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!
This week (and a half) was insane! I don’t know if any of you kept count, but that was a grand total of 51 separate comics in a single week. To say that I went overboard would be an understatement. I went to a comic shop (though not the same comic shop) every day for seven days straight, and then, almost as a distraction so I wouldn’t keep buying comics every day, started this blog! I don’t think this is a week I can repeat again (or I’ll go bankrupt rather quickly). So I’ve imposed some limits on myself in terms of how many comics I can buy at once, and when I can buy them (I don’t need to be going to the comic store EVERY day). Hopefully that’ll keep the sheer number of comics down, and also the number of summary/opinion posts will go down as well. That’s the hope at least. Those rules just went into affect today, so unfortunately, there is quite a stack of comics to read this coming week. Maybe the slowdown will start next week…
Easiest to Pick Up Without Prior Knowledge: Mind the Gap #1– I’m not quite sure if this category is ever going to be fair for anything from Marvel or DC, because a stand alone storyline is ALWAYS going to be the easiest thing to pick up, especially the first issue in a series. But what can you do? Mind the Gap is still one of my favorites from this week – beautifully drawn with a storyline that will hook you before you know what’s happening, it’s one I would recommend to anyone, especially if you’re looking for a good comic outside of the typical superhero story. There is nothing you need to know prior to picking up this issue, though the author has warned that you do have to pay very careful attention to everything. At the very end of this issue, he called attention to all of the clocks in the first five pages or so, making sure that you knew exactly what the timeline of events were. If that happened in the first book, you know there are going to be lots of little hints to pick up all over the story.
Most Likely to Hold Your Attention: Superior Spider-Man #3 – This issue is my favorite in the series so far. It’s a good blend of a lot of different little storylines done well enough that it keeps your interest and attention all the way through the issue. Between the Spider-Signal at the beginning, Charlie’s subtle hints that she knows something is wrong, the trip through Doc Ock’s memories, and the actual fight with Vulture, it was a lot of story packed into a single comic, but nothing felt like it was rushed or ignored. I truly enjoyed this one!
Most Surprising Issue: X-Men Legacy #1 – I should clarify here: When I say “Most Surprising Issue”, I mean an issue that I never intended to pick up that I was really pleased with. I never had any plans to pick up this series, but the cover art persuaded me otherwise. I am so glad the cover artist did what he did, because I would have missed out on this series without it! It’s been an awesome, fun story so far, and I’m excited to see where they take it!
Most Surprising Ending: New Avengers #3 – Anyone who says they saw this ending coming is lying. Really…it’s no biggie. We’re just going to erase Captain America’s memories. Nothing to see here…
Most Repetitive: Iron Man #4 – This is the third issue that essentially followed the same formula in its story. It was getting a little old by that point. I’m glad they changed it up in the issue after this one, but I kind of wish the writers had come up with a couple of different ways to tell the different Extremis stories.
Least Likely to Hold Your Attention: Katana #1 – I was really sad to have to pick this one, but I was debating between this and Fearless Defenders #1, and honestly, the slower pace on this one just pushed it a little further down. I really wanted to like this story, I really did. But it was set at a snail’s pace with a character that wasn’t all that interesting or endearing, and it never got around to explaining itself. I found myself on the other side, disappointed that I’d pushed myself through the entire story.
Most Wikipedia Searches Required: All New X-Men #6 – Most of the All New X-Men series is guilty of this, but this specific issue left me with so many questions (if you saw my post about it, it really was just a list of questions!) that, if someone didn’t either know all of this ahead of time or didn’t have people like all of you to answer questions, Wikipedia would have needed to be consulted! Not to say that not knowing this information detracted from the story. Its just there were so many little things that I wanted to know by the end of it.
Most Confusing: New Avengers #1 – The difference I see with this category and the category above is that no amount of Wikipedia searching (short of looking up the next few issues on Wikipedia) would have helped to explain this issue! We were given a glimpse at a really complex idea and story-arc with absolutely no knowledge of what was going on (Black Panther was kind of in a similar situation) and just had to go with it. It was a good issue, but they needed the entire second issue to explain after what we witnessed in this issue, which I think is evidence of how confusing this was!
Worst Pick: Savage Wolverine #1 – I really was excited to see a Wolverine story…and then I read the first few pages. The storytelling was sub par. The one female character was meant for nothing more than to be eye-candy. Too much narration. I was happy to put this one down…and hide it in the back of my box. I’m pretty sure I don’t want to see it again.
Personal Favorite: Hawkeye #6 – If you’ve read through any of my posts on Hawkeye, you know I love this series so much! I mean, seriously, I’m tempted to just put *Cue Choir Singing Hallelujah* as the opinion of each of these issues. I don’t think a single one has disappointed me yet, but #6 is a special favorite of mine. I love how everything fits together and ties together by the end of the issue, even with the relative chaos of the beginning. That and Dog Cops…I still giggle at the thought of Dog Cops 🙂
Questions and Answers From This Week (a.k.a Wikipedia is our FRIEND):
Characters with Unknown Backgrounds –
- New Nick Fury (son) vs. Old Nick Fury (father): More information on these characters can be found in the Battle Scars series. There’s also a little blurb about it here.
- Hawkeye’s Past: There are WAY too many comics you’d have to go through to get everything, but most of the information can be found here.
- Jean Grey’s Past: Also WAY too many comics. Even on Wikipedia, it’s a long story.
- Angel’s Past, and the Metal Wings: thegothamrogue gave a partial synopsis of it here (along with many other questions). The rest of the information can be found on Wikipedia.
- Raven = Mystique? : Answer also given by thegothamrogue here. Both names are used almost interchangeably on Wikipedia.
- Frenzy’s Past: Wikipedia
- Blindfold’s Past: Wikipedia
- Chamber’s Past: Wikipedia
Unknown Plotlines –
- Scarlet Witch Depowering Mutants – Can be found in the House of M series.
- War Against The Phoenix Force – Can be found in the Avengers Vs. X-Men series
- Hawkeye and Black Widow’s Former Team – Former Secret Avengers series
- Why are people so surprised to see Green Goblin again? – Might have something to do with this.
- A.I.M.’s History – Wikipedia
- When did Kate take over for Clint as Hawkeye, while he went to be a ninja? – There’s a little blurb of it from Clint’s Wikipedia Article, and more in Kate’s
- Who was in the Original Sinister Six – Wikipedia
- Stark’s first experience with Extremis – Can be found in the 4th volume of Iron Man written by Warren Ellis and Adi Granov – Wikipedia
- What is with the numbered Colins of A.I.M.?
Comic Issues Being Read This Week:
- Hawkeye #8 – SO EXCITED!!!
- Mind The Gap #2-#5 – Finally got my hands on #2 of this amazing comic, so I can read the few I’ve had sitting around.
- Uncanny X-Men #2 – I’m hoping the second issue is as good as the first…
- X-Men Legacy #6 – With the cliffhanger after the last issue, this one is going to go fast…
- Uncanny X-Force #1 – Features a largely female cast, and I’m still looking for a good series about female characters!
- Captain Marvel #9 & #10 – Ditto to the above, and I’ve heard this one is pretty good
- Thor: God of Thunder #1 – Just wanted to try this out
- Guardians of the Galaxy #0.1 – Also wanted to try this out
- Fantastic Four #1 – Another one that I want to try out
- FF #1 – Yes another one I want to try out
- Batman #0 – I’ve got a bunch of Batman issues waiting in the wings, but there are enough holes that this is the only one I can read so far…
- Avengers Vs X-Men – I know this isn’t a lot of people’s favorite series, but it’s referenced so much in this universe that I wanted to read it for myself.