Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Weekly Comics Round-Up 25/10/2012


Scott Lobdell continues his gritty reinvention of the popular team of teenage superheroes, but unfortunately not to the liking of this reviewer. I've had issues with this volume of Teen Titans from the very start, but mostly due to DC throwing away the long history the core characters had together in the previous DC universe. The New 52 incarnations have been barely recognisable and not even remotely as fun as their original counterparts. However, my big fault with this issue isn't due to the screwy continuity, merely that the issue itself is particularly dull. In what is meant to be 'The Bloody Origin of Wonder Girl', Cassie falls prey to the trappings of every whirlwind romance ever written. The dashing stranger, the seductive locales, the "heartbreaking" trauma that rips the lovers apart, etc. By the time any genuine plot kicks in, about some supernaturally haunted armour, I'd grown sick of the pair of them and actually WANTED something horrible to happen to split them up. Of course, all of this is told in retrospect, with Red Robin and Superboy offering snarky comments at appropriate moments. However, the one thing that did make me smile reading the issue? Seeing Superboy back in his t-shirt and jeans motif from pre-relaunch. I don't suppose it's a lasting change, but I'll always prefer an actual teenage look for the character, as opposed to his Tron suit.

3 out of 10


Bringing to a close Jason Aaron's largely botched run on the character, we have the final issue of this volume (soon to be relaunched once again as Indestructible Hulk under the far more capable Mark Waid). After well over a year of both Hulk and Banner trying to kill one another, they've decided to put their differences aside and team up to take down the real every other Hulk story known to man. I can only describe this issue, as fun as it is, as a massive reset button. The two halves of the psyche have been reunited, the villain put in their place and any lasting consequences of Banner's stint as a mad scientist erased. The last thing in the world any story should do is put everything away tidily and leave it all exactly as you found it, but this series does. In years to come, this volume will be little more than a footnote in the continuing adventures of Bruce Banner and his big green split personality. Where the cinematic incarnation soared to new heights this past summer, the comic equivalent sunk to new lows. Just when everyone wanted to read about a likable, wry, fun Bruce Banner, Marvel offered up an evil madman. Talk about a misfire.

5 out of 10


Picking up from last week's fantastic issue, we continue to watch Scott Summers aka Cyclops traverse the physical dangers of prison, not to mention the political ramifications, even from his locked cell. This series was initially little more than a curious exploration of the aftermath of a larger crossover, but with every passing issue becomes something more. Kieron Gillen has been doing wonderful work with the character of Scott Summers ever since his run on Uncanny X-Men began and Cyclops formed the Extinction Team. That continued guiding hand pays off in spades here, as the character remains fundamentally consistent, even in such a traumatic period of his life. Forget that Uncanny X-Men came to an end last week, this could be yet another issue and I wouldn't bat an eye. The most impressive aspect of this book is that despite the lead character's incarceration, despite the world at large hating him, despite the superhero community in an uproar over him, Cyclops has never been more in control of the situation. He may be conflicted over his role in the death of Professor X, but he continues to be the same man who united the Mutant race when no one else could and I don't get the feeling he's willing to give up that leadership role just yet. No matter how many replacements Captain America puts forward in his place. All in all, an excellent book that continues threads from Uncanny and masterfully sets up the soon to debut All-New X-Men.

8 out of 10


For the past several issues, we've been witnessing flashbacks to Robot and Monster Girl's time in the hyper-accelerated Flaxan dimension. Which led to the untimely reveal that Monster Girl had secretly fathered a child with a native! Don't even get me started on the logistics of a girl fathering a child, I always assumed the Monster was a girl too, but I guess it's...confused. Anyway, the conflict with her progeny is wrapped up quickly, leaving a fair portion of the book to deal with the emotional impact of the revelation. Robot seemed to take the news quite hard previously, but if anything, it brings about a heartwarming reunion for the couple. I'm just going to ignore the deep dark secret he's hiding (even though I know it's bound to come out later!). Meanwhile, there's a hilarious little subplot about Mark (thought the series had forgotten about him, didn't you), wherein he and Eve attempt to rekindle their sex life in the wake of losing his powers. Sufficed to say, he's clearly been taking the easy road all these years, as his technique could use some finesse. Not a standout issue of the series, but it keeps the proverbial plates spinning for another month. Essential in the buildup to a landmark like issue 100.

7 out of 10

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Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Weekly Comics Round-Up 17/10/2012


While some readers may have come across this particular Michonne story in the pages of Playboy magazine, it's largely new material for the rest of us! Jumping back to the early days of the outbreak, we see Michonne before she was the katanna-wielding badass we've come to know. Initially, she wisely decides to lock herself away with her boyfriend and his best friend (despite him being an out and out idiot). Unfortunately, not knowing how to deal with zombies yet, the boyfriend is bitten before you can say 'all you can eat buffet'. Let's just say the situation doesn't get any better from there. However, it gives us a valuable insight into the beginnings of one of the best characters in comics.

7 out of 10


Spinning out of the summer event 'Avengers vs X-Men', Captain America has become acutely aware of lingering Mutant prejudices, both against them and from them. Looking to put an end to such irrational hatred, he attempts to put together a team of Avengers and X-Men alike. All under the Avengers banner of course, extending the supposed public adoration to their Mutant brethren. His first pick? Ironically enough, disgraced X-leader Cyclops' own brother, Alex Summers aka Havok. The issue also features the latest funeral of Charles Xavier and a cliffhanger so disturbing you have to see to believe. While I didn't remotely enjoy the crossover this series springs from, it's wonderfully written by the talented Rick Remender and beautifully illustrated by John Cassaday. Hopefully this series can pull both franchises back up from the nosedive that was AvX.

8 out of 10


Our first look at the terrifying 'Third Army' came in the Green Lantern Annual several months ago, but due to the need to establish rookie Green Lantern, Simon Baz, their threat has largely been reduced to the back burner. As such, this issue of Green Lantern Corps is one of the first to truly depict their spread out into the universe. Unexpectedly, the Third Army descends upon Guy Gardner's team and he's forced to watch in horror as one of his fellow Lanterns is assimilated and reborn as one of the alien menace. It's a disturbing sequence, as you watch the Corps member in question struggle against conversion, until there's literally nothing left but a faceless creature in the tatters of his former uniform. Obviously a beloved fan favourite like Guy Gardner isn't going to be the sacrificial lamb in this instance, but it is surprising to see him thrown into direct conflict against the Third Army quite so early. This issue was essential to establishing this new threat to the universe and does nothing but enrich the promise of this already highly anticipated crossover.

8 out of 10

Tuesday, 2 October 2012

New Set Photo From Iron Man 3

Courtesy of the UK's own, Daily Mail, we have a close up look at the latest happenings on the set of the eagerly anticipated "Iron Man 3"!

The picture below features our favourite heroes, Tony Stark and James Rhodes, in their brand new suits of armour. Stark sporting a fancy new gold paintjob, while Rhodey gets himself a new codename, transitioning from War Machine to the Iron Patriot!

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Monday, 1 October 2012

New Details Emerge For Joss Whedon's S.H.I.E.L.D.

Last month, Marvel and ABC made the bold step of pushing forward with an ongoing S.H.I.E.L.D. tv series created by Avengers mastermind, Joss Whedon. In the past few days, details have emerged about the characters set to star in the series. TVLine describes them as following:

SKYE - This late-20s woman sounds like a dream: fun, smart, caring and confident – with an ability to get the upper hand by using her wit and charm.

AGENT GRANT WARD - Quite the physical specimen and “cool under fire,” he sometimes botches interpersonal relations. He’s a quiet one with a bit of a temper, but he’s the kind of guy that grows on you.

AGENT ALTHEA RICE - Also known as “The Calvary,” this hard-core soldier has crazy skills when it comes to weapons and being a pilot. But her experiences have left her very quiet and a little damaged.

AGENT LEO FITZ and AGENT JEMMA SIMMONS - These two came through training together and still choose to spend most of their time in each other’s company. Their sibling-like relationship is reinforced by their shared nerd tendencies – she deals with biology and chemistry, he’s a whiz at the technical side of weaponry.

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