Monthly Archives: February 2013

Falling Down the Rabbit Hole (Mind the Gap #2 and #3)

I swear, I just keep getting more and more sucked into this comic…

Mind The Gap 2

 

One of the many things I love about this series is the artwork – I always think it’s beautifully done. I love the faces, which we get a whole lot of throughout this story. The artists seem very adept at conveying emotion through an upturned lip or a raised eyebrow, and I’m totally captivated by what isn’t being said more than what is sometimes. The fact that you can read between the lines of these characters actual conversation is a great testament to how well these people and faces are drawn.

The story is as captivating as ever. Between Elle trying to get back to her own body, the explosion at the brownstone, conversations between different individuals, and some of the goings on at the hospital, people seem to slowly start suspecting other people. I know the author mentioned that we’ve already met whoever did this to Elle, so you can’t help but try to read these people, what they are and aren’t saying and their actions, and see if you can’t sniff out who it is first. The author has also mentioned you want to play close attention to things going on in the background as well…so each of these comics takes twice as long to read! To go into all the suspicions that were raised would take far too long, so just let it be known that this story is still a roller coaster ride. And the ending…oh, it makes you want the next issue as soon as possible!!

Mind The Gap 3

 

The hints will not let up…Jim McCan is obviously planning a very drawn-out reveal for us. We get a few tantalizing hints in random places (one in this issue is going to have me going through every issue looking at people’s shoes…), but it’s never enough to give us something concrete.

I think the most interesting concept that was presented in this issue was the green Mind Room that Elle spends some time in during this issue. It’s where her access to see the real world is (through the fireplace), and there’s certainly something up with the walls. When she’s trying to remember something, her hand actually reaches INTO the wall, as if she’s trying to pull something in from beyond that wall. And then we end up with this memory of a doctor (can’t tell exactly who, but it looks like Doctor Hammond) holding a needle and syringe to her, which freaks her completely out. It’s a memory of some sort…but what it means is totally beyond us right now. It could be a simple as being traumatized by childhood vaccinations (my brother certainly was :P) but it’s most likely something a little more sinister. So many questions still running around…none of which are likely to be answered anytime soon.

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Anyone Else Watching These?

Anyone Else Watching These?

So, I know they’re advertised in like every issue from Marvel, but has anyone else actually watched these videos from the MTV show? I mean, they are most definitely giant commercials, but I enjoy getting to hear from the writers and artists of these stories! I’d love to know what you think!

You Call This A Date? (Hawkeye #8)

Okay, so I don’t know why, but when I was reading the blurb on the Marvel site about this issue, I really thought this was supposed to involve some sort of Valentines Day date or something…and that’s certainly not what I got with this issue:

Hawkeye 8

Hawkeye #8 did not disappoint at all this time around, even with me expecting something totally different. Honesty, that happens almost every time I open one of these comics. I expect one thing, and I’m handed something completely different. I love it! The story was as simple as ever (breaking into a strip club owned by the tracksuit mafia and stealing a safe), but as always, it was the little moments that just made this issue amazing.

The very first scene with Black Widow, Clint’s Ex-Wife (who is this??), and Spider-Woman (At least, I think she is…I’ve heard mention of the two of them dating somewhere, but I can’t find it again…Wikipedia is failing me!) and their reactions the Red-Head girls appearance (do we know what her name is? Cherry? Penny?) was amazing, not to mention Clint’s reaction to them. All contained in one page and I could not stop laughing.

Did anyone else notice, when the two are talking over coffee near the beginning, that Clint’s coffee mug was leaking, and he was dripping right onto the dog (who didn’t look too happy about the whole ordeal)? I also love that Kate is the one that dropped them off before hi-tailing it out of there so she wouldn’t be caught (does taking someone to a location knowing they’re going to commit a crime make you an accessory to that crime?)

I also loved Clint’s little rant at the end about how he was going to get fired 😛

The magazine covers were actually really interesting. The most obvious use of them was to give us little clue’s into Red-Head’s past. But I wonder if we actually got to see them in the right order (and therefore have the combination…) or not.

I feel like the ending of this really needed a “To Be Continued” on it, because there is more to this story. The first page was never explained. I feel like we might be starting to take our first tentative steps into a larger storyline, but it’s hard to tell. The Tracksuit Mafia and their anger at Clint has been running throughout, so that’s nothing new. This is the second appearance of Red-Head, but we know we’re at least going to see her once more. And if they really got someone to try and kill him….well, that could get interesting quick. I wonder what a larger storyline would look like in this series…we’ve gotten so used to little, episodic issues. Yes, there have been a few things that held from issue to issue (the tracksuit mafia, Kate, Red-Head, Pizza-Dog, etc) but nothing that would hinder your understanding of the plot. Having an actual overarching storyline would be different, but it’s too soon to say if it would work.

As always, I’m a huge fan of David Aja’s work, but I found myself really liking Annie Wu’s covers that were scattered through this issue. The style was very different, but they seemed to fit right in. I wonder if we’ll get to see her again on this series…

And on a totally unrelated note, did anyone else see the synopsis for Hawkeye #11 up on the Marvel site? No? Check it out here. Sounds like it is going to be hilarious!!

Questions for This Week:

  1. What is with the numbered Colins of A.I.M.?
  2. Who is Clint’s Ex-Wife? **According to Wikipedia it’s Mokingbird, Bobbi Morse**
  3. Are Clint and Spider-Woman dating?
  4. Who is this Iron Fist that keeps getting referenced? **Can also be found on Wikipedia**
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Comic Newbie Week in Summary (2/16 – 2/26)

Okay, so this should really be a Week-and-a-Half in Summary, but that just seemed obnoxious. I’ve been thinking about doing something that would add a little structure to this blog – because the last few days it’s been a whirlwind of thoughts, summaries, and opinions that had absolutely no rhyme or rhythm to them. And I enjoyed myself – I got to reread everything I bought in my crazy first week as a comic book collector (yes, this was all in a week…) and really enjoyed myself! But, at the end of the day, structure is a good thing. So this is going to be my first attempt at structure – a weekly post of bests and worst series or issues in different categories (I’m thinking things like Easiest and Hardest to Pick Up without prior knowledge, Most and Least Likely to Hold Your Attention, Most Suprising, Most Repetitive, Worst Pick, Personal Favorite, etc. I’ll settle on a formal list eventually…), questions that were raised and any information that I have on them (probably a lot of links or lists of comics that contain the information, most of it provided by all of you readers!!), and what series and issues are currently in the pile to be read this coming week. This will probably be a post that repeats every Wednesday, so let me know your thoughts and/or suggestions!

Weekly Summary

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Insanity Is…(X-Men Legacy #3, #4, and #5)

Seriously, guys, how can you not fall in love with these covers? Every single one, I think I spent a few minutes just staring at the cover. They’re amazing!

X-Men Legacy 3

X-Men Legacy #3 – Legion goes to rescue the twins who were in trouble, but rather quickly runs into problems. Turns out, those kids weren’t tied up or being held prisoner…not exactly anyway. They actually trapped Legion (thinking he was coming to destroy them), after some lengthy exchanges between their caretakers and Legion, attempt to get into his mind. He manages to free himself in the end, and convinces the kids to come with him. They’re just about ready to head into the sunset, when through the roof bursts the X-Men, ready to save the kids from Legion…

This was a decent story. I like Legion as a character, which is probably a good thing since this series centers around him! I loved the chase scenes through his mind as he tried to wrangle another personality/power for him to use, only to fall short over and over. I also loved the realization he had that he didn’t have to try and be his father. It was a very sentimental story in that way, and I am a sucker for things like that…

Now, of course, how do we convince the X-Men, who are already convinced he is trying to hurt the kids, that Legion is really just trying to help them?

X-Men Legacy 4

X-Men Legacy #4 – For all the talking going on in this one, since some of the X-Men were trying to be reasonable here, there was a lot of little things to get out of this issue, which I enjoyed! The X-Men show up and try to take away the two kids that Legion has rescued, but he’s not about to give them up. They shouldn’t be forced to fight, and that’s what he’s afraid will happen to them if they go with the other X-Men. So there is a fight mixed in with all of the talking about who is right and who is wrong here. Blindfold eventually tries to step in and stop it, but gets thwarted (and possibly put into a coma?) by one of the creatures in Legion’s head (more on this in a bit…) and it all ends with Chamber throwing a fireball into an amunitions warehouse, the warehouse blowing up, but Legion manages to fold the explosion out of current space-time, and fold the kids back over to the X-Men, who take them back to the school.

One silly note: Putting Wolverine to sleep seems to be some sort of tradition…first it happens in All New X-Men when Jean has heard enough…now Legion does the same thing. Is that really the best way to react to Wolverine? 😛

Also, there’s been this creature running around Legion’s head that I’ve been meaning to talk about, but keep forgetting to. It looks a little like Golum and, from the few comments around it’s appearances, I don’t think it’s supposed to be there. It first made an appearance at the end of Issue #1, after Legion had destroyed his mind prison. It then showed up again, hiding out above Legion at the end of Issue #2, and indicated that its something that Legion doesn’t know about. And now it jumps in, takes a swipe at Blindfold, and the girl is basically in a coma. I’m not sure what this creature is, but whatever it is, it can’t be good. It was born out of the crazy that came after Xavier’s death, at least from what was alluded to in the first issue, but what it is, that’s a mystery.

There was also the appearance of two characters that I’ve never heard of before in this issue, and we really didn’t get much story on them either…they were just kind of there: Chamber and Frenzy – I looked them both up on Wikipedia just to get something of a background on them. Does every single character have such a huge backstory? Really…these people should be a lot older than they seem if this much has already happened to them!

X-Men Legacy 5

X-Men Legacy #5 –  NOTE: IF YOU DO NOT WANT SPOILERS, STOP READING NOW (and again, I don’t know why you’re reading my stuff if you don’t want spoilers…I tend to throw them in everywhere…)

This issue focuses on Blindfold, specifically on her past. Legion creates a diversion for the other X-Men, then sends himself out telepathically to find her and try and help her, but also learn more about her. Most of the issue is a trip through her awful past and focuses on her abusive over brother who, in the end, tried to cut her up with a chainsaw, but ended up killing their mother instead. Then, when he is being given the death sentence, his ghost somehow comes out, attacks her, and takes away part of her power. At this point, Legion is dragged away from Blindfold, but not before catching a glimpse of Sojobo walking into the infirmary and knocking out the doctor, knife held in one hand. We come back to Legion’s actual body, where a knife has been drawn on him too, but this time by Karasu, Sojobo’s twin sister. She says Sojobo has not been asking like himself ever since they got here, but since they are family, she will do what he wants. And he asked her to deliver a letter and keep Legion away. The letter is what makes everything come into place. Sojobo has been taken over…by Creepy Eyeball Guy…who is Blindfold’s Brother’s Ghost…who has stolen part of Blindfold’s powers. AAAAAAHHHHH!

This was obviously a set up issue for whatever is going to happen in the next issue…but it was a story that kept you interested enough that you barely noticed – you wanted to know more about Blindfold, you wanted to know if things got better. And you wanted to know what the heck Sojobo was doing! It was more than enough to keep making me press forward!

I am really enjoying this series so far, and I can’t wait to read the next issue!!

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Off the Beaten Path (Insurgent #1 and #2)

I’ve been wanting to start reading some DC comics, because most everything I have so far is Marvel (except for Katana and Mind the Gap). But getting into some of Marvel’s main storylines is a little daunting…they’re all at least in their teens in terms of issue numbers, and me being OCD about wanting every single issue makes the thought of trying to track everything down a little scary. But then I heard about Insurgent – a miniseries by DC with an interesting premise. So I figured I’d check it out.

Insurgent 1

Insurgent 2

Hmm…well so much for that attempt. The concept behind Insurgent, that ordinary citizens had been turned into Super Soldier sleepers without their knowledge, was an interesting enough concept for me to want to try this series out. But, from what I’ve read so far, I’d have to debate a bit before I decide to pick up #3. Artwork in this series is so-so. Sometimes its a little confusing to figure out how to got from Panel 1 to Panel 2…it feels like there are panels missing in random spots. And while the concept is interesting, the story really isn’t executing all that well. Ex Super Soldier hunter who has adopted the daughter of his last kill (creepy much?) is being forced back into service to deal with the latest batch of Super Soldiers gone rogue. None of the characters are all that developed or unique. There’s really nothing outside of the story to keep you interested, and even that isn’t enough for me. So yeah, this will probably not go any further than this issue…oh well. It was worth a shot, right?

I’m gonna have to find another series to start getting into DC…

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Sometimes We Do Judge a Book By It’s Cover (X-Men Legacy #1 and #2)

So, originally, X-Men Legacy was not anywhere on my radar. I hadn’t heard anything about it, hadn’t really looked into it, and wasn’t really interested in picking up anything new. But then I kept passing the covers as I was picking up All New X-Men. Those covers had me floored. I wanted to know what was inside just because the covers were so interesting. So I finally got around to picking up a few to try them out!

X-Men Legacy 1

X-Men Legacy #1: Legion is yet another character that I have never heard of before (since when did Charles Xavier have a son?) I went ahead and looked up what I could on Wikipedia just to get a quick primer on him…so many of the X-Men have had such colorful lives, haven’t they?

The artwork within this issue is…interesting? It’s very stylized (I think that’s the right word…). But the story makes up for any weirdness in the artwork. You find Legion, who obviously hasn’t had much control over himself previously, trying and mostly succeeding to keep control of his army of personalities through the use of a mind-prison and the help of his guru, Merzah the Mystic. As a character, he’s endearing…you can’t help but root for a kid that just wants to do the right thing but can’t always trust himself (his mind prison isn’t totally without flaw…). Then, I guess, the series matches itself up with the current timeline in that Legion feels he father die and looses all control over himself. His powers on the rampage, his mind prison destroyed, we come to with his guru, who is almost dead in this sea of destruction that Legion created. And that’s where we end.

As Legion was loosing control, there was a flash over to some other X-Men, specifically a girl called Blindfold (who apparently has more of a history than I thought…must read up more on her later…) who either felt Xavier’s death or felt Legion loose control when Xavier died. Then she says something strange: “The old king is dead. Long live the new king.” What that could possibly mean is up in the air…but I could certainly make a few guesses!

Overall, I’m am very intrigued by this series…and I want to see where they take it.

X-Men Legacy 2

X-Men Legacy #2: Enter Creepy Eyeball Man. We don’t know who he is, or what he is for that matter, but he suddenly appears after Legion managed to drag himself away from all the crazy people in his mind and regain control of his body (though the scenes with those crazy people controlling his body were kind of funny…). Creepy Eyeball man explains he can “see” things and make things happen how he wants them to happen. He demonstrates this by flicking an icicle that, a few pages later, based on the sequence of events from that initial icicle, ends up saving them when a boulder is dropped on the head someone chasing them.

Creepy Eyeball Man then gets annoyed at Legion for not wanting to fight and tries to fly away, but not before Legion manages to catch a telepath in his mind and use it’s powers to read Creepy Eyeball Man and see a pair of twins who need help.

It was nice to see that Legion does have the ability to control his own mind…though it does take some extreme circumstances to bring him to the point that he takes action. The hope would be that, eventually, he’ll be able to take control of more and more of the personalities running rampant in his head. Though if this ends up becoming a “We’re tacking THIS personality this week” sort of thing, that wouldn’t be good either. We’ll have to see where it goes.

Overall, though, I really like the series, and I’m really excited for more!

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More of the Appetizer, Please! (Indestructible Hulk 4)

Indestructible Hulk 4

So I’m starting to wonder if this series is going to make a transition – the story at the beginning of every issue so far that almost always gets cut off in favor of another mission, will that ever become the main story in the series, or are we always going to get little bits of it only to have it interrupted?

I loved the beginning of this issue. As morbid as living on an old Atomic Testing town has to be, it was really interesting to see how Banner was handling it – with so much sarcasm. I love the changes to the town sign, so that now the town is Bannerville, Population: 1. We get a tiny glimpse of who Banner is working with and who has the blackmail material mentioned in the very first issue. We know they’re (probably) in New York. Still not sure who that could be…but maybe they’ll let us in on the secret sometime soon.

The Lab Techs have arrived! Unfortunately, we didn’t get to see much of them. What little we did see I enjoyed, and I really want more of them! Hopefully they will get more time in the coming issues. They are given a tiny piece of metal from Thor’s Hammer and are tasked with coming up with ways they can use it (Melinda has plenty of ideas, it seems…).

And then we’re dragged away from the good stuff and into the main storyline, involving crazy sea monsters and Hulk being shot out of a cannon (what was Maria Hill thinking?) along with R.O.B. (We knew he was coming back, right?) to attack Attuma, the leader of the crazy sea monsters. Anywho, even this was really short, leaving us with a cliffhanger where Hulk is being dragged into the depths of the ocean. Now, obviously, I want to know how he gets out of this. We all know he will somehow get out of this.

Overall, the single mission stories have not been my favorite format for this series. I’m kind of hoping we get an overarching story at some point soon, so that maybe some of the amazing tidbits we get at the beginning of each issue gets a little more time to develop!

Adding and updating my list of questions, because I’ve been getting a lot of good info from people, or at least looking some stuff up!

Plots to Find in Older Comics:

  • Scarlet Witch Depowering Mutants, War Against Phoenix Force – High Priority. This was mentioned in Hulk #1, but became much bigger when it came to All New X-Men. I’m going to need to find this info sometime soon! **House of M series (Thanks SM!!) and Avengers Vs. X-Men series**
  • What’s up with the numbered Colins of A.I.M? – Medium Priority. They seem to be spanning a few different series…
  • Who is this new Nick Fury? – Medium Priority. If he’s going to be a major character in Secret Avengers, I kind of want to know who he is… **Can be found in the Battle Scars series** Thanks thegothamrogue!
  • Previous Team for Hawkeye and Black Widow – Medium Priority. I think it might be the last series of Secret Avengers, and I wonder if something that happened there will be the reason they joined here.
  • What happened to Green Goblin that made people so surprised to see him again? – Low Priority – fully out of curiosity.
  • A.I.M.’s history – Low Priority – who they are, where they came from, etc.
  • Jean Grey’s history – Low Priority – This is something I should just Wikipedia, so I know what some of these random panels are referencing. – **Looked this up on Wikipedia. No need for an explanation**
  • What happened to the original Nick Fury? – Low Priority. Just curious.
  • Incident where Kate took over for Hawkeye while he was a ninja – Low Priority. It would be fun to know, but certainly not necessary!
  • Shield Command Structure – Low Priority. We probably don’t need this for most of the stories, but it would be nice to know.
  • Who Else was in the Sinister Six? – Low Priority. Mentioned in Spiderman #1 and #3, but not necessary to know. Like always, just curious..
  • Hawkeye’s Past – Low Priority. This is totally out of my own curiosity. You don’t need to know this to understand what’s going in in Hawkeye. It’s mentioned briefly, but it’s really not expanded on much.
  • Tony’s first experience with Extremis – Low Priority. It’s not something that it that integral to the plot, so it’s more of a curiosity than anything else **Fourth Volume of Iron Man by Warren Ellis and Adi Granov (Thanks thegothamrogue!)**
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Introducing The New Gang (Avengers #5 and #6)

This is the last of the Avengers for a while! I’m finally caught up with all the series that I had a large backlog to get through!! Whew! Almost done with everything from the first week too, so hopefully I can start getting to new stuff in the next day or so!

Avengers 5

Avengers #5: Its starting to look like we’re going to be diving into the backstory of some of the new members of the Avengers over the next few comics. Though if they all come out like this, I’m not sure that I mind. This issue focused on Smasher, a character that I had absolutely no knowledge of prior to this, but I think I like her. It was a really cute story about a girl who loved the stars getting to go into space and become, initially, a subguardian, and then a superguardian. You also learned that she has some sort of legacy when it comes to superheros – her grandfather is somehow connected with Captain America (would anyone like to enlighten me as to how?)

In terms of the main storyline, there isn’t much. We see that Stark is working on translating what Adam (who his now calling himself Blackveil) is saying. The most interesting part was the very end, when they were trying to find out why the Empire was attacked, only to realize their attackers were not trying to invade. They were running from someone…no, that’s not ominous at all! Definitely curious to see if this thread gets picked up and where it might lead.

Avengers 6

 

Avengers #6: This issue focuses on Captain Universe and the woman who was taken as host, Tamara Devoux. Honestly, though, that wasn’t the interesting part of the issue. While it was nice to learn exactly what she was, and parts of the reason why the Universe decided to take her as a host (going into Light, both of them dying – anyone else seeing New Avengers connections to that statement?), it felt a little flat, and I was really reading through that to get to the other parts of the issue.

The little side-story involved Ock/Spiderman taking food from Sunspot and/or Cannon Ball (I’m not quite sure which one is which at the moment…they tend to travel as a pair…). There’s a bit of an argument, where Ock doesn’t seem to be even remotely trying act like Peter, and then we head out to Stark, who is still working with Adam/Blackveil, trying to get a translation program down so they can understand him. But he doesn’t seem to be having any luck. They are then joined by Captain Universe, who can not only understand Adam/Blackveil, but can speak back to him. She shows Stark where he went wrong with his translation, then somehow makes it so that Adam (who’s actually been calling himself Nightmask all this time…) can speak in English. I’m not sure I like Captain Universe all that much in terms of storytelling…she just seems to jump in and fix things without any real explanation…just a snap of fingers or a few choice words, and everything is okay….like a perpetual Deux Ex Machina character.

Anywho, Adam/Nightmask’s first words to the group are ominous enough – there is a “White Event” that is coming – but at the same time, the sky changes colors, and there is something streaking toward earth. Oh yes…very ominous!

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The Grass is Always Greener On The Other Side (Uncanny X-Men #1)

So, I picked up Uncanny X-Men because SM mentioned that it would be related to All New X-Men (a fact reiterated by many of you on here as well!) and I was curious to see how they would end up tying together. I’m kind of glad I didn’t have to wait long to figure that one out…

Uncanny X-Men 1

Okay, this was a really good opening issue! Start off with a mystery figure in a super-secret SHIELD interrogation room, one whose face you do not see. This mystery figure proceeds to tell Maria Hill about Scott Summers, what he’s doing, why this is something they have to be concerned about, and exactly how they need to go about stopping him.

Art-wise, this wasn’t bad. I can’t say it was my favorite in terms of art work (some of the action scenes looked a little…off?) but it was good enough to not worry about it too much. I don’t know if this is a good thing or not…

This was a wonderful work of storytelling, mixing the conversation and exposition of mystery man with the action that this new team of X-Men is going through when they show us the fight in San Diego. The exposition wasn’t too much, and it was all interesting and informative (especially if you haven’t read All New X-Men). The fight was interesting (though…Sentinels? Anyone care to explain what they are? And why they are such a big deal?) and the two blended together very well to give you a good idea of what’s going on and what you need to know.

Now, one question that I’m sure I’m not the only one asking…what’s with the sudden costume change? I mean, it is a new title, yes, so they can certainly make new costumes…but if this is supposed to be tied in with All New X-Men, does that mean we’re going to see these costumes over there as well? Or are these just for this series (which would be really weird…) They’re old costumes were fine…so what’s the need to change?

And wow, that ending. If you don’t want to know any more, you might want to stop here (and I don’t even know why you’re reading my posts…I tend to be pretty spoiler-ific…). Because I can’t NOT talk about this…

The mystery man was Magneto, who is rather angry with Scott for killing Xavier and taking away his powers (though, if All New X-Men #3 holds water here, I’d say it’s the latter that’s really getting to him.). All I can think is how interesting this is going to get – Cyclops has a mole on his team. A rather big mole, who is not at all happy with him.

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