Monday, June 10, 2013

(Kind of...)The Best of the Rest! June 5th edition.

Hey hey, X popping in with a quick post.  A REALLY quick post!  So yeah, as I said in the last post, I've been staying away from the blog and just reading comics for fun again.  Crazy, no?  It's nice to have a little summer vacation again, I definitely need the time to recharge the old batteries.  Anyway, enough bellyaching from me, hows about I talk comics now?

-Age of Ultron #9 was horrible, as expected.  Two fucking Wolverines...  No thank you, one is enough!  The Wolvies and Sue told Pym about Ultron, and wanted him to put some sort of program in Ultron to prevent him from destroying the world or something equally dumb.  So yeah, sucktacular.  I'm still holding out hope that the aftermath will make this whole ugly experience worthwhile...  5 out of 10.

-X-Factor #257 was okay, I guess.  It was all about Layla Miller trying to wrangle Demon Madrox.  Spoiler: she does.  But he's still a demon.  Supposedly this series is ending soon, which sucks.  I'm sure PAD will bring the big guns as we get closer to the finale.  5 1/2 out of 10.

-All New X-Men #12.  What the hell, Bendis?  Seriously, what the hell?!  This series just keeps spiraling down the Bendis spiral of crap.  We get a lot of talking, Jean acting like a bitch, more talking, and Jean acting like a bitch some more.  You'd thing the first meeting between the O5 X-Men and the Avengers would be better, but nope.  Jean is still randomly reading minds, in this case Wanda's, which leads to her throwing a tantrum and then crying...  So basically Bendis has made me hate Jean, who was my favorite female X-Men.  Kudos, Bendis!  4 out of 10.

-Thanos Rising #3 finally gave me a good comic to read.  It showed us Thanos after he left Titan and gathered his pirates.  It also explained Nebula's creation, which was something I wondered about from as far back as the Infinity Gauntlet story.  So again, really good stuff here.  8 out of 10.

-Superior Spider-Man #11.  I know people like to dump on this series, but I'm still enjoying it.  A lot.  Spidey is tasked with making sure that Alistair Smythe is executed, and does his best to outsmart Smythe, but can't account for The Revenge of the Villains Spidey Brutalized!!  I'm definitely looking forward to the angry villains getting their hands(or wings) on Spidey next issue.  8 out of 10.

-I didn't read Ultimates #25 or Iron Man #11 or Stormwatch #21 yet, so I've got nothing to say about them.

-I have been reading a ton of back issues, and most of them are SO MUCH better than the new stuff!  I've been enjoying some Iron Man action from the mid-1980's, back when Tony was a drunk living in the gutter and Rhodey was taking care of business, Iron Man style.  I also finished off Christos Gage's Absolution series from 2009, and it was GREAT.  It was Brubaker good!  See, it's great comics like that which remind me why I love comics so much.  Anyway, I have some Maximum Carnage comics calling my name.  Until Next time, X out.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

So yeah, it's summer...

What with it being summertime and all, and most comics being kind of lackluster to just plain sucky(I'm looking at YOU, DC and Age of Ultron!), JT and I are gonna take a well deserved break now that the weather has heated up.  I'll still do a Best of the Rest type post on Monday or Tuesday, and JT will chip in whenever he has the chance, but things will definitely be slowing down a bit for the summer.  Just a word to the wise.  Until next time?  X out.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Throwback Tuesday: Featuring Superman's Pal Jimmy Olsen #14

Hey comic fans, it's Tuesday so you know what that means, it's time for a Throwback review! I planned on reviewing this issue last week before I took an impromptu vacation, if you wanna call it that, so here I am this week with my Throwback post. Today I'm reviewing another issue of one of the most goofy comic series to ever exist, Superman's Pal Jimmy Olsen. If the cover below doesn't dissuade you from even reading this, let's see what happened!

Superman's Pal Jimmy Olsen #14

Summary: This issue starts with Clark arriving on the roof of the Daily Planet in the helicopter they have, because that paper has MONEY. He notices Lois waiting for him and he takes his Superman suit off and hides it on the helicopter due to his Clark Kent attire sleeve being burned from a fire he put out as Superman, and he didn't want Lois to see his suit under it. Next we...wait... how did he burn his sleeve of his Kent clothes if he put out the fire as Superman?! Anyway, Jimmy manages to take the helicopter and fly it around, because the paper has so much money they'll let Jimmy pilot a helicopter even though he barely looks old enough to drive. Of course Jimmy manages to crash the helicopter, because he's Jimmy Olsen. He calls Superman for help with his watch but quickly finds Superman's suit on the helicopter and puts it on for warmth for some...odd reason. While walking around in Superman's suit, God realizes he has the chance to kill Olsen and Jimmy's struck with lightning, but sadly for us all, Superman's suit is impervious to lightning. Jimmy stumbles onto a land that time forgot, and is surrounded by hillbillies in Hogfoot Hollow. They think Jimmy's Superman, but he says he's not, so they say he's being modest and give him tests to prove he IS in fact Superman... because yeah. They ask him to move a tree stump from the ground, and in odd Olsen fashion, a boulder happens to fall down and move it while Jimmy pushes it, and no one else sees the boulder. Jimmy soon finds out that the strongest person in Hogfoot is to marry the Mayor's daughter, I guess... age doesn't matter. Jimmy's next exploit is being fed a ton of food he can't possibly eat, but luckily a giant bear reaches through the window and eats all of the food, which impresses the local hicks when they come back to see "Superman" has eaten everything! From there we see Jimmy seemingly scare a bear away, but the bear was actually afraid of a skunk... who wrote this?! When Jimmy finds out he has to marry Petunia, the Mayor's daughter, since he's the strongest guy in the town, but Moose Morton, super hick, is jealous since he wants to marry Petunia. Meanwhile, Clark flies out looking for Jimmy in his work attire. Why... not just take your glasses off... then people will just wonder why Superman is wearing a suit instead of them seeing and wondering why Clark Kent is flying. Moose challenges Jimmy to a fight but is shocked when he sees Clark flying and he faints, causing Jimmy to win Petunia's honor. With the wedding approaching, Jimmy is dressed in his suit by Petunia's brothers... weird. Moose decides to run up behind Jimmy and hit him with a boulder... um...okay, but Jimmy slips on a banana peel.  Moose figures the rock is "kricktynite" and Jimmy takes advantage of that to act powerless and run away. Moose, the potential murderer, then wins the love of the daughter of the Mayor... Anyway, Clark takes advantage of Jimmy being out of the suit and gets it back, then flies Jimmy back to the helicopter and fixes it, but basically threatens Jimmy not to ask why his suit was in the Helicopter. The issue ends with Jimmy telling Clark that being mistaken as Superman isn't fun and to never get caught wearing his suit, while Clark smiles knowingly.

Thoughts: This was sooooooo bad! I mean, I know these people apparently had never seen Superman, but if this is such a hick town that no one has a newspaper with his picture or anything, how did they even KNOW he was Superman? Who says, he's wearing spandex with an "S" on it but omits that he's a super powered flying ginger?! Also, how did Jimmy survive a helicopter crash, being struck by LIGHTNING (Who did HE piss off?! It wasn't even raining!), being narrowly missed by a boulder, surviving coming in close contact with a bear, TWICE, AND fighting a guy who was going to club him to death and then later throw a BOULDER at his head. The worst part is, Superman was around when the guy was gonna hit Jimmy with the boulder and didn't even intervene! He must've been thinking "I'll teach you to wear my suit, Olsen!" And the cherry on top was Superman threatening Jimmy while flying with him. "You ask how my suit got in that helicopter and they'll be asking how you fell out of it!" The trend continues, absurdity at it's finest.

Pages in this story: 8 (Seemed like MUCH more.)
# of Times people call Jimmy "Superman": 18
# of Times Jimmy should have died: 7

Monday, June 3, 2013

Best of the Rest! May 29th edition.

Hey all, X back with his last contribution to the blog this week.  This was a really light comic week for me, and as such, I have hardly anything to review for this post...  Just two measly comics...  Not only that, but JT doesn't have anything else to review!  So basically, this post will consist of two reviews, one of which is a last issue!  Since I'm not expecting anybody to read this, I'm just gonna blow through these as quick as can be.

Venom #35: Crazy Eddie confronts Flash at the High School Flash was teaching at, wanting a rematch of the prior night's festivities.  Before things can get too explosive between the two, the Unnamed Alien from the past few issues pops up, attacking students and teachers alike.  Eddie and Flash put their differences aside and team-up to destroy the Unnamed Alien.  After fighting besides Flash, Eddie decides to leave Flash alone, but threatens that he'd return if Flash proved unable to control his symbiote.  Hey, good stuff here!  I enjoyed this story and really enjoyed the interaction between Eddie and Flash.  I don't get what the hell was going on with the Unnamed Alien, as we learned nothing about it for three issues(not even it's name!), so I'm kind of perplexed as to why Cullen Bunn included it here.  Besides that though, I have no real complaints.  Score: 8 out of 10.

Dark Avengers #190(final issue): Basically the Dark Avengers manage to get back to their proper Earth thanks to Alternate Reed forcing the info out of the AIM agents who were wandering around for the past few issues.  In the end, US Agent, Moonstone, Ragnarok, Trickshot and that Witch woman decide to remain as a team, while Skaar takes off(good riddance, bitch) and that Spider-Man lookalike gets stepped on.  And that's about as much time as I want to take on this issue.  The Dark Avengers trip home was way more complicated than I spelled out above, and included slivers of time...  So you should be thankful I bottom lined it, 'cause it was all sorts of weird.  I'm sad to say that I'm not going to miss this series...  It's been treading water for a while, and the storyline with the alternate earth went on entirely too long for my liking.  Oh well.  Score: 6 out of 10.

And that'll do it for this week...  Here's hoping next week is a bit more lively than this week's pitiful display.  Until then?  X out.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Avenging Spider-Man #21

Hey OSGuys and OSGals, it's your favorite blogger, JT, with my second review of the week. The last issue of Avenging left off with Spidey about to face to Hulk, while pursuing Chameleon, as he wore a dead Doctor's face.

Avenging Spider-Man #21

Summary: In this issue, Spider-Man frantically tried to find Chameleon while the Helicarrier was attacked by Russians and guys that wore masks and could burn you with their hands. Superior Spider-Man was delayed by The Hulk, but Hulk was soon distracted and then blown off of the Helicarrier by a missile from the Russians that attacked from outside. With Hulk out of the way, Spider-Man, Black Widow, Hawkeye and Nick Fury make short work of the attackers, which allows Spidey to pursue the Chameleon, still posing as a Doctor. Spidey tries to talk to Chameleon, saying he was never this blood thirsty and that he's his responsibility, but Chamaleon gets the drop on a distracted Spidey and stabs him with a syringe. Spidey goes after him and runs into one of the mask-wearing Russians, and manages to knock him out as well as Chameleon. Spidey uses the communicator that the Russian was wearing and sends both unconscious men, the Russian and Chameleon, to the base where he's holding his other former teammates. He then tells Fury that the Russians got Chameleon and teleported him to a nearby enemy ship, so they blow it out of the sky, leaving everyone to think that the Chameleon is dead.

Thoughts: This arc really didn't do it for me. I just couldn't get into the secrets and the Russians attacking S.H.I.E.L.D. and Chameleon only wearing one face for the entire time. It's just odd to me that for the issues with The X-Men team up or the one with Thor vs. Electro, we basically got one issue, self contained stories, but for this story it was two issues, which didn't really seem necessary. But That's my opinion. All in all, this issue wasn't bad but it was far from great or memorable for me.

Score: 5.5/10

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Indestructible Hulk #8

Hey X-Maniacs, X here with the first comic review of June!  Huzzah!!  June is a great month...  Summer vacation is almost upon us, we don't have to worry about temperatures in the 30's or snow, and my birthday is coming up!  Yup, you gotta love June.  Oh yeah, the review.  Since I had a really light comic haul this week, and can't read and/or review like 5 of the comics I did pick up, I really don't have much of a choice but to tackle Hulk this post.  I've enjoyed this title, but haven't loved the current storyline...  Here's hoping things pick back up again here.

Indestructible Hulk #8:

Summary: Bruce discovers that one of his fellow scientists has an incurable disease and was hoping to be smashed to death by the Hulk so that the life insurance on her would go to her father.  Meanwhile, Thor manages to open a portal back to Bruce's proper time and dimension, which was what the Frost Giants were hoping for.  The Giants stage a sneak attack, quickly taking Thor out.  However, they didn't plan on contending with the Hulk, who holds his own until Thor awakens to assist in defeating the Giants.  With the Giants done for, Bruce and company head back home, with Bruce hoping his sick scientist would find a new found will to survive having seen magic and gods.

Thoughts: I enjoyed this issue a bit more than the previous ones in this storyline.  It was a quick read, and took very minimal thought...  Which is good sometimes.  So yeah, I really don't have much else to say here...  Um, Happy June?

Score: 7 1/2 out of 10

Friday, May 31, 2013

Red Hood and the Outlaws Annual #1

Hey blog readers and true believers, JT here, back from a brief hiatus due to injury. This issue should pick up where we left off, with an amnesiac Jason, Roy feeling betrayed, and Starfire feeling despondent. Also, a bunch of assassins are after the team, so unbeknownst to them, Green Arrow is coming to help, so let's get to it..

Red Hood and the Outlaws Annual #1

Summary: This issue starts with Jason sneaking into a room with a master computer to look up the Red Hood, and he's shocked to see numerous pics of him killing people, and his confirmed kill count at eighty-three, which I thought would be higher. From there we see Roy thinking about his past sessions with Hugo Strange as well as when he designed tech for Oliver Queen that Ollie never used but Ollie wouldn't let him come into the field. He eventually goes to check out the alarm that goes off but first tells a pretending to be asleep Starfire that he's not happy about her lying to him about her memories. Roy goes to investigate and finds Green Arrow, who warns him that Roy and his friends are in danger with 500 Million Dollar bounties on each of them. The talking is put on hold as there's an explosion with Starfire enters a room looking for Roy but instead finds a bunch of gasoline left as a trap which explodes when Starfire tries to illuminate the room with her flames. Roy arrives to seemingly see Starfire dead, after inhaling a Toxin by her attacker, Cheshire! Roy and Cheshire fight as Ollie goes to protect Jason at Roy's request. Cheshire and Roy's fight is laced full of her hitting on him and making sexual innuendo, which allows her to subdue Roy and take his hat as a trophy. Cheshire tries to attack her old pal Jason, they've worked together before but Jason doesn't remember, but Ollie and a poisoned Roy try to run interference, but Roy gets poisoned even more as a result. Ollie saves him with some anti-toxin as Cheshire prepares to paralyze Jason and take him with her, but Starfire returns and scoops Cheshire up, flying away with her but Cheshire manages to disappear (she can teleport or become intangible or something now), but not before saying she's keeping Roy's hate to remember him, and next time she may take one of his strong arms. (Ah, nice one Tynion.) Afterwards, Jason yells at Roy for telling him he was good, when he's a killer, and walks off, then Roy yells at Ollie, saying he never trusted him but apparently no one does, as he directs that comment at Starfire and walks off. The issue comes to a close as Roy and Star find a note saying Jason's leaving and not to come after him, we see him stowing away on the bottom of Ollie's helicopter, as well as the next threat for the Outlaws, the League of Assassins, lead by Bronze Tiger!

Thoughts: Does anyone else find it a bit... surprising that Roy invents tech when he was basically a class clown type character for a majority of this series? Also, someone wants to pay One Billion and Five hundred Million dollars for Jason, Starfire and Roy?! WHY?! That stuff aside, I enjoyed this issue. I was a bit wary of Tynion after all the bad stuff we've dealt with during Lobdell's run but this story was fun, it had jokes, we got to see more arguments of the team and it introduced a lot of threats like a bad ass Cheshire that I'm totally a fan of, Bronze Tiger, Roy's time with Strange which will surely come up more in the future. All in all, this annual felt like it was worth it, and I enjoyed it more than the I expected I would.

Score: 8.5/10

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Captain America #7

Hey all, X here with the first review of the week.  This week I'll be kicking things off with one of my favorite ongoing titles, Captain America.  Rick Remender really hit on something great with this storyline, I'm just hoping he can keep up the momentum as we race towards the finish.

Captain America #7: 

Summary: Cap manages to gain access to the upper reaches of Zola's lab, where he is met by Jet Black.  Jet is prepared to attack Cap again, but after some discussion about Zola's murderous antics, Cap can sense that Jet isn't like her father, and doesn't want to murder all of the Phrox.  The two have a bit of a fight, but that ends when Cap notices one of the Phrox being dropped into a steaming vat of dead Phrox.  Cap makes the save, but is unable to pull himself up the rope he used to catch the falling Phrox.  Luckily, Jet pulls Cap and the Phrox up, realizing that her father's way was wrong.  It's then that Zola launches his lab/battle station towards Earth, where he intended to use his hordes to conquer the planet.  Jet promises to help Cap stop her mad father from demolishing the Earth, provided Cap promises to save Ian from Zola's machinations.  Cap heads off to find Ian, but the brainwashed Ian finds Cap first, and shoots him through the abdomen.

Thoughts: I enjoyed this comic, as usual.  However, it's been so long since I read issue #6, I didn't quite enjoy this story as much as I could have...  I didn't really remember everything that happened last issue...  That's what happens when you read like 200 comics a month!  Honestly, I probably should have read my review of issue #6 before I read this one, but that ship has sailed.  Still, I enjoyed this comic, and can't wait to see what happens when Cap realizes just who shot him.

Score: 8 out of 10.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

New Comic Day! May 29th edition.

Hey comic fans, X here with the latest New Comic Day post.  It's the fifth Wednesday of the month, so I'm not really expecting to pick up a lot of comics...  Or am I???  Um, I actually don't know yet...  The easiest way to rectify that is to check out which comics I should be picking up when I head to the comic shop in a few!  Deathmatch #6, Red Hood and the Outlaws Annual #1, Morning Glories #27, Avenging Spider-Man #21, Captain America #7, Dark Avengers #190, Indestructible Hulk #8, Morbius #5, Venom #35...  So 9 comics this week, which is roughly what I'd expect in a long month like May was.  I'll definitely be reviewing Cap #7 on Thursday.  For Saturday though, I have no clue what I'll be reviewing...  Probably Hulk #8, but that could change depending on what I read and when.  So yeah, that's all I've got for now.  Now we'll check in on JT and see what he'll be picking up today.  Until later, X out.

Hey guys and gals, JT here after a brief sabbatical to let my hand heal. It's not 100% by any means but I'm hoping by Friday it's feeling fine enough for me to type up some reviews. This week I plan on picking up Deathmatch #6, Injustice: Gods Among Us #5, Earth 2 Annual #1, Red Hood and the Outlaws Annual #1, Smallville Season 11 Special (not annual?) #1, Wake #1, Avenging Spider-Man #21, Captain America #7, Indestructible Hulk #8, Morbius the Living Vampire #5, and Uncanny X-Force #5. Of those books I plan on doing single reviews for the Red Hood Annual and either Injustice or Avenging Spider-Man. I guess we'll see, shall we? But until then, this is JT, signing off!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Throwback Tuesday: Featuring Amazing Spider-Man #14

Hey hey, X here with yet another Throwback post.  Now, this was supposed to be a JT review week, but he came down with an "injury"...  Conveniently to his hand, so here I am, the Brady to JT's Bledsoe, saving this blog's season.  Or not.  Just go with it.  Anyway, this will be the first Throwback post from the Marvel side of the fence.  So sadly, it probably won't have nearly the same amount of sexism, racism, marble tournaments or magic cigars as the DC comics from the same time period had.  Sad, I know.  Nope, today it's time to check out some old school Spidey action.  And not just any kind of old school Spidey action, but the very first appearance of the Green Goblin!  This should be good...

Amazing Spider-Man #14(July 1964)

Summary: This issue gets started with the Green Goblin finishing off his "flying broomstick" and meeting with the Enforcers.  Gobby tells the Enforcers he had a plan to defeat Spider-Man, which would allow the Enforcers to avenge their previous loss to the Webslinger.  Next up, the Goblin heads to a big Hollywood producer(?!) and gets him to agree to make a Spider-Man movie starring Spidey, the Goblin and the Enforcers...  Um, okay, I guess...  Meanwhile, Peter Parker aces another test!  Huzzah!!  While at school, Peter hears about the Goblin flying around Manhattan, and decides to head out there to investigate.  Spidey meets up with the Goblin, who tells Spidey that the producer wanted him to star in a big Hollywood film.  Spidey decides to meet up with the producer at his hotel, and signs a $50,000 contract to make a Spider-Man movie...  If he just waited until the 90's, he could have made WAY more than $50,000!  From there, Peter Parker manages to get himself a flight to Hollywood thanks to J. Jonah Jameson, who wanted Peter to take pictures of Spidey while Spidey made the movie.  After a quick flight cross-country, the Goblin and the Enforcers(who Spidey thinks are just actors) trick Spidey into meeting them in the desert to practice their lines.  While alone in the desert, the Enforcers attack, and Spidey realizes he'd been tricked.  Under the Goblin's leadership, the Enforcers actually do a decent job, forcing Spidey to retreat into a nearby cave to catch his breath.  The Goblin and his goons follow, closing the cave entrance with a massive boulder, trapping Spidey inside with them.  Spidey manages to pick the hapless Enforcers off one by one, leaving only himself and the Goblin.  Unfortunately for Spidey, all the ruckus draws out the Hulk(really?!), who was hanging out in the cave.  Gobby stays high in the air, hoping the Hulk would finish Spidey off for him.  After a few pages of brawling, Spidey eventually tricks Hulk into bashing the boulder blocking the cave entrance, freeing Spidey.  The Goblin decides now was the ideal time to escape, but Spidey manages to snag Gobby's broomstick.  After the fight with the Enforcers and the Hulk, Spidey is too wasted and can't hang on to the broomstick, falling into a small spring below.  Spidey remains in the spring long enough to make Gobby think he was dead, and for the Hulk to head back into his cave.  Spidey hops out of the spring, makes sure the Enforcers get arrested by the army, and meets back up with the movie producer, who decides to scrap the Spider-Man movie to make a Hulk movie instead...  Big mistake there, buddy...  That Spidey movie is definitely gonna out-gross the Hulk one!  With that, Peter Parker heads back to New York, his Hollywood dreams over.  As for the Goblin, he promises that the world hadn't heard the last of him!

Thoughts: Hey, this was a good comic!  It makes you wonder what DC was thinking by pumping out the campiest comics imaginable, while Marvel was doing good comic stories...  Weird.  Anyway, there were a few things that made me scratch my head and say, "Wha-huh!?" so this wasn't exactly a perfect comic.  First off, why did the Goblin decide he was going to try to kill Spidey?  Where did that come from?  Did Norman Osborn just wake up one day, build a rather phallic looking flying broomstick and decide to go after Spider-Man just for kicks?  I mean, how does that work?!  And his plan was to trick Spidey into agreeing to star in a movie?  And then kill him??  That seems rather elaborate...  I guess he wanted to catch Spidey with his guard down, but still, to go through the trouble of finding a producer, selling him on the idea of a Spider-Man movie(where the unknown Goblin would be the villain), and then selling Spidey on starring in the movie seemed like a convoluted plan...  Besides that, the Hulk...  Really?!  I mean, THAT was one hell of an unnecessary guest appearance if I ever saw one!  Of all the caves in the US, Gobby traps Spidey in the cave the Hulk was hiding in?!  Although, to be fair, if this comic was written now, you KNOW Wolverine would have been in that cave...  Wolvie does love himself some gratuitous guest appearances.  Overlooking those minor quibbles, this was a good read...  I guess if I want to slag on old comics, I should stick with DC...

Umm, whatcha doin' there Gobby??

Monday, May 27, 2013

Best of the Rest! May 22nd edition.

Hey all, X here with the forth BotR post of May.  How time flies...  Anyway, I'll be doing only three reviews in this post(I know, only 3!?), while JT chips in with a few of his own...  Or at least that's what I originally thought when I typed this up a few days ago!  With JT nursing an injured hand, this is going to be an exceptionally brisk BotR post, since it'll only have my 3 reviews...  So yeah, enjoy.

Daredevil #26: Wooo, I love this series!!  The most important thing going on here is that after consulting with Foggy, DD realizes that the man behind all of his recent troubles is(drumroll, please), Bullseye!!!  DD then manages to find the villain's base and defeat Lady Bullseye(!).  This issue ends with DD approaching the iron lung containing the villain(Bullseye), with Ikari approaching DD from behind.  Yup, this series is gold.  Plain and simple.  This was the second consecutive issue where I audibly said, "Holy shit!".  In this issue, it was the page before the reveal when I realized what Foggy was drawing.  Super, good, amazing stuff here. Score: 9 1/2 out of 10.

Teen Titans #20: This comic was bizarrely all about Trigon...  Yep.  Scott Lobdell was all, "You know what people want to read about in a comic book named 'Teen Titans'?  A super old demon named Trigon."  So yeah, we get Trigon's story, with a heavy emphasis on Raven.  And in true Lobdell style, the Raven portions make little to no sense!  He left Raven's mother alive so she could teach Raven humanity and love?!  And then he STILL expected her to be all, "Yeah, cool.  Let's destroy the earth and other relams, dad!"  How does that even make sense!?  Oh, and to top it all off, it looks like he also retconned the prior issue where Raven was controlling Tim, shifting that instead to one of Raven's brothers.  So either a) editorial stepped in and told Lobdell he could no longer run with that story thread(and with DC's editors, that's a very real possibility), or b) Lobdell himself forgot he even did the Tim/Raven thing(also a very real possibility) .  Anyway, Trigon's backstory somehow sets up next issue's confrontation between Trigon's sons and the Titans and Raven.  This is such a headache to read every month...  Score: 5 out of 10.

A+X #8: The first story is about Shadowcat and Spider-Woman trying to keep a magic meteorite away from AIM, Hydra and the Absorbing Man.  Kitty actually allows Absorbing to touch the meteorite, thus gaining it's abilities, only so she could defeat the now powered Absorbing Man.  Thus proving my long-time point that Kitty is an egotistical bitch.  The second story has Hawkeye and Deadpool teaming up to rescue a restaurant owner from Captain Barracuda.  Honestly, I should have hated this story, but I didn't...  When it started I was thinking, "Hawkeye teaming with Deadpool?!  Bah!"  And yes, I did think, "Bah!"  But by the end, the story had won me over.  So yeah, not bad.  Score: 7 out of 10.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Uncanny X-Men #6

Hey comic fans, JT here with my second review of the week, Uncanny X-Men. After the last issue where Dormammu pulled Magik and the rest of the Uncanny team and students to Limbo, let's see how they deal with mounting an escape...  And that's about as far as JT got with this review...  Hey all, X here to finish this review off.  Mi amigo wound up hurting his hand, and as such wasn't able to finish this review off.  Poor JT also won't be joining in on tomorrow's Best of the Rest post, nor will he be able to get a Throwback Tuesday post up.  That means it'll be all X, all the time, at least until JT's hand heals up.  Hopefully for Wednesday and New Comic Day.  So hey, I get to review an issue of Uncanny X-Men.  Huzzah...  Or something.  I wasn't a fan of the prior issue, and the way Bendis decided to make Dormammu into Magik's bitch.  Here's hoping the Dread Lord Bendis does a better job writing the Dread Lord Dormammu here.

Uncanny X-Men #6

Summary: Dormammu properly treats Magik like HIS bitch in Limbo this time around.  Lord Summers tries a full scale optic blast on the Dread One, but it does no real damage.  All the while, Dormammu taunts Magik, telling her he was going to kill her friends, because Dormammu is awesome!  Dormammu finally has enough of Lord Summers' band of X-Men, and unleashes the Mindless Ones on the group.  The Evil X-Men put up a valiant effort, but end up overwhelmed by the endless hordes of the Dark Dimension.  Also, Dazzler joins SHIELD as their mutant adviser.

Thoughts: Way, way better than the last issue.  Dormammu was treated properly here(as a God!!), and shrugged the Evil X-Men off.  Let's face facts, Dormammu doesn't rule a country, he doesn't rule a planet, he doesn't rule a galaxy, he commands an entire DIMENSION!  Magicians invoke his name and use his power when crafting spells!  Sorry, there's NO WAY Magik should be able to spank a being with a resume like the Dread One has.  So I was really happy to see Bendis rectify last issue's follies.  Of course, this IS Bendis we're talking about, so there were naturally parts where I could only scratch my head in confusion...  Dazzler as the mutant adviser to SHIELD?  For real?  I mean, don't get me wrong, I like Dazzler and all, but why would SHIELD hire an ex-disco singer to advise them on all things mutant?  That would be like the US hiring Lady Gaga as their British ambassador!  It just doesn't fit!  So yeah, while there was some good here, it was still a Bendis comic, meaning it was far from perfect.

Score: 7 out of 10.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Uncanny Avengers #8AU

Huh, so Age of Ultron is still rolling along.  Too bad...  But hey, We have an AoU tie-in issue written by none other than Rick Remender!  So this HAS to be good, right?  Well, at least it should be better than Bendis's work...

Uncanny Avengers #8AU: 

Summary: This issue actually takes place in the present of Age of Ultron(after Wolverine killed Pym and screwed up the timestream), but the past of Uncanny Avengers...  Yeah, it's kind of confusing...  Basically, this issue sees Kang manipulating the Apocalypse Twins when they were still children, not the adults we saw in the last two issues of this series.  Kang has instilled in the twins the fact that humans and mutants are unable to live together in peace, and as the chosen caretakers of mutantkind, the twins had to segregate mutants from humans.  So basically, humans bad, mutants good.  That's the way Kang raised the twins.  Since he was destined to be a constant thorn in their side, Kang wants the twins to kill Colonel America(AoU's Steve Rogers).  As for the Colonel, he was meeting with the Morlocks, led by Rogue and Havok.  Uriel attacks the Colonel, but Havok intervenes, giving the Colonel time to escape.  Angered that a mutant would defend a human, Uriel ends up killing Havok, who was mainly fighting defensively.  Rogue then attacks Uriel, but winds up impaled by him.  As she is dying, she manages to absorb Uriel's memories, and tries to convince Uriel not to follow Kang's teachings.  Uriel takes pity on Rogue and goes to find a healer among the Morlocks, but before he can, his sister kills Rogue, much to Kang's approval.  With the mission to kill the Colonel a failure, Kang returns to his base with the twins and decides to punish Uriel by sending him to an anti-mutant camp to better learn the hatred of humans towards mutants.  Eimin tells Kang that she would face the same punishment her brother was getting, so Kang agrees to send her as well.  This issue concludes with Kang leading the twins through his massive trophy room of dead heroes.

Thoughts: Yep, Remender can indeed tell us a really good AoU story!  It kind of makes me wonder why Marvel lets Bendis do anything...  We got a glimpse into the Age of Ultron world, AND Remender managed to give us a deeper look at the twins, further advancing his own storyline.  What more could you want in a tie-in issue!?

Score: 9 out of 10.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Superior Spider-Man #10

Hey blog readers and true believers, JT here with my first review of the week, and keeping up the trend, It's Superior Spider-Man! In the last issue we saw a battle of the minds, literally, between Peter Parker, The Amazing Spider-Man, and Otto Octavius, The Superior Spider-Man. Now that we have a clear winner for the battle of Peter's body, let's see how things go from here.

Superior Spider-Man #10

Summary: This issue starts off with Doc Parker waking up and ready to start his day with no further interruptions from Peter's consciousness, now that he's purged his memories. He then goes onto stop a gang war between The Owl and White Dragon and their respective thugs. It turns out Owl and White Dragon are two of the six bosses of the main gangs of New York, and while taking down the bosses, some of the thugs escape and are led to safety by thugs wearing a Green Goblin insignia. Interesting. From there we see Doc Parker heading to class when he runs into Mary Jane, but since he doesn't know how Peter would act, considering he no longer has his memories, he avoids her and says he's busy, which makes MJ even more suspicious. While this is going on, Carlie Cooper and Capt. Watanabe, who has returned from leave, questions the officers on duty about Spider-Man shooting Massacre, but they all cover for him and say they weren't looking, but Carlie reveals to the Captain that she did the autopsy and Massacre was killed from point blank range, not a stray shot like the officers claimed, so Carlie will have to find another way to prove her theory about Spider-Man. We eventually see The Green Goblin (!) rewire the tech in a Spider-Bot which makes it not pick up on him and his thugs as a threat, and uses this to send some of his goons to MJ's nightclub to burn it to the ground. While this happens, MJ is trying to remain calm, certain that Spider-Man will be there to save her and her employees, but Spidey is across town, having just stopped my main man, The Tombstone, and his gang, saying that the fire across town seemed beneath him so he dispatched it to the fire department, who manage to save MJ and her employees. The issue comes to a close as Superior Spider-Man reflects to himself that everything is under control and everything else is beneath him, unknowing to him, we see The Green Goblin surrounded by an army of thugs as he proclaims himself "The Goblin King!"

Thoughts: I am SO happy the Green Goblin is back. He popped up a few issues back but seeing him here and outwitting Superior Spider-Man was great. I'm excited for a few meeting with Superior Spider-Man and Goblin is right up there with Venom and Scarlet Spider-Man, both of which are coming up in the year. I really enjoyed him basically building an army while Spider-Man preoccupies himself with other people, and Goblin is really keeping a step ahead of him. I also like that the women in Spider-Man's life were featured here, with Carlie and Watanabe investigating him, MJ starting to realize something was wrong, Aunt May being proud of him about to become a doctor, and his date with Anna which ended in a kiss before he was called back to action. Add in a brief appearance by Tombstone, and I'm a happy camper. While I enjoyed this issue, the thing with the dude named Pedro who looked like Peter seemed a bit blah for me, as did Mary Jane's wait-and-see approach. I know Spidey always saves her but she could at least TRY to get out instead of waiting around for him. That annoyed me, especially when it wasn't just her life on the line but her employees as well. But besides those things, I enjoyed this issue and I'm excited to see what both Doc and Gobby have up their sleeves. 

Score: 8/10

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Young Avengers #5

Thursday is an X review night, and predictably, I chose Young Avengers as my first book to review this week.  Young Avengers has been everything I could have hoped for...  And more!  So yeah, this is definitely the book I'm most looking forward to reading.  Which means I should probably get to reading!

Young Avengers #5:

Summary: Loki actually manages to come through and channels Wiccan's powers into a massive counter-spell.  With the rest of the team now magically powered, they are able to eliminate all of Mother's hench-parents, causing Mother to leave.  However, a side-effect of the spell means that the group can't go to their parents, or near where their parents died, since that would make them return to life and go all evil and stuff.  Or at least that's how Loki explains it.  Miss America sees it more as that Loki wants the group to stay together for some Loki-esque purpose.  Whatever the reason, the crew does decide to stick together and do super-heroic type stuff.

Thoughts: This was a pretty solid issue.  I wasn't in love with it, as I was the previous issues, but I still enjoyed it.  The team is officially together, we still don't know for sure where Loki stands, and Wiccan seems ready to return to being a hero.  In other words, the future looks bright!  Speaking of looking bright, the next issue brings us Speed and Prodigy, which is like a double treat for me!!  I loved Speed through the original YA run, and was a huge fan of Prodigy before Decimation ruined New X-Men: Academy X(stupid Marvel...).  It should go without saying that I am hugely looking forward to the next issue.

Score: 7 1/2 out of 10.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

New Comic Day! May 23rd edition

Hey guys and gals, JT here after a brief absence since Sunday, with the New Comic Day Post! As always, this is where X and I will list the comics we plan on picking up, which comics we'll do single reviews for and which comics will get the Best of the Rest treatment. So, let's get to the books, shall we? This week I plan on picking up Green Lantern #20, Justice League #20, Bounce #1, Scarlet Spider #19, Superior Spider-Man #10, Uncanny Avengers #8AU, Uncanny X-Men #6, and Young Avengers #5. So with a total of eight comics this week, you can expect full reviews for Superior Spider-Man and Uncanny X-Men, and probably BOTR posts for Scarlet Spider-Man and Justice League, plus I'll review a Super issue for the Throwback Tuesday next week. Now I'll pass things off to The Conductor himself, The Irredeemable X-Man.

Thank you, Wicked JT.  Yes, my name is X and I am a comic-holic.  Here are the books I'll be picking up today.  Arrow #7, Teen Titans #20, A+X #8, Daredevil #26, Scarlet Spider #17, Superior Spider-Man #10, Uncanny Avengers #8AU, Uncanny X-Men #6, Young Avengers #5...  Huh, this is a REALLY light week!  Weird...  Anyway, I'll be doing a review for Young Avengers #5 on Thursday, and one for Uncanny Avengers #8AU on Saturday.  Everything else will find it's way into the BotR post come Monday.  And there you have it, another NCD in the books.  Until next time, X out.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Throwback Tuesday: Featuring Teen Titans #7

Hey there, X-Maniacs!  X here with the latest Throwback post.  And yes, this post really is a weekly thing!  Seriously!  JT and I have managed to keep it going for like 5 weeks now, so yeah, Tuesday=Throwbacks around here.  As for this week's comic, I dropped a hint in last Wednesday's NCD post, it will indeed be mad...  Yes mi amigos, we're going to set the wayback machine for England in the late 1960's...  It's Mad Mod time!!!  This blog will never be the same again...

Teen Titans #7(Jan/Feb 1967)

Summary: Hey, cool, this issue is in chapters for some reason!  So yeah, I'll break this post down by chapters.  First up, Chapter 3!  Wait, no...  That makes no sense...  Ah, I got it.  First up, Chapter 1!  The US government has been having problems with international smuggling lately.  And for some reason, the clues the government have gathered point to famous teenage rocker, Holley Hip.  Naturally, when you find yourself having smuggling troubles, you turn to a bunch of teenage super-heroes to do your job for you!  And that's just what the government does, as they call the Teen Titans in to assist them in solving this problem.  The three boys aren't exactly fans of Holley, but Wonder Girl loves him, and since the Titans would never say no to a request from the government, they agree to go out on a tour of England with Holley...  Take that, you stinking, government hating hippie bastards!!!  Oh, and the Titans end their visit to the government offices by saluting a PICTURE of JFK...  Who salutes a picture!?  From there, the Titans meet up with Holley, hop aboard a jet and fly out to London.  Upon arriving, the Titans and Holley are hoisted in the air by the joyous English kids.  Dick Grayson sadly doesn't scream out, "Holy ass-grabbing, Batman!" in that scene, but by god, he should have!  Holley's swinging digs(or "clothes" for us born after the 1970's) are then trucked to a famous clothing designer named the Mad Mod.  I haven't the slightest idea why he's called the Mad Mod, but whatever.  Kid Flash follows the clothing, and sure enough, the Mod is using Holley's clothes to stash various items, getting them past customs.  Helpfully, the Mod makes sure to point out that Holley knew nothing about the Mod's actions, which Kid Flash overhears.  Kid Flash goes to radio the other Titans, but he notices one of Mod's men sneaking around, so he rushes to the front of the Mod's shop, directly into a pillory...  Yep...  

Chapter 2!  Since Kid Flash had been cut off in the middle of his transmission, Robin and the Titans head to the Mod's shop to investigate.  The Mod helpfully shows them around the shop, at which time Robin notices Mod's men carrying a manikin outside to a truck.  Suspecting foul play, Robin and the Titans head out front where Wonder Girl stands in the street and halts the truck's progress.  Unfortunately for her, the Mod(who is now in the truck) orders his men to put the truck in reverse, which somehow leads to Wonder Girl smacking her head on the truck's fender and passing out.  With that, the truck drives off.  The truck stops at the Thames River where the Mod orders his men to toss one of the manikins into the drink.  Aqua-Lad, who had been stowing away on the bottom of the truck, realizes that the manikin was actually Kid Flash and hops into the Thames to rescue his partner.  The Mod spots Aqua-Lad jumping into the water, grabs his special scuba gear(never leave home without it!), snatches a harpoon and climbs onto his giant robot fish...  Why was he riding around with a robot fish in his truck in the first place?  I mean, I guess it's good that he did, but still, that's a weird thing for a clothing designer to have with him...  Aqua-Lad swims Kid Flash to the surface and winds up getting chased around by the Mod's robo-fish.  Aqua-Lad manages to disable the robot fish, but the Mod is saved by his henchmen, who fish him out of the water.  Aqua-Lad reports back to Robin, who has no evidence of the Mod's wrongdoing, which at this point includes, international smuggling, attempted vehicular manslaughter, assault and attempted murder.  In order to get some evidence, Robin tells Holley the whole story and Holley agrees to ship the Titans to his next gig in a clothing box.  While on board the plane to Paris, Robin manages to get some incriminating pictures of the Mod with his mini camera, but the plane hits some turbulence and he falls out of the box with Wonder Girl, alerting the Mod to his presence.  On a positive, when he falls out of the clothing box, Robin screams, "Holy suitcases!".

Chapter 3!  Damn is this review turning out to be longer than I expected...  This is like a JT review now!  Upon seeing WG and Robin, the Mad Mod fires knockout gas at them and kicks them out of the plane!  Wow, that seems kind of extreme!  Falling through the sky revives Robin and WG, and WG flies over and catches the original Boy Wonder.  However, the Mod leaps out of the plane with a parachute and Wonder Girl's magic lasso!  Okay, I have to give the Mod some props for that!  The Mod ties Robin and WG up, in mid-air(!), with the lasso.  He then pulls off Robin's utility belt and tosses it away, correctly figuring that Robin's camera was in it.  Unfortunately for the Mod, while falling through a cloud, WG manages to free herself and Robin from the lasso, slipping away from the confused Mod.  The Titans meet up with Holley in Paris and Robin finds out that the Mod wanted one of Holley's outfits in order to alter it.  Figuring the Mod had stashed something on the outfit, Robin instructs Holley to not turn the outfit over to the Mod.  Instead, Holley goes through with his concert in Paris.  While preforming, the lights in the arena go dark and the Mod and his men rush the stage and try to strip Holley of his threads.  The Titans turn the lights on and swing out of the rafters, knocking the Mod's men out.  The Mod grabs Holley and puts a gun to his head, but the Titans swing around Mod in a circle(?!), causing the Mod to become dizzy(!?!).  Holley, apparently unaffected by the Titans' antics, smashes his guitar over the Mod's head, knocking the Mod out.  The French police then take the Mod and Holley's clothes into custody.  Things then get even weirder as Holley realizes he had to finish the concert, but didn't have clothes or instruments.  To rectify this, Robin strips out of his clothes(and then stands around in a barrel!), and Holley puts them on.  As for music?  Holley uses Wonder Girl's lasso and a board...  Groovy!!

Thoughts: So yeah, this was a thing that happened...  I'm going to overlook the sheer weirdness of the last page, with Robin giving Holley his speedo, because maybe people did things like that in the 60's.  I don't know.  Looking past that, we have the Mad Mod...  Honestly, he was a genius for the most part!  His smuggling operation was brilliant(even though I don't know why a famous clothing designer would turn to international smuggling...), he correctly deducted that Dick had taken pictures of him while on the plane, AND he got rid of that evidence.  So yeah, he was pretty smart...  At least until the end of this issue...  His best idea to get Holley's clothing was to rush the stage of a crowded concert and steal the clothes right off of Holley's back!?  Even though he knew the Titans were watching Holley's back?!  I mean, there wasn't another more opportune moment to get those clothes?  Sad...  Besides all that, Mod also wracked up a hell of a lot of crimes!  In 22 pages, he smuggles things into three separate countries, had a Kid Flash assaulted, tried to run Wonder Girl over in a truck, tried to have Kid Flash drowned, personally tried to kill Aqua-Lad with a harpoon, had Wonder Girl and Robin tossed out of an airplane, tied Robin and Wonder Girl up so they wouldn't be able to save themselves from the fall from said airplane, destroyed property, tried to steal clothes, and held a famous musician hostage at gunpoint!  Eat your heart out, Lex Luthor, the Mad Mod makes you look like a chump!  Overall, this issue was more than just a comic book story, it was also very educational to me.  From this point forward, I'll always remember to salute pictures of JFK.  I now also know that English people can't pronounce the letter "H".  They also carry celebrities on their shoulders, which is nice, I guess...  Oh, and they seem to get dizzy faster than Americans do.  I'll keep that one in mind in case I ever travel across the drink, as they say.  Finally, if I ever happen to see a person wearing nothing but their undergarments, I'll happily give them my clothes, provided there is a barrel present for me to slip into.  See that, you DO learn something new everyday!

# of times Robin said "Holy...": 5
# of times Aqua-Lad made an aquatic alliteration: 7
# of times Mad Mod said, "'aw!": 19.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Best of the Rest! May 15th edition.

Hey all, X here to kick off what looks to be a pretty slim Best of the Rest post.  Both JT and I had lighter than usual comic weeks, meaning we really don't have a load of books to look at.  So yeah.  But hey, JT(whose reviews will be in blue text) will probably grace us with more than the measly one review he gave us last week...  Probably...

Nightwing #20: After some digging around, Nightwing manages to find the Prankster, who he suspects will be able to help him find Tony "The Man Who Killed Dick Grayson's Parents!" Zucco.  However, the two get off on the wrong foot when Nightwing interrupts Prankster trying to kill a corrupt businessman.  After a bit of a tussle, Nightwing ends up getting trapped in a glass box(really), with Prankster telling him the only way he'd escape was to remove his mask, thus revealing his identity.  This comic was okay, I guess.  I still think Prankster has some potential as a vigilante, even though he was coming dangerously close to becoming just another run of the mill villain.  On the positive side, Tony "The Man Who Killed Dick Grayson's Parents!" Zucco only appeared on two pages, and that makes me happy.  Score: 6 out of 10.

X-Factor #256: The team heads after Mephisto in an attempt to send him back to Hell.  Meanwhile, Tier kills all the Hell-Lords Mephisto had locked up.  Mephisto kills Shatterstar and Rictor before he is attacked by Tier.  Before Tier can kill Mephisto, Guido kills Tier, which makes Guido the new king of Hell.  Guido brings Monet back to life and then banishes her from his sight.  So yeah, wow...  This was a big miss for me...  Guido as the devil?  Tier, Shatterstar and Rictor dead?  Mephisto unable to figure out to teleport away from Tier when he was attacked?  Tier killing like 6 Hell-Lords in a small room?  Yeah, bad, bad stuff here. Score: 4 out of 10.

FF #7: Wizard and his newest incarnation of the Frightful Four(himself, Blastaar, a brainwashed Medusa, and Bentley-23, who doesn't want to be there) attack the FF.  Bentley-23 predictably betrays Wizard, which frees Medusa from Wizard's mind-control, leaving Wizard and Blastaar as the Not-So Terrible Two.  After Wizard is defeated, Black Bolt takes him into custody for brainwashing his wife(AGAIN!) and decides to have words with him...  Meh.  The story didn't really do much for me, but dammit do I LOVE Mike Allred's artwork!  Seriously, it's like the perfect art for a comic book, and you all know I don't usually care about art in a comic!  So yeah, oddly enough, if not for the artwork, I'd probably have scored this comic lower.  Score: 6 out of 10.

Thunderbolts #9: Hey, check it out, I'm still getting this comic!  Weird...  A mystery man is constructing gamma powered Crimson Dynamo units to be used in terrorist activities.  The T-Bolts manage to take down a few of the units and are able to trace the units back to the man behind them, Elektra's brother.  So yeah, I don't get why exactly I'm still collecting this series...  I don't think I've given any issue a score over a 6!  Methinks I'll be rectifying that when I get to the comic shop on Wednesday...  Score: 5 out of 10.

Avengers: The Enemy Within #1: Yon-Rogg sends Captain Marvel and her teammates after various menaces to keep them distracted so he could steal the piece of the Psyche-Magnetron that CM had stored at her apartment.  After saving her elderly neighbor from dinosaurs(way cooler than I just made it sound, actually), CM returns to her place with Spider-Woman and realizes that she had been burgled.  Spider-Woman promises revenge.  Finally, a good comic!  Huzzah!!!!!  Man this week has been brutal comic-wise for me... I enjoyed this one, and think it set-up the upcoming Avengers Assemble/Captain Marvel crossover nicely.  This feels like an Avengers story should feel, which is a nice change of pace from Bendis and Age of Ultron...  Score: 7 1/2 out of 10.

Iron Man #10: 451 tells Tony a story about how he first met Tony's father before Tony was born.  Basically Tony's dad went searching for 451 after learning that he and his wife were unable to procreate.  451 then makes vague comments about Tony having more parents than he knew of...  UGH!!!  What the hell is happening here!?  THIS is the story they think are going to grab movie-goers who just saw Iron Man 3?!?  Really?!  Come on, Marvel, this is a DC-esque bungle!  You're better than this!  Yeah, in case I haven't made it clear, I think this entire storyline is idiotic.  Dumb, dumb, dumb.  All I know is that we better discover that 451 was lying the whole time to be an ass or something.  Anything else will be horrible.  Score: 4 1/2 out of 10.

Or, maybe JT won't review anything at all...  Huh, go figure!  I'm sure he'd blame his lack of reviews on me taking Nova #4, but don't buy JT's lame excuses!  He's a slacker!!  Slacker!!!  On the plus side, unless he somehow manages to do -1 reviews next week, he'll definitely have more reviews next week than he did this one.  But enough about that guy.  Check back tomorrow for a Throwback post by yours truly.  Until then?  X out.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Ultimate Comics Spider-Man #23

Hey comic fans, JT here with my second review of the week, Ultimate Comics Spider-Man. In the last issue we saw Miles proclaim he would be "Spider-Man No More!" after losing his mother due to a battle with Venom. Let's see how Miles copes with no longer being the Web Slinger.

 Ultimate Comics Spider-Man #23

Summary: Surprisingly, this issue starts off a year after the Venom story arc. We quickly learn that Miles is older, taller, and looks more like Donald Glover. We also see that he's still afflicted by his mother's death due to him being Spidey, and we also learn he's dating a girl by the name of Katie Bishop. (Shout out to Hawkguy and Hawkeye!) We also see that Ganke hasn't changed much, as he's upset because he's missed out on Limited Edition Legos, and he's also waiting for Miles to take the mantle of Spider-Man once again, but Miles says he's done. Miles is thinking of telling Katie who he was and Ganke is against that idea, but the argument is cut short when he Miles gets a text from Jessica Drew asking where he is. Miles meets up with Jessica as she tries to give him something and asks when he's going to be ready to return, but Miles says he's done and she needs to respect that, before leaving. Miles heads home and meets with his dad, who seems way more calm and less uptight since losing his wife, Rio. They decide to go out for dinner, and when Miles heads to his room to get ready, he finds a briefcase on his bed. He opens it to find a new costume for him as well as some S.H.I.E.L.D. issued web shooters and a note that says "A year is a long time. How many people could you have saved? You fall off a horse, you get back on." Miles puts the suitcase up as Jessica Drew watches on from an outside rooftop. As Miles and his dad walk to a Chinese restaurant for dinner, they discuss the settlement their lawyer expects they'll get since Miles' mom was shot by an officer while trying to help people, and Jefferson is already planning to use it to pay for Miles' college and take a vacation. At the restaurant, Miles and Jefferson talk about Miles' girlfriend, as Jefferson says Miles' mom thought he and Ganke may have had something going on, not that there's anything wrong with that, when they're interrupted by the waitress, Gwen Stacy. Miles excuses himself and he and Gwen talk about how Miles has stopped texting her and if she needs help, she's there for him. Miles says okay, and his dad notices he's upset and asks if he wants to leave, and Miles says yes. They get ready to leave when Miles' spider-sense goes off and there's a huge explosion. Miles and Gwen run to the window and see Bombshell (throwback from Ultimate Spider-Man!) fighting with Cloak and Dagger!

Thoughts: Wow... I expected to be done with this series once "No More" started because that storyline seems rehashed and never lasts. But the idea to jump ahead a year was great, because now it seems like that decision was important, plus there's been so much character development and things we missed, I'm interested to see what happened. I loved seeing the change in Miles' demeanor, seeing how different Jefferson was after losing his wife, as he's clearly trying to be more of a friend to Miles and have a closer relationship. This is probably my favorite issue of this series in a while because everything feels so new and reinvigorated, plus Cloak and Dagger seemed pretty damn interesting here, and that's the first time I've EVER said that!

Score: 9/10

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Nova #4

X here with my final solo review of the week.  Well, final current review, as I still have a Throwback review coming up on Tuesday.  If you remember, I had no clue what comic was going to be my Saturday review, but as you can see, problem solved!  After a flip of a coin, which came up heads, fyi, we'll be tackling Nova.

Nova #4:

Summary: Nova has been cut off from any contact with Rocket Raccoon and Gamora, so he decides to go after the mothership of the Chitauri.  While in there, he is confronted by an old ally of his father, a former Supernova named Titus.  And yes, Titus has gone heel and joined up with the Chitauri.  Titus gives a story as to why he went bad, and also takes credit for killing Nova's father.  After Titus's origin tale, he reveals that he had managed to create an Ultimate Nullifier and was planning on using it soon.  Nova realizes he has to get the Nullifier away from Titus and the Chitauri, and manages to snatch it and make his way back to Earth.  After hiding the Nullifier in the garbage, Nova spots a light outside his home and rushes outside figuring it was Rocket and Gamora.  Instead, it's Titus, who is demanding the Nullifier in exchange for not destroying Nova's entire town.

Thoughts: Eh, this issue kind of fell flat for me.  I think my problem with it was the heavy focus on Titus, and the lack of focus on Sam.  I've said it in past issues, it's more the character than the story that I'm enjoying here, and this issue really hammers that home for me.  Besides that, what the hell happened to Rocket and Gamora?!  They send an untested Nova after the Chitauri and then vanish?  What a pair of jerks!

Score: 6 out of 10.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Red Hood and the Outlaws #20

Hey Todd Squad, JT here with my first review of the week, James Tynion IV's second issue as writer of Red Hood and The Outlaws. After the last issue where Jason gave up his memories completely, by mistake of course, Roy and Starfire are trying to help get them back from S'aru, aka Aang, because I forgot his name while doing this review.

Red Hood and the Outlaws #20

Summary: This issue continues where we left off, with Roy and Kori trying to get this floaty magic guy that looks like Aang from Avatar to give Jason his memories back. He tells them when Jason said he wanted his bad memories removed, that counted as all of them, since they're linked. He shows them Jason's bad memories but Roy said Jason would never have wanted this, and demands his memories are returned, but Aang says no. He shows them one of Jason's memories, where we see Roy getting beat up outside of a bar in Gotham when he was a junkie, but Jason shows up, introducing himself to Roy as Robin, Version II, and saves Roy from the goons. He tells Roy that if he needs a friend, he's there for him, since his predecessor said he was a good friend before Roy became a Junkie. Roy says friends always let you down, but Jason keeps the invite out there before taking off into the night. From there we see Jason and a gang of mercenaries (including Cheshire) doing what Jason thought was the right thing until he realized they were there to steal an artifact and felt betrayed. Roy tells Aang that although they were far from perfect, this is why the team got along so well, and Aang says Starfire has more secrets than them all. Starfire gets defensive as he says Starfire has selective amnesia, and remembers far more than she lets on. He pulls up one of her darkest memories and we quickly see her shooting energy blasts at Nightwing for some reason, before she stops him from showing the memory. Jason, still with no memories, says he's sick of everyone fighting over him, and if he did this he must have had a good reason. He asks Roy to respect that but Roy says no dice, and shoots him with a tranquilizer in the neck, causing Jason to pass out. Roy threatens Aang to return Jason's memories but he's nowhere near intimidated by him and banishes him, Starfire and Jason to outside in the snow. While recovering, Roy starts to breakdown, feeling betrayed by Starfire's lies about her memories and getting no answers when he asks her about Grayson, as they crouch over an unconscious Jason Todd. Unknown to them, Ducra, Essence and Aang are above them, as Essence says that she won't stand by while Jason and his friends are attacked by the evil coming their way, but Ducra and Aang says they know what they're doing by putting the Outlaws through this. The issue comes to a close as Green Arrow finds out that the baddest assassins from around the world are coming to collect a bounty on the heads of the Outlaws, and he says he'll have to save Roy once again.

Thoughts: Man... I enjoyed this issue a lot! It was cool seeing Jason's memories so we can still get a sense of what's happened and what hasn't in this not so New 52, and I really liked the addition that he's saved Roy before. It shows why Roy is so loyal to Jason, it shows how optimistic a younger Jason Todd was, and it was just a great scene with those two that adds to their friendship. I also really liked that they put out there that Starfire can remember things and has been playing dumb this whole time. It makes her more interesting and makes me wonder what she's been hiding and why she attacked Grayson at some point. Plus, seeing Green Arrow, Cheshire, Deathstroke possibly and a host of other people popping up in this comic is definitely a plus in my book.

Score: 8/10

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Age of Ultron #8

As usual, X here, with the first review of the week.  And yes, it's going to be Age of Ultron...  Ugh.  I really have nothing nice to say about this series at this point, this storyline seems like a huge missed opportunity, but whatever.  So yeah, here's more Bendis madness.

Age of Ultron #8: 

Summary: Iron Man complains about Wolverine killing Hank Pym and wrecking the timeline.  Naturally, Wolverine defends his position, even though Iron Man repeatedly points to options Wolverine could/should have taken.  While Wolverine is being interrogated, Invisible Woman escapes from her interogation room.  The Defenders decide to get Wolvie and Sue themselves, since they wanted to...  question them?  I guess?  It's at that time, the big bad of the world attacks the Stark helicarrier, Morgan Le Fey.  Le Fey and her forces lay waste to everything in their path and this one ends with the helicarrier destroyed.

Thoughts: Hey, this issue was leaps and bounds better than the last two!  That's not saying I'm actually enjoying this storyline, I'm not.  That ship has already sailed.  But I did like the fact that Iron Man pointed out so many other options to Wolverine's plan to simply kill Pym.  Why not go to a Reed Richards, or a Prof. Xavier, or someone along those lines to deal with Pym?  I know, sense in a Bendis comic?  Madness.  The reveal of Morgan Le Fey as the chief villain with Pym gone was way more Bendis-like, because it made no sense...  Then again, Bendis did use Le Fey in one of his storylines, and we know how he hates Avengers stories that he didn't write, so I guess Le Fey's inclusion actually makes perfect sense...  Bottom line, this issue was better, but everything is still in a holding pattern, and I have no clue how Bendis fixes his mess.

Score: 7 out of 10.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

New Comic Day! May 15th edition

Wow, it's already time for a New Comic Day post!  That's... surprising, actually...  I mean, I STILL haven't finished off last week's books!  Mainly because I have next to zero interest in reading about Batman and Clayface, but still...  Huh.  Let's see what this week has in store, and hope we have some good books coming out...  Nightwing #20, Red Hood and the Outlaws #20, Fatale #14, Age of Ultron #8, Avengers: Enemy Within #1, FF #7, Iron Man #10, Nova #4, Thunderbolts #9, X-Factor #256.  Cool, only 10 books this week!  I needed that, especially after last week's suck-fest.  I'm required to do two reviews around here, on Thursday and Saturday, so expect a review for Age of Ultron #8 on Thursday, mainly because JT is a jerk!  Seriously, I tried to push this title on him, but he was all, "Hell no am I reviewing that garbage, X!" and here we are.  So yeah, expect a rather dour review of that comic on Thursday.  As for Saturday...  I honestly have no clue what I'll be reviewing...  I'm thinking either Nightwing, Nova or Iron Man.  Whichever strikes my fancy, either good or bad.  Most of the rest will be in Monday's Best of the Rest post.  As for Tuesday, I'll be busting out a Throwback review that's absolutely mad!!!  And yes, that's actually a hint!  That'll do it for me, now I hand things over to the Dean of Mean, the Master of Disaster, the Reel Joker himself, JT.  As for me?  X out.

Hey, hey, hey comic lovers! JT here with my half of this week's New Comic Day post. After beating that jabroni X last week and having more comics than him for the first and probably only time ever, I felt I should say something, as a wise man named Nelson Muntz once said, "Ha Ha!" Now that I've done that, let's get to the comics! This week I plan on picking up Regular Show #1, Red Hood and the Outlaws #20, Age of Ultron #8, Iron Man #10, Nova #4, and Ultimate Comics Spider-Man #23. Hm... small week. Of those six comics, you can expect single reviews for Red Hood and Ultimate Spidey. If I chime in the BOTR post it will be to review Nova and possibly Regular Show. Til then, this is JT, signing off!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Throwback Tuesday: Featuring Superman's Girlfriend, Lois Lane #106

Hey guys and gals, JT here and it's that special time of the week! The day after the Best of the Rest and before the new comic week starts, Throwback Tuesday! This week we've got a doozy... yeah I said doozy, shut up, as I stumbled into a goldmine known as "Superman's Girlfriend, Lois Lane." So yeah, get ready for a few of those for my next few Throwback Tuesday's. Anyway, this issue features Lois becoming a Black Woman for twenty-four hours... so.. yep.

Superman's Girlfriend, Lois Lane #106

Summary: This issue starts with Black Lois, who I'll call B-Lo for the rest of this because why the hell not, asking Superman if he'll marry her now that she's black. Really? This didn't have anything to do with the issue because on the next page Lois is white and hasn't turned black yet. Anyway, in this issue Lois head's to the black community of Metropolis, known as Little Africa, because that's what black people would call it apparently. Lois goes around Little Africa (Ugh) and tries to talk to everyone but no one will talk to a white person. She finally gets an old woman to talk to her, but it turns out she's blind and when she hears Lois' voice, she gets up and walks away. HA! Superman checks in on Lois and she has him fly her to the Fortress of Solitude where she uses a machine called the Platimold, which when Superman pulls the Transformoflux pack (THESE ARE NOT WORDS!) it turns Lois into a black woman.

B-Lo has Superman fly her back to her apartment so she can change into her hoop earrings, head wrap scarf and Dashiki, cause apparently white women keep those in their closets just in case they become black women. B-Lo quickly learns how different things are when her favorite cabbie won't stop for her because she's black. B-Lo eventually finds a woman to interview, and this woman has it rough, she even has a rat in her daughter's room that's so brave he'll come out during the day! Also, plaster is falling off the roof because the building is basically owned by a Slum Lord. B-Lo sees how this woman is living and starts crying, then heads around the city to further investigate...sigh... Little Africa. She comes across a black man named Dave that spoke ill of her while she was white but is very friendly now that she's black. Before Dave and B-Lo can talk, Dave chases after some criminals that are selling drugs to the community! Black Dynamite...I mean Dave, doesn't want people selling drugs to the community! Dave quickly learns that he should mind his own damn business, when he gets shot by the two drug peddling criminals. Superman arrives, literally a second late, and melts their guns but didn't stop Dave from getting shot for some reason... Superman then knocks out the criminals and picks up Dave and Lois to fly them to a nearby hospital. They determine that Dave will need a blood transfusion and he's type O-Negative, which causes Superman to state that he can't help, because he's not his blood type and even if he COULD, no needle could penetrate his skin. Well why even say that?! Luckily, B-Lo is Dave's blood type, so they pull a reverse Archie Bunker/Sammie Davis and she gives him some blood. After giving up blood, B-Lo plays the race card when asking Superman if he'd marry her if she couldn't change back, he tries to play the Alien card, but sorry my brotha, the race card trumps all! Luckily for the Son of Krypton, B-Lo's pigment lightens up as she turns back into a white woman. Dave wakes up and asks for the woman that helped him, as Lois goes to see him, Dave is obviously shocked but then smiles and shakes Lois' hand as this issue ends.

Thoughts: How did this make it to 106 issues?! How did it make it PAST 106 issues?! How did it make it past SIX issues?! Also, she gave him blood, they shook hands and that was it! That seemed like such a weird ending, they literally said nothing. He didn't ask her why she was basically in black face or anything! And whoever named the black community "Little Africa" should be slapped. That just sounds... wrong. Anyway, this absurd issue had it all, white women as black women, Dave saying stopping criminals was Man's work, Superman being a dick and saving Dave literally RIGHT AFTER he got shot, and of course, Lois proposing to Superman. So yeah, this was an enjoyable and very stupid comic, which is exactly what I'm looking for when it comes to Throwback posts!

# of words they made up for this issue: 2
# of Times "White" appears (sans cover): 9
# of Times "Black" appears (sans cover):11

Monday, May 13, 2013

Best of the Rest! May 8th edition.

It's Monday, which means it's time for a brand spanking new Best of the Rest post.  As usual, I'll bust out a few reviews, followed by JT, who will bust out a few reviews of his own, but in blue text.  Considering the relatively small comic haul for both JT and myself, this post shouldn't be as long as the past couple of been.  Okay, let's see which comic is up first for me...

Walking Dead #110: Rick takes a group of people to the Kingdom to meet Ezekiel and his group.  Meanwhile, Jesus prevents Kal from betraying everybody to Negan and the Saviors.  Michonne is initially pissed by Ezekiel's king act, but the two have a nice little heart-to-heart and seem to get along very well.  Once we got past the Jesus stuff, this issue slowed way down.  It does turn out that I like Ezekiel now!  Kirkman did a great job of filling out his character, which means one of two things...  Either a) he's going to die next issue, or b) he's going to betray Rick and company to the Saviors.  Hopefully neither thing happens, but after reading as much of this series as I have?  I would not be surprised.  Score: 7 out of 10.

Secret Avengers #4: AIM sends the stolen Iron Patriot armor loose, at which time it begins attacking individuals who had been targeted by America.  To avoid a diplomatic incident, SHIELD sends Hulk to destroy the renegade armor.  On top of that, SHIELD sends Nick Fury Jr, Mockingbird, Black Widow and Hawkeye to AIM Island to assassinate the Scientist Supreme.  Meh, meh, and double meh.  I swear, the name Secret Avengers is cursed for me...  Regardless of who the writer is, or how much I enjoy their work, without fail, I can never get into this series...  This one is getting dangerously close to the chopping block...  Score: 5 1/2 out of 10.

Superboy #20: Dr. Psycho enlists Superboy's help in dealing with HIVE, which had sent agents after Psycho, who has gone rogue from them.  Yeah, and that's it.  Nothing much to say about this one, actually... It seems as if SB randomly bounces from one clandestine organization to another.  Plus we all know Psycho is going to betray SB!  There's one of the failings of the New 52, introducing a brand new character would work way better than slotting Psycho here, who will undoubtedly turn of SB.  Score: 6 out of 10.

Ultimates #24: Cap learns that the leader of California was planning on blowing Sacramento up and heads there.  Meanwhile, Iron Man escapes from the Californian leader and meets Cap in Sacramento   Finally, Thor and Invisible Woman join the two and the four(okay, mainly Thor, Sue and Iron Man) manage to prevent the Stark Space Station from obliterating the city.  This one ends with Cap deciding he didn't want to be president anymore since he was a soldier, not a politician.  I enjoyed this one.  We still have a threat in California and the West Coast Ultimates, and Cap has stepped down, which was pretty much a given.  Good stuff here!  Score: 7 1/2 out of 10.

Avengers Assemble #15AU: This takes place in Jolly Ol' London, where the only heroes left are Capt. Marvel, Capt. Britain, some woman named Excalibur, who is a healer, a guy named Computer Graham, who can enter computers, and a girl who has magic soccer(or I guess in this case, football) powers...  Yep, really...  Poor, poor London...  Anyway, I've already wasted enough time on this rubbish(hey, when in Rome...).  Basically Ultron kills everybody who tries to fight him.  The end.  Yeah, I picked this comic up on a whim and am now cursing myself for wasting the money...  This comic was all sorts of terrible...  A girl with magic soccer powers...  Yeah, that's all for me...  Score: 2 out of 10.

Avenging Spider-Man #20: I can't believe this series is at issue twenty already! Anyway, let's do this. This issue features Superior Spider-Man visiting the SHIELD Helicarrier after he stops a bunch of A.I.M. soldiers/scientists/nerds. It just so happens he's done so while Black Widow and Hawkeye are there for Secret Avenger stuff, while Dr. Bruce Banner is on board, and while the Russians have sent people to kill Chameleon so he doesn't leak government secrets. Spider-Man is there to free Chameleon because he's collecting real life Sinister Six trading cards, and sends his Spider-Bots to find him and cut the power. Before he can get to him, the Helicarrier is invaded by two dudes with skulls for faces that can burn you with their touch. Spidey heads to find Chameleon and finds bodies in his wake, and blames himself for their death's since he freed him, but quickly backtracks, saying if those guys hadn't invaded, he'd have had time to get there and stop Chameleon. We see Chameleon running to his freedom, wearing the face of his Doctor as Spider-Man heads off to find him and is confronted by none other than The Hulk! This was an interesting issue for me because I never really got into it. It just happened and here we are, I have no feelings either way which is kinda... bad if you think about it. Once again, this comic wasn't bad but I doubt I'll remember it this time next week. Score: 6/10

I know! I'm shocked too!!! I know you guys expected more reviews from me but hey, I'm a busy dude! Plus X took all the good books! :P Either way, expect a Throwback review from me tomorrow, and until then, this is JT, and my buddy X, signing off!

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Batman and Red Hood #20

Hey guys and gals, JT here with my second review of the week, something I've been waiting for since I'd heard about the changes to the Batman and Robin title. So, without further adieu, Batman and Red Hood!

Batman and Red Hood #20

Summary: This issue starts off with Batman investigating some criminals when Alfred tells him he has a guest. Bruce heads upstairs to see Carrie Kelly, and after talking about Damian missing and Bruce saying he's studying abroad for a few years, Carrie returns most of Bruce's money, saying she doesn't take what she doesn't earn. She notices Titus and shows she has a bit of knowledge about dogs, but Bruce doesn't wanna hear this and tells Alfred to show her the door. Alfred offers Carrie a job taking care of Titus for a few days a week, as well as covering her food and gas, and she accepts. Jason eventually runs into Bruce, as he was there for one final check-up by Alfred to make sure he was fine after the recent Joker events, and Bruce invites him to go stop some criminals with him. Batman and Red Hood make short work of the cartel of snipers, considering a few targeted Damian when Talia put a bounty on his head, with Hood only shooting for the knees, elbows and hands, per Bruce's request. They eventually take them all down, with Bruce paralyzing the nerve endings in one guy's hands so he'll never be able to use them again... well damn.

Jason asks Bruce why he asked for his help, he had fun but Bruce didn't need him there. Bruce reveals he did want to stop those guys but he had other motives, as the two drive, Bruce reveals that they are at the place where Jason died. Jason is obviously pissed about this, saying this is not somewhere he wants to be, as that was the worst day of his life, but Bruce says if he can help him erase the worst day of his life and bring Damian back. Jason attacks Bruce, saying he wants to move forward and not worry about his past and how Joker and Bruce have tainted his life, and the two beat the crap out of one another. Bruce says he needs to bring Damian back, he earned the right to grow up and he wants to give it to him, but Jason says Bruce has nothing else to give. Jason says he was ready to forgive Bruce and stand beside him and he threw it all away. He tells Bruce to take off his mask so he can kick his ass and Bruce does, and knocks Jason down. He tells Jason that he trained him better than that and to get up and hit him. Jason does just that and delivers a few stiff punches to Bruce's face, but Bruce says he's still standing while he stumbles. Jason grabs his helmet and says he's taking the car, then tells Bruce goodbye as he leaves him standing there. The issue comes to a close with Two Face holding a gun in a dark room, flipping a coin which lands on heads, then saying "No."

Thoughts: I loved this issue. Not just because Jason was in it, but of course that helped. I loved the way this was set up. Bruce was so upset, he was willing to let Jason shoot these guys, in a none lethal manner but that shows how angry he was. Also, Bruce fried the nerves in a man's hands because he was willing to kill a kid, which worked for two reasons, one, It shows how pissed off he was, which made a lot of sense, and it was something he could've only done WITH Jason. Dick would've done something or said something about that, as would Tim, but Jason didn't even bat an eye. Also, Jason was finally the bigger man here, and not only was he the bigger man, Bruce was in the wrong here. And seeing them fight over the place where Jason died, no masks, no tricks, just a fight between father and son. And Bruce clearly wanted to lose here, as much as I am a fan of Jason's, it was fairly obvious Bruce did this to punish himself on his second destination through the five stages of grief. I'm excited to see what happens with Two-Face now that they've shown he'll be popping up soon, as well as seeing how Bruce interacts with Babs after not only Damian's death but the Death of the Family stuff. I'm even a bit interested in seeing what they do with Carrie Kelly, plus hearing Bruce yell at Alfred when he finds out about her new job.

Score: 10/10