X-Men comics of February 24 2016
Follow me on Twitter (@XMenXPert). The weather today is awful. I got soaked through my winter jacket. The sidewalks consist of giant puddles. I hate when snow melts more than when it falls. Anyway, here’s some comics.
All-New X-Men #5, by Dennis Hopeless, Mark Bagley, Andrew Hennessy and Nolan Woodard. Angel is worried about Laura, who’s been hurt really badly, to the point where she should be dead. Beast is walking down the street, and walks right into Blob’s fist. Idie is over at Notre Dame, demanding a conversation with Jesus. Scott buys a soccer ball, and drops it and it bounces into a dark alley, where someone’s waiting for him. Before we can find out who, Blob and Beast smash through the wall. At a shoe store, Bobby is having trouble flirting with a cute boy, so Evan decides to help him out. Bobby decides to go get street crepes, because he is really bad at flirting. He and Evan, while eating crepes, talk about Bobby’s reluctance to talk about his sexuality. And then they come across the giant fight against the Blob. And we also return to Idie’s talk with god, where she talks about how her faith caused her to see herself as a demon and hate herself, and now she no longer hates herself, and is unsure how much of her faith to keep. So, the Bobby/Evan scene is the one that I’m sure most people will pay attention to. But honestly? I feel like Idie’s scene is the better and bigger one. Bobby talking about his sexuality was done OK. He talks about how everyone tries to tell him it’s no big deal, but that to him, it kinda is a big deal, and he doesn’t really want to put that on anyone else. It’s a reasonable scene, done well. But Idie wrestling with her faith, and wrestling with Christianity’s history of rejecting The Other, was a lot more powerful. Because here’s the thing: Idie’s African. She was raised under a very strict version of Christianity. I mean, just look at how a lot of African churches talk about homosexuality. Churches in the US might say homosexuality is a sin, but they don’t advocate killing them. She was raised to see mutants as demons. Her journey in Generation Hope was all about that (and Aaron dealt with it in WatXM, but nowhere near as subtly or cleverly as Gillen in Generation Hope). And it’s the sort of thing that does happen. This isn’t unique to Christianity, of course; shaming is common in most religions. Organized religion is primarily a tool for setting appropriate behaviour. I don’t say this as a criticism, I’m just saying that that’s the basis of organized religion. And the way it sets these standards is by setting other behaviours up as shameful. And that’s something a lot of people have struggled with. The idea that, say, having sexual desires makes them bad. It’s especially bad for women, of course. Just being a woman can be seen as a sign of being bad, in a lot of churches. Women are seen as dirty, as dishonest, as temptresses, as all sorts of bad things. So while Idie’s speech can most easily be compared to a gay Christian trying to decide if they can worship a god that hates them, that is by no means the only comparison to be made, and Idie’s speech can apply to a lot of different people. And it’s a great scene, and it does hearken back to her Generation Hope days in a really good way. So I liked the issue as a whole, but I liked Idie’s scene in particular. And, of course, the art remains fantastic. Mark Bagley. Can’t go wrong with him. Ever.
That’s the only X-title, but I’ll talk about other comics, too.
Angela: Queen of Hel #5, by Marguerite Bennett, Stephanie Hans, Kim Jacinto and Israel Silva. It starts off with quips and jokes and is great. One of the Disir has a head-canon about Leah/Hela, Sera laughs at Angela body shaming her for being starved in Hel. Lots of good stuff. (Also, “Let’s upset the status quo” is a fantastic line.) Then it transitions to an epic battle with Hela. And then Queen Angela starts giving out rulings. She pardons Hela, creates a new section of Hel for fallen Angels (to be called Elysium), frees Leah of the magic binding her to Hel (and Leah also takes Thori), and, of course, declares that Sera lives. And then she immediately gives up the crown, since she doesn’t want or need it any more. And then the sweetness comes. The ending of this issue really is so sweet. Romantic. It’s wonderful and makes me happy. There’s smooching! Jacinto and Silva do great work on the art, of course, but I do feel a bit sorry for them, because every few pages, Stephanie Hans just steals the show with an amazing, gorgeous splash page. Hans kills with the splash pages here. She’s amazing. This comic is fantastic. If you haven’t read this series, I definitely recommend checking out the TPB, because it’s really, really worth reading.
Patsy Walker, aka Hellcat! #3, by Kate Leth, Brittney Williams ad Megan Wilson. It starts with a brief explanation of Casiolena, an Asgardian sorceress who was involved in one of Patsy’s deaths. Yes, “one of.” Luckily, that death was brief. Meanwhile, Patsy is suspicious of her landlord and his hunky hunky son. Ian explains that all the building’s tenants move out quickly, and the landlord keeps the security deposits. Ian thinks it’s a scam. Patsy and Tom both think Federigo, the son, is sexy. Ian doesn’t want Patsy getting involved with him, though. That night, Patsy figures out the building has a bedbug infestation. And her mystical senses tell her they’re not natural. So who do you call about something unnatural? Steve! Dr. Strange, I mean. And then Patsy goes to fight bedbugs, and it’s exciting and gross. I love this comic. There’s really fun jokes, great characterization, adorable art. What’s not to love? This book is a delight, every single month.
Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #5, by Ryan North, Erica Henderson and Rico Renzi, is amazing. It’s ridiculous and awesome and involves the greatest callback ever to Squirrel Girl’s debut.
New Avengers #7, by Al Ewing, J. Cassara and Rachelle Rosenberg, is also great. It gets intense. It also includes White Tiger and Power Man arguing over whether gelatto in Rome counts as a date.
And Moon Girl this week was really sad! Poor Lunella, and poor Devil! It’s a great book. I definitely recommend it.