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Pull list for October 14 2015

October 13, 2015

I’m off tomorrow. So reviews as normal.

I’ll go to the store for: A-Force #5, by G. Willow Wilson, Marguerite Bennett and Jorge Molina; Ms. Marvel #19, by G. Willow Wilson and Adrian Alphona; New Avengers #1, by Al Ewing and Gerardo Sandoval; Phonogram The Immaterial Girl #3, by Kieron Gillen and Jamie McKelvie; Spider-Man 2099 #1, by Peter David and Will Sliney; The Wicked + The Divine #15, by Kieron Gillen and Stephanie Hans.

I’ll also review: Deadpool vs. Thanos #3, by Tim Seeley and Elmo Bondoc; Guardians of the Galaxy #1, by Brian Bendis and Valerio Schiti; Uncanny Avengers #1, by Gerry Duggan and Ryan Stegman; What If Infinity X-Men #1, by Joshua Williamson and Mike Norton.

So that’s 6 comics I’m picking up, and probably 6 reviews.

I’m most excited for Ms. Marvel, New Avengers and WicDiv. Ms. Marvel is obvious. I’m always excited for that one. Always. Plus, I checked out the preview for this issue, and it’s wonderful. Just amazing. New Avengers has a writer I love, and a cast I love, and a concept I love. And an artist I hate. Oh well. As I’ve said so often, it looks like it’ll be gloriously insane, keeping a Silver Age Avengers feel with modern characters. As for WicDiv, I’m more excited than usual. I love the series, so I’m always excited. But tomorrow’s issue is drawn by Stephanie Hans. And you know how much I adore Hans. Her art is just so gorgeous. I’m going to see if my shop has her variant cover, because oh man, it is beautiful. McKelvie’s cover is great, but Hans’ cover is like looking at pure happiness. I’m not sure how worried I should be about the issue, though. These spotlight issues during this arc have been pretty heavy. Kate Brown’s issue about Baal’s grief and anger. Tula Lotay’s Tara issue was just . . . just the most heartwrenching issue of the series. Even more than #11. And then the Wodan issue was dark. So I’m not sure how worried I should be for Amaterasu. She’s a total sweetheart, I’d hate to see her suffer, but this is Kieron Gillen we’re talking about here. Anyway, Stephanie Hans on art!

So Marvel Studios has pushed back the Captain Marvel movie again, this time to make way for Ant-Man and the Wasp. Because if there’s one thing the MCU needed, it was yet another movie with a male lead. Fuck you, Marvel Studios. This is bullshit. Yeah yeah, we get a woman’s name in the title this time, hurrah, but she’s still only getting second billing. The woman is still an adjunct to the man. And beyond that, it’s the Wasp. Sure, she’s cool, but her power is shrinking. Captain Marvel is a powerhouse who can go toe-to-toe with Thor or trade blows with the Hulk. The Wasp could acquit herself well against a bee. Yippee. One can throw tanks, the other can make ants do tricks. So, naturally, it’s the female powerhouse who gets pushed back. Again.

Also, every single claim that’s been made about Marvel needing to “find time” to do certain movies is now exposed as complete and utter horseshit. They’ve now bumped back Captain Marvel twice in order to fit in movies that weren’t in their original plans. So they’re more than capable of re-arranging their plans when it involves fitting in more white guys. Apparently, it’s just the female characters where Marvel has their hands tied. “Well, you know, we’d love to make a movie with a female lead, but we have our plan and we have to be careful and we just can’t find the room for- Oh hey, let’s stick a white dude in there!” What next, delay Captain Marvel again for GotG 3? Bump it for a Hawkeye movie? Gonna try to fit Speedball in there? How many more white guys is Marvel Studios going to try to push in before we get Captain Marvel?

I’ve seen some people being optimistic by saying, “Well, at least Marvel has more time to make sure Captain Marvel is great!” You know what else would make Captain Marvel great? Actually getting made. Why is it only the female-led movie where people show concern about whether it’ll get enough time? Ant-Man and the Wasp only has a couple years, but no one seems to wonder if that’ll be enough time for it. But Captain Marvel? Oh, it can’t be rushed!

One more delay and I’m just going to boycott Marvel Studios. I am so pissed off about this.

So hey! Kickstarter projects I’m backing! For graphic novels, there’s Anima, which looks like it has a really weird art style, but looks pretty fun;  it’s sitting at 4500 Euros, out of nearly 45 000 Euros needed, with over a month left to go. Henchmen, which is a comic about, um, henchmen. It’s pretty much already funded. And Super! Volume 2, which seems like a pretty standard superhero comic, but the first volume was apparently very well-received, so hey, why not. Then for novels, there’s The Last Fairy Tale, a fantasy novel that has a gorgeous cover. It seems like an interesting novel, but really, the cover got me. At least, I’m assuming the image in the video is going to be the cover. Anyway, it needs another $2500 over the next couple weeks, but I figure it’ll make it. The Fettered Flame, the second book in a fantasy trilogy. It promises diversity and gender themes, which are things I like to see. So I figured I’d support it. It needs almost $5000 more by the end of the month, so I’m not sure it’ll make it. We’ll see. And Brilliant Shadows, a fantasy novel that’s already funded.

And one more project I’m backing: A table-top RPG, Masks. I haven’t actually done any role-playing since I was in my early 20s, and I barely did any of it in the first place. But this one’s got a neat concept. The idea is that the players take the role of a group of young heroes. The comparisons they make are to Teen Titans, Young Justice, Young Avengers and X-Men. That sounds really cool. Honestly, part of the reason I’ve decided to support it is related to my shitty superhero story. I figure I might get some ideas from the game that could inspire things in my shitty story. I doubt I’ll ever actually get to play the game, though, which is kind of a shame, because it probably would be a lot of fun. But hey, you never know. Maybe some day. In the meantime, if you’re into RP-ing, maybe check the game out. It’s already fully-funded – $50 000 out of $4000 needed. But $10 for a PDF of the game, or $30 for a paperback copy, isn’t a bad price for a cool new game.

Also, the new episode of My Little Pony was pretty great. It was a musical episode, and the songs were all good. Normally, when they do musical episodes, they’ve got a couple great songs and a couple weak ones. This one, they were all solid. It was about the younger ponies, and it was great. One hell of an ending. It’s interesting the way this show continues to move forward. A lot of kids’ shows never really make major changes. Even this show had a certain inertia to it. But starting with the third season, they’ve moved away from that, and have been routinely shaking things up in pretty noteworthy ways. It’s nice to see.

I finished Heir of the Sun, by Jennifer Allis Provost. Here’s my review from Goodreads:

This was pretty good. It’s a reasonably interesting fantasy setting – different enough from a standard fantasy setting to be interesting. The plot is decent. The characters could mostly use a little more depth. They have motivations beyond romance, but those motivations are completely overshadowed by their romantic motivations. This book is very, very heavy on romance. There are two primary couples. There’s a warrior and a priestess, and those two have virtually no ambitions beyond being together. It makes them a little too shallow. The other couple is a slave-turned-rebel leader and a king. The king, once again, has little motivation beyond loving the woman. But what’s especially bad is what’s done with the rebel leader. She starts off motivated by a mix of revenge and protectiveness. But once she meets the king, that largely falls by the wayside, in favour of focusing on their relationship. What makes it worse is that her friendship with a fellow ex-slave, which was the highlight of the early part of the story, is pushed hard to the side. Early on, there seem to be implications that the two might be lovers, but as soon as the king starts trying to woo her, her close friend just disappears into the background. And the rebel’s mission to free other slaves gets touched on a lot less at that point, and is mostly used as a reason the king loves her.

I feel like the romance ended up being a little too prominent. There needed to be more balance between the romance and everything else.

Also, there were still way too many typos. It’s a minor thing, but they always distract me.

On the whole, this is a pretty good book. Fans of romantic fantasy will enjoy it. People who prefer their fantasy a little more plot-heavy won’t be as impressed.

I do think it would’ve been nice if it was made clear that the two women were lovers. But even more important, we should’ve seen them continuing to be close even as the one was being woo’d by the king. Just regularly put in scenes of the two together, talking about something other than the king. Have the rebel leader, when with the king, talk often about her friend. Things like that. Oh well. Next up, I’ll read a graphic novel – I’ve got a few options – and then I’ll try to read one or two superhero novels.

My schedule for the week: 7-11 Thursday, 1-6 Friday, 6-11 Saturday, 6-11 Sunday, 9:30-3 Tuesday. So, next pull list post on Tuesday, and I’ll have regular posts Monday and Tuesday.

And that’s all for this week.

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