Wednesday, July 28, 2010

The Pull List

Words: Frank Tieri
Pictures: Chris Staggs

X Marks The Spot! This one starts in a unique way: a job fair. Seems Deadpool is trying to convince people that being an assassin is a great job: "Exotic locales, guns, lots of money...and the chicks... Well, let's just say you can't spell assassin without a whole lot of "sin"- and twice the "ass"!"
To illustrate how great it is, Deadpool tells the tale of his fight with X, a character who...well, I guess he's what the Karate Kid would be if he were a man. He apparently has learned every martial art ever known and forgotten and has the ability to read the minds of his opponents.
This last part is why Deadpool was hired. Since DP is insane the thought is X wouldn't be able to read his thoughts. Works to a point but DP still loses both arms and rats on his employer.
In the end the people he was trying to talk into becoming an assassin all run away except for a girl who likes the idea. But Deadpool isn't one for competition.

Words: Jonathan Hickman
Pictures: Neil Edwards

Time travel. It's fun. If you don't do it too much.
Here we have the future versions of Franklin and Val, now grown up and running errands for their grandfather, Nathaniel Richards.
Seems something bad happened and all the different versions of Nathaniel ended up in the same time/place. This isn't good, apparently, because Immortus, a being who is tasked with policing the time stream, decides they must be destroyed.
But not all of them. He decides that only ONE Nathaniel Richards can be allowed to live but the different versions of him must decide which version it is. So, as is the way of man, they try to kill each other (and in some cases themselves) in hopes of being the one who survives.
In this story we are down to two and one of them enlists the aid of Reed Richards, Ben Grimm and Victor Von Doom, all before they become who we know them to be today!
It's always fun seeing Doom belittle people, no matter what time he's in. I also like the cover, how the shadows of Richards and Doom reflect who they are today. Not a bad read. I'm curious to see where this one goes.

Words: Matthew Sturges & Bill Willingham
Pictures: Tony Akins

Wow, I can't believe how #45 came out April 29th! It's been 3 months since I got an issue of Jack!
Apparently time has still been moving though because all these stories take place 'in the future'
First up the Page Sisters continue their quest to rebuild the Great Library with the original books and stories of the Fables. Naturally a shootout in a public library with a baby in tow happens. Naturally.
Next up, Jack Frost decides he's been at this hero thing long enough and retires. But gets called BACK into active duty when offered a chance to kill a real life dragon!
Finally...Jack Dragon, formerly Jack Horner, and Gary try to live together Gary doesn't much like the situation. Jack keeps eating the women he loves.
Some interesting things here: The Page Sisters are looking for the Original Books. What they don't know is Jack Dragon has them. Jack Frost has been hired to kill a dragon. Jack Dragon, his father, is, well, a dragon. And who is this baby being carried around? Jack Dragon, when he was Jack Horner did have...relations...with all three Page Sisters (it was BEFORE he found out they were his half sisters) and it might be his, I think that'd be freakin' funny!
Great to have another Jack Of Fables to read finally!

THOR #612
Words: Kieron Gillen
Pictures: Doug Braithwaite

These are the stories that make Thor a great book!
Hela and he realm, Hel, are in Mephisto's Hell. She needed a place for the Fallen of Asgard to go and Loki made it possible. Loki also made it possible for the Disir, hellish female Asgardian spirits curse with the hunger of Asgardian flesh in death as they were in life, on Hel.
Thor has to try to save Hela and the Fallen from the maws of the Disir, not an easy task when the only weapon that can kill them, a sword called Eir-Grim, is deep in the realm of Mephisto.
Thor begins his quest through Hell.
This was great, the conversation between Mephisto and Thor was what I would expect: Mephisto tries to tempt the Thunder God only to be answered with a very determine glare.
I really can't say enough about this book, great art and story.
Also, the second Thor series has been dropped. I like it, but I'm going to grab the trades.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Friday, July 23, 2010

My Pull List

Words: Joe Quesada
Pictures: Paolo Rivera, Joe Quesada, Danny Miki & Richard Isanove

One Moment In Time Begins! A few years ago Marvel decided to reboot Spider-Man's mythos. During Civil War, Spider-Man outed himself and as a result Aunt May was shot, the bullet was meant for Peter.

Peter was desperate to help his dying Aunt and made a deal with the devil. Mephisto, to be exact, who gave Peter a choice: Save Aunt May and lose Mary Jane or keep Mary Jane and lose Aunt May.
Personally, I think the right choice was made because I never really cared for Mary Jane as a main character. The series since then has been fresh and fun, much like it was in it's early days.
But there were still lingering questions like what happened on the day Mary Jane and Peter Parker were supposed to be married? That is the purpose of this story.
It's told in flashback and in an interesting way. At the beginning of this issue we have Peter and MJ talking about what happened. We then flash back to those days and the art style changes to the way it was done back in the 1970's/80's all the way down to the panels and dialogue. It's really neat. So we find out that Peter was having doubts about marrying MJ because he still held a torch for the late Gwen Stacy. He confided in his friends, Harry Osborn and Flash Thompson, at his bachelor party about this.
MJ was at her party being told her life of parties and hot men was coming to an end but she didn't seem to mind, yet.
As Spider-Man, Peter fights a crook (long story short) and ends up unconscious, on the wedding day, in an alley. No one knows where he is and Harry and Flash think he really had cold feet, a conversation with MJ overhears and things go downhill from there.
Great story, awesome art concept but I really, REALLY hope they don't end this era of Amazing, I would probably drop the series if they bring back the marriage..

Words: Brian Michael Bendis
Pictures: John Romita, Jr.

The Avengers are still trying to figure out how to save the future from their children...if they actually believe what Kang tells them.
Before they can do anything though they have to face off against Apocalypse and his Four Horsemen, twisted versions of Scarlet Witch, Red hulk, Wolverine and Spider-Man.
This is where they realize that something is indeed wrong with the timestream as Apocalypse is out of his element. He's used to traveling through time but he's used to having control over it.
This time he doesn't.
After he and his Horsemen disappear the Avengers split up: 1 group goes to make a new time machine and the other goes to see what is going on in the city and end up face-to face with Devil Dinosaur?
Art is still top notch and the story, while moving slower than I expected, still has some great moment, especially with Spider-Man.
Only complaint I have is how much I hate covers that have nothing to do with the story inside. They are just lucky it's a great looking cover.

Words: Daniel Way
Pictures: Carlo Barberi

...and so, Deadpool's adventures in Las Vega come to a close. He's able to get away with ruining Weasel's life, re-capture Grizzly and ... um...
You know, reviewing these Deadpool books is kinda difficult sometimes because, well, Deadpool doesn't always follow the rules of comics.
Let's just keep this short and sweet: Explosions, guns, bullets flying and smoke. That's all you need to have a goof time with Deadpool.
It also doesn't hurt to have a good old fashioned gimmick cover for the 25th issue!
That's right, since 3-D is the over rated craze at the moment, Deadpool #25 comes with a 3-D cover and on the BACK cover are your 3-D glasses which allow you to view the 3-D cover in "High Definition 4-D!"
Hey, it's Deadpool, what did you expect? A gimmick that made sense? What are you, retarded?

Words: Victor Gischler
Pictures: Bong Dazo, Kyle Baker & Matteo Scalera

FINAL ISSUE! Deadpool, Headpool, and those other people, find their way, eventually, to the swamp where the Nexus of All Realities rests. It's their only chance of getting back to our universe!
Along the way they fight Zombie Brother Voodoo, Zombie Wrecking Crew and Zombie Deadpool (before he came to our universe in Marvel Zombies 4 and lost his body...time travel, go figure)
Do, zombies, AIM Agents and gators all die but Headpool gets his body back when Zombie Deadpool loses his head but then when the no-longer body-less Zombie Deadpool jumps back to our universe to eat everyone he ends up in the beginning of Marvel Zombies 4 and loses his body again and ends up in the boat where he was found in the beginning of Prelude to Deadpool Corps.
Time travel.
Overall, I'm actually sad to see this book go, it was more fun than it should have been but it'll be nice to be down to just 2 Deadpool books and month!

MARVEL ZOMBIES 5 #5 of 5 Variant Cover
Words: Fred Van Lente
Pictures: Fernando Blanco and Frank Brunner (Marvel Team-Up #151 cover on page 3)

Machine Man, Howard the Duck and that indian chick end up in the worst universe of all: the REAL one! That's right, our universe. No powers, no mutants and no fun.
They are tracking down the final version of the zombie plague  and this is where the path leads.
On our earth a kid, who loves...I mean LOVES Marvel Comics, becomes infected with a version of the zombie plague and after going through some heavy soul searching decides to take advantage of his ability to not die and becomes the Zombie Marvel!
Just in time for rigor mortis to set in, preventing him from moving. Machine Man and crew show up, take their sample and burn him.
I laughed at the ending of this one. Very Machine Man and Very Marvel Zombies. I can't wait to see where the next story takes us! I can't wait for Marvel Zombies 6!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Gimmick Covers #2

Ghost Rider, Volume 2 #15
Cover Date: July 1991

In the 1990's, when I started collecting comics, gimmick covers were all the rage. It started with embossed covers, foil covers and die-cut covers then things got interesting. Ghost Rider was one of Marvel's most popular characters at this time and it seemed like a great idea to do something interesting with him. This cover, drawn by the great Mark "Tex" Texiera, featured a close up of Ghost Rider where his flames were glow in the dark. To my knowledge this was the very first time this was done on a comic book cover. If anyone knows of a glow in the dark cover that predates this one, please, let me know!

Classic Marvel Figurine Collection #11

#110: Machine Man

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

The Pull List

Words: Joe Kelly
Pictures: Michael Lark, Marco Checchetto, Stefano Guadiano and Matt Southworth

The Grim Hunt Concludes! I should probably add 'finally' to that. Let me just say while I really enjoyed The Gauntlet, this Grim Hunt as a big let down.
Really, I don't have much to say about it. Kraven had a great ending in Kraven's Last Hunt and this story completely negated it.
I also have to ask 'why bring Kraven back?' I mean, there hasn't been a big call for his return has there been?
No, there hasn't.
Okay, this issue the story seems to go everywhere and doesn't seem to focus on anything. Spider-Man gets pushed to the edge and apparently no longer has a problem with killing Kraven's family. Don't worry though, some last minute words from the Spider-Chicks help Spidey see the error of his ways and...he walks away.
No, this story was pointless and to toss in equally pointless back-up stories just so you can hike the price from $3 to $4 just seems pathetic.

Words: Dan Abnett & Andy Lanning
Pictures: Miguel Sepulveda

We have 4 more issues to go... 4. Issues. To go.
After reading this issue I have to ask: How much more are we going to get?! This story is beyond awesome! It's good cosmic fun that reminds me of Annihilation and Annihilation: Conquest. This start off big and get bigger.
So far we have the Magus and Adam Warlock seemingly dead, the evil versions of our heroes have managed to open the Fault all the way and the 'Cancerverse' is oozing into our reality in an attempt to destroy all death and take it over.
Just when Nova, the Shi'Ar and the Guardians seem to be falling the Silver Surfer shows up and tells the defenders he isn't really there to join them...rather, he's just a herald.
This means Galactus has entered the fight! Along with him are Aegis and Tenebrous, two beings who were sword to destroy him and all he created and... The Celestials! All are referred to as The Abstracts, which I do like.
And, as mentioned in the story, the involvement of these beings shows exactly how bad this situation is and on the last page it gets MUCH MUCH worse!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

The Pull List

First week in July, wow, it's hard to believe we are more than half way through 2010!

Words: Joe Kelly w/Zeb Wells
Pictures: Marco Checchetto and Michael Lark & Stefano Gaudiano

The Grim Hunt, Part 3: I have to admit this story isn't living up to the expectations I had for it. Kraven The Hunter is a character who had a great ending and should have been left alone.
But...there are some things about this story that are nice. The swerve from last issue about the Death of Spider-Man, for example. We are down another clone of Peter Parker as Kaine took his place and died in the originals place. Very nice.
Kraven doesn't seem to be very pleased with being brought back. After reading Kraven's Last Hunt I can understand why he would be annoyed with coming back. He did what he wanted to do in Last Hunt and died by his own hand. He was, in his mind, at peace.
So, in this story we have his wife, brother, son and daughter trying to bring him back without consideration for if he wanted to come back or not.
Okay, so where we are now is Kraven is back and not happy about it, his return was messed up in some manner because it wasn't the Original Spider-Man who died for his return and now Kraven wants Spider-Man to hunt him down again and, to add a touch of nostalgia, he offers Spider-Man a black version of his costume. Which was what he was wearing during the Last Hunt.
There are also a few back-up stories in these Grim Hunt issues but I don't care for them. And again, Marvel, stop doing this. Amazing comes out 3 times a month. It doesn't need pointless back-ups in order to give a reason to increase the price to $4. Drop the back-ups and leave it a $3 or I will have to drop the series.

Words: Joe Ahearne
Pictures: Bryan Hitch

I remember when annuals were something special. So far this year I've gotten two, including this one, and they are not special anymore. I knew I should have passed on this one when I saw Bryan Hitch on the art. The story is kind of pointless, unless there are plans for some of the concepts introduced here like Psycho-Woman or Johnny's child, but chances are nothing will come of these.
Okay, so the story goes like this: Johnny was at a club and apparently, for some reason, Psycho-Woman, daughter of Psycho-Man, decided to make some girl pregnant with Johnny's child... I think... Honestly, this whole thing made very little sense at all. Had I known what a mess this was going to be I would have passed on it. But, my collector habit made me buy this and, yes, I regret it.
Not good, so far this week we have two books and both were less than impressive.
What's next...

Words: Chris Roberson
Pictures: Michael Allred

FINALLY! A book with good art and a good story. Continuing from last month, Gwen is trying to unravel the mystery of John Amon and  the man who's brain she ate in the first issue.
He seems to be a rather mundane person, good man, father, worker...until what appears to be a car accident. After the accident he lost control of his emotions and ended up dead.
By the end of the issue, Gwen and Ellie, her mod ghost friend, are at Amon's house in hopes of figuring out his connection to the man in Gwen's head. A few things about this: first, the man in Gwen's head seems to have been pretty messed up and second he looks a LOT like John Amon.
Also, John can see Ellie which is very weird and knows who Gwen is which is even weirder. I love a good mystery.
Then there are is the mean vampire's nice to see a vampire who is out for blood and not some pathetic emo wimp.

Words: Mike O'Sullivan
Pictures: Various

This is a mix between a Saga book and an Official Handbook.
Told as entries by Nova, the Saga part is first. It covers the live and times of Thanos, as we know them, from his birth through the Cosmic Cube and Infinity Gauntlet affairs and continues through Annihilation and Realm Of Kings where Thanos makes his return.
It also covers the State of the Universe. This part serves as a primer for people who may not have been paying much attention to the cosmic parts of the Marvel universe. Covering mainly recent items such as the Annihilation War and Conquest through Realm of Kings (mostly because the Infinity Saga was covered under Thanos) this brings everyone to where they need to be and also serves as a refresher for those who have been reading it all. Like me.
The Handbook part is next. A series of small entries concerning all the major players in Marvel's Cosmic drama.
Though I don't think $4 was a good cover price considering there are no ads this book is a good idea for everyone who is interested in Marvel's Cosmic part.

Words: Roger Langridge
Pictures: Chris Samnee

This one is interesting. We get sort of an out-of-continuity retelling or reboot for Thor. He first appears on earth in this issue and is looking for his hammer.
Jane Foster is here as well but instead of being a doctor she works in a museum in the Norse Mythology Department.
So, a few changes here and there but this isn't the classic Thor that appears in his book and in The Avengers. This is a book to introduce new readers to Thor and give regular readers something fun to read that isn't attached to a lot of history. It's like Ultimate Thor only not stupid.
It's also an All Ages book which means you can buy this for your kids and feel good knowing the stories, art and characters are not mature. It's good for all people.
Will I actually continue this series? Who knows. I did enjoy it more than I though but this might be something to get in trade for me. Problem is, Marvel tends to put these All Ages books in digest sized trades. That, I don't like. I'll decide with Issue #2 since I'm losing 3 books next month.