Tuesday, July 13, 2010
There's quite a few noteworthy books on tap for this week in our Post-Crisis Previews. We've got the conclusion to Grim Hunt over in Amazing Spider-Man, JMS's first issue on Superman, more cosmic goodness in Thanos Imperative and even the long awaited Dell'Otto painted title, X-Force: Sex & Violence. Hit the jump to find out exactly what Ryan and I will be picking up this week and what we expect from each!
Written by Joe Kelly, Stan Lee & JM DeMatteis
Art by Michael Lark, Marcos Martin & Max Fiumara
THE LAST STAND OF THE KRAVENS! The Grim Hunt ends with a death in the family…but not the family you may think! Spider-Man’s about to learn a violent lesson… that nothing is forever. Plus more on the untold confrontation between Kraven and Kaine and the amazing “Spidey Sunday Feature”!
Kirk: It's hard to believe this storyline is ending with this issue. It felt like it was setting up for a six issue arc. I'm curious how they will wrap this up with this final issue. Will Kraven live? Will Spider-Man avenge Kaine? Does Arana become Spider-Girl here?
Written by Jason Aaron
Art by Adam Kubert
The biggest adventure that Spider-Man and Wolverine have ever been on continues! A major Marvel mystery villain is putting our dynamic duo through hell, pushing them to their absolute limits and ripping their lives apart. But how does this villain have the power to summon enemies like Doom the Living Planet to challenge our heroes? All astonishment brought to you by Jason Aaron (WOLVERINE, PUNISHERMAX) and Adam Kubert (WOLVERINE, ULTIMATE X-MEN)!
Kirk: The first issue was a lot of fun, but a bit lacking on substance. Wolverine and Spider-Man are on some time travelling adventure, but that's about all we know. The bi-monthly schedule is killing my enthusiasm as well. I might trade wait this from here on out if nothing major comes out of this issue.
Written by Christos Gage
Art by Mike McKone
TIME TO MEET THE AVENGERS ACADEMY TEACHERS! Hank Pym, Quicksilver, Tigra, Justice and Speedball (that's right, we said Speedball) are here to mentor the next generation of Earth's Mightiest Heroes...but is one of the students hot for teacher? Plus: Get a glimpse inside the mind of Finesse, the enigmatic polymath who can duplicate any skill but who finds human interaction the most baffling mystery of all! The return of the walking death machine known as Arsenal! Hints at a student's possible connection with a well known Marvel character! Quicksilver gets old school! All this, and one of the kids makes a Faustian bargain!
Ryan: Avengers Academy had a dynamite debut issue last month, which makes this one of the books I’m looking forward to most this week. The new characters were tremendously engaging, so hopefully while this week’s issue will focus on the Academy’s teachers, it won’t take too much time away from the new young heroes—especially after the shocking reveal that they are in the Avengers Academy because of their likelihood to be insanely powerful supervillains.
Written by Bryan Q. Miller
Art by Lee Garbett
It's the end of Batgirl's first year as a member of the Bat-family, and the stakes couldn't be higher! Stephanie Brown must risk her life to break into the Calculator's secret lair in an attempt to save Oracle and all of Gotham City from his techno-plague. And finally, the Calculator's daughter accepts her true destiny!
Ryan: While too many folks were scoffing at the idea of Stephanie Brown as Batgirl, this title used its first year to quickly become one of the top comics in DC’s publishing catalogue. It looks like Miller and Garbett are going to close the first year out with a bang as Stephanie must take down Calculator and save Barbara Gordon. I expect nothing less than awesomeness and I know that I won’t be disappointed.
Written by Grant Morrison
Art by Tony Daniel
Grant Morrison and Tony Daniel re-team to tell the exciting 2-part, untold tale of Bruce Wayne and his adventures between BATMAN R.I.P. and FINAL CRISIS! What happened to Batman – and Dr. Hurt, for that matter – after the devastating events at the climax of R.I.P.? And what secrets within this story point toward THE RETURN OF BRUCE WAYNE?
Ryan: I’m strongly considering not picking this up, despite the fact that it would put a hole in my Batman collection. I’ve never been terribly pleased with Grant Morrison’s run on Batman, but, to me, R.I.P. was tremendously overrated and full of plot holes. While it sounds like this story might fill in some of those gaps, I just don’t have any interest in it. I might pick this up if its essential to The Return of Bruce Wayne, but as of right now, I’m really on the fence.
Kirk: I'm on the fence as well. I'm enjoying Morrison's Batman related work at the moment, but I can't help but think this might be filler or end up like those Final Crisis tie-ins for Batman that didn't really add anything to that event.
Written by Gail Simone
Art by Ed Benes
The explosive first story arc of BIRDS OF PREY continues! Pursued by an unstoppable killer, the Birds are forced to run a gauntlet of insane gang members and corrupt cops out to kill them all while trying to stop a teammate from dying in front of their eyes! The meanest BoP villain yet is calling for blood and won't stop 'til she gets it!
Ryan: After last issue, the Birds are now on the run thanks to the actions of the White Canary, so I expect lots of action in this week’s issue and, hopefully, more fun gags with tagalong villain The Penguin (who had some great scenes with Dove last issue). This title has been absolutely spectacular since the relaunch and is the early favorite for my Book of the Week pick.
Written by Andy Diggle & Antony Johnston
Art by Roberto De La Torre
SHADOWLAND Tie-in Matt Murdock has long played judge and jury to criminals as Daredevil, but has he now become executioner as well?! SHADOWLAND takes over Daredevil and his friends aren’t about to stand by and lose him on the path he seems destined for. A major player joins the battle as Hell’s Kitchen is about to live up to its name once more!
Kirk: Shadowland #1 was a good first issue for this event. It was exactly what I expected from an event book focused on Daredevil in that it was reader friendly, light on continuity or unnecessary monologuing about the current status quo and heavy on action. I'm hoping the main Daredevil title will offer some more meat and show us more from Matt's perspective and show us what's going on inside his head compared to the straightforward Shadowland portrayal.
Written by Various
Art by Various
The final issue is here, and you won't want to miss out on the event of the year comes as these acclaimed creators take on everything from Marvel romance to Marvel horror! Join the celebration with veteran creators of both classic Marvel and indie comics, including Marjorie Liu (DARK WOLVERINE), Ann Nocenti (DAREDEVIL) and Carla Speed McNeil (Finder).
Ryan: As Girl Comics comes to a close, I still absolutely hate the name, but I have enjoyed this anthology miniseries quite as a bit as Marvel has assembled an awesome group of female creators for some really great stories. As with most anthologies, it has a lot of ups-and-downs, but in the long run, I’ve enjoyed the unique vision presented in the last few issues a lot more than I have some of Marvel’s other recent anthology titles.
Written by J. Michael Straczynski
Art by Eddy Barrows
J. Michael Straczynski begins his highly anticipated run on SUPERMAN! After the devastating events of WAR OF THE SUPERMEN, how can Superman possibly continue his battle for Truth, Justice and the American Way? Find out here in ""Grounded"" part 1 and get in on the starting line of a modern-classic SUPERMAN story!
Ryan: I was really interested in the opening arc of JMS’s run on Superman when it was first announced, but the snippet we saw in Superman #700 didn’t sit well with me. I’ve never been the biggest Superman fan, but there was just something “off” about how he was presenting the character. I’ll give it a flip through, but its going to need to “wow” me off the bat or I won’t be leaving the store with it.
Kirk: We've had some discussions on the new direction JMS is taking Superman in his Grounded arc, most of it negative, but I'm not going to write it off without having read anything (well, I've technically read the 'preview' in Superman #700). I'll give it one issue.
Written by Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning
Art by Miguel Angel Sepulveda
Thanos...Nova...Silver Surfer...Quasar...Gladiator...the cosmic heavy-hitters take the stage as Marvel's latest sci-fi saga rockets onwards! A rival universe where life is the ultimate curse--and reality is determined by twisted, monolithic gods--is gouging into our own! Even the great abstract figures of creation like Oblivion and Eternity have taken up arms! What possible significance can Star-Lord and his band of misfit heroes hope to have? And how will the Mad Titan Thanos chose to take his stand?
Ryan: It’s more of a great cosmic event and it’s written by Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning. Do you really need to know anything beyond that? I say, “No, friend, you do not. You know that is the perfect blend of awesomeness.”
Kirk: Excellent first issue kicked off the event, but the previews for this second issue stole the show by showing Galactus and other primordial gods rallying to fight back against the Cancerverse forces. This has given the book a truly epic feel and I'm dying to find out what happens next.
Written by Brian Michael Bendis
Art by David Lafuente
Guess what? That ain't Peter Parker! But it is Peter's worst nightmare. Someone has taken Peter's place in the world, his likeness, his everything, and he is--well--he is doing some damage! You won't believe the mayhem that goes down in this issue!
Ryan: A shape-shifting villain has taken over Peter Parker’s identity? Meh. I wasn’t impressed when they did this with Chameleon last year in Amazing Spider-Man. Of course, with Bendis at the helm, the quality character work and fun interaction could make up for the less-than-thrilling premise. This series has yet to disappoint me, so even though I’m not wowed by the solicitation, I’m still pretty pumped for this one.
Written by Matt Fraction
Art by Whilce Portacio, Jamie McKelvie, and Steven Sanders
Hot on the heels of SECOND COMING, see how the X-Men fit into the Marvel Universe as a whole. Three stories by Matt Fraction and artists Whilce Portacio (UNCANNY X-MEN), Jamie McKelvie (SIEGE: LOKI) and Steven Sanders (S.W.O.R.D.) taking you all around the Marvel Universe!
Ryan: There are three reasons and three reasons alone for me to pick this up. 1) Steven Sanders absolutely killed on S.W.O.R.D. with his unique flair and great storytelling. 2) I’ve never read a book with art by Jamie McKelvie, but I’m constantly impressed with the preview pages I see online. This seems like a good place to start. 3) Molly freakin’ Hayes graces the cover and I’m having some serious Runaways withdrawals.
Kirk: I didn't even pay attention to this until I saw Ryan had it on his pull list. Not a huge fan of Portacio's art, but both McKelvie and Sanders handling duties on this? I'm sold. Hopefully the shop has some extra copies lying around.
Written by Craig Kyle and Chris Yost
Art by Gabriele Dell’Otto
Just when you thought it was over, we pull you back in—it's the X-Force story everyone's been talking about, finally delivered! Wolverine and Domino have always had a special relationship, but everything goes upside down when the Assassins Guild puts out a hit on our gun wielding bombshell. Why do they want her dead? And more importantly, how many people have to die before Wolverine and Domino can spend some quality time together?
Ryan: I’ve been waiting on this one for a while. Kyle and Yost have done some great work with Domino in the past and it will be cool to see them really push the envelope in this series. Plus, Dell’Otto interiors should look pretty dang good, even if he’ll be drawing a furry little man knocking boots with an extra pale assassin.
Kirk: Gabriele Dell'Otto is the reason to get this. Yost & Kyle doing some Domino and Wolverine centric work is just icing on the cake.
Written by Various
Art by Various
The end is here. Sacrifices have been made. The most dangerous and successful attempt at the extermination of mutants is upon us. Who will walk away?
Ryan: We know that the vast majority of the X-Men make it out of Second Coming thanks to stories that have take place after this issue, as well as the solicitations for the rest of the summer and early fall. We also know that Hope defeated Bastion last issue. So, what is left to tell? Aside from some explanation of Hope’s powers and the new breakdown of X-Teams, I can’t imagine there is a lot of story left for this issue to tell.