Well, it’s the first week of 205; the year Back To The Future promised we would have hoverboards and flying cars. It’s the year Arnold Schwarzenegger was cloned without his knowledge or consent (in the mediocre movie The Sixth Day). On a more serious note, it’s the year Marvel begins their very first weekly ongoing series, Wolverines, and the year Disney is pretty much guarenteed to rule the box office with both Avengers 2 and Star Wars Episode 7 – both could potentially break the $1 billion mark (Avengers 1 did). Seriously, that company is a monster these days. Oh, and about that hoverboard…
Also being the first Wednesday of the month, it’s a big week for comic releases. From Marvel I picked up Wolverines 1, Ant Man 1, Angela: Asgard’s Assassin 2, Weapon X Program 5, Legendary Star Lord 7, Spider-Man 2099 7, Amazing Spider-Man 12, All New X-Factor 19 and X-Men 23. The other comics I picked up include IXth Generation 1, Red Sonja: Vulture’s Circle 1 and Vampirella 8. I also picked up Avengers: No More Bullying in support of the initiative, but I won’t be reviewing it because I’ve already read 12 comics in one sitting, not to mention that Ant Man 1 is both extra-long and very wordy. So here are my first impressions, and links to full reviews will be added when they’re posted.
Angela: Asgard’s Assassin 2 is great. If the first issue introduced Angela as a character and threw her into a crazy situation, this one really delves into her past, the mythology behind the Marvel Universe’s angels and the events that led up to the first issue. I’d say this is shaping up to be a surprisingly brilliant series, but then again Kieron Gillen is rarely anything but. This is a fun yet compelling comic about Thor’s long-lost sister, and anyone who could see themselves enjoying that concept should make sure to check this out.
Legendary Star Lord 7 is great. All you need to know is that Kitty Pryde heads into space to rescue Star Lord from his dethroned and very angry father. In addition, there’s a bit more build-up toward the Black Vortex crossover. If you enjoy either Kitty Pryde or Star Lord, you should pick this up.
Spider-Man 2099 7 is fun. It’s funny how even though Peter David has said in the past that he’s not usually a fan of crossovers, he often writes the best tie-ins for them. Miguel continues his investigation into the Inheritors, along with the steampunk Lady Spider, and Punisher 2099 makes a special appearance. There’s some good story development towards the Spider-Verse event along with some good moments for Miguel himself. While this is a good comic though, it’s not worth reading unless you’re also reading Spider-Verse.
Amazing Spider-Man 12 is intense. A lot happens in this comic, both with the large fights between the Spider armies and the Inheritors and with the tie-in subplots all starting to come together. It’s a little annoying when it keeps referring to different tie-ins, but otherwise it’s a fun read with some great humour, good action and a huge twist ending that I’m sure a lot of people were waiting to see since this event was announced. How much you enjoy this issue depends on how much you’re enjoying Spider-Verse so far.
All New X-Factor 19 is decent. Like always, the dialogue is fun and the team dynamic is always fascinating, but the story feels a bit rushed. Even for a rushed story though, everything still makes sense and there’s still good character development for Danger, but it feels like more could have been done with the soul sucking demon that X-Factor fights. Considering this title is ending soon I’ll give it some slack and it’s worth picking up for any fans of this series, but it is a little disappointing.
X-Men 23 is great. The writing retains much of the wit and balance between characters and story that G. Willow Wilson displays in her Ms. Marvel series, yet it feels different in a way that suits the X-Men fine. As an added bonus, X-Men 23 deals with Storm’s reaction to Wolverine’s death better than Storm’s solo series did without interrupting the story. In other words, X-Men fans should pick this up.
Red Sonja: Vulture’s Circle 1 is good. The concept behind this mini-series is interesting, with Red Sonja being an older woman who has retired from slaying demons to train women to become heroes. The story is off to a good start with a strong setup and some good action, but there are some odd art choices that hold it back. There are obvious shadows on characters’ naked breasts to cover up their nipples, even when the scene’s lighting makes those shadows out of place. It would have worked better if they used another angle instead, or a silhouette. Other than that, this is a great comic and Red Sonja fans should check it out.
Vampirella 8 is good. My only complaint with this one is that the first issue set up a fast spreading plague in Brazil that turned people into crazed, violent maniacs. This issue sweeps that under the rug with a quick panel showing military involvement. Apart from that, Vampirella 8 has strong story development, good action and creepy build-up for the next issue. It also delves into Vampirella’s origin a bit, along with a werewolf ally’s backstory. So far, this remains a good horror series starring a heroic vampire, making Nancy A. Collins’s Vampirella worth reading if the sound of that compels you.