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Old 01-09-2013, 07:30 PM   #1
JewishHobbit
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Default Bought/Thought - January Today, 2013

Eh, I forget the date and don't feel like looking it up.

Anyhow, in addition to this week's comics I also picked up the Walking Dead trade (vol. 1). I've gotten into the show and that, naturally, got me curious about the comics. I saw a new issue came out today but I just can't jump into a series late, so I got the first trade. If I like it then I'll get the next one and on and on. If it goes how I expect it'll be the first comic I buy in trade format... ever.


X-Men Legacy - I've been going back and forth on whether I want to drop this book or not. I love Legion but the past two issues were boring as can be. I skipped the 3rd one and then skimmed the 4th and it looked a lot better than issues 1 and 2. Loving Chamber and seeing that he had a decent role in issue 4, I decided to give them a shot. While definately better than 1 or 2 it still wasn't astounding. Still, the two might be decent enough for me to keep buying on an issue by issue status. I need to make some cuts soon and this might officially be one, but I love Legion and Chamber, hopefully more will come of this title.

Thor: God of Thunder - Just as good as the previous issues. I'm loving this story but I'm not majorly attached to Thor as a character. I want to finish this story but I might drop the book after that. Then again, I'm enjoying the story so I'll decide once that time comes. LOVE the art!

Phantom Stranger - I'm not sure what to think of this title just yet. I'm liking the jist of what I'm reading but I just don't know. I'm at least sticking with it through this Spectre stuff but after that I don't know. I'm just real curious where it goes. The Phantom Stranger is an interesting character and as a Chrsitian, his origin completely has my attention.

As for the issue itself, I liked it a lot. I love the Justice League Dark and liked their role in the issue. I'm not sure what to think of the actual story but the Spectre coming really has me intrigued.

Wolverine & the X-Men - I liked the issue but the arc has been sorta bleh. I'm glad it's over. Now, hopefully, we can move on to something more enjoyable for me. Azazel's appearance in the end has me excited. If a writer who wasn't exactly top notch could create a story with him that I liked, I'm excited to see what someone like Aaron could do!

And as always, Bradshaw rocks.


I don't feel like going downstairs to look but I think I'm forgetting an issue. If I am I'll review it later.

Best and Worst of the Week

Best: Thor: God of Thunder - Fantastic issue, fantastic art, fantastic everything. Solid issue.

Worst: X-Men Legacy - While issue 4 was better thanthe previous issues it still wasn't amazing.

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Old 01-10-2013, 04:41 AM   #2
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Default Re: Bought/Thought - January Today, 2013

X-Men Legacy - I read this because it was Chamber was in it. Good seeing him in action again although wasn't a fan of the over exaggerated cockney stuff. Wolverine sure likes threatening to stab people. Young Cyclops in New X-Men last week and Legion this week.

Superior Spider-man - Doc Ock being a douche and trying to prove is a better Spider-Man that Peter Parker. Outraged at a third c-list sinster six and almost beating one of them to death but was stopped by Ghost Peter. Ock-Pete perving over MJ is creepy.

I bet most Spider-Man fans probably don't like this. One more day and ultimate Pete dying, Ben Reilly clone saga and this seem like the most controversial Spidey stories in the modern era.

Thor: God of Thunder - This title is still great. Fantastic art and great storytelling. I like the dark edge the title has as well. The God Killer talking about torturing a god of torture and cutting off that alien gods eyelids.

Fantastic Four - Space venus fly trap planet trys to eat them. Thats about it really.

Wolverine & the X-Men - The circus stroyline has been boring. Now that its over hopefully the title will pick up again.

Cable & X-Force - Decent issue. Forge leads the bad guys right to base. I like the 'Forge Vision' in which he could see the design flaw and take it out on the mech villain.

Thunderbolts - Deadpool says what will happen when the punisher finds out about Ross having the leader and lo behold it happens.

Age Of Apcoalypse - Weapon Omega is finally killed in this gritty misery porn of a title. I've enjoed AoA even if it is relentlessly grim.

Punisher War Zone - Frank and Thor have a chat over some beers.

Animal Man - Buddyand co find the Green Lantern who powers up and kicks ass. Little wing gives herself to the rot in exchange for her family. Good issue.

Swamp Thing - Swampy makes more of his formula with the help of Batman and Barbara in Arkaham. Good issue again enjoying Rotworld saga.

Phantom Stranger - Atleast DC has atlast picked an origin for the Phantom Stranger in the new 52 and seem to be sticking with it. Judas and his 30 pieces of silver. Constantine the master manipulator tries to get Phantom to join his Justice League Dark.

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Old 01-10-2013, 05:32 AM   #3
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Default Re: Bought/Thought - January Today, 2013

Animal Man #16- Rotworld continues. Last issue, I complained that this crossover seems like it's been going on forever. I still feel the same way, but this issue was better than the last. Animal Man's Red forces have received help from a certain hero and are approaching Anton's stronghold, only to find that it's being heavily guarded. It looks like this issue is leading up to the final battle, so I'm excited and relieved to see this storyline end.

Avengers Arena #3- I don't care what people say, I'm really enjoying this series. It's an opportunity to give these younger characters some time to grow and shine. If it wasn't for this series, they'd all be stuck in limbo. I still don't think that these characters are actually dying and all will eventually be revealed. But yeah, this issue features a cool character that I otherwise knew nothing about. Plus, this issue started getting down to some actual fighting. This is a great series, people should check it out.

Cable and X-Force #3- Yeah, I'm done with this series. I originally started picking it up for Colossus and to feed my X-Force need after Remender's run ended. I just can't get into this at all. The rest of the cast is just uninteresting for me. Meh.

Detective Comics #16- This issue was really ****ing good. This should be the model of what a tie-in issue should be. This issue was able to connect to the Death of the Family storyline without completely sacrificing everyone that's going on in it's own storyline. The issue focuses on Batman hunting down various Joker gangs and also connects it to Ignatius Oglivy. Just a really great issue. I've enjoyed Layman's run thus far, but it feels like this is the issue where he hit his stride.

Fantastic Four #3- This book is a lot of fun. Reed's still lying to his family about the reason for their trip while trying to find a cure for himself. This lie leads to some danger in this issue. One thing that I don't get is Ben being all mopey in space. Doesn't seem like he should be. But yeah, Fraction has been killing it on this and FF.

Star Wars #1- I decided to give this series a shot and I'm glad I did. It's a Star Wars book featuring the characters of the original trilogy. It takes place directly after A New Hope, so Empire and Jedi haven't taken place yet. The Rebel forces need to find a new planet to base their operations out of and it's up to Leia and her self assembled covert team to find one.

Superior Spider-Man #1- So yeah, there's a really big twist in this issue and it's a very good one. It should make a lot of people who didn't like what's going on happy. That being said, I felt that this issue was kind of unbalanced. I like having Ock as Spidey and I feel like Slott is doing a great job of writing him that way, but I felt like the end of 700 introduced an Ock that wasn't such an ******* and I felt like that was a more interesting concept. You can still have narcissistic, kind of an ******* Ock who's still trying to do good rather than full blown ******* Ock who's only being good for fame and recognition. Still, this seems like it's going to be a very interesting series and I'm all in with it. Also, it should be said that Stegman's art is absolutely beautiful in this book and he's doing a truly great job.

Swamp Thing #16- Rotworld also continues here, but in Gotham. In this issue, we get to see the fate of both Superman and Batman. Alec travels to Gotham to see if Batman was able to find a way to combat the Rot. While there, he discovers that Bruce was indeed able to find something and that Gotham is a little better off than other cities. This all builds up to the end of the issue, which is truly awesome. Like I said, I'm ready for this storyline to be over, but it looks like it's going to end in awesome fashion in this book.

Thor: God of Thunder #4- Yeah, so this book continues to be great. In this issue, we get something I've been wanting the last few issues: More Old King Thor. And boy, is it ****ing great. Aaron is doing such a good job of weaving through the different timelines of Thor and keeping each one of the timeline's fresh and exciting. I'm interested to know what happened in that cave in young Thor's story. But yeah, this issue leads up to a pretty shocking finale and I can't wait to see where it goes next. Aaron is crafting a masterpiece.

Thunderbolts #3- I liked this issue. It wasn't fantastic or anything, but it was fun. I guess that's all I'm expecting from this title: Some mindless fun. I really like this team and most of the characters in it. Hopefully Way can keep this title fun and doesn't try to get to heavy. If he can, I'll stay on.

Walking Dead #106- I'm really loving this storyline but it's SO hard to read monthly. Kirkman crafts these huge cliffhangers that make it so hard to wait for the next issue. I can see why people always wait for the trade with this series. Anyway, Negan is a true mother ****er, *******, and a badass. He's the best villain that this series has had since the Governor and he has the potential to eclipse him, in my opinion. I can't wait to see what ******** thing he's done now in the next issue. The wait's going to be very hard, though.

Wolverine and X-Men #23- Man, this series has really dropped off to the point where I was thinking "What the ****?" while reading this issue. This used to be one of my favorite titles and now it's a meh title to me at best. I'm hoping that now that this circus storyline is over, it'll pick back up and get back to the school where this title is best. But yeah, this series went from great to meh over the course of only a few issues. It's a bummer.

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Old 01-10-2013, 11:13 AM   #4
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Default Re: Bought/Thought - January Today, 2013

Secret Avengers #36:
Remender provides another solid, if relatively uneventful, issue of what seems to be the most underrated of all the Avengers titles. Next issue appears to wrap up this fantastic run on the title and I, for one, will miss Remender greatly. I wish I could have faith/optimism about the relaunch but, without Remender, I won't be sticking around. Final verdict: 3.5/5.

Punisher Warzone #3:
This title has proven to be surprisingly good. Although, much like another poster on these forums, I am disappointed by the author's failure to acknowledge past character histories and interactions. For example, I own quite a few issues (early to mid '90s) where Castle and the Black Widow were on friendly terms. Much like Wolverine, the Widows distate for the Punisher seems a little hypocritical. Anyway, I enjoyed how Frank "handled" Thor and am glad that the reputations of both characters were not butchered for a cheap thrill. The Punisher may be my favorite character but even I must concede: there's no way Frank could take out Thor or most of the Avengers' heavy hitters. Spider-man, Daredevil, Wolverine, or Black Widow? Maybe in a one-on-one scenario. Captain America, Iron Man, or Thor? No way. As always, Rucka's writing has been great and the pacing of this mini-series has been satisfying. However, the art seems a little washed out and shaky for my liking. It's a shame Chechetto (sp?) couldn't have stayed on the title. Final Verdict on this issue: 4/5

Thunderbolts #3
I absolutely cannot wait until Phil Noto takes over on art. I respect Dillon but he DOES NOT FIT superhero titles. The vivid coloring helps but his art is way to simplistic and does not convey action well at all. Also, the four identical sized pannels for page thing really hurts the flow/momentum of the story. Regardless, Way is providing a decent story without butchering the characterizations too much. These definitely aren't the greatest versions of these characters but at least no one should be whipping their books accross the room in anger. Still, a mediocre story with poor art makes this one of Marvel Now's weakest titles. 2/5

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Old 01-10-2013, 11:39 AM   #5
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Default Re: Bought/Thought - January Today, 2013

Not happy with my books this week. :-(

Superior Spider-Man #1 - Yes, it was well written. Yes, it was well drawn. Yes, it had a great "twist" at the end. No, I still don't like it. Its creepy, Ock taking Peter's body for a spin and leering at MJ. Its weird reading a Spider-Man book and rooting against him. And even the "twist", which I don't consider a twist, just felt very forced and,...I don't know, insincere? Like, see? Pete's is still around and as soon as sales dip, Ta Da! Guess who's back? Bah! I read it. Gave it a shot. Did not enjoy it. Not a fan. Let me know when Peter Parker stars in Amazing again.

New Avengers #1 - the Other Hickman Avengers book. Didn't do anything for me. First off, I like my Illuminati in small doses, not a whole series dedicated to them. And second, I couldn't care less about the Black Panther, and if this issue is any indication, he's the star. Hickman gives us more new villians with the power to destroy planets, who he'll probably delve into more next issue, but I won't be there. Not for me. I'd rather read his Avengers proper and call it a day.

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Old 01-10-2013, 12:19 PM   #6
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Default Re: Bought/Thought - January Today, 2013

I've not read Superior Spider-Man but I feel like people are just getting caught up in the advertising hype. This is nothing new really. Firestorm's been doing it for years. And it's just a regular story twist dressed up way more than it likely should have been. Should the series have relaunched when he got the symbiote costume? Or when he went Cosmic? Or when he embraced the Spider? Or when Ben Reilly took over? No. And we can all look back and know round about what issues those happened in sequence because of the numerical value of comics. These days we can't do that.

First off, a MAJOR turn off for me is that they, yet again, killed off a character and made a huge fuss about it only to bring them back an issue later. In this regard, Marvel is a joke. I actually would have had more respect for the story if Slott would have revealed Peter being alive in SpOck's head at the end of 700 as to not jerk around fans. That would have told me that Marvel was more invested in the story than in the gimmick.

All of this was a money grab. They over-sized and over-priced issue 700 and then made this big thing about Peter dying and the book relaunching to simply tell what should have been just the next arc in the story. I'll tell you... I'm so freaking sick of gimmicks. Tell a good freaking story. This could be a good story, but all the gimmicks surrounding it has turned me off from ever bothering trying it. And even now when it sounds like Spidey 2099 might actually make an appearance in Superior, I no longer care. At Marvel, the gimmicks are bigger than the stories and that's just rediculous.

Again, I'm not reading the book. But the only thing that I can see coming out of this and really benefiting from the relaunch and hype is that moment when Peter's voice informs Ock that HE is the superior Spider-Man and then does something with his body to totally overthrow Ock. I'll say this though, as cool as that moment might be, it isn't worth all this gimmicky crap. In fact, him just flat out calling himself superior without the predictable build up to it would be a better impact than telegraphing the moment (if it ever happens).

I don't know if this sort of thing is the writer's idea or the editors or what... but I wish they were better idea men, whoever thought of it.

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Old 01-10-2013, 12:49 PM   #7
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Default Re: Bought/Thought - January Today, 2013

Pick of the week- STAR WARS #1. Brian Wood did a fantastic job. The issue was fun. It felt like classic Star Wars. I'm looking forward to Leia's secret mission, and I feel like this will add to the story of the original trilogy. I was also really surprised by the artwork. I loved all of the panels with the X-wings and the Star Destroyer. Vader also looks really menacing in this book as well. This makes me happy, because Vader can sometimes look goofy in comic form. I have never been into Star Wars comics before, but I am very, very excited for this book.

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Old 01-10-2013, 07:36 PM   #8
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Default Re: Bought/Thought - January Today, 2013

Thor: God of Thunder: This book is just...is just...I can't even...

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Old 01-10-2013, 07:38 PM   #9
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Default Re: Bought/Thought - January Today, 2013

I finally started reading Invincible. I guess that makes me one of the cool kids now? *crosses fingers*

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Old 01-10-2013, 07:41 PM   #10
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Default Re: Bought/Thought - January Today, 2013

Thor #4- Was excellent I've dropped several titles (inlcuding Thunderbolts) and can't seem to get to the store quick enough for Avengers books these days. THis was one of the best single comics i have read in a long time.

Secret Avengers #36- This is just such a solid story by Remender, I'll miss him on the title..it's certainly lost some oomphf with his new titles out, but this is a good arc and the guy clearly gets a good avengers tale.

Caught up on Captain America issues #1 and 2- also enjoying this new direction...fairly weird tale, but it works for me.

I looked over some stuff at marvel I used to buy (like T-bolts) and New Avengers (which i decided i was not going to get) but instead picked up some older Boom studios titles..interesting contrast with Boom Studios "Deathmatch" Vs Avengers Arena...i read Deathmatch and decided i actually liked it.

As for Avengers Arena I will not support the book, as i feel it is an affront and cheap gimmick to use exisiting "young" heroes in such a way..it's a bad pitch and I wont do it..plus i really like Darkhawk and Mettle..I could go on, but i think a generic tale in it's own can work on this "genre"...nothing wrong with high stakes Vs book, and deathmatch is showing me it can work.

I noticed a supreme stack of available copies of Arena Vs almost all the other current Now! titles...not looking good for that book and I'm pretty glad.

I also picked up issues 1-3 of Boom Studios "Extermination"...i enjoyed them and will continue to check out this book, although i have some catching up to do. If you don't like spoofy end of the world tales featuring cloney DC archetypes, it's not for you.

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Old 01-10-2013, 08:23 PM   #11
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Default Re: Bought/Thought - January Today, 2013

I liked Superior... it was weird... it was creepy... and ultimately, it's going to be FUN!!!


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Old 01-10-2013, 08:25 PM   #12
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How did your kid like it?

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Old 01-10-2013, 08:34 PM   #13
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Default Re: Bought/Thought - January Today, 2013

He didn't get to read it yet... he's with his Mom... I'm gonna tell him tomorrow night over the phone...

I think he's gonna like it a lot...


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Old 01-10-2013, 11:14 PM   #14
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I finally started reading Invincible. I guess that makes me one of the cool kids now? *crosses fingers*
I want to get into Invincible, but I don't know a good jumping on point. Any suggestions? I've previously read like the first 20 issues but don't feel like going back and buying all the trades.

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Old 01-11-2013, 10:58 PM   #15
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Exclamation Re: Bought/Thought - January Today, 2013

Let's be real. The only spoilers anyone cares about is about a certain new Spider-Man title. Onwards with that!

DREAD'S BOUGHT/THOUGHT FOR 1/9/13:

ACTION COMICS #16: The penultimate issue of Grant Morrison's run, and I don't want to imagine how bad sales will slide once he's gone. At any rate, Brad Walker and Rages Morales both contribute to the art for a crazy story which seeks to tie up all of the ends to this arc. Superman's battling a 5th dimensional tyrant in both the present and future who wants to kill him, basically because he was the greatest "trick" of his rival, Mr. Mxy. It reinvents the 5th dimensional imps as a more complicated and dangerous element to Superman's universe, instead of essentially being the Great Gazoo. I'm not certain I like it, but it is ambitious. The issue also includes a cameo of most of the villains introduced during this run (or the annual) such as Nimrod and the Kryptonite Man, along with the Legion of Super-Heroes, and heavy doses of techno-babble and over the top dialogue. I kept thinking that Morrison sort of wants to do a more complicated and convoluted version to the finale of ALL-STAR SUPERMAN, but it isn't quite clicking in the way that is. Too many sprinkles, after all and you forget the ice cream is there. The art is lovely and the LOSH back up strip by Sholly Fisch and Chris Sprouse is alright. One wonders if WB's home video department will adapt this to DVD animation like they did ALL-STAR SUPERMAN (after all, the Geoff Johns/Gary Frank BRAINIAC story from 2008 is getting the treatment), and is so this is probably a yarn which many benefit from some editing down. I don't like Superman enough to continue after the next issue, frankly.

GUARDING THE GLOBE #5: Phil Hester and Todd Nauck continue to play with Robert Kirkman's spare creations in this INVINCIBLE spin-off. There are ramifications to Outrun being possessed by Embrace (of the Order), namely her being turned into a chain smoking sexpot who slept with several heroes; there is essentially a debate as to unintentional rape and losing control of one's actions. Later bits involve Brit dealing with his autistic son with his wife and the perspective being a superhero brings to that. Mauler attempts to claim all of the babies's imprinted his DNA upon, and Set continues to tear up a city battling one of his own. The art is lovely and this isn't a bad book, although it seems to present more of a sequence of events strung together rather than a story. In fairness, that's worked for soap operas for decades.

SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN #1: With the passage of Christmas and the end of 2012, AMAZING SPIDER-MAN seemingly came to an end with a 700th issue which had been promoted for roughly half a year. The promotional gears within Marvel's editorial board played it to the hilt, claiming that during Spider-Man's 50th anniversary year, his flagship title would come to an end and that Peter Parker would totally die for good. Naturally, not only did writer Dan Slott aid in this with his own interviews to various websites, when spoken to at the New York Comic Con back in October, a lot of it was likely his idea. To replace ASM in 2013 would be a superior Spider-Man called...SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN. And on this day it came, drawn by Ryan Stegman (SCARLET SPIDER, FANTASTIC FOUR), colored by Edgar Delgado, and sporting a collective eight different covers in total. It follows right on the heels of ASM #700 to the point that it easily could have been issue #701; and if one follows even recent Marvel Comics history, the odds of all of these SS-M issues being counted as potential ASM issues to reach another triple digit double priced issue is very high. However, once one attempts to subtract the comics itself from the promotional machinations, how does it read?

The supreme irony is that Slott himself has revealed his hand in regards to the fate of the "true" Peter Parker very quickly. The climax of this week's debut issue of SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN all but paves the cement for the path for the return of the "true" Spider-Man; all which has to be determined are the details and time. If one considers this a chapter from the story which began with the last three issues of ASM, this is only the fourth issue of a long reaching arc; other writers could and would have stretched things another issue or two in terms of revelations. It is the promotional engine fueled by Slott and the editors which have sparked some of the fury of fans online and attempting to make them forget recent Marvel history - that a "reboot" of a major title with a new number one is as common as the seasons. After all, Johnny Storm was seemingly killed off during the 50th anniversary of FANTASTIC FOUR, only to return the next year. Both Thor and James Barnes were seemingly killed off in major events yet returned in months. Such manufactured frenzies are part of the advertising game to pump up sales, but it remains a strategy which risks being worn thin and promotes cynicism in the market.

Regardless, this issue picks up where ASM #700 left off; Otto Octavius/Dr. Octopus has successfully swapped minds with that of his enemy Spider-Man to cheat death and finally gain revenge on the hero. The major twist was that it actually worked; Peter's mind/soul seemingly perished with Ock's mangled form, leaving Dr. Octopus as the new Spider-Man. However, a bombardment of Peter's memories and motivations in a last ditch attempt to survive inspired Ock enough to avoid being a tyrant and instead attempt to be a "better" Spider-Man. To this end Ock-as-Spidey has redesigned the costume, dove head first into inventing new gadgets at Horizon Labs and has full intentions to get hot and heavy with Mary Jane Watson. This issue is chock full of action as a new version of the Sinister Six arise, which naturally sparks Ock's personal ire. At the end of the issue, we learn that Peter's "soul" is somehow still tethered to his body and is able to prevent Ock from performing more intense acts (like murder), vowing to reclaim his life. One could imagine Dr. Strange could fix this in an hour, but that's likely too simple. Highlights include the currently incarnation of the Six, which include an oft neglected Lee/Ditko creation in the Living Brain, and some well paced and exciting battle scenes. Slott does wrest some decent perspective for Ock; while he has succeeded, he is frustrated that he is now merely improving the legacy of his "vanquished" adversary. The dialogue is interesting and the art by Stegman is as strong as ever - if one enjoys his scratchy, mid-90's style.

There are some hiccups, as there were with ASM #700. Naturally, while Ock has full access to Spider-Man's memories, powers, and skills, he doesn't act much like Peter Parker. Suddenly, "Peter Parker" is dressing like DR. HORRIBLE at work and is acting like a passive aggressive jerk to MJ, snapping at her using stock super-villain dialogue fresh out of a James Bond flick while switching to passively imbibing in alcohol. While one can perhaps forgive Peter's super genius friends at Horizon being fooled, someone who knows him as well as MJ should at least be suspicious by now. In contrast, Invisible Woman has been capable of figuring out when her husband is being mind controlled or impersonated within less than an issue - although in fairness that's happened far more to Reed Richards than Peter Parker. While some outside intervention is inevitable, it seems the detail is how soon things start to click into place, which can seem like a stalling tactic. Much as in the last issue, the angle of finally reuniting Peter with MJ for the first time in five years, only for Peter to be possessed by Doc Ock smirking with a date rapist's glee when thinking about MJ, is salt in the wound for some fans.

The bottom line is that this is a very entertaining arc of Spider-Man. However, that is all it is, and Slott's story itself even makes little attempt to hide this for longer than a few weeks. It is the promotion which has artificially pumped this story up. While it may be an obligation to sell comics, it is a shame, because without the pumped up fan rage in some corners, this is a perfectly entertaining arc. One only hopes it isn't prolonged to absurd lengths just for extra dollars, and reached at least a somewhat organic conclusion.

(BTW, while everyone has their own nickname for Ock-as-Spidey, the one I attempted to coin for the other at Examiner is, "Peter, The Friendly Ghost". That's what I call him for the moment. Hammerhead was once a ghost, too.)

SCARLET SPIDER #13: A new year brings about a new story line for what has quickly become an exceptional spin off of ASM, courtesy of writer Chris Yost. Regular artist Khoi Pham is back on pencil art with two tinkers and a whopping three colorists in tow. This arc springs forth from issue #12.1 that it may as well have been a regular issue. Since the start of the series, the mysterious runaway youth Aracely that Kaine has liberated from a human trafficking ring (and defended from the deranged Salamander) has offered more questions than answers. She has no memory yet potent psychic powers, and is involved in Houston's seedy organized crime. This issue offers clues which tie into the Aztec pantheon of gods as well as dusts off more obscure WEB OF SPIDER-MAN villains in the Lobos family. During the Gerry Conway/Sal Buscema run of WEB OF SPIDER-MAN during the late 1980's, the Lobos Brothers emerged as Latin mobsters who also had werewolf like mutations. One of them perished back then, but now the surviving brother as well as a similarly powered sister are hot on Aracely's heels, with Scarlet Spider finding himself in the middle of their hunt. Rather than invent some disposable villains, Yost is often choosing to enhance ones that were neglected for years, if not decades, which is a shrewd move. This book continues to be a highlight in Marvel's line, offering a uniquely cynical and ambiguous anti-hero in a setting which isn't the same as NYC. The fact that this book has survived 2012 when many titles haven't is a blessing for wary Marvel readers, and one hopes it continues.

SECRET AVENGERS #36: This is not only the penultimate issue of Rick Remender's run on this title as solo writer, it is also the penultimate issue of this volume of what was once Marvel's fourth Avengers title. It will relaunched next month with a fresh #1 and former writer Nick Spencer at the helm. Remender has been on this title for roughly 16 issues worth of material, and barring a diversion during AVENGERS VS. X-MEN has stayed the course on one story line. A race of artificial life-forms called the Descendants see themselves as the future of humanity and seek to transform the rest of mankind into beings like them - feeling if they do not, they'll be attacked and wiped out as the mutants (almost) were. Evolved from Super-Adaptoids and aided in their creation by the father of team member Captain Britain, they have now launched their attack on humanity, beginning in NYC as per obligation. Half the team have acquired a MacGuffin needed to stop the Descendants, although it risks killing anyone who has been transformed into one unwillingly. The other half of the team struggle to breach the core of the invasion, and have to fight former team member Eric O'Grady, who has been transformed into the Black Ant. The art is by Matteo Scalera with colors by Matthew Wilson and as this is an action issue, that art gets to shine. In theory the story plays with elements as to what is considered true life, even if Remender does indulge in a lot of satisfying superhero action. Despite being launched by Ed Brubaker, Remender has been the best writer this series has known, and it will be a shame to see it end. Hopefully, this conclusion will be as good as his final issue of VENOM was.

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Old 01-12-2013, 12:14 AM   #16
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Superior Spider-man just reminds me of Azrael in Knightfall... but that last page genuinely shocked me, in a good way. Will probably pick up #2 to see how Obi-Peter stops Ock from doing anything he wants with MJ.

Fantastic Four was worth it. Bagley is my favourite artist, so yeah.

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Old 01-12-2013, 12:15 AM   #17
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I didn't read Superior Spider-Man, but I did flip through it at the shop and I had a good chuckle at that last page. That was some stupid s***, man. Peter's spirit stuck around after all and won't let Ock be too much of a jerk? Geez.

Thor: God of Thunder #4 was fantastic. I'm wondering if Aaron will tell us anything about Gorr's origins. If he's able to kill off scores of gods, he's gotta be pretty powerful, but his reaction to that survivor's question about his being a god makes it seem unlikely he is one. He could just be a really powerful alien, I guess, but that's a little mundane to me. Anyway, the ending of this issue was especially great, and after two issues of teasing, I'm now officially dying to know just what the hell happened in that cave.

Punisher: War Zone #3, another Thor-centric one, was equally as great as Thor's own series. Rucka nails Thor remarkably well, given that he hasn't written Thor much before. I was glad to see he didn't do something cheap and stupid like have the Punisher magically pull out a win or even slow Thor down enough to escape him; Thor being who Thor is and the Punisher being who the Punisher is, there's really no conceivable reason that Thor shouldn't easily be able to capture the Punisher. Which he does, so that was good. The bonding over liquor bit was nice, and I like how Thor, who's experienced lifetimes of what the Punisher's gone through, laid it out in the terms Frank would best be able to understand: his war is an act of convenience at this point that will now certainly take Rachel's life. Forcing Frank to take responsibility is a nice way to show the tiny shred of humanity still residing at the core of his soul, which seems to be what Thor and Cap were hoping for all along. I love that Rucka's clearly thought this through and is giving us a layered approach where each issue reveals some new facet to Cap's strategy with the Punisher. The obvious temptation would've been to just make this a prolonged chase that ends in a big brawl between the Avengers and the Punisher, but Rucka's mindful of the fact that these are seasoned pros and skillful tacticians dancing around very complex issues. As the first issue showed, only Spider-Man sees the Punisher in purely black-and-white terms. At first it seemed like the others all just didn't want to be bothered with the Punisher, but Rucka's slowly revealing a lot of layers to their reactions. Cap seems to have the most complicated feelings of all--he clearly doesn't condone the Punisher's methods, but he still seems to recognize that there's genuine good in Frank and wants to save his soul rather than just throwing him in jail like a common criminal. Bottom line: I find myself thinking about this Punisher comic more than I think I've ever done for any other Punisher comic, ever. Yes, including Born. Kudos to Rucka (although I think he's pretty well established by now that he's easily one of the very best writers working in comics by any measure).

It's well past their respective weeks, but I only just read Captain Marvel #5 and 6 this week. I did so because I saw Emma Rios had drawn them and 1) I love her art, and 2) I've remained somewhat interested in Carol as a character in spite of my meh-ness toward #1 of this series. These two issues were definitely better than that first one. I like that Carol regains her confidence by the end of #6, since one of my complaints about the first issue was that she came off really whiny and green for a decorated Air Force officer and longtime superhero. I came in on the tail end of a time travel story, so I won't pretend to understand everything that was going on (especially Helen's stealing Carol's powers and seemingly turning on her at one point), but the story moved along at a reasonable pace and kept me engaged. I was thinking I might actually continue reading the series thanks to these two issues... until I got to the "Next Issue!" box on the last page of #6 and saw that Dexter Soy is returning with #7. I always thought I was more influenced by characters than creators, but I have to say, as good as these two issues were, they didn't make me like Carol enough to compensate for just how much I abso-friggin'-lutely hate Soy's art. So it looks like #5 and 6 will be but a dalliance with the series for now; I do, however, intend to keep an eye on it and pick it up if Soy ever leaves, or if there are other fill-in artists that I happen to like.

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Old 01-12-2013, 12:24 AM   #18
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ACTION COMICS #16: The penultimate issue of Grant Morrison's run, and I don't want to imagine how bad sales will slide once he's gone. At any rate, Brad Walker and Rages Morales both contribute to the art for a crazy story which seeks to tie up all of the ends to this arc. Superman's battling a 5th dimensional tyrant in both the present and future who wants to kill him, basically because he was the greatest "trick" of his rival, Mr. Mxy. It reinvents the 5th dimensional imps as a more complicated and dangerous element to Superman's universe, instead of essentially being the Great Gazoo. I'm not certain I like it, but it is ambitious. The issue also includes a cameo of most of the villains introduced during this run (or the annual) such as Nimrod and the Kryptonite Man, along with the Legion of Super-Heroes, and heavy doses of techno-babble and over the top dialogue. I kept thinking that Morrison sort of wants to do a more complicated and convoluted version to the finale of ALL-STAR SUPERMAN, but it isn't quite clicking in the way that is. Too many sprinkles, after all and you forget the ice cream is there. The art is lovely and the LOSH back up strip by Sholly Fisch and Chris Sprouse is alright. One wonders if WB's home video department will adapt this to DVD animation like they did ALL-STAR SUPERMAN (after all, the Geoff Johns/Gary Frank BRAINIAC story from 2008 is getting the treatment), and is so this is probably a yarn which many benefit from some editing down. I don't like Superman enough to continue after the next issue, frankly.
That's an interesting look at the way Morrison's 5th dimension reinvention, though I kind of see it as the opposite. Out Vxy, what we've seen of the 5th dimension antics seems fairly fantastical and fun, and Mxy seemed like the usual prankster from the princess's story. It's really just the introduction of Vxy that really makes it seem any darker than before.

Be interesting to see this done as one of those animated films, too. Be cool to see jeans and T-shirt Supes in animation. I kind of doubt they'd go as far as the 5th dimensional stuff, though. They'd probably do a cut off point at the end of the origin story with all the Brainiac stuff.

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Old 01-12-2013, 12:31 AM   #19
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Superior Spider-man just reminds me of Azrael in Knightfall... but that last page genuinely shocked me, in a good way. Will probably pick up #2 to see how Obi-Peter stops Ock from doing anything he wants with MJ.
I couldn't resist making this. I'll post it as a URL for the sake of spoilers:
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v7...ps9637a308.png

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That's an interesting look at the way Morrison's 5th dimension reinvention, though I kind of see it as the opposite. Out Vxy, what we've seen of the 5th dimension antics seems fairly fantastical and fun, and Mxy seemed like the usual prankster from the princess's story. It's really just the introduction of Vxy that really makes it seem any darker than before.

Be interesting to see this done as one of those animated films, too. Be cool to see jeans and T-shirt Supes in animation. I kind of doubt they'd go as far as the 5th dimensional stuff, though. They'd probably do a cut off point at the end of the origin story with all the Brainiac stuff.
That, and traditionally the whole 5th dimensional imp thing was just something which would sporadically challenge Superman like a lot of other things. Morrison has revisioned it as this entire cross-dimensional quest which involves Jor-El and Superman's entire mythos. I wouldn't outright say that I'm all for it, but it is ambitious.

And considering one Grant Morrison Superman story was immortalized in animation, I figure a subsequent one would be game. I mean, TWO Jeph Loeb ones made it, and he's the Michael Bay of comics.

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Old 01-12-2013, 11:04 AM   #20
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TMNT: The Secret History of the Foot Clan keeps up the IDW Turtles' streak of excellence so far. It is exactly what it claims to be: a history of the Foot Clan starting in feudal Japan, woven into the telling of a modern-day story that sees the Turtles, Casey, Splinter, and April learning that history as the reader does. So far it's pretty awesome, although the would-be shocker of an ending was easy to predict as soon as we saw how the Foot Clan got its name. I hope the revelation of that character's involvement doesn't preclude some actual magic from being involved. It always bores me when a fictional universe--especially one that invites a broad range of stories, like a never-ending comic universe--cuts itself off from any avenue of storytelling, and the most common way that happens is when they utterly demystify magic and chalk it all up to parlor tricks with sci fi explanations. But Kitsune still seems to be the genuine Kitsune spirit from Japanese folktales, so who knows? Either way, the series is off to a promising start and I will be looking forward to its next issue just as much as I do to the ongoing TMNT series'. Also, Santalouco's art is gorgeous. He makes the Turtles themselves look a little weird in close-ups, but it's not too distracting. The energy of his action scenes and layouts more than makes up for it, too.

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Old 01-12-2013, 12:40 PM   #21
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Default Re: Bought/Thought - January Today, 2013

This new Turtles comic... it's one of those things where I wish I would have jumped on in the beginning. Now I'm hesitant because it always seems like there's two or three books based on reviews or what I see on the shelves and I can't afford that.

Maybe if I find them on ebay for cheap one day.

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Old 01-12-2013, 12:44 PM   #22
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There's only one ongoing. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. There was a series of one-shots called TMNT Micro-Series: [Character's Name], but that ended. Most of those were quite good, but you could easily skip them and still understand the ongoing's story. Now The Secret History of the Foot Clan is just a mini-series filling in the blanks about the Foot Clan's history, since that ties into the Turtles' present a lot more in the IDW continuity than it has in the past. But I'm fairly certain you could skip this mini too and still be fine with just the ongoing.

If you're seeing things like TMNT Color Classics and other stuff, don't worry about them. Those are reprints of the original Eastman/Laird/Lawson/et al. Mirage comics from the '80s. They're good, but they're not relevant to the ongoing IDW stuff.

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Old 01-13-2013, 08:26 AM   #23
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Default Re: Bought/Thought - January Today, 2013

Hmm. What issue are they up to on the main ongoing?

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Old 01-13-2013, 09:28 AM   #24
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How did your kid like it?
So I told him on Friday night over the phone... he's feeling pretty good about it...


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Old 01-13-2013, 02:02 PM   #25
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So I told him on Friday night over the phone... he's feeling pretty good about it...

Good stuff

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