Monday, July 21, 2008

Post-Crisis Comic Book Previews for 07/23/08

Not a bad selection of comics coming out this week. Nothing that has me foaming at the mouth for in anticipation, but nothing cringe worthy either. There are also American Flagg! and Mini-Marvel trades solicited that I may have to pick up...

Written by Dan Slott & Christos Gage
Art by Harvey Tolibao

"The Only Good Skrull..."
With the NEW AVENGERS and the MIGHTY AVENGERS trapped in the Savage Land, it's up to the AVENGERS INITIATIVE to face off against the first major strike of the Skrull Invasion! There, on the field of battle, the cadet with the biggest secret has to choose how red (or green) his blood really is. Heroes will fall. Heroes will die. And one shall rise. All THIS and: A new cowardly low for ANT-MAN! A new danger for WAR MACHINE! And 3-D MAN gains a "killer" new "krew"!

Kirk Says: Holy crap, a Skrull "homage" cover that actually makes sense in the context of the issue it adorns. That's got to be a first for Marvel since they started spamming these ugly covers back when Secret Invasion started.

Written by Greg Rucka & Ed Brubaker
Art by Michael Lark

Part 3 of "Cruel and Unusual" with special guest co-writer Greg Rucka joining the acclaimed DD creative team! Daredevil and Dakota North have investigated all angles of the brutal murders that Big Ben Donovan sits on Death Row for, and all they've come up with is more questions and conspiracies. Why does Big Ben want to be executed for a crime he probably didn't commit? And why does the government want Dakota and Matt Murdock off the case? Find out these answers and more!

Kirk Says: I hope this stint on Daredevil convinces Rucka to do more Daredevil with Brubaker in the future because this storyarc has been the best the title has been since Devil in Cell Block D, way back when Brubaker first took over for Bendis. Anyone know what kind of, if any, contract Rucka is under over at DC (not sure how he's working on a Marvel book as it is since I assumed he was a DC exclusive)?

Written by Peter J. Tomasi
Art by Patrick Gleason and Drew Geraci

It's the action-packed conclusion of "Ring Quest"! Kyle, Guy, Sodam Yat, Arisia, Soranik and other members of the Green Lantern Corps wage an all-out battle against Mongul and the mysterious Mother Mercy.

Kirk Says: Ring Quest went in an odd direction, but it's finally come back to what I had been hoping for from the start - Mongul kicking Green Lantern ass. I imagine the ending of this issue will lead to that promo image of Mongul holding the Star Sapphire ring (or was that a Red Lantern ring? Colouring looked pinkish to me) and I'm curious to see what leads him to seeking out more rings instead of solidifying his Sinestro Corps leadership position.

Written by Duane Swierczynski
Art by Travel Foreman

“The Mortal Iron Fist" part 1 of 4
Marvels’ kickingest, punchingest, kung-fu-iest book just got bigger! Following the character-redefining, critically-acclaimed, fan-favorite events of “The Seven Capital Cities of Heaven,” the all-new IMMORTAL IRON FIST creative team of Duane Swierczynski (CABLE) and Travel Foreman (ARES) takes it to the next explosive level! Think you know everything there is to know about the traditions of the Immortal Iron Fist? If you do, then why’s Danny sweating bullets over an inescapable legacy that’s haunted the Iron Fists for centuries, huh? Tell us that, if you’re so smart. What was the deeper meaning of Xao’s ominous threat? And what incredible new adventure are Danny’s fellow Immortal Weapons embarking upon?

Kirk Says: One chance, that's all Duane "I write Cable" Swierczynski is getting as the new Iron Fist writer and that is only because I loved Brubaker and Fraction's version so much. If this ends up as bad as I'm expecting, I may have to write an angry forum post or say mean things on the internet about Marvel.

Written by Robert Kirkman
Art by Ryan Ottely

New costume! New beginning! New home! New Partner! Everything is all-new starting with this issue. Featuring an all-new cover by comic book super-star JIM LEE! If you’ve ever thought about reading INVINCIBLE this is the jumping-on point you’ve been waiting for. The next fifty issues start here!

Kirk Says: I find it hard to believe Jim Lee could draw something so hideous (okay, it's not that bad, by normal standards, but this is Jim Lee for chrissakes!). It doesn't look anything like a Jim Lee drawing either. Did he throw that together at a convention sketch session?

As for the new costume, I'm not a fan. I believe it's an attempt at recapturing the dynamics of the Spider-Man black costume switch over back in the 80's, but Invincible had one of the best looking new costumes in all of comicdom and the primarily yellow colour scheme was both striking and memorable - something this new version is most definitely not.

I'm sure I'll love the comic still, which seems to be coming out on a monthly basis again, and the introduction of his brother as a sidekick should be interesting, but I'll miss the old costume and I'll keep hoping this is just a short term and very temporary thing.

Written by Jim Shooter
Art by Francis Manapul and Livesay; Variant Cover by Neal Adams

On planet Velmar V, the invincible Ikilles has already trashed Timber Wolf and Shadow Lass. Now, the Legion's last hope is — Invisible Kid?! Meanwhile, while the rest of the weary, wounded Rimbor Team fights an army of heavily armed Science Police, Atom Girl squares off against the vicious Commodore. And on Earth the mysterious M'Rissey awes everyone with his unexpected power!

Kirk Says: While I don't expect this version of the Legion to survive past Legion of Three Worlds, I'm still enjoying every issue of Shooter's run on the title. It's not for everyone, but it's definitely filling that team super-hero adventure / drama gap in my pull list and it's a tonne of fun to boot.

Written by Brian Bendis
Art by Billy Tan

SPIDER-MAN VERSUS CAPTAIN AMERICA IN THE JUNGLES OF THE SAVAGE LAND! But who is who and what is what?? At least one of these people isn't who they say they are. Plus a huge chapter in the Secret Invasion story as more information as to how the Skrulls set their major plans in motion is revealed...
Guest-starring Ka-Zar and Shanna and featuring spectacular artwork from rising star Billy Tan.

Kirk Says: I'm guessing this will consist of Spider-Man making, "are you a Skrull", jokes and the fake Captain America Skrull acting like he's the real deal even though everyone and their mother knows he's not. Oh, and there won't be a lick of actual story content or Secret Invasion revelations found in this issue either.

ROBIN #175
Written by Chuck Dixon
Art by Chris Batista and Cam Smith

The events of "Batman R.I.P." carve a path of destruction through Tim's life, threatening to rip apart the entire foundation of what made him choose to take on the role of Robin in the first place.

Tim's on the run and, with Batman's life at stake, he can't afford to make one misstep. Don't miss Part 1 of a shocking 2-part story that will irrevocably change Tim Drake's present as Robin…and his hard-won future as Batman.

Kirk Says: If this is anything like the Detective Comics' RIP tie-in, I'm going to be extremely disappointed with DC, especially after seeing the death of Jason Todd cover homage they are using here.

Written by Christos Gage
Art by Fernando Blanco

SECRET INVASION strikes Thunderbolts Mountain as Captain Marvel attacks! But when you're dealing with the Thunderbolts, it's never quite clear who's the villain and who's the hero...Also, another unexpected visitor shows up, threatening to tear the T-Bolts apart from within! Can Norman Osborn hold his team of damaged psyches and tortured souls together, or is this the end of the Thunderbolts as we know them? Part 1 of 4.

Kirk Says: Odd. I know Ellis is off Thunderbolts now, but I thought these Secret Invasion tie-ins were going to be in a mini-series and outside of the Thunderbolts title proper.

Regardless, while I like Gage as a writer, I'm not confident in his portrayal of the over the top Ellis version of the Thunderbolts team and adding an SI tie-in into the mix only compounds my worries. However, Gage did wonders with the WWH: X-Men tie-in, so this could just as easily work out in his favour.

Written by Aron Eli Coliete
Art by Mark Brooks

X-Men vs. X-Men! After their attack on Alpha Flight, Colossus and his team are wanted fugitives! Worse, they’ve become addicted to the insidious drug known as Banshee! Now it’s up to the other X-Men to take them down. Yes, it’s mutant vs. mutant! When the X-Men go to war with each other, who wins? Plus, the startling revelation of Jean Grey! Where did she go after defeating Apocalypse? Find out here!

Kirk Says: Coliete has reinvigorated my enthusiasm for the struggling Ultimate X-Men title, which hasn't been good since around the Magnetic North storyline several years ago, and I've had nothing but good things to say about this title since he took over for Kirkman several months back. While I'm leary of seeing the mention of the abyssmal Apocalypse storyline that recently ended, I'm still looking forward to seeing what Coliete has in store for us this time around.

Written by Ed Brubaker & Matt Fraction
Art by Terry Dodson
Tracing by Greg Land

“SFX”, PART 1!
Sentinels? What? And Magneto? And is that the Master Mold? What the hell is going on in San Francisco now that the Uncanny X-Men have relocated there? They’ve got a new Headquarters and a new status quo as the gauntlet is thrown for a new era of mutantkind. It’s all here in the double-sized anniversary issue that sets up the plotlines that will be developed over the next year in UNCANNY. And it’s all brought to you by the hot writing team of Ed Brubaker & Matt Fraction (Immortal Iron Fist) and fan favorite artists Greg Land (ULTIMATE FANTASTIC FOUR, X-MEN: FREE COMIC BOOK DAY) and Terry Dodson (SPIDER-MAN/BLACK CAT, Wonder Woman). New creators, new home. The future begins now.

Kirk Says: On one hand, we have Brubaker and Fraction, former co-writers on Immortal Iron Fist, partnering up on Uncanny X-Men for the first time and the promise of Magneto's return.

On the other, we have Greg "I trace for a living" Land on the art chores. Also, Brubaker's UXM has been average, at best, compared to his other work at Marvel and Fraction will have to work a lot of magic to make me a believer in following Uncanny every month again.

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Eric said...

Rucka ended his DC exclusive contract over a year ago. I'm surprised a lot people still don't remember that.

I'm passing on Iron Fist but if I hear good things I'll get it in trades.

I'm p*ssed with the New and Mighty Avengers tie-ins so far but I having been following SI since New Avengers so I am just going to finish it up and call it quits when SI ends.

Thunderbolts should be good since Gage is no longer writing around Ellis. Plus, WWH: X-Men was way better than it had any right to be.

I'm passing on UXM. I haven't heard good things from people who got early copies.

Andrenn said...

Broken Trinity also comes out this week, just to let you know.

I don't mind that Jim Lee cover, it's all right. I like the costume redesign, but I agree that nothing was wrong with the original one. This change just seems like for the sake of change, nothing else.

I'm only getting certain issue of New Avengers. Such as the Illuminati issue, and all the ones with Cheung's amazing art.

Phillyradiogeek said...

I very much enjoyed New Avengers #41, which kicked off the Kazar-Spidey-Cap subplot, so I'm looking forward to this. The New Avengers SI tie-ins have been the best, although I haven't had the problems with SI in general that a lot of other readers have had.

Keep in mind that the SI mini deals with just that--the invasion. Chances are will be dealing with a Skrull occupation until at least next summer.

Skrulls--get used to 'em!

Cat said...

Great previews Kirk!
Kinda off topic but I was just looking at the October solicitations from Marvel:
Ultimate Captain America annual by Loeb & Ultimate Hulk annual by Loeb....ugh!
Also I thought this was funny: description for Ultimate Spider-Man Annual 3 reads: The relationship between Peter Parker and Mary Jane is one of the most iconic and popular romances in all of comics....apparantly Joe Q. didn't get the memo :-)

Pj Perez said...

re: Detective "RIP" X-over: Right there with you. See if I get suckered again.

re: Mighty Avengers: Yeah, if nothing happens in here I'm dropping this title like I did with New Av. last week. It seems the Savage Land stuff has been better than the random New Av. single-character explorations, so we'll see ...

Anonymous said...

Nothing has you foaming at the mouth in anticipation? Not even AMBUSH BUG #1? Honestly, if it's anything like the 1980's series, I'll be ready to pick my favorite limited series of the year.

I do hope Keith will remember to include another Egg Fu cameo. That was one of the best moments of the original series, and it makes his recent reinvention in 52 and Checkmate all the more impressive.

Kirk Warren said...

@eric - Wow, didn't realize Rucka wasn't under an exclusive for so long a time.

@andrenn - What's Broken Trinity about? Coming up blank with it and the only thing Trinity coming to mind is DC's weekly.

@phillyradiogeek - God, please don't let there be a Skrull occupation. I'm not sure I can handle another 5+ months of the invasion event. I dont think I could take another year worth of occupation and horrible Skrull covers.

@cat - Now why did you ahve to go and ruin my day, cat, by telling me Loeb would be doing Ultimate Cap and Hulk Annuals? I'm going to go cry in the corner with my copies of Ultimates 1 & 2 now.

@pj perez - DC is just shooting itself int he foot with these marketing plunders for RIP.

For a small sales blip on these other books, they're willing to sucker fans into buying tie-ins that have less to do with the story than most of the Secret Invasion tie-ins, which is pretty bad to say the least.

@anonymous - I've actually never read or even heard of Ambush Bug until they announced this Year None mini. I usually like Giffen's humour, so may have to take a peak at this first issue to see if it's something I want to invest in or not.

Andrenn said...

@Kirk Warren: Broken Trinity is about the trinity of the Darkness, Angelus and Witchblade, three elemental powers. Darkness is, as the name says, the dark side of this power, Angelus is the light, and Witchblade, their child, is the balance between the two.

It's a 3 issue mini series with Ron marz writing it, Phil Hester doing break downs of the art, and Stjepan Sejic painting over the breakdowns.

The story is about when 2 new artifacts awaken and break the Trinity, with a promise that one of these three will die.

There's a far more in depth interview with Ron Marz on Newsarama, it also has a preview of Broken Trinity, which came out today.

Also, sorry for not responding with this earlier, just now thought to check if you might have asked anything about it.

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