's thwarted once again by Spider-Man, who not only stops the missiles from entering orbit, but also saves Doctor Octopus. When asked by a livid Doc Ock why he saved him, Spider-Man prepares to say how he promised no one would die as long as he's around but cuts himself short. The issue comes to a close as Spider-Man dumps Doctor Octopus at the boat of Max Modell and his students. When Modell says Spider-Man has saved them all, Spider-Man replies that he failed, and somberly says "Someone died."

Thoughts: Small thing, Marvel screwed up the speech bubbles and has Ironman and Peter saying each others lines on the page where Ock launches the missiles. I gotta say, the apparent death of Silver Sable surprised me, not that they did it but how much Dan Slott made me care. I've never been a fan of Silver Sable, I didn't dislike her, she just existed. Over the last few issues I'd come to like her and appreciate her as an ally of Spider-Man, and the way her death scene (if she is dead) was written here was great, especially since Spider-Man vowed not to let anyone die since what happened with Marla Jameson. The only problem I had with this comic was why Doctor Octopus would keep controlling the bodies of the Avengers when it was painfully obvious that controlling them was more of a hindrance, I guess you could chalk it up to him being cocky but that seemed kinda weird to me for a genius to do. Besides that small thing, this issue was damn near perfect and a great conclusion to this great storyline, definitely looking forward to what Slott has coming next.

Score:  9.5/10

Spider-Man: Ah, Mysterio. Now ya see 'im, now ya don't ever wanna see him again.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

JT's Take: Green Lantern #10

Hey guys and gals, JT back once again with a new review, this time we're gonna check out Green Lantern. Now due to X's hatred of CHAIRMAN JOHNS (Dun dun dunnnnn!!!) there hasn't been any reviews of what I think are two of the best books currently coming out of the DC Reboot that aren't Batman, Green Lantern and Aquaman. So, consider that over, X still has beef with Johns but I do not, so I plan on reviewing Green Lantern and Aquaman from this point on. So, I know present to you, the first issue of Green Lantern written by Geoff Johns reviewed here since February 2011, Green Lantern #10!

Green Lantern #10

Quick Rundown: Just a quick catch-up for people that haven't been reading Green Lantern since the reboot. Following War of the Green Lanterns, Hal Jordan was stripped of his ring and title and they were awarded to Sinestro, who had helped the Green Lanterns become victorious. Hal moped for a while and his life sucked until he finally manned up and things started to look up for him, until he was recruited by force by Sinestro to help him take back Sinestro's home planet of Korugar from the Sinestro Corps. After defeating the Sinestro Corps, Sinestro seeks Lyssa Drak and discovers the plans of the Guardians third army to get rid of the Green Lantern Corps. Sinestro and Hal search for answers until they are confronted by the Indigo Tribe who make Sinestro join them as punishment. We then learn that the Indigo Tribe are a group of murderers and villains who were brought together by none other than Abin-Sur and a being by the name of Natromo, who create the Indigo Lantern and give compassion rings to the world's worst killers. This was done because Abin knew one day the Guardians would turn on the Corps and they would need help. The team was led by Abin-Sur's worst enemy, the woman who killed his daughter, Iroque, who would become Indigo-1. Upon finding out from Hal Jordan that Abin-Sur was dead, Natromo destroyed the Indigo battery, which not only freed Sinestro but also the murderers of the Indigo Tribe, and even our old friend Black Hand. There, now you're all caught up.

Summary: This issue starts with Hal grabbing Sinestro and running from the former Indigo Tribe, explaining why the Indigo Tribe are after them. We also see William Hurt, The Black Hand, wondering where he is, where his black ring is, and why he has on a Indigo ring, which he promptly throws off. (Keep in mind he's pretty much been out of it since Blackest Night, and now he finally has consciousness.) Sinestro decides he's going to stay and fight the Tribe but Hal forcibly takes him since Sinestro's ring is all-but dead and Hal's is running on fumes. While escaping they run into Natromo and try to convince him to restart the Battery, but he believes with Abin-Sur dead all hope is lost. After being persuaded by Hal, he agrees to try, and Sinestro goes to buy them some time by fighting the Indigo Tribe, that's right, Sinestro engaged in fisticuffs everyone! Back with Hal and Natromo, they try to reconstruct the battery but can't without any of the Indigo light, which is long gone by now. Surprisingly, they are approached by Iroque, the former Indigo-1 who says they must repair the battery. She says while she wore the ring it showed her how much she hurt Abin-Sur by killing his daughter, and while wearing the ring she felt sadness. The compassion she feels while recounting this causes her ring to spark, which is all Natromo needs to rebuild the battery, which brings the Indigo Tribe back online. All except The Black Hand, his ring seeks him and Black Hand continues to run from it and jumps from a ledge, falling to the rocks below which instantly kills him. The ring scans the bloody body of a now deceased Black Hand and flies off to find a replacement in the area. (Wonder who that will be...) Back with Hal, we see that Sinestro is back online too, and Hal has to ask the Indigo Corps to release him. Indigo-1 says she will release him if Hal believes he will find redemption without the Indigo Ring. She then asks Hal if he thinks Sinestro can become a hero again... Hal thinks and says he wants to believe he can. From there we cut back to the dead body of The Black Hand, as his body spits out a Black Lantern ring that flies out of his mouth and onto his hand, telling him to RISE. The issue closes as a Black Lantern Black Hand says he wants to go home.

Thoughts: See, it's issues like this that I still have faith in Geoff Johns after that Brightest Day debacle. I loved the reveal of the Indigo Tribe consisting of villains a few issues ago but the fact the rings actually work and helped changed Iroque for the better is a very interesting thing. I'm also wondering who that Indigo ring will go to, hopefully someone we know already because that will be interesting to say the least. Sinestro was awesome as usual here and I love seeing him and Hal play off of each other, with Sinestro clearly wanting to be more like Hal, even if he won't admit it. Add that in with the way Black Hand was written here, clearly showing that everything between Blackest Night and now to him was the equivalent of blinking was an awesome idea. I was wondering why he killed himself as opposed to being lobotomized by that ring but him having a trick up his sleeve is great, plus I can't say I mind having a Black Lantern ring or two around.

Score:  8.5/10

Sinestro: I'll hold them off.
Sinestro: *whispers* It's what you would do.

Friday, June 15, 2012

JT's Take: AvX: VS. #3

Hey Todd Squad (Yep, you've slowly converted in X's absence), it's time again for another review! This we're looking at AvX: VS. #3, for those unaware this book features more fleshed out versions of the fights between the Avengers and X-Men during their big battle. Prior to this issue the score was Avengers: 3, X-Men: 1, so let's see how our two teams fared in this issue.

AvX: VS #3

Summary: As you can see from the cover above, our two fights this issue were Black Widow vs. Magik and The Thing vs. Colossus. We started things off with a fight between Red Hulk and Colossus, which I would have much rather seen, but instead we ended up with Colossus and The Thing, both victorious from past fights against Spider-Man and Namor respectively, facing one another. Since this issue takes place on the moon, due to the events of Avengers vs. X-Men #5, the fight drastically changes once The Thing and Colossus's fight take them out of the Blue Area of the Moon, which is a side that has oxygen. Once outside of the Blue Area, Colossus is able to make short work of Thing since Colossus doesn't have to breathe apparently, while The ever-lovin, blue eyed, oxygen sucking Thing does. This brings our total up to 2-3, with the Avengers still leading. Next we saw Black Widow take on Magik in a fight that really wasn't a fight, Magik sent Widow to hell but Widow brought her with her, then proceeded to beat the hell (No pun intended) out of Magik before making her return them back to the Moon. After the ass-kicking she dished out, Black Widow is literally stabbed in the back by Magik with a sucker punch using her Soulsword. Magik then looks up at the quickly approaching Phoenix as this issue comes to a close.

Thoughts: This issue was kind of a let-down for me. The prospect of Red Hulk vs. JuggerColossus was way more interesting to me than seeing The Thing again, I get that they needed some wins for the X-Men and probably didn't wanna job Rulk out to Colossus but seeing two people who have already had fights when we have people like Wolverine, Thor, Hawkeye, Beast, Cyclops, Storm, Emma Frost and other people that haven't had fights yet seemed odd. Add that in with the fact that Widow basically kicked tons of ass and was beaten by a sucker punch and that left a sour taste in my mouth. Once again, I realize that was done to tie up the score I guess, but I hated seeing Widow taken out like that. Plus, a lot of the dialogue in that fight was in Russian because they're trying to push that Augmented Reality App, not everyone has a Smart Phone Marvel, and those that do, may not feel like scanning a page to read a comic they already purchased...

Score:  6/10

Black Widow: You think I'm not ready to die for what I believe in? Think again.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

JT's Take: Spider-Men #1

Hey Former X-Maniacs, and current unwilling members of the Todd Squad, JT here with another requested review. Today we're gonna see how The Amazing Spider-Man, Peter Parker, meets up with our newest Ultimate Spider-Man, Miles Morales. So let's check in with our friendly neighborhood Spider-Men.

Spider-Men #1

Summary: Things get started with The Amazing Spider-Man (Parker) swinging around New York, talking about how much he loves his city, he's prideful just like most New Yawkers. (Right X?) While proclaiming his love for the city, Spidey stops a crime in progress and is confronted by the police, but he leaves before they can do anything and continues to sing his praises about New York. Spidey continutes until he see's a strange beam shooting into the sky, so naturally, he goes to investigate. He's led to an old abandoned building where he finds some kind of portal but he's suddenly attacked by Mysterio. Spidey takes down Mysterio who is behaving more like a nutjob talking about the first time Spider-Man died, and he's able to shoot off a laser that hits the portal, causing everything to pretty much blow up and transports Spidey to another world. Spider-Man is clearly confused since it was night-time and now it's clearly daytime. Spidey returns to the formerly abandoned building to see it's populated with people that have clearly lived there for a while. While looking around the city for clues, Spidey drops in and saves a guy from muggers, the guy is thankful but says the costume is in terrible taste since it's the same as Peter Parker's. Naturally, Spidey is taken aback by this comment and leaves to find more clues, now even more confused. The issue comes to a close with Spider-Man shocked that he's now face to face with Ultimate Spider-Man.

Thoughts: This issue was a bit slow, it made sense as they had to set up the whole "How do we make them meet?" storyline, but I could've done without Peter's I love New York mentality, just because it's so often re-hashed. Also, I could have done with a little more Miles in this issue but that's just my personal opinion. Aside from that stuff, I'm very curious to see how this goes, as well as what will happen if Pete learns about the Ultimate Universe Reed Richards, as well as the former Ultimate Spider-Man, and maybe even Aunt May, MJ and Gwen Stacy?

Score:  7.5/10

Civilian: I appreciate you saving me, man, but can't you come up with your own costume?

JT's Take: Batman #10

Hey guys, gals and gallivanting miscreants, it's your temporary head honcho, a Vice-President if you will with a brand new review that you guys suggested. See, we even have a democracy going on! Since they were suggested by you guys, you can expect a few reviews over the next few days, including Spider-Men #1, but that's then, for now let's see what's going on with The Dark Knight himself in this issue of Batman. Warning: This will include spoilers, so if you haven't read Batman #10 yet, I would skip this review.

Batman #10

Summary: Things started off with Batman finally tracking down the Court of Owls after the Bat-Family has finally dealt with the Talons. Batman heads to the Harbor house, the place he went looking for clues as a child and almost died, as he finds the entire Court of Owls dead, poisoned by their drinks, Jim Jones style. Defeated, Bruce heads back home until he lays eyes upon a picture of his Parents and heads to the morgue looking for a body, instead finding a note. Bats follows the directions of the note to the remains of an old mental hospital for children and is met by none-other than the no longer deceased Lincoln March. Batman reveals that he knows Lincoln used the Talon serum before dying, and he betrayed the Court of Owls and poisoned them. Batman then says that Lincoln was an inmate at the Children's Hospital, which March confirms, and Bruce says the thing that tipped him off was a story March told him about a pin his Mother wore when she was in the car crash that killed her. Turns out she didn't die in a car crash, but the pin he described was a pin owned by Martha Wayne, a pin that was only given to mothers who had a child in the mental hospital, as Lincoln march reveals he is Bruce's brother, Thomas Wayne Jr.!!! Bruce denies having a brother but Thomas says deep down he knows it to be true, Martha was pregnant when in a car accident and Thomas was born early, so the Waynes sent him to the Willowwood Children's Hospital, as it used to be a premier hospital, before the funding dried up when Thomas and Martha Wayne were killed in Crime Alley. The issue comes to a close as March announces this as a fight for Gotham, Brother vs. Brother, Bat vs. Owl. In the back-up story we see Alfred's Father, Jervis Pennyworth in a story that pretty much backs up Lincoln's claim that he may be Bruce's brother, since Martha was indeed pregnant and was in a car accident that was caused by a Talon.

Thoughts: Well man, what a twist!!! I really enjoyed this issue, Scott Snyder has been on a roll and he planted hints well throughout the last year, which we all overlooked but in hindsight they really do make sense. I think we all figured Lincoln March was behind the Court of Owls but no one saw this coming. If done right, we can have a great new villain for Batman, and imagine how interesting Snyder will be able to do a story with Damian and his uncle Thomas. But I'm getting ahead of myself, I was kinda bummed at how soon we got rid of the Court, and there's always more but that seemed kinda rushed. The twist definitely made up for that though, and I'm very excited to see what Scott Snyder has up his sleeve next.

Score:  9/10

Lincoln March: So if I'm not Lincoln March, then who am I?

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

New Comic Day! June 13th Edition.

Hey everyone, it's that time of the week, So break out the bags, the boards and the wallets because it's New Comic Day! As some of you may or may not have noticed, this is JT filling in for my good buddy Vampire X, considering he's been under the weather for the past few days. Who knows when Vamp X will be up and running so instead I figured I'd let you guys know what I'll pick up and you can pretty much suggest what you'd like yours truly to review.

Luckily, this is a big haul for me this week, and since I grab books that X doesn't, consider this a chance to get some books you may not expect to see reviewed get the honor. So this week's books are as follows, Batman #10, Batman and Robin #10, Green Lantern #10, The Ravagers #2, Suicide Squad #10, Invincible #10, Amazing Spider-Man #687, AVX #3, Deadpool #56, Scarlet Spider #6 and Spider-Men #1! Man, this is a jam-packed week for me. Let's see, for Pick of the Litter, it's a toss up between Amazing Spider-Man and Batman since I've enjoyed so much, but I'll give the nod to Batman #10. For my Runt of the litter, I'm giving that (dis)honor to The Ravagers, which isn't it's fault since it's only in it's second issue, but what can ya do? Anyway, whatever you guys would like reviewed I'll do my damndest to get up for ya. As I said, I'm not sure if we can expect X since he's been sick lately but until then I'll be here. Expect the first review up by Thursday afternoon, and until then, I'm your friendly neighborhood Blogger-Man, Jason Todd, signing off.

Friday, June 8, 2012

A Quick Look At... June 6th's new releases.

So I just got home from work a few minutes ago and cooked myself a pizza. I have a few minutes before the pizza cools, so now is as good as any time to break out the first “A Quick Look At...” post of the week. Since I have 8 books left to blog about, I'll do four for this post and leave four for the next post(which will probably be up tomorrow). For this week, I figured I'd go up to THREE whole sentences for each comic! I know, crazy!! Okay, enough talk, I have a pizza waiting for me, so let's get to this...

Stormwatch #10: This was the second issue written by Peter Milligan, and much like the prior issue, it was pretty good. I'm not sure where he's going with Apollo and Midnighter(since I thought it was already established they were gay, although maybe Midnighter hasn't come out yet?), but I was glad to see the guy who betrayed the team(whose name escapes me at the moment...) and Projectionist pop up here. This was another one-and-done type of issue, but as long as the stories are good, I'm fine with that format.
Score: 7 1/2 out of 10.

Morning Glories #19: This was a weird comic... It was all about Hunter being chased through the woods by a knife-wielding Zoe, who knew WAY more about Hunter's life then you'd think she should have. In the end Zoe was shot by some weirdos, which did indeed piss me off since I really like Zoe.
Score: 7 out of 10.

Invincible Iron Man #518: A LOT went on in this issue, including War Machine(who everybody thinks is dead) acting as the new Iron Man, Tony Stark publicly declaring that he was no longer Iron Man(for the ten-thousandth time), Sasha Hammer being attacked by the crazed Detroit Steel, Spymaster still trying to kill the Stark Resilient staff and Ezekiel Stane telling the Mandarin that he was no longer the Mandarin's slave... Whew. The downside of all that stuff going on is that no one thing was really focused on, so this issue was kind of a blur.
Score: 7 out of 10.

X-Factor #237: Polaris and Siryn/Banshee decide to take Wolfsbane on a road trip in order to perk Wolfsbane up. After failing, they take her to Reverend Madrox, who does get through to Wolfsbane, at which point Wolfsbane decides that she wanted to find her abandoned child. That was a great thing to read, because I am SO curious about Wolfsbane's child, and think the kid has HUGE potential. Oh, and this was a fun read, as usual. And yes, I know that took me over my 3 sentences or less decree... But hey, rules(especially mine) are made to be broken!
Score: 8 out of 10.

Okay, I think I've burned enough time for my pizza to cool off, until later, Vampire X out!

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Winter Soldier #6

I don't have that much time to waste before heading off to work, so let's bust this review out post-haste!

Winter Soldier #6:

Summary: Bucky manages to track down the hidden base that was holding the third sleeper and is disturbed to find the lab in disarray. Bucky reasons that the sleeper had been woken up during an earthquake, which means he wasn't administered the proper mental conditioning and drugs upon waking up, and was therefore insane. Sure enough, the third sleeper IS insane! We learn the sleeper is a man named Leo Novokov, who had learned that he was a sleeper after 12 years or so of living life as a amnesiac bum, and that upon meeting the man who was supposed to be his hander, he murders the man, an action that no other sleeper had ever done before. After watching Steve Rogers eulogy for Bucky(after Bucky's “death” following Fear Itself), Leo feels Bucky isn't dead and decides to draw Bucky out... To that end he hunts down and murders Fred Davis(!!!), who was the second Bucky. That action does indeed draw Bucky out, who, along with Black Widow and SHIELD, investigate the crime scene. From a distance, Leo smugly watches, content that now HE could kill Bucky for real.

Thoughts: First off, I can't believe Fred Davis died here! He JUST starred in a storyline in the Captain America and Bucky series a few months ago, so he's a character who was still fresh on my mind. I never expected him to get offed like that. With that said, this comic? It was awesome. Ed Brubaker took Leo and made him into an ULTRA dangerous threat to Bucky. If given a good villain name, I can't see why Leo can't become Bucky's own personal Red Skull/arch-nemesis type of character. With Fred's murder and Bucky training Leo back in the day, it's already personal between the two, plus Leo is crazy and crazy people make for great foes! This was the prologue to the next Bucky storyline, and if it's half as good as this issue was, we're in for a treat!

Score: 9 out of 10.
winter soldier #6
No, not Fred!!

Avengers Academy #31

Nope, your eyes aren't deceiving you, ol' Vampire X is really doing ANOTHER full review! Madness! I actually enjoyed typing up the AvX #5 review, so I figured I'd do another full review right now(after work) and try to do another one tonight BEFORE work. After that though, most likely I'll do two posts talking about the other books from this week, that is unless one of them really impresses me. Anyway, let's get this show on the road so I can go to sleep!

Avengers Academy #31(AvX tie-in):

Summary: Tigra gets in touch with Hazmat to warn her about Sebastian Shaw being on the loose and that the Avengers Academy staff feared Shaw was planning on killing the X-kids. Hazmat attacks Shaw, which leads to the X-kids defending him, which naturally leads to the Avengers cadets brawling with the X-kids. Eventually Tigra, Hercules, Madison Jeffries and Dr. Rao arrive on the scene and we find out that Shaw wasn't planning on killing anybody, he simply wanted to help the X-kids escape. X-23 decides to side with the X-kids, stating that they should be allowed to join into the Avengers vs X-Men festivities because they had been in lots of battles before... So that means they should fight the Avengers... Who are known heroes... Um, why? Basically everybody is swayed by X-23's argument(?!) so Tigra stages a mock battle that sees the X-kids “defeat” the Avengers and their allies, leading to them “escaping.” X-23 decides to stay, even though she sided with the X-kids because she had made friends with Finesse. And that's pretty much that.

Thoughts: Uh-huh... That was... something. I don't get why X-23's argument seemed to sway everyone myself. So the X-kids have fought against Sentinels, Purifiers and other assorted villains. I get that. But they were brought to the Academy campus for their safety, as well as the safety of the Avengers on the field. With the X-kids there, they wouldn't be getting their heads bashed in by Red Hulk or Thor. So Tigra let's them leave, at which point you'd have to assume they went off to fight the Avengers. That's a horrible thing to do, not only to the X-kids, but to the Avengers as well! Like I said, the fact that I didn't agree with the main argument to let the X-kids leave was why I didn't enjoy this issue nearly as much as I usually enjoy this series. But for those of you who did agree with X-23, I'm sure this issue was a lot more enjoyable to you.

Score: 7 out of 10.
avengers academy #31
Hercules' “death” scene(s) actually saved this issue for me.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Avengers vs X-Men #5

Okay, this is supposedly the big one, so I figured I'd give it a read and review while eating my dinner before I head of to work. Here's hoping this issue lives up to Marvel's hype.

Avengers vs X-Men #5(of 12):

Summary: With the Phoenix looming and Hope losing control with a devastating pyrokinetic blast, she begs Wolverine to kill her to end this since she no longer wanted to join with the Phoenix. Wolverine decides she was right and moves in for the kill, but is stopped by an optic blast from Lord Summers. Once again, Captain America attempts to reason with Lord Summers, but he is too far gone in the throes of madness to listen and simply attacks Cap and Wolvie. However, Iron Man and Hank Pym have one last ditch plan, to attack the Phoenix Force with some gigantic Iron Man suit that had been supplied with the data the Avengers Space team had collected. Iron Man heads up for what seems to be a suicide run and blasts the Force into nothingness(!!!)... Or so it seems... In actuality, the Phoenix Force has bonded with Lord Summers, Namor, Emma Frost, Colossus and Magik, and has decided to wait for Hope to be recovered enough to accept the Force into herself, even though she had decided she no longer wanted to take that path. Cap tries to talk the Phoenix Brotherhood into giving Hope up once more, but they simply laugh at him, take Hope and head towards the Earth, ending this one.

Thoughts: Um, so the Phoenix Force didn't actually bond with one person in this issue, as expected, it bonded with the entire Brotherhood... That was a swerve that I didn't see coming, and one that I didn't necessarily like. I guess that leaves the Force more beatable, since it spread it's powers out, but why does the Force have to “prepare” Hope to take it? Why not just possess her and be done with it? On the plus side, the X-Men have now officially gone to the dark side, so we seem to have clear cut lines coming out of this issue, the Avengers are the good guys, the Phoenix possessed X-Men are the bad guys. You can tell by the insane way they were talking and their, as Cap put it, “scary voices.” Also, the X-Men can be redeemed after this, as whatever evil actions they do going forward can be blamed on the Phoenix Force. It'll be interesting to see what Lord Summers meant when he said he was now more than a mutant and was bringing “tomorrow”. Even though I didn't love this issue, I'm still looking forward to the next issue in two weeks.

Score: 8 out of 10.
avengers vs x-men #5
Oh no, it's the Dark Phoenix Corps!

New Comic Day! June 6th edition.

It's Wednesday, and you know what that means... Yep, it's time for New Comic Day! Huzzah! It's also time for me to finally, you know, type up a post... Anyway, I already know what this week's Pick of the Litter is before checking out which books I'll be getting this week, but let's see what else I expect to be picking up at the comic shop later on(I wrote this last night, that's actually a lie, I just got back!)... Stormwatch #10, Morning Glories #19, Thief of Thieves #5, Avengers Academy #31, Avengers vs X-Men #5, Dark Avengers #175, Invincible Iron Man #518, Journey Into Mystery #639, Mighty Thor Annual #1, Winter Soldier #6, X-Factor #237. I'll also probably pick up Uncanny X-Men #13, although I'm seriously on the fence about that after the ultra-lame ending of the last issue(Yeah, I didn't bother picking that up to read about more of Lord Summers and his scathing love letters). Anyway, that's a definite 11 books for the week, which would actually make this week somewhat light. Huh, go figure.

As expected, this week's Pick of the Litter is Avengers vs X-Men #5. Marvel is promoting this issue as the end of the first act/arc/part/whatever, so you have to expect something HUGE to occur in this one... Should make for a really interesting read, as well as set the tone for the rest of the event. So far I've enjoyed this event, this issue could be the one that tips my opinion in the other direction though. We shall see... As for this week's Runt of the Litter? I guess that would be Thief of Thieves #5. I just haven't been able to get into this series in the way I hoped, and to be honest, I was planning on dropping it, but forgot to. Oh well, I'll probably just drop it after this issue. Now it's time to talk about my posting schedule... Due to work, as well as my other responsibilities, I don't see myself having the time to do very many full reviews. So expect a few “A Quick Look At...” posts over the course of the next few days. However, I do fully intend on giving AvX #5 a full review upon getting home from the comic shop, meaning it should be up in a few hours(forget a few hours, how about a few minutes!)! Shocking, I know! So that's that. As always, things could change, but that's what I'm anticipating. Until later? X out.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Amazing Spider-Man Annual #39

Hey X-Maniacs, JT here again with another annual and another review. This time we're going over to the Marvel side of things with The Amazing Spider-Man Annual. So, without any further stalling, let's do it to it!

Amazing Spider-Man Annual #39

Summary: This issue actually starts off really quickly. We kicked things off with Peter helping Grady with another time based project because apparently he didn't learn his lesson when he almost destroyed New York. Peter ends up in a world where no one remembers Peter Parker and he pretty much doesn't exist. It isn't until he stumbles around to certain places that he relives old memories, which cause more people to remember him. Also, being weird out of place character in this world, it causes time related Earthquakes all over New York until Peter gets there, which triggers a memory he relives. Also, he hangs out with Uncle Ben. Anyway, he keeps reliving this memories and doing things until Time eventually fixes itself and he exists again or something. The issue ends with him telling Grady to take the experiment apart to which Grady obliges, and Pete then says goodbye to Uncle Ben, who's still around somehow before he fades away... or something.

Thoughts: I'm sorry but I couldn't get into this issue, I'm sure it showed above but I just didn't enjoy it. One, how many times does Grady have to screw up time before he moves on to a new experiment?! Secondly, I'm not a big fan of time jumps unless they pay off, and this didn't. Nothing really happened but Pete reliving things that happened... so... yeah. Also, he admitted the world was better off without him, so basically he was fine with Norman Osborn not curing cancer as long as he got to exist. What an ass.  Another thing I'm tired of is Annuals being an excuse to bring Uncle Ben back. Last year's annual had Uncle Ben too, and at least then he was evil and the story was good, this was just basically him patting Peter on the back every two pages and saying "Great Job, Pete!" Add that with the fact they basically not only recycled the Grady storyline thing but the "People needed help from Peter, not Spider-Man!" thing... which is exactly what happened the LAST time Pete helped Grady. I could have really done without reading this comic.

Score:  2/10

Flash Thompson: What kinda name is Mister Fantastic? Guy's a beanpole! He ought to get a look at me before he goes calling himself "Fantastic."

Well, thankfully that review is done with. If you agreed or if you actually enjoyed this issue feel free to let me know what you thought, and until next time, I'm your friendly neighborhood blogger-man, Jason Todd, signing off!

A Quick Look at... May 30th's new releases. Take 2!

Hey all, Vampire X here with the second part of my laziest idea ever, A Quick Look At...! I should be able to get a few real reviews done Sunday night or so, which means I can post some reviews Monday... Probably. But until then, it's lazy Vampire X to the rescue! I have to say, it's a REAL good thing JT is doing posts here, because if it was just up to me, this blog would be a sad place... Or a sadder place. I think that's more appropriate. Anyway, here's the rest of the books I picked up on Wednesday, in two sentences... Or less!!!

America's Got Powers #2: This was another good, strong issue of this series. The characters are interesting, the story is engaging, and with Bryan Hitch doing the art, it goes without saying that the art is great.
Score: 8 out of 10.

Batman Annual #1: JT pretty much said everything I'd have said about this comic, but better! This was a fantastic one and done issue that puts a whole new spin on the Mr. Freeze character.
Score: 10 out of 10.

Astonishing X-Men #50: This issue actually made me remember how much I enjoyed reading Marjorie Liu's work... I'm not a huge fan of any of the characters here, but Liu tells a story that's good enough to have me interested in the next issue.
Score: 7 1/2 out of 10.

Ravagers #1: This comic was good! I'd have liked it better without Beast Boy, and I'm not sure if I'll snag issue #2, but I'm at least pondering picking up the second issue, which is more than I expected.
Score: 7 out of 10.

And that'll do it for me. After a quick bite to eat(heh heh...) it's back to the casket until tonight. Until later, Vampire X out!

Friday, June 1, 2012

JT's Take: Batman Annual #1

Hey X-Maniacs, it's I, your friendly neighborhood Blogger-Man, the guy here that's not a Vampire, and your favorite bench rider, JT! Since our buddy Vampire X is feeling a bit burned out I'm gonna pick up the slack here. Of course, the week he wants me to pick up the slack is the week only I bought three books, but we'll make it work! I had a joke about Vampire X not sucking blood, but just sucking, but I figure why not just get to the review? So let's get started!

Batman Annual #1

Summary:  So in this issue we kick off with Mr. Freeze in Arkham Asylum, recounting the story of his mother falling through Ice during Winter about thirty years ago, she was frozen which kept her alive until help arrived.When he's stalled long enough, Freeze kills the psychiatrist and uses the man's crayon (something Freeze couldn't use as a weapon) and uses the crayon to jam the electric currents that keeps Freeze's room hot. Once the room becomes cold, Freeze uses it to his advantage pretty damn awesomely to break out. I say this a lot but words can;t do it justice, Snyder really writes Freeze like a bad ass in this scene. Freeze then meets with Penguin and is looking for guns, as he's ready to retrieve his wife, Nora Fries, and leave Gotham once and for all, due to his recent Bat and Owl problems. We then see a flashback to six years ago, as Bruce Wayne and Victor Fries meet for the first time, via Lucius Fox. Basically, the project Fries was in charge of, Bruce didn't feel comfortable doing and decided to end it, this didn't go over well with Fries though since he thought the project could save Nora.

Freeze finally returns in the present day with a serum he believes will cure Nora, as it's the serum the Court of Owls used to awaken the Talons, but he finds his wife is no longer there, and he's also met by Robin and Nightwing. Freeze eventually gets the upper-hand on the former Dynamic Duo and is about to freeze and shatter Damian's arms until Bruce Wayne interrupts over an intercom and tells Freeze he's in the penthouse and to come up. As Freeze goes to meet Bruce we see another flashback where Bruce finds out about Fries' experiment with Nora and tells him he's shut the program down and called the authorities because he can't allow Fries to play mad scientist. An irate Freeze hurls a chair which blows up a cryo-container that explodes over Fries. He wakes up in an emergency room hearing Doctor's talk about how his body temperature is 27 degrees Fahrenheit and he shouldn't be alive, and his blood cells are capturing the cold air. Upset at Wayne and clearly his current condition, Freeze kills the doctors and yells that he's coming for Wayne. Back in the present Freeze arrives upstairs looking for Wayne but finds Nora's cryogenic pod, as well as Batman busting through the skylight and beating the hell out of Freeze for his actions tonight. Freeze subdues Batman long enough to get to Nora, but Batman says he's not letting him leave with her because they both know she's not his wife!!!! Bats drops the bomb that Nora Fields (?!) was born in 1943 and frozen when she had an incurable heart condition. Fries wrote his doctoral thesis on her over a decade ago but never knew her and she's old enough to be his grandmother. Bats eventually uses the cure Freeze planned on using on Nora on Freeze, which causes him to overheat and become unable to move, so Batman calls Nightwing to return Freeze to Arkham. As the issue closes we see a young Victor Fries taking his confused, forgetful mother back to the ice she once fell in, and pushing her in as a sympathetic yet insane, peaceful ending to her life.

Thoughts: I really enjoyed the bit of Freeze's past we saw, and it explains a lot about who he is and why. I also liked how well Snyder portrayed him here, he had that same swagger as Freeze pre-reboot but seemed so much more dangerous without his suit and gun, which is a vibe Freeze never really gave off before this issue. What else? I HAVE to give a full point to any book I can see someone kick Damian SQUARE in the face... man that was priceless. Oh, the explanation for how Fries became Mr. Freeze was excellent, as well as why he has to wear the goggles. Before the reveal this comic was a damn good comic, after the reveal it became an EXCELLENT comic book. This is probably one of, if not THE best single issue I've read all year.

Score:  Perfect Score, 10/10!

Batman: You love the cold, Victor. Even if you did bring her back, you'd end up destroying her. Because you love an idea, Victor. An Obsession. And that I do understand.

Man, that review was much longer than I expected, but damn that was a great comic. Anyway, as always, thoughts and comments are welcome, I look forward to seeing what you all thought of this issue, I'll be back tomorrow with a review for the Amazing Spider-Man Annual, until then, this is Jason Todd, signing off.

A Few Thoughts with JT

Hey blog readers, JT here with a quick post on a few things I wanted to mention and inform you guys on.

Numero Uno, as you guys know, our good buddy X has burned himself out due to doing a ton of reviews, a ton of comments and working a crazy ass Vampire schedule. Due to that, I told him I'd help out here more so the blog doesn't get stagnant, he doesn't overwork himself, and you guys have something new to read/discuss. I'll be back later on tonight (Friday) with a review for the Batman Annual and tomorrow with a review of the Amazing Spider-Man Annual. That leaves us with pretty much nothing from me on Sunday-Wednesday since I only grabbed three books this week, so if X doesn't wanna review America's Got Powers, I'll do that as well, just wanted to let you guys know what to expect.

Secondly, I know a few people were worried that Rick Remender is leaving Venom soon and Cullen Bunn will be taking over, it appears the book is in good hands according to a recent tweet by Remender himself. "Remender: Just finished reading @cullenbunn 's first solo issue of Venom. It's smart, insane and everything I love in comics. Book is in great hands."

Now that all that stuff is out of the way, I can post the thing I REALLY wanted to tell you about, the upcoming fighting game featuring DC Comics Heroes and Villains!!!!! That's right, there's a game coming out next year starring all DC Comics characters including Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, The Flash, Harley Quinn, Solomon Grundy and more, and you can see the first trailer below and read more here. Feel free to let X and myself, HUGE Gamers, know what you think! And with that, I'll catch you guys later today with a new review, JT signing off!