Saturday, February 26, 2011

Quick Hits: 2/26/11

Howdy, it's a tired and snow-weary X again(who else would it be?), ready to bring the awesome with a new Quick Hits review. As I type this up I just came in from shoveling snow all day(I typed this up on Friday and proofed it today), so if it makes less sense than usual, blame my worn out body and mind. Okay, with the excuses out of the way, let it be known that 3 Marvels and 1 DC make up this post, so without any further adieu, let's get to it!

X-Men #8:

Summary: Picking up from last issue, Spidey convinces the WORST ASSORTMENT OF X-MEN EVER to stop hunting the giant lizards in the NYC sewer system since Spidey believed they had been unwittingly turned into lizard-like creatures by the insane Lizard... Hmm, you know, calling Emma Frost, Wolvie, Storm and Gambit the WORST grouping of X-Men ever probably isn't very fair of me... I'd say the worst possible grouping of X-Men would look something like this: Emma Frost, Shadowcat, Maggot, and Colossus. Anyway the X-Men and Spidey head to a hotel room and share notes, learning that the lizard creatures had been kidnapping a bunch of nerdy teenagers. They manage to discover that all of the kids who had been abducted by the lizard creatures visited the same website(X-Man Comic Blog)and that soon thereafter were abducted. Now with a lead, the heroes begin to dig deeper into this mystery website. We end this issue learning that it wasn't Lizard himself who was transforming the children, but somebody who had captured Lizard and was using the children as experiments.

Thoughts: Okay. The only way this story can possibly be saved at this point is if the mystery villain is Dark Beast. I half suspect that it is him from the tiny glimpse of the villain we saw, but not really enough to say with any degree of definitiveness. Unfortunately, the story itself is doing absolutely nothing for me. With the exception of Wolvie(and I guess Storm), I could care less about the X-characters in this issue, Spidey really hasn't lent much to the story, and the kids who were captured, especially the one we met this issue REALLY didn't come across as very sympathetic. Hell, I was GLAD when the kid in this issue was abducted! By this point in this series I'm really hoping Victor Gishler revisits the vampire stuff again... SOON!

Score: 5 1/2 out of 10.Please be Dark Beast... Please be Dark Beast... Please be Dark Beast...

Detective Comics #874:

Summary: We kick things off with Commissioner Gordon meeting up with his son(I honestly didn't know he had a son!) at a coffee shop. James Jr. talks with Gordon for a while, apologizing for his past misbehavior and swearing that while he did a lot of bad things, he never killed anybody, as Babs and Dick had always suspected. James Jr. reveals that he had been diagnosed as a psychopath, and was taking experimental medicine to help him. Gordon doesn't know what to think and James Jr. leaves, telling his father that hopefully Gordon could find it in his heart to forgive him. From there we head to Batman(Dick Grayson) and Red Robin staking out a ship. It seems that the guys on the ship had stolen a rare bird from an aviary in Gotham(an aviary that James Jr. had coincidentally visited recently as well...), and the two former Robins climb board and attack. Unfortunately for Dick, he is still reeling from the drugging he suffered at the hands of the Dealer and is WAY off his game, getting knocked into the drink and swearing that a giant whale was in there with him wanting to eat him. Red Robin manages to take care of all the goons and pulls Dick out of the water, asking what happened. Dick almost admits that he was seeing things, but ultimately withholds that information. From there the two heroes had into the ship's underbelly and find dozens of stolen exotic animals, while this issue ends with Gordon staring at a bunch of unsolved case files involving murdered children.

Thoughts: I actually loved this comic. Oddly enough though, it's hard to verbalize why... I mean there was nothing special about this comic, but it really satisfied me while I was reading it. The scene with Gordon and his son was really well done, with James Jr. coming across as both remorseful and creepy at the same time, a REAL hard thing to pull off. Besides that we had Dick pushing himself too hard and almost paying the price for it. It was great to see Red Robin in this issue, and I was happy to see Tim save Dick, as opposed to the other way around(how things usually go). So far I may have to say that Scott Snyder's run on Detective is the best of the five main Bat-books right now(Batman Inc, Dark Knight, Batman and Robin and Batman).

Score: 8 1/2 out of 10.Dick Grayson and Tim Drake teaming up? Yes please.

Deadpool #33:

Summary: Our favorite red clad mercenary finds himself stuck out in space after his space car ran out of gas. Pool sends out a distress call and is picked up by a tow truck. The tow truck owner was expecting to find the space car's former owner inside, Macho Gomez, but Pool smugly gloats about having killed Macho last issue. Macho's wife comes after Pool, and the two wind up falling in love and getting married... Huh. Since Macho's wife was a part owner of the tow truck/repo company, Pool is given a job, and goes about botching everything he's asked to do. Finally the company's owner and the tow truck driver(who held a flame for Pool's new wife) decide to send Pool on a suicide mission, telling him he had to go out, hunt down and kill the inane living moon, Id. The idea of killing a planet(Pool refuses to call it a moon) excites Pool and he prepares to embark, not realizing he had no chance of succeeding.

Thoughts: I enjoyed this one. It wasn't spectacular, and the story was kind of dumb, but dumb works REALLY well in a DP comic, so in this case, dumb is good! From Pool marrying Macho's wife, to the company's owner plotting against him, to Pool's excitement over what was an obvious suicide mission, this comic was a fun read, and that's all I really ask for from a Deadpool comic.

Score: 8 out of 10.Disturbing...

Invincible Iron Man #501:

Summary: We begin with a flashback of a younger Tony Stark meeting Dr. Otto Octavius(the future Dr. Octopus) at a science expo. Tony is a self-absorbed little twerp, while Otto is always trying to gain the attention and respect of anybody who could help him continue his research. Needless to say they didn't get along, and as a matter of fact, a drunken Tony ends up taking a run at Otto... HA! In the present, we get a glimpse into Tony's day, as he meets with one of his workers about the designs for the New Asgard, does a TV interview about his new company and repulsor powered car, and attends a fashion show, mainly to ogle the models. At the end of the day, Tony is relaxing in his hotel room, watching his interview from earlier when a missile crashes into his room, destroying it. Luckily for Tony, he saw what was happening and had grown his Iron Man suit on and confronted the machine that fired the missile. Stark is surprised(and annoyed) to see Dr. Octopus's face on the video screen of the machine. Tony threatens Octopus until Octopus reveals that he had gotten his hands on a thermonuclear bomb, and was planning on setting it off in Manhattan unless Tony met with him on Octopus's space station. Not wanting to push the maniac's buttons, Tony flies to the station and meets Octopus face to face. Octopus explains that he was dying from a combination of brain and nerve damage. Knowing that Stark once managed to revive himself from a vegetative state, Octopus basically wants Tony to fix him, or admit that the great Tony Stark couldn't fix Octopus's problems. Tony is struck silent for a moment before telling Octopus that he couldn't fix him. Octopus wants Tony to try, since if Tony succeeds, Octopus has a new lease on life, while Tony failing would prove to Octopus, and the egotistical Tony that he wasn't as great as he always made himself out to be. Tony still doesn't want to help, so Octopus explains that besides the bomb he hid in New York, he had also kidnapped one of the scientists at Tony's company, and that Sandman and Electro were under orders to kill the scientist if they didn't hear from Octopus every five minutes. Octopus gloats a bit about how Tony was doomed to fail, since there was no conceivable way to help Octopus, while Tony calls Octopus pathetic, and the type of villain who was so insignificant that he never even bothered to worry about him. In the end, Tony looks at several brain scans of Octopus and decides that he'll at least attempt to save Octopus's life.

Thoughts: Trust me, this comic was way better then this review might have made it seem. This was my last review of the day, and as I stated in the open, I'm not exactly firing on all cylinders. With that said, I LOVED this comic! It was basically just two characters talking in the past and present, but Matt Fraction did it so well I was engrossed by each page. From Octopus wanting to see Tony fail at saving him, just to see the arrogant Tony humbled, to Tony's awesome digs about how little he thought of Octopus the scientist as well as Octopus the villain, this comic was a blast to read. Fraction has a few different ways he can go with this story too, which makes the rest of the storyline intriguing. Tony can succeed in spite of all of Octopus's taunts, thus saving the life of a notorious villain, or he can fail, something he doesn't do too well with. It's a comic like this that makes me glad I started reading Iron Man again.

Score: 9 out of 10.Tony Stark coming out and saying that he wasn't sorry Dr. Octopus was dying was awesome!

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