Life kind of got a little crazy (in a great way) for me in the past couple of weeks and I got a little behind on my reading. I’m going the way of mini reviews once again, to catch up with everything I’ve missed before June 9th’s releases.
Spoilers for: Second Coming, Fantastic Four, Thor and the Warriors Four, Rescue, Dazzler, Thor, Hawkeye & Mockingbird, Secret Avengers, Avengers Prime
X-Force #27 (Second Coming, Chapter 9) – Holy. Crap. Mike Choi and Sonia Oback are my favorite Marvel art team right now, and their ten pages of nothing but action proves just why that is. The first half of this book is nothing but panels of various action sequences as the X-Men fight off the Nimrods, and words aren’t needed. Every bit of action, every bit of emotion, every image from the mutants kicking ass to the wounded and/or dead after the battle…it all packs a punch most artists only dream of. In a way, the amazing art detracts from the story a little — but only a little, if only because my mind was blown by the art that I barely soaked in what was going on. It took me a second and third (and fourth, fifth, sixth…) re-read for everything to sink in. Cyclops comes off as an incredibly cold, calculating person throughout this entire ordeal, but I think the moment he tells Emma he just sent X-Force off to their deaths brings it all back to perspective. He’s doing what he believes is right for the mutant race, even if that means killing his own son to save them. Holy crap, guys. Just…never did I dream Second Coming would be this epic. Story: 5/5, Art: 5/5
Second Coming Revelations: Blind Science – I was really looking forward to this, since my love for the X-Club has grown after seeing bits and pieces of them in the main X-Books. My main problem with this was the writing — there was a solid story there, but it was buried under arguments for and against science, attempts at emotion, attempts at bonding, a hell of a lot of stuttering (seriously, what was up with that?), Madison Jeffries acting like a five year old, and a plot that doesn’t hold up in the end. The only good thing about it was Dr. Nemesis cracking wise and being amazing as he always is. Story: 2/5, Art: 3/5
Fantastic Four #579 – There are still times where I feel the current FF arc goes completely over my head. The sheer number of characters being juggled is a bit much at times, but that moment at the very end, where it finally all comes together and we see Reed Richards preparing the kids they’ve kind of collected to be the future of humanity…it hits my sweet spot in a wayI will thank Hickman for forever. It makes me giddy, brings the FF back to their roots, puts the exploration and discovery back into the heart of the first family of the Marvel U. Story: 4/5, Art: 4/5
Thor and the Warriors Four #3 – I’ve made no secret of how much I love this series. Alex Zalben is doing something right here; it’s the perfect blend of adventure, heart and humor, something for everyone to enjoy whether you’re a kid or not. Loki’s plan is put into action in this issue, and it’s a reminder of how much Power Pack are still kids that they fall for his tricks so easily. I’m totally in love with this series, and will be horribly sad when it ends next month. Story: 5/5, Art: 5/5
Rescue – I’m still not sure exactly what I think of this one-shot focusing on Pepper Potts during the days before Siege. On one hand, it’s really nice to see something focusing on how she’s doing during the insanity, but at the same time, it seemed a bit superfluous. She’s scared, but she’s saved lives anyway, because she was doing the right thing…it’s a storyline that’s been told a million times over. It has heart, at least. Story: 3/5, Art: 4/5
Dazzler – Dazzler’s one of those characters I’ve never had much care for one way or another, but I got this on a whim and I was pleasantly surprised. There seemed to be a bit too much packed into it at first glance, but I really loved the dynamic between Ali and Lois, as well as Ali going to the X-Men for help despite Lois having helped during the entire Necrosha mess. Prolonged action sequences aside, this was a really nice read. Story: 4/5, Art: 5/5
Thor #610 – Though Siege ended with a whimper, it’s got me reading Thor on a regular basis, so I guess Marvel got one thing they wanted out of it. I’m still feeling out Thor, and right now my main reactions to the series is whether I like an issue or not, and I enjoyed this one. Seeing the aftermath of Siege on Asgard and getting to know the characters and their relationships is something I’m enjoying. Story: 4/5, Art: 5/5
Hawkeye & Mockingbird #1 – I love this pair. Hawkeye’s one of my favorites, making Mockingbird one of my favorites by proxy, and it’s about time they were back together. This issue is solid, reintroducing the pair during a pretty great action sequence, as well as bringing back an old enemy in a plausible way. There were even some great Clint and Steve moments, which I fully appreciated. Story: 5/5, Art: 5/5
Secret Avengers #1 – Holy badasses! Brubaker kicks things off in Secret Avengers with a bang, diving right into the action and intrigue but still leaving enough of an emotional aspect to keep things from seeming too over the top. I really enjoyed this, and will definitely be reading on a regular basis. Having Deodato on art doesn’t hurt, either. Story: 5/5, Art: 5/5
Avengers Prime #1 – Ever since it was announced, I’ve been anticipating this series. I love that the big three are back together again, but I love the fact that they have to figure out how they work together all over again. I especially love finally getting to see Steve and Tony get angry and go at it, as well as Thor tiring of their arguments. Enchantress showing up to throw a plotline in there was a bit unexpected, but it gave us Steve kicking goblin ass, so I can’t really complain too much. Story: 4/5, Art: 4/5
I, Zombie #2 – I had high hopes for this series after the first issue, and I’m so glad the second lived up to them. Chris Roberson sets up this world in such a way that it seems novel and modern, having supernatural creatures living among us. He also begins to inject a plot in this issue, having left the first one to introduce Gwen and the world. This is easily becoming one of my favorite new series.