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X-Men comic of August 4 2019

September 4, 2019

Follow me on Twitter (@XMenXPert). Pretty big comic day. The first comic I read today was Pretty Deadly: The Rat #1. So good. It’s amazing. Pretty Deadly is my favourite comic. The whole creative team clicks. DeConnick, Rios, Bellaire, and Cowles, they’re all amazing at what they do, and they work together brilliantly. After that, I read The Wicked + The Divine #45. The final issue of the series. It’s also brilliant. I got the Olivia Jaimes cover, and it’s delightful. But yeah, starting the day with the two comics most guaranteed to fuck me up was definitely a great idea, no regrets here, nope. So let’s get to a bunch of comics that can’t possibly live up to those two.

House of X #4, by Jonathan Hickman, Pepe Larraz, Marte Gracia, and Clayton Cowles. Archangel and Husk are already dead. Holy shit, Paige didn’t even get to punch someone. Damn. Cold, Hickman. The assault continues, though, and Monet, uh, somehow turns into Penance? That’s unexpected. That feels like something that should get some time dedicated to it. Of course, it doesn’t. This is Hickman. Plot is all that matters, and Monet turning into Penances isn’t directly related to the plot, so it doesn’t actually matter. Which makes it completely pointless. Unless he actually does have plans for exploring this, either in this series or in X-Men, then Monet turning into Penance is entirely frigging pointless. It’s a cool moment for the sake of a cool moment, and any emotional meaning to justify it be damned. Which is annoying. Anyway, naturally, she dies. So does Mystique, who gets spaced. The bad guys start bringing the Mother Mold online, so Kurt and Logan sacrifice themselves to stop it.

earthlyslumber (2)

At least this is a genuinely good character moment.

This assault ends with the whole team dead. Bear in mind, most of these characters already have places in Dawn of X. So these deaths, ultimately, are meaningless. We know that they’re going to be revived before this story is even over, which takes out a lot of the tension, a lot of the emotional weight. If the story had spent more time on the characters, there would’ve been more weight, but as it is, Hickman is banking on existing familiarity with the characters to do the heavy lifting. And I cannot stand that kind of thing. My feeling is: make us care about the characters in the context of the story you’re telling. Ultimately, this issue’s point is to make Xavier fed up with mutants getting killed. Which I can certainly relate to, I’m pretty fed up with it, especially given Rosenberg’s run was a frigging slaughterhouse. So it’s hard to take Xavier’s “no more” all that seriously, too. I mean, if Hickman does get the X-office to back the fuck off its murder-boner for a little while, great, good for him, but it doesn’t make me like this particular story any more. Hickman is just not a writer I enjoy. This is a perfectly well-crafted story, but it’s one that I find puts very little effort into making anyone care, and instead relies on people caring solely because it’s the X-Men. I had similar complaints about his Avengers run. He is just very much Not For Me.

And the non-X-stuff.

Alpha Flight: True North, with three stories. The first is by Jim Zub, Max Dunbar, Jim Charalampidis, and Ed Brisson. Snowbird and Talisman check out some mysterious danger in Nunavut. On an interesting note, the comics I buy, I also get torrents, just for screengrabs. And this one, the torrent had an interesting error. Some of the dialogue from a later story is included in this one. I’m not sure if that’s anti-pirating measures from Marvel – I’ve never noticed it in any other comics – or if it was just a weirdness with the digital file of this issue. It’s interesting. And a little annoying, as there’s a gorgeous panel I was going to screengrab for my favourite panels tweets on Tuesday. I’ll just have to remember to use the digital code to get the issue on Unlimited. Anyway, the story is really good. I like it. It’s connecting Snowbird to her human side in a nice way. The second is by Jed MacKay, Djibril Morissette-Phan, Ian Herring, and Ed Brisson. Puck and Marrina! Also, Northstar and Aurora working on their tans. But mostly, this is about the friendship between puck and Marrina. It├Ęs nice to see. They were friends back in the original Alpha Flight, before Byrne wrote Marrina out of the series. And this is a really sweet story. Marrina was always such a boring character, before she died, but then the last Alpha Flight series made her all punk. And even though she’s not punk here, her calling Puck “Old Man” is such an endearing bit, and she’s still got plenty of personality. And the third is by Ed Brisson, Scott Hepburn, Jim Charalampidis, and Ed Brisson. Brisson actually lettered this comic, which is interesting. Heather’s reading her daughter a bedtime story, and guys teleport in the arrest her, and Guardian arrives to help her. She’s still wanted for the events of 2011’s Alpha Flight series. This story’s good, too, with a bit of a harsh twist.

Ghost-Spider Annual, by Vita Ayala, Pere Perez, Rachelle Rosenberg, and Clayton Cowles. Gwen gets caught in a trap meant for Spider-Man, gets pretty emotionally messed-up fighting a robotic Lizard, has a great time fighting a robotic Daredevil and Punisher, and saves a robotic Gwen Stacy. It’s a fun comic. Also, I’m 99% sure one of her female classmates has a crush on her. And I’m also 100% sure that her world’s MJ is in love with her. What I’m saying is Gwen Stacy is lesbian-bait.

Champions #9, by Jim Zub, Steven Cummings, Marcio Menyz, and Clayton Cowles. Viv 2.0 is not impressed with Riri falling under Blackheart’s control. And Kamala finally reveals her secret identity to Sam and Miles. I’ll be honest, I really like Viv 2.0. I like that she feels things, expresses her emotions. She’s an android, but she’s not reserved like her dad. I find that far more interesting.

Agents of Atlas, by Greg Pak, Nico Leon, Pop Mhan, Federico Blee, and Joe Sabino. Cho’s continuing crush on Luna Snow is very fun and cute, and is reciprocated. Also, Amadeus is told the difference between dragons and wyverns. Good issue. Very fun, there’s lots of mystery, and I’m intrigued to see where this story goes.

Web of Black Widow #1, by Jody Houser, Stephen Mooney, Triona Farrell, and Cory Petit. Natasha crashes a party. And uses ballet to beat the crap out of people. I’m intrigued. She’s out to right some of the wrongs she’s committed, but she’s not doing it in a particularly heroic fashion.

From → 2019, Uncategorized

2 Comments
  1. Shumagorath88 permalink

    As for Alpha Flight True North the third story was pretty bad, Brisson made a bad situation even worse. As this issue make it clear that Heather is in a abusive relationship with Mac… makes me wish Madison had married her instead.

  2. I didn’t realize that Pretty Deadly was returning this week, so I didn’t even look for it. I need to rectify that soon. (It’s been a really busy couple of weeks. Multiple appointments in the mornings, and some big changes happening at work).

    I managed to pick up House of X 4, but since I haven’t read either issue 3 yet, I’m going to wait until I do. But from the sound of it, Hickman’s X-Men run is starting to feel more like his Avengers run than his Fantastic Four run. His FF run was very much plot based, but it still found a lot of room for great character moments. I’m still going to finish these two minis, but I might not be picking up his ongoing X-Men series after that if I’m not satisfied with the minis by the end.

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