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X-Men comics for January 21 2015

January 21, 2015

New comics! Woot!

All-New X-Men #35, by Brian Bendis and Mahmud Asrar. The X-Men from both universes are battling in Latveria. Ultimate Jean gets hurt, and Spider-Man makes a rush for Doom. Cut back a few hours, to the Jeans using Cerebro to find Teen Jean’s team. They also find the girl who made the portal that brought them to the Ultimate Universe. In Latveria, Doom wants to force Beast to help him find the secrets to the multiverse. In Canada, Laura’s pissed off about visiting a world that’s even worse than her own, and wants to visit a world that’s better, a world to aspire to. The Jeans show up with the Ultimate X-Men, where there’s some rather amusing stuff about Warren being alive, since Ultimate Warren is dead. Ultimate Kitty rambles hilariously. Then, it’s down to Atlanta, for Iceman. Then, to Latveria. This is a great issue. There’s a lot of great character stuff done, a lot of it also really funny. The two Icemans have a funny scene together, and the scene where the Ultimate X-Men see Warren is really funny, if only for Kitty not being able to stop making things worse. Laura getting pissed off at how few good worlds there are raises an interesting point. It’s true that worlds where things are better are very rare to see. It’s almost always much, much worse. It might be interesting seeing a world that, while not utopian, is still just a little better off than the 616. Though, of course, the reason for bad worlds is it’s a lot easier to create conflict in it. Oh well. Bendis does a great job with this issue. Asrar’s art is solid. It’s not art that’ll sell more copies or anything, but it’s good art. This series continues to be great.

All-New X-Factor #20, by Peter David and Carmine Di Giandomenico. The final issue. Doug wants to make sure things are still cool between him and Warlock. Warlock punches him, and things are fine. Back at Serval, Snow goes in to meet with Tiberius Stone from Alchemax, where he runs into Miguel. The two know each other. Back on the jet, Lorna asks Warlock to talk to Danger. Danger’s feeling bad about not having a soul, and figures Warlock is the best one to talk to her. Back at Serval, Miguel wants to know what Snow’s doing. Harry comes from 2099, and came with a friend. The guy he seemingly killed last issue. He didn’t kill him, he actually sent him back to 2099 . . . which isn’t the same any more, so Snow may have killed his friend after all, by accident. Snow says he came back in time to take down Alchemax, by recruiting every hero in the world. A good finale. Some interesting stuff. It touches on events in the upcoming Spider-Man 2099 arc, and spoils that Miguel will definitely be returning to the present at the end of it, but no biggie. The reveal of Snow as coming from the future to destroy Alchemax in the past is interesting, but not really a game-changer for me. There’s some good dialogue, some solid humour and interesting character stuff. I dislike the art. This whole series has felt pretty middling to me. It seldom really grabbed me, the way the previous X-Factor did. Ah, well.

Wolverines #3, by Charles Soule and Juan Doe. We start with Fantomelle and her wolf, Culpepper, trying to steal Punisher’s shirt while he sleeps. Fantomelle uses an illusion to make him think he’s on fire, and he puts on night vision to check. So now it’s fight time, and during the fight, she finds a spare shirt. Then she brings it to the guy who hired her to steal it, who plans on auctioning it. As he leaves, he mentions standing offers for any of Captain America’s shields, or one of Luke Cage’s tiaras, preferably paired with an Iron Fist bandana. Another offer for a Goblin Glider, which Fantomelle turns down, because she refuses to be associated with weapons. Then she has a bit of a fight with her boyfriend, who can apparently get money from nowhere. They’re both products of Paradise. This issue’s just introducing Fantomelle. She’s OK, I guess. A bit bland, really. She doesn’t have the same charm Fantomex does, which I suppose is meant to differentiate her from him. But as a result, she’s just not as fun and enjoyable as he is. We’ll have to wait and see if she gets more interesting. But her debut didn’t do much for me.

Magneto #14, by Cullen Bunn and Gabriel Walta. Well, we’re back to the heavy, dramatic narration from Magneto. Meh. Magneto’s on Genosha, looking after the mutants still there, when SHIELD shows up. He takes some MGH to fight them, and thinks back to when the Sentinels destroyed Genosha, and he couldn’t stop them. After the wrecked his home, he was left badly injured, not able to walk. He had to use his power to stab metal braces into his legs so he could control them. He walked out, and some other mutants took him to a bunker to survive the continuing attacks. Back in the present, he attacks the SHIELD team. I still can’t get into this series. I find it too heavy. Bunn has seldom impressed me as a writer – he’s strictly middle-of-the-deck. I also don’t like Walta’s art at all. Just not a style I enjoy. So, meh.

Deadpool’s Art of War #4, by Peter David and Scott Koblish. Loki’s trying to rally his forces, but Giganto marches towards them. Other heroes are also beating up his forces. Meanwhile, Deadpool’s in a bit of a killing rage. Captain America calms him for about two panels, then he freaks out again, so Spider-Man decks him. Later, he wakes up and fights the Executioner. Thor saves him. Then the heroes all gather for a big battle against Loki’s forces. Thor and Loki meet in a duel, and Loki gets the advantage with a sword. Deadpool saves Thor this time. An OK finale to an OK mini. There was some decent humour, and some decent fight scenes. And it tried to make the Art of War a little more accessible. I actually read that book when I was a teenager. I didn’t really understand it. I’m not a smart person. Actually, I’m thick as a post. So, I didn’t really get the Art of War. I, uh, kinda still don’t, even after this mini. I’m very stupid. The art was pretty OK, but again, not my style, really.

There’s the X-Men, now a few non-X-Men.

Bucky Barnes Winter Soldier #4, by Ales Kot and Langdon Foss (with the last few pages by Marco Rudy). Bucky and Ventolin keep doin’ it. Meanwhile, Quake is talking to an older version of Bucky. He comes from 200 years in the future, a world where the fighting’s stopped. Cut to him relaxing, listening to robot music. He heads off to take a look at multiversal versions of himself and Ventolin, all lovers. Except when he comes across 616, where he’s dead. Old Bucky’s forced to come out of retirement to save 616 Bucky. This issue is a bit of a let-down. The series, so far, has been so frigging weird. This issue’s a lot more straightforward. And I may read too many comics, given I think of “older alternate reality version of character trying to save younger version” as straightforward. Anyway, this issue’s mostly about Old Bucky’s world, and it’s very nice and peaceful, but it’s also kinda boring, because he doesn’t really talk to anyone. I think the art is what let me down the most. The weirdness of this series was largely a result of Rudy’s art, with its bizarre layouts and all that. Foss’ art is a lot softer, a lot more cartoonish. It’s not that it’s bad art. It’s that it is such a massive departure from Rudy’s style, and it’s a lot less interesting. The final pages, by Rudy, are the highlight of the issue.

Spider-Woman #3, by Dennis Hopeless and Greg Land. Silk, in the radioactive wasteland world, spins herself a web suit so she can look for the fallout shelter she spent so many years in. On Loomworld, Spider-Woman is having trouble dealing with Morlun. She tells him she’s sick. She finds a door guarded by Mary Jane, who Jess punches out. Then she sneaks through the base, until she finds the Great Web, and the Weaver, who gives her a pair of scrolls, which she teleports to Spider-Man. Meh issue. It’s basically just a repeated of stuff we already saw in ASM #12, combined with Greg Land continuing to insist on exclusively using recycled faces, which mean that character will actually sometimes manage to look a little different from one frigging panel to the next, because Greg Land is a damned hack and should not be allowed to make comics any more. Seriously, I find it almost impossible to enjoy any book Greg Land draws, because seeing the exact same faces traced over and over and over is so distracting.

Superior Iron Man #4, by Tom Taylor and Yildiray Cinar. Tony Stark goes on a morning talk show to talk about a new security system he’s implemented in San Francisco. A bunch of drones that will watch all Extremis users, all the time. Daredevil realizes something else Stark has done. Stark is asked about the people who can’t afford Extremis, and he says it gives them something to work for. The “trickle-up effect,” he calls it. Then he leaves to deal with a situation at his home, where SHIELD is there for Teen Abomination. Hill wants to talk to Stark, to express her concern for what he’s been doing. He tells her to leave, without Teen Abomination. He talks to Teen Abomination about plans to study and help him, then tells him to leave so he can talk to Daredevil. Meh. So very meh. Stark is still just too plain unsympathetic to work as a protagonist. Also, we don’t really know his motivation. Is it greed? Is it power? Does he really think he’s making the world a better place? Why is he doing what he’s doing? It may seem like keeping it a mystery just heightens the tension and makes you keep reading to find out, but that doesn’t work for a protagonist, even a villain protagonist. Maybe especially a villain protagonist. We don’t need to know the end goal, but we need to know the general motivation. Otherwise, the character just comes across as evil for the sake of being evil. So this series still doesn’t really work.

Legendary Star-Lord #8, by Sam Humphries and Freddie Williams. Peter and Kitty are hanging out in bed, feeling really really awkward. He asked her to stay in space with him, and she’s not really certain about it. She thinks he might be a bit too irresponsible for that big a step. He’s a thief, and she can’t see herself with someone like that. They go to Spartax, and go to an orphanage. Everyone there is angry at him for not visiting in months. Kitty throws some food at him, and a food fight starts up. Later, the woman who runs it tells Kitty he funds a bunch of orphanages, which makes her change her view of him a bit. Not a bad issue. The Peter/Kitty relationship is still cute. Really, Kitty’s presence is the only reason I talk about this comic.

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From → 2015

3 Comments
  1. Hamburger Time permalink

    Huh, they explained how Magneto survived Cassandra’s attack? That’s actually pretty cool. That was one of the few things left hanging from Morrison’s run, as we clearly saw him in a building that got hit. Whether you think he was Xorn or not, it’s still never been revealed how he survived.

  2. In such a big week, I somehow forgot to pick up All New X-Factor 20 – something I’ll have to rectify tomorrow even if it didn’t really finish everything that Peter David obviously wanted to explore further.

    I liked Fantomelle in Wolverines 3 and thought it was a good introduction, and I like the telepathic fox connection, but I do agree that she’s not that deep of a character yet.

    The interactions between the two Icemen and the comments about them is probably the funniest part of All New X-Men 25, and that’s saying a lot when there were as many amusing moments as there were. Mix in some genuinely good dramatic scenes and some great action and you have a good X-Men comic. Probably the best X-men comic of the week.

    Also, the build up in Star Lord for Black Vortex is getting intense. I’m actually excited for this event now. Not to mention it crosses over the X-Men, Guardians of the Galaxy and Captain Marvel.

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