Tuesday. Bullet Reviews. Awesome. This week: All-New X-Men #9, Avengers #8, Deadpool Killustrated #3, Journey Into Mystery #650, Judge Dredd: Year One #1, Justice League #18, Justice League Of America #2, and New Avengers #4. First, though: Age Of Ultron #3 and Superior Spider-Man #6AU!
AGE OF ULTRON #3 (Marvel NOW!)
This story is almost like those classic cartoons where a character would try running from something and would basically end up running in place. We’re going nowhere fast here. In my opinion this issue things begin to pick up if only slightly. We still have the heroes spinning their wheels, making plans and doing little else, and golden Ultron robots floating all over the place as they continue their dominance over the Earth.
This time around we have the heroes working their plan and getting out of dodge. Now, this isn’t the same thing mind you, their plan is to ‘give’ someone to Ultron in order to, hopefully, get some information and begin to take down Ultron’s empire. They decide to send one of their stronger members into the lion’s den, so-to-speak. She-Hulk gets the honors and Luke Cage gets to ‘sell’ her to Ultron. It’s here that we learn there is more going on than we originally thought and Ultron might not be the robot behind this whole disaster.
Meanwhile… The heroes that stayed behind decide to get out of the city and head to the Savage Land, if it still exists.
So, overall, this is where the story starts to turn around. It’s actually beginning to get interesting, in my opinion, and while I still have a lot of questions, mostly continuity related, but at least it’s beginning to get interesting.
If only they used a different artist. But the story is FINALLY picking up. -Skott Jimenez
SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN #6AU (Marvel NOW!)
First I’d like to say how totally stupid the numbering system here is. Why are they using the same numbers the regular issues have? It’s funny how Marvel and DC claim to want to make things easier to understand by making things worse for new readers. You know what they should have called this? Age Of Ultron: Superior Spider-Man. Wow, so simple it boggles the mind!
Anyway, the big reveal here is the answer to the question we’ve all had since this whole thing started: Who is Spider-Man, Peter or Otto? Well, not to spoil anything but the book is called Superior and not Amazing so that should tell you all you need to know. So, in the regular series Otto is balancing his regular ego and villainous urges and in this book he begins to see an even larger picture as he interacts with the other heroes in their darkest moments. He begins to see them in a different light, just as he saw Peter Parker in a different light when he experienced Parker’s life.
The main focus of this issue is Spider-Man’s attempt to stop Ultron. He gets close but his ego kicks in and he figures he can beat Ultron on his own by taking control of his drones. While he succeeds at first he fails when he goes face to face with the robot controlling the Ultron drones… and it isn’t Ultron! Who is it? Well, everyone should know by now but if you don’t just look closely and you’ll see who it is.
This was also the first Superior Spider-Man story written by someone who isn’t named Dan Slott. Christos Gage does a good job here but I’m not ready to have someone else fully take over Spider-Man. Another thing… this book should be read before Age of Ultron #3. -Skott Jimenez
ALL-NEW X-MEN #9 (Marvel NOW!)
Even in the issues where absolutely nothing happens All-New X-Men still kicks all sorts of ass. One thing that really sticks out is how much time Marvel’s story writing team took to do the research to make the younger kids still seem, well younger. The opening scene has the new (old?) students using a much more sophisticated Danger Room than they ever used. It is playful but really goes to show how much the X-Men have advanced over the years. As our technology got better in actual time, comics evolved to have better technology as well, and they really play with that in this new X-Men concept. Mystique, Sabretooth, and Lady Mastermind coming together for some sort of plan, hmmm could it be the newest version of the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants? I have noticed that containing Evil in your team name really isn’t something most companies do these days, but lets face it, these three are evil! They definitely deserve to keep that Evil in the name. Jean continues to dig into peoples minds without asking giving her that real first taste of power…oh if only she knew how bad everything turned out. Oh wait. She does. -Nick Furious
AVENGERS #8 (Marvel NOW!)
All right, I am officially back on board with Avengers. It has found exactly what it needs to be a stellar superhero team up book. And this is all leading to something. I am not sure what exactly that it is, but I know its gonna be grand. Kevin Connor fighting the Avengers naked was not only awkward but slightly hilarious. All the drawings they did to cover up his wiener made me chuckle every panel. One particular panel was a very tiny lightning bolt going across. We are talking about a very small area was covered. No wonder Kevin Connor is so happy to be able to have all this power, dude is rocking the smallest ding-dong in history. As the story unfolds before us we finally come full circle and start to realize why Avengers #1 opened the way it did. We needed to know everything to understand what is happening now. And all we need to know is this. The White Event is almost here. -Nick Furious
DEADPOOL KILLUSTRATED #3 (Marvel)
Deadpool’s reign of terror across the Ideaverse continues and as bad as it is, he does something in this issue that potentially makes things worse. At the beginning of this series we were introduced to a new voice in Deadpool’s head. A voice that took out the other two and seemed more… vicious and evil. While Deadpool was in the Frankenstein world he killed Igor then using a spork he took out part of his brain and put it in the Monster’s body. He gave the twisted voice a body… one with power. After killing Dr. Frankenstein he goes on to take out characters from the Jungle Book and others.
We also find that what Deadpool is doing is also having a rather serious impact on the Ideaverse. It appears that the different worlds are starting to merge allowing characters and concepts to, in essence, crossover with each other. Deadpool might have crossed a line with this one and I’ve got to say I am very much looking forward to seeing where this leads. Mostly because I want to see Deadpool Vs. Sherlock Holmes. That’s going to be very interesting.
Also in this issue: Learn the connection between The Little Mermaid and Marvel’s First Mutant, lol, cracked me up! And did anyone else notice Galactus on the cover? -Skott Jimenez
JOURNEY INTO MYSTERY #650 (Marvel NOW!)
Kathryn Immonen and Valerio Schiti have created one of the best comic books featuring a super-powered female lead on the shelves today! They put so many fun little bits in their book that it’s almost like a brand new read every time you look at an issue. Immonen’s characterization has done the one thing for Lady Sif that seemingly has never been done: She’s made Sif into a fully fleshed out character. But make no mistake, Schiti’s art is as big a factor in this and makes this, visually, one of my favorite Marvel titles (which is a cheat since I only really buy two Marvel books). But if any team deserves a huge pat on the back for a job very well done… then this is that team!
This issue also wraps up the ‘Psycho-Sif’ story as she learns more about her true nature and the secret behind the spell that created her blood lust. She is also betrayed by one of her own who had more to do with the deaths of other in their realm than he first let on. It was another great read with all the fun and action we used to get from Marvel Comics years ago. Perhaps that’s why I love this series so much, it just feels like classic Marvel, back when they were more interested in just making good, fun comic books. If Marvel had more books like this one, especially priced at $2.99 like this one, I would read more of their books.
The best part is, as fun as this issue was, and all the previous issues of this run, the only thing I think about when I finish each issue is ‘I can’t wait for the next one!’ -Skott Jimenez
JUDGE DREDD: YEAR ONE #1 (IDW)
We all know Dredd as he is today, a man who has control and knows, presumably, his limits. But this series gives us a new look at Dredd: what was he like at the beginning of his career and not only that but happens when he’s faced with something that is a little more difficult to deal with than judging a perp… people with abilities. It’s interesting to see his reaction to something he can’t simply explain away but even more interesting when he’s face to face with a cocky teenager with the power to blow things up. And this is only the beginning because people all over Mega-City One are starting to get powers, though most of them only last for a few moments and the person involved tend to not have any memory of what they have done. Which in the case of the boy who used his powers to rip a man to pieces, may not be a bad thing.
Now, I’m not a regular reader of Judge Dredd but I do have a healthy respect for what the character has accomplished, but I have to say that both the first issue of this series and the regular ongoing that IDW is putting out are both entertaining and while I’m not buying them myself I can honestly say if you’ve seen the recent Dredd movie then you really should look at both of these books. I’ll be getting these in trade at least! -Skott Jimenez
JUSTICE LEAGUE #18 (DC)
I haven’t quite figured out why people hate Cyborg so much. He really is one of the most hated characters in DC and I personally think he is such a fascinating character. This guy went from being this bad ass sports star to losing everything because of his d-bag Dad, but still finds the will to fight alongside the Justice League. If anyone should have left the team, it shouldn’t have been Green Lantern. It should have been him. I think Cyborg would thrive without the Justice League to be honest. I went on a big of rant. Sorry about that. This issue takes place after the events of Atlantis and it appears the Justice League will be getting a bit bigger, Flash continues to be my favorite character in the DCU with great zingers like “We’re gonna have to get more chairs.” Oh Flash where do you come up with your hilarious one liners? This issue didn’t exactly thrill me, but I found it fairly entertaining. On another rant, when are we gonna stop this whole two issues in one thing? Personally I hate it. -Nick Furious
JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA #2 (DC)
Issue two impressed me even more than issue one. The dynamic for this team is WORLDS better than the dynamic for the Justice League. You have a super powerful team of…for lack of a better word, rejects. These are the people who weren’t fit for the Justice League. I see a definite love story blossoming with Trevor and Catwoman. Two heart-broken people who will see the beauty in the other regardless of how reckless or stupid the choices they have made in the past. But this is DC we are talking about! That probably won’t happen I mean look how long it took for DC to make Diana and Clark get together. I love that Stargirl is the spokesperson for the team. Have the kid take on the biggest responsibility. That is the kind of friction you want for a team book. The team can’t just be buddies. You have to have to FRICTION. Perhaps that is why this book is going to become one of the hottest comics on the shelves and Justice League is never going to do the kind of business that we all know it can. -Nick Furious
NEW AVENGERS #4 (Marvel NOW!)
Another slam dunk cover by Marvel! If only all the artwork could be as good as these covers! No, Steve Epting and his illustration team do a fine job with every panel as New Avengers is just as pretty as the story is provocative. After kicking Cap out of the Illuminati Black Bolt of the Inhumans once again has a solidified place on the team. With Beast replacing Xavier he has solidified his place on the team. Add Black Panther, Namor, Tony Stark, Doctor Strange, and Reed Richards, that is one helluva team. As they continue to look for a way out so they don’t have to kill another world they find a simple solution in the form of the planet eating entity known as Galactus. But then everyone starts to attack and defend the planet. Hello! Galactus feeds on this planet and then you don’t have to worry about our planet being destroyed! But this team isn’t looking to kill billions. They are looking for an answer to save everyone. They still have very little time, and having to stop Galactus isn’t going to help at all. This one is a doozy folks. New Avengers is a top-notch read that everyone shouldn’t miss out on. -Nick Furious