X-Men comics of September 14 2016
All-New X-Men #13, by Dennis Hopeless, Mark Bagley, Andrew Hennessy and Nolan Woodard. Idie and Evan are taking Bobby to a club so he can learn to flirt. Bobby says he’s not good at that, and remembers a blind date he went on where a girl called him a poop tornado. In the club, Bobby’s first attempt to strike a conversation goes . . . less than well. “I like turtles.” He continues to do poorly, so Evan brings him onto the dance floor, and then kinda forgets why he brought Bobby onto the dance floor and just starts stealing the floor. Bobby gets miserable and wanders over to the bar, where a guy starts talking to him about straight friends being annoying. Idie and Evan have a quick conversation about the last arc. Bobby’s conversation with the cute guy is going well, which causes Bobby to panic, ice up and run out, where he crashes into another cute guy. Who tells his own embarrassing story to cheer Bobby up, then rushes off to find a friend who’s in trouble. The friend is a monster who starts rampaging. This issue’s good. It’s fun stuff. It’s nice seeing Bobby’s sexuality get explored, and it’s also nice that he’s terrible at flirting with guys. Idie and Evan are fun wingmen. There’s some fairly nice Inhuman stuff in the issue, too. But mostly, this is about Bobby dealing with being gay. Something that does deserve more focus. I don’t understand why Marvel hasn’t announced an Iceman solo, to be honest. Seems like a logical thing to do. His coming out got a lot of press, a solo would make sense. But, of course, that would mean doing a solo title with an openly LGBT lead, and Marvel’s weirdly reluctant to do that. As far as the art goes, it’s Bagley. So it looks great. Lots of cute boys. Lots of nice clothes, too. Idie’s dress looks great. I also really like Idie’s hair. You can never go wrong with Mark Bagley art, and if anyone says otherwise, you punch them right in their dirty lying mouth. Hennessy does a fantastic job on the inks, and Woodard’s colours are great. This is a great-looking comic. And a very fun issue.
Old Man Logan #11, by Jeff Lemire, Andrea Sorrentino and Marcelo Maiolo. Logan is facing down a whole lot of ninjas, and knows he can’t win by himself, so he frees Deathstrike. In the future, Logan and Maureen meet the leader of the Silent Order, and he pops his claws. Back in the present, Deathstrike is keeping count of her kills, because she’s that kind of person. Then Sohei cuts her open. Poor Deathstrike. So ill-used in this series. Anyway, Sohei and Logan fight through an awesome layout. There’s not a lot of story in this issue. But there is some pretty great action, and gorgeous art. The writing slips a little, but Sorrentino and Maiolo are still absolutely killing it with the art. Lots of cool, clever layouts, and some stunning panels. As always, the art is the real draw of the book, because it really is spectacular.
Deadpool #18, by Gerry Duggan, Mike Hawthorne, Brian Level, Terry Pallot, Jordie Bellaire and Rachelle Rosenberg. It opens with Deadpool and Shiklah arguing about her sleeping around. Shiklah’s definitely pansexual, as she mentions men, women, a demon and a tentacle monster. So then, they fight. Once she’s finished kicking his ass, she invites him back to bed. He declines, but she says it’s never the end. He feels sorry for himself and returns to the Unity Squad HQ that Ultron trashed. He finds Rogue collecting some things – she mentions that X-Men and Avengers get used to picking through rubble for their stuff. It’s true. The X-Mansion gets destroyed constantly, and so did Avengers Mansion before they moved into a tower . . . that also got wrecked regularly. He takes her to see Ellie (through a sniper scope), which is sweet. The stuff between Deadpool and Rogue is actually really good. I enjoyed their interactions here. They have some nice banter, and a bit of an easy camaraderie. It’s nice to see. But, once again, the comic isn’t funny enough. There needs to be more jokes. Self-deprecating humour, given Deadpool’s mood, but humour nonetheless. Duggan’s run is just too lacking in jokes. There were some during the fight with Shiklah, but they were pretty weak. We’ll see if this is the end of that marriage. The 2099 issues have hinted at Bad Things between them. I suppose it is nice that Shiklah is pansexual, at least.
Uncanny Avengers #14, by Gerry Duggan, Ryan Stegman and Richard Isanove. Rogue, Cable, Shaw and Toad attack a US Army base that was experimenting with Terrigen gas, and steal their research. Captain Steverica catches them in the act, and says they’ll face justice. So Cable shoots Shaw, to power him up, and the fight starts. Rogue initially stays out of it, but once Cable has Steve down, Rogue calls an end to the fight. She keeps Steve held down while Cable, Shaw and Toad escape. Cap says the mutants are off the team, and also kicks Deadpool off the team for lying about not knowing where the mutants were. He declares an end to the Unity Squad. The stuff with the mutants looking for a Terrigen cure is fairly interesting. This still isn’t a series I particularly care about, though.
And I may as well mention that Frenzy was in All-New Inhumans #11. A group of mutants are on a raft in the middle of the Mediterranean, with a Terrigen cloud getting closer. Frenzy shows up in with a small plane to save as many as she can, but her plane’s not big enough. Luckily, Crystal and her ship arrive to take them all to safety. Yay Frenzy! She says the Inhumans need to deal with the cloud, or mutants will keep dying. It’s cool. I like Frenzy, and I like seeing her still being heroic.
That’s the X-titled (and related stuff), but here’s other comics.
Black Panther #6, by Ta-Nehisi Coates, Chris Sprouse, Karl Story and Laura Martin. It opens with a briefing on the rising turmoil in Wakanda. T’Challa notes that the rebels want democracy, and wishes he could sympathize with them. He does approve a strike against them, though. But the Midnight Angels and their army are ready. With an epic speech: “We have seen how the woman becomes the enslaved. Let us now show them how the enslaved becomes a legend.” Tetu and Zenzi show up to help fight off the Panther’s men, by hitting them with revelation. Meanwhile, T’Challa talks to Tony Stark, and insults him a bit. And we touch back in with Shuri in the Djalia. We also get a nice ret-retcon from T’Challa. A few years ago, it was revealed that T’Challa only joined the Avengers so he could spy on them. Here, he admits he only spied on them so he could join them. Which is a neat little reversal. This is another great issue. This series has a lot going on, but it never feels cluttered or unbalanced. We get a little bit of the Midnight Angels, a little bit of Shuri, and quite a bit of T’Challa, and each section feels as long as it needs to be. T’Challa’s sections highlight his intelligence, as he makes clear that he’s a scientist at heart. The history lesson in the Djalia remains fascinating stuff, as well. The art’s great. Sprouse, Story and Martin do solid work. Sprouse’s style is a bit more superheroic than Stelfreeze’s, which works well for this arc, which is more superheroic in nature. I really do recommend this series. It’s great stuff.
Mockingbird #7, by Chelsea Cain, Kate Niemczyk, Sean Parsons and Rachelle Rosenberg. Bobbi takes over the investigation into the murder of the guy who claimed he had evidence to help clear Clint’s name. It’s a locked room mystery! There are bloody shoeprints in the bathroom, so that’s a clue. They’re almost definitely not from a corgi. The TV and cell reception goes down when they enter the Bermuda Triangle, though Bobbi points out that there is absolutely nothing odd about the Bermuda Triangle. Which makes her the only fictional character ever to say that. She assembles the suspects, most of whom are real people included in the arc. One of them is Kate Niemczyk. Cute. She continues to examine the clues, and realizes who committed the murder. It’s a cool reveal, and should make for an interesting next issue. This is so much fun. There’s a lot of silly jokes, but we also see plenty of Bobbi’s intelligence as she does her investigation. The art is fun and bright and great, as well. I really do love this series.
A-Force #9, by Kelly Thompson, Paulo Sequeira and Rachelle Rosenberg. Captain Marvel and Medusa are in town to talk to Nico. Medusa is a jerk and grabs Nico, which annoys Carol, who wanted to settle it peacefully. Dazzler and Singularity also arrive, with Dazzler threatening to blind Medusa. Elsa just wanted a damn sandwich. And Singularity has had quite enough of the fighting. She’s, uh, pretty good at conflict resolution. “Or I put you all in my insides until you can get along” is quite the threat. A plan is developed to save the day. Medusa and Dazzler stay in town, and work through some of the tension between them, and hug, to Singularity’s delight. It’s sweet. Meanwhile, Carol and Nico discuss the whole Future-crime thing. The scene is definitely opposed to what Carol’s doing, but still works hard to make her sympathetic, and her position understandable. I think this is a key difference between CWII and the original Civil War: None of the writers want to portray Carol as bad. In the original Civil War, the Pro-Registration side was routinely depicted as downright villains. In CWII, there’s a real effort from all involved to keep Carol sympathetic. It makes a huge difference. Anyway, Carol and Nico both also like Elsa, because of course they do. Elsa’s awesome. They head up to the abandoned mine, and find Alice. This is great. Elsa brings a ton of humour, just by being Elsa **** Bloodstone. But I think where this series continues to excel is having so much heart. Dazzler and Medusa having a heart-to-heart was so sweet. For all that she can be an absolute bitch, Medusa is also capable of immense compassion, and she shows that to Dazzler here, saying she would move mountains to help Ali. (Ali also gives a nice explanation of why Medusa is still hanging out with the team: It’s the one place where she doesn’t have to be a queen, and can just be herself. A nice bit of insight.) The interactions between Carol and Nico are really good, too, with Carol treating Nico as a teammate and a friend, and Nico standing up for herself. There’s a nice focus on Nico in general, and when they find Alice, it leads into some really emotional territory. The art is really good. Siqueira does a very good job with expressions and body language, really selling both comedic and emotional beats. And the colours are really pretty, of course. This is great stuff.
Animosity #2, by Marguerite Bennett, Rafael de Latorre, Rob Schwager and Marshall Dillon. We open a week after The Wake. Sandor and Oscar, Jesse’s dad, go out looking for a way out of the city. Sandor also points out to Oscar that this isn’t a Zombie Apocalypse, and running to the mountains won’t do much good. They get attacked by gators, and run away, and Oscar threatens to put Sandor down if he ever hurts Jesse. Not cool, Oscar. Cut to a month later, and Central Park, and a trade zone. There are cows looking for people to milk them and split the profit. Rats offering rat poison for animals who can’t deal with being sentient. And a cat selling Xanax and Adderall, for the same reason. Russian pigs talking about Animalism, which is a cute reference. Sandor and Shannon, Jesse’s mom, bond over their mutual love of Jesse. They care about each other, too. It’s sweet. The next day, a Senator meets with a representative from the animals – a moose with a pair of squirrels in its antlers. And then things get intense. And then we cut to a year later. This is so great. It’s really emotional, and really intense. Jesse’s dad is a dick, but her mom is really nice and sweet. I feel sad that she’s dead now. The negotiations between humans and animals are really interesting, though it doesn’t last long. There is some gruesome stuff, as well. And next issue, we’ll be getting to the real meat of the series, as Sandor tries to get Jesse across the country to California. I definitely recommend this series.