So it’s two and a half weeks into Nanowrimo. I didn’t write a journal this week because a number of factors slowed my progress, including funky hours at work and my increasing mental fatigue. Instead, I focused mainly on just writing fiction. I’m also falling behind on a number of other things going on, like my co-owned youtube channel, GamehuntersRUs, and my reading in general. On the up side, I’m 55,656 words into my second book of the month, and yesterday I finally wrote a scene I’ve been looking forward to writing for more than a year now. My total wordcount so far is 143,551 words this month, which means I’m only 6,718 words short of last year’s total. And I’m not the only one in my area who is pretty much guaranteed to pass their personal best.
That’s enough about Nanowrimo though – I’m here to talk about comics. The Marvel comics I picked up include Storm 5, Amazing Spider-Man 10, X-Force 12, Magneto 12, Black Widow 12 (lots of 12s), Guardians of the Galaxy 21 (reverse 12) and Uncanny X-Men 28. The non-Marvel comics I picked up are Vampirella: Feary Tales 2, Supergirl 36 and Witchblade3 179. Here are my first impressions, and I’ll provide a link to my review when it’s posted. With my brain so tired though, there will only be one full review this week.
Storm 5 is alright. It’s Storm dealing with a criminal underground situation that Wolverine kind of started with Yukio. The fight scene is fun but there’s not anything special about it. There are no real surprises in how Storm tries to argue a better way for the gangs to deal with power struggles, or with how upset Storm was after Yukio dealt with it her own way. I would love to support this title, being a black female-led solo series, but it’s just not good enough so far. I’m dropping it. Unless you really want to read about Storm mourning the loss of Wolverine, I wouldn’t recommend this issue.
Amazing Spider-Man 10 is good. Chapter 2 of Spider-Verse explains a little more about the plot, along with joining Peter Parker’s Spider-Man team with Superior Spider-Man’s own operation. It shows Superior’s methods failing while giving us some great action. The only thing that holds this back, and this is minor, is that a couple pages are dedicated to splitting off the teams and setting up their own tie-ins. It’s not too obnoxious about it like Logan Legacy 1 was, but it’s still obvious. Most of Dan Slott’s Spider-Man events have at least one weaker issue, and if this is that weaker issue, this should be a great event. Also, the next issue promises an Amazing vs. Superior Spider-Man fight. Spider-Man fans should be certain to pick this up.
X-Force 12 is great. A rising theme in this series is how broken this X-Force team is, and when Fantomex turns on them, it really shows how broken they are when they spend much of the issue arguing amongst themselves. Only Hope seems to be keeping the team focused. Psylocke’s narration also helps explore these problems. Beyond that, there’s also some fun action and great art. This is the best X-Force title in a while – pick it up.
Magneto 12 is decent. From what I’ve read of Axis, this takes place during issue 3, and it feels a bit late when Axis 6 releases this week. Otherwise, it’s a decent action issue that also explores Magneto’s mindset a bit. If that interests you, this could be worth picking up (although that’s coming from someone who hasn’t read Axis so I don’t know how much this repeats Axis 3’s events).
Black Widow 12 is great. The special report advertised on the cover brings a whole new problem for Black Widow, who is already facing a number of threats involving the mysterious Chaos organization. Meanwhile, she’s working with commandos in Somalia for some good action scenes. The montage of all the characters who have helped her through this series brings an added dimension to the whole thing, along with the narration that sometimes friends aren’t worth the effort when the art makes it’s obvious they all care. Black Widow is such a good espionage series set in the Marvel Universe and if that piques your curiosity, just read it.
Guardians of the Galaxy 21 is passable. It touches on a number of the Guardians characters, but mostly focuses on Venom as the symbiote goes out of control. It has some good character moments and a decent fight between Venom and Gamora once Flash completely loses control, plus the cliffhanger is pretty intense. This story arc could be good, but I’m not feeling too optimistic yet. If you’ve enjoyed Bendis’s Guardians of the Galaxy so far you’ll enjoy this. Otherwise, read it before you buy it.
Uncanny X-Men 28 is great. While speaking with the ultra-powerful mutant, Cyclops finally reveals a part of what his revolution entails. It’s a great character moment for Cyclops as they have “breakfast” at a remote location, and the brief commentary scene featuring Adult Beast and Storm adds depth to the story. The ending with Magneto showing up only increases the dramatic quality of this issue. There is so much to like about Uncanny X-Men 28, and any X-men fan who hasn’t given Bendis a chance really should.
Vampirella: Feary Tales 2 is entertaining. After being thrown into a magical book of fairy tales, Vampirella has to figure out how to escape this mad world that combines stories like Snow White and a Western with horror, written by a collaboration of some of the industry’s best writers. The obnoxious narrator and Vampirella’s interactions with him only add to the fun. The Snow White tale is frequently amusing and features constant rhymes, while the western is a darker story involving kidnapped mermaids. This is such a bizzare mini-series that deserves an audience, even if you don’t normally like vampire comics.
Supergirl 38 is good. Mike Johnson is back on the title, along with co-writer Kate Perkins. The comic starts with Supergirl trying to figure out a normal life on Earth, but then is sucked into some kind of intergalactic superhero academy for some tests. There are good character moments, including a quick meet up between Kara and Clark Kent, and some decent action when she’s sucked away. There’s a lot of potential with the series new direction, and unlike Tony Bedard’s run, it doesn’t feel like Kara is regressing at all. This is worth recommending for anyone curious to check out Superman’s teenaged cousin, or for anyone who may have dropped it during Bedard or Michael Alan Nelson’s run.
Witchblade 179 is fun. It’s a fairly simple issue, with Sara Pezzini taking on a werewolf of sorts after it slaughters a bunch of farm animals. The last few issues have obviously been teasing a larger story building up, yet this one still stands on its own. It’s not the greatest introduction to new readers who want to discover this delightfully weird title and how awesome it can be, but it’s easy to understand for newcomers all the same.