It’s over! Secret Wars is finally over. It’s not that Secret Wars isn’t a good story – it’s actually been fantastic, but the event has been going on for almost a full year and it’s good to finally move past it. There are a few other notable releases this week, but that’s the big one. Also, why is Marvel so bad at splitting up the X-Men books? All three of the X-Men titles that started at least a month ago released today – it’s kind of ridiculous.
Anyway, the comics I picked up this week include All-New X-men 3, All-New All Different Avengers 3, The Mighty Thor 3, All-New Hawkeye 3, All-New Wolverine 4, Radioactive Spider-Gwen 4, Extraordinary X-Men 5, Secret Wars 9, Red Sonja 1, Starfire 8 and Gotham Academy 14. Here are my first impressions, and links to full reviews will be added when they’re posted.
All-New X-Men 3 is fun. It concludes the opening arc with the Ghosts of Cyclops, and there’s some great Cyclops moments and character development for the ghosts themselves. There isn’t anything special about this issue though, and the ending felt a bit too convenient considering all the damage the Ghosts of Cyclops caused. Even with this issue’s problems, this is the best X-Men team books out right now.
All-New All Different Avengers 3 is good. This is the issue where the new Avengers team officially becomes a team, after they solve their first crisis involving a Chitauri warlord of course. It’s just a fun comic, and sometimes that’s all you need. Avengers fans should give this a chance, especially since in-universe, it’s the only actual Avengers team.
The Mighty Thor 3 is great. The bulk of the issue is an epic fight between Thor and Loki, and it doubles as a fun look into the different ways Loki’s been portrayed over the years. The other plotlines are touched on as well, especially with the dark cliffhanger ending, but the Loki stuff is great. Definitely pick this up if you’re either a Thor or a Loki fan.
All-New Hawkeye 3 is good. The modern half of the story is mostly a downtime issue focusing on how the two Hawkeyes live their lives now that there’s a rift between them, while the future part of the story gives us a quick but fun action scene and some story development. I’m not sure if I’ll stick with this series since I’m not really a big Hawkeye fan, but those who are should at least give this a chance.
Radioactive Spider-Gwen 4 is decent. Most of this issue is a fight between Spider-Gwen and her universe’s Green Goblin. It’s a good alternate take on the classic Spider-Man villain, but I’m starting to feel like the overall focus on what happened to Peter Parker is starting to get a little overbearing. This is still a neat overall take on the Spider-Man mythology and those who are enjoying this series so far will likely enjoy this one too.
Extraordinary X-men 5 is an improvement over the last few issues. The ending gives hope that this series will get a little more lighthearted later on, but there’s still an overall dark and depressing tone and it probably won’t win over anyone who’s already dropped this series. Personally I’m still considering dropping it, but after this one’s ending, I might pick up one more issue to be sure.
Starfire 8 is fun, but there are a few questionable moments in the sub-plots. For one, Sol seems a bit too forgiving of the fact that Starfire flew off with Dick Greyson in the previous issue without saying much, even if it was to stop a bunch of bad guys. Overall this series still manages to be fun though.
Gotham Academy 14 is, well … I’m not entirely sure what to make of this either. It’s full of a bunch of little stories that take place at the academy, written and drawn by different creators. I honestly don’t remember much about half of these stories, although it was near the bottom of my read pile and my brain was starting to get a bit tired at that point. So I’ll just say that series regulars should read before you buy if you can.
ANXM was great. A lot of fun. The Ghosts became really complex here. More than in previous issues. Bagley’s art wasn’t up to his usual standard, but was still great.
ANAD Avengers was fun. It’s an enjoyable comic. Nothing memorable so far, but still fun.
Thor was great. Loki was in full Loki mode, which means I had no goddamn clue what his actual game was. I think Aaron’s benefiting a lot from what Gillen and Ewing did with the character, because it’s made him so unpredictable. No matter what Aaron does with him, readers will be trying to peel back layers. Also, I love that Cat Thor was one of Loki’s versions. That was incredible.
Hawkeye was great. Some fantastic work in both time periods. And I’m always glad to see America hanging around.
Wolverine was great. So much fun. So weird, but so fun.
Spider-Gwen was good. I guess. The references to old sitcoms was weird. That felt like Latour referencing things he remembers, rather than coming up with things Gwen would know and reference.
EXM was much improved, especially with the more optimistic ending, starting from Storm talking to the cameras, and then Anole saying social media is talking about her speech. I want more of that. Always more. I want signs that the entirety of humanity doesn’t hate mutants. The fact that we’re still not allowed to know what Scott did is pretty obnoxious, though. Just frigging tell us, already.
Secret Wars was good. A good finale.