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Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Mighty Avengers #6

February 9, 2014
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MAvengers 6

A strong week… with a couple disappointments.

Starting at the weakest…

MARVEL KNIGHTS: SPIDER-MAN #5 (Matt Kindt / Marco Rudy / Val Staples) Marvel

I should have stopped buying this after issue #1. What a terrible, terrible comic. The thing is, the art is very good… in a vacuum. It just doesn’t illustrate the story well. And I am not totally convinced that there is a story there to illustrate. Yeah. Terrible.

TRILLIUM #6 (Jeff Lemire) Vertigo

Just when I thought this book couldn’t get more annoying. I barely even read a couple of pages because flipping orientation page-to-page (which was already very annoying) was not enough for Lemire. Now he has us flipping back an forth on the same page. I almost think this is a big joke for him and he is laughing about figuring out ways to piss the readers off.

If this was an ongoing, I would drop it now. There are only two more issues though, so I guess I’ll see how it turns out.

LAZARUS #6 (Rucka / Lark / Arcas) Image

Ugh. I like this book in general, but not this issue. The old trope of a woman using her sexuality to distract stupid men while her partners do something nefarious is old hat. This went beyond that. Instead she actually let them have sex with her, when I would argue that her speech made it clear she didn’t really want to. The guards who were taking advantage of the girl (even if she WAS just desperate for food and water…. even more so), were admonished…but that is it.

Yeah. I am not claiming that this is like the infamous rape joke that launched this blog, but it IS cheap writing that adds to the general rape culture.

Not cool.

(In fact, this shows how much I disliked the two comics below it on the list that this book wasn’t last.)

AVENGERS A.I. #9 (Humphries / Araujo / D’Armata) Marvel

I have enjoyed this book, and this issue wasn’t bad… there just wasn’t that much to it. No great Doombot quotes. The revelation that everybody can just do whatever they want in the Diamond makes any battle kind of pointless.

Yeah, there have been better issues… but the America vs rebelling nations analogy was spot-on.

X-MEN #10 (Wood / Anka) Marvel

First off, the art is a big step down from the Dodsons. With all of their faults, they are still very talented artists and this is more… journeyman art. This is a leo a bit of a bridge issue. Not a lot really happens. The reveal of who WILL be joining the villains was pretty interesting.

SWAMP THING #28 (Charles Soule / Javier Pina) DC

Not a bad issue overall, but it was saddled a bit with the origin of Capucine. She has not been an incredibly interesting character and her origin emphasized that. The scenes with the ex-Parliament were better.

FAIREST #23 (Marc Andreyko / Shawn McManus) Vertigo

From the James Bond-esque cover to the addition of Ramayan, this book was pretty solid… but just solid. Again, there seemed to be a lot of ‘bridge’ stuff and the bits with the mice… like what was up with the sex scene at the beginning? He can change back and forth if he says he loves someone? Is that it?

THE MOVEMENT #9 (Gail Simone / Freddie Williams II) DC

An up-tick of this book. Batgirl was a good addition to the mix… the girls’ dinner had just the right amount of tension-easing for Babs to let her guard down enough to get dropped. The fact that she is the daughter of a cop meant that there was no way these two forces would get along.

I am happy to realize that this story does not go into the Batgirl book, which I don’t buy.

BLACK WIDOW #3 (Edmondson / Noto) Marvel

Another strong done-in-one adventure story for Natasha. Phil Noto continues to be amazing and they story’s morality part was telegraphed, but is still worked. I wonder if Natasha realized the big slip Isaiah made there?

Either he set her up, or Edmondson made a huge mistake in the script. In the space of one page, Isaiah went from assuming the job didn’t work out to knowing not only what when down, but why.

SUPERIOR FOES OF SPIDER-MAN #8 (Spencer / Lieber / Rosenberg) Marvel

This is the Hawkeye of villain books. Or something.

The Silvermane vs Shocker fight was brilliant. Boomerang trying to pick somebody up. Big Wheel. BIG WHEEL!

The reveal (to the rest of the team) that Tombstone is Beetle’s daddy.

The Sinister Six has five members… or maybe four.

How did I miss the first six issues?

MS. MARVEL #1 (Wilson / Alphona / Herring) Marvel

This book would have landed a lot lower on the list if I hadn’t read interviews and seen some promo art.

A young, female, Pakistani-American, muslim super-hero headlining her own book.

Yeah. That is kind of a big deal.

They don’t shy away from the cultural differences but she doesn’t come across as a parody. STRONG writing. The art is not as good, but it gets the job done. It isn’t distracting.

Why would it fall lower, then? The last page.

Her first iteration of her powers as wish-fulfillment turns her into a blonde, white lady.

The thing is, I KNOW that isn’t where it is going – but wow. Leaving THAT as the last page cliffhanger with no pay-off?

Bad idea.

Anyone who reads this review, though… trust me. This is NOT where the book is going, based on everything I have read.

MIGHTY AVENGERS #6 (Ewing / Schiti / D’Armata) Marvel

Another great written issue and the art is better! There is so much goo din this issue… Jessica’s concern about being Avengers again… Power Man’s interesting power set… the difference in opinion between Luke and Adam… but more than anything, addressing the comments about Monica’s relaxed hair style… without trying to justify anything. They SEE the concerns and are willing to face them.


Though I imagine there are many readers who don’t understand the exchange at all, it was very great.

Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Amazing Spider-Man #700.1

December 7, 2013
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Well, I am really sick. I also have a slam tonight that I am really not up to going to… but the show must go on and I have all the slam stuff. I am certainly not performing or hosting or anything.

Starting at the weakest…

MARVEL KNIGHTS: SPIDER-MAN #3 (Matt Kindt / Marco Rudy / Val Staples) Marvel

Sigh. It was a bit better for one issue. Now it is back to just begin a series of pin-up pages (that are really well done). This is not a story.

INHUMANITY#1 (Fraction / Coipel / Morales / Martin) Marvel

Talk about disappointing. I am a big fan of Matt Fraction. I liked what I heard about this series and the position it is meant to hold in the Marvel Universe.

But this was really lame. This whole issue did nothing more than take a full comic to update what happened as one of the sub-plots in Infinity. (Admittedly the best sub-plot.) Nothing was advanced other than the disappointing and illogical death of a cast member.

Here is hoping it gets better.

TRILLIUM #5 (Jeff Lemire) Vertigo

Congrats to Jeff Lemire for continuing to try and push the envelope of the storytelling medium. On the other hand, there is a reason why comics are printed the way they are. Some of what he has tried is just annoying to read. This falls into that category (though not as bad as the one you had to flip over constantly.

The story is interesting but… not THAT interesting.

GREAT PACIFIC #12 (Joe Harris / Martin Morazzo) Image

They are finally dealing with the elephant in the room. If Chas has the tech to CLEAN UP the mess in the ocean, why is he not doing it?

Hiatus now?

SWAMP THING #26 (Charles Soule / Jesus Saiz) DC

I almost missed this as it wasn’t put in my box by mistake. That would have been a shame as Soule is really doing a great job on Swamp Thing… who doesn’t appear in this comic. I LOVE Seeder. Woodrue never got the position he deserved after being such an important part of the most important Swamp Thing comic ever. It is nice that he is finally getting his due.

THE MOVEMENT #7 (Gail Simone / Freddie Williams II) DC

Is this going to be one of those books where actions have real consequences? I don’t believe Mous wis actually dead and Burden is going to save Vengeance Moth, but at what cost.

This is a hit-and-miss book, bu still a solid read overall.

SUPERIOR SPIDER-MAN #23 (Slott / Gage / Ramos / Olazaba / Delgado) Marvel

Is there still a Venom book or is it cancelled? I am pretending there isn’t one because if there is, we know none of this can actually stick. Is Venom going to infect someone else? Is Flash free from it, but with new legs?

Hey, why can’t Miguel be called Miguel?

AMAZING X-MEN #2 (Jason Aaron / Ed McGuiness) Marvel

The second issue of the new, FUN X-Men book is here and everybody is in… Hell? Wheee?

It is fun, actually. The team is split and facing overwhelming odds. Dead allies and a mysterious reunion in the offing.


FAIREST #21 (Marc Andreyko / Shawn McManus) Vertigo

One thing stopped this book from being higher on the list – did Cinderella really NEED to do that scene in her underwear? It wasn’t as bad as it could have been either since McManus is not a standard T&A artist (good!)

Having said all that, I really like the Cinderella stories. I also prefer Andreyko to Willingham on this book (though I am happy with Bill W. on Fables).

I really liked the panel with the Huntsman and Crispin. I can’t recall, was that previously established?

AVENGERS ANNUAL #1 (Immonen / Lafuente / Beredo) Marvel

This book was good fun. The message was there, but not very heavy-handed. The characters were light-hearted and there was a good dose of ‘do I really sound like that’.

What stopped THIS book rom begin higher is that it made me think of the books I have read before that did a better job of the ‘lonely Christmas’ theme. Do you recall that Peter David issue of Peter Parker where Peter (lots of Peters) thought Aunt May didn’t want him to come for Christmas?

YOUNG AVENGERS #13 (Gillen / McKelvie / Thompson / Norton / Wilson) Marvel

I thought this was the last issue, but I guess there is another one.

This is where you need a scorecard to keep up with the twists and counter-twists. SO Loki is a bad guy? Or good guy? Or in between? Billy saved the day but then didn’t. Mother is defeated. No, I think we are good with that one.

Hey, does this mean Kate can go back to NYC in the Hawkeye book?

Speaking of Kate… Noh-Varr really blew that one. (Good.)

AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #700.1 (Morrell / Janson / Buccellato) Marvel

Let me say upfront that I really like the Superior Spider-Man book. I like it quite a bit, actually.

That doesn’t mean that I don’t miss Peter Parker. It is nice to see classic Spidey in action. (Though the idea that nobody needs him because of a massive snowfall doesn’t really make sense…)

Let’s wrap up the Octo-Spidey stores ion and bring back the original. (I had hope this was going to be that, but clearly not.)

Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Swamp Thing #25

November 14, 2013
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This actually for last week as I was away at the Canadian Festival of Spoken Word so didn’t get my comics until I got back.

It wasn’t a great week, honestly. Some okay books, but not very many.

MARVEL KNIGHTS: SPIDER-MAN #2 (Matt Kindt / Marco Rudy / Val Staples) Marvel

What can I say about this comic? It was better than issue #1. That is something, I guess.

I CAN say that after Suicide Squad and this, Matt Kindt is not rating very high on my preferred writers list.

THE MOVEMENT #6 (Gail Simone / Freddie Williams II) DC

So far I like the IDEA of this book more than the book itself. The art hurts it, but the biggest problem is that it seems to meander. It is character-based more than plot-based, which definitely an work but… we’ll see. It isn’t in danger of me dropping it yet.

TRILLIUM #4 (Jeff Lemire) Vertigo

Now HERE is an example of a book that is really hurt by its art. Jeff Lemire is a very good writer, but his art is distracting from the story. It really hurts my enthusiasm for the book.

MIGHTY AVENGERS #3 (Ewing / Land / Leisten / D’Armata) Marvel

There have been places where I have spoken out against Blue Marvel. I am not a fan of incredibly over-powered character. I hated the Sentry, for example. Having said that, Adam sure worked in this issue. In fact, they ALL worked well in this issue. Luke’s speech at the end was a perfect capstone. This very well could be the Avengers book that succeeds where the others are generally failing… making you care about the characters. Oh, and the identity of Spider Hero has been spoiled… I won’t reveal it here but… interesting. I sure didn’t guess it, and I am not sure of I like it. Could be worse, that’s for sure.

AMAZING X-MEN #1 (Jason Aaron / Ed McGuiness) Marvel

Another entertaining X-Book? It seems that the X-books are the place to be now that Marvel has done so much damage to the Avengers franchise. This book is just fun – straight up. The sexual innuendo between Wolverine and Storm didn’t really work, but the rest was top-notch. You can pretty much buy any marvel book with X in the title without going wrong. (Well, maybe not that Wolverine & the X-Men one…)

SWAMP THING #25 (Charles Soule / Jesus Saiz) DC

Swamp Thing vs Seeder for the right to be the avatar of the Green! What could be better?

This was a great issue with an interesting fight (not much of a punch ’em up, but why would it be?), interesting philosophical dilemmas and a surprise ending!

Good comic!

Rusty’s Comic of the Week: Swamp Thing #24

October 7, 2013
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Solid comic week.

From the weakest…

HUNGER #3 (Fialkov / Kirk / Aburtov) Marvel

It isn’t terrible but the whole ‘cosmic power’ and struggle against it in a non-specific way that drags on, issue after issue’ gets really old.

Also, inspired by Ultimate Peter Parker is almost becoming a trope.

TRILLIUM #3 (Jeff Lemire) Vertigo

And here is the most annoying comic of the week. When it was a flip book, it worked. When it is just random flipped pages, it is just a pain in the ass.

The comic isn’t good enough to make up for hoping it will end so you can stop flipping the book back and forth.

FAIREST #20 (Williams / Sadowski / Jimenez) Vertigo

Hey, remember what the premise of this Fables spin-off was supposed to be?

Yeah, me either. I am pretty sure it wasn’t the awakening of Prince Charming.

Not a great arc, but better than the last one. Hopefully Willingham doing Goldilocks will be better.

MARVEL KNIGHTS: SPIDER-MAN #1 (Matt Kindt / Marco Rudy / Val Staples) Marvel

This is the best LOOKING book out this week. Marco Rudy has done a great job. Too bad the story is such a bare excuse for a series of pin-up pages.

But, boy, do those pages look nice.

THE MOVEMENT #5 (Gail Simone / Freddie Willimas II) DC

Interesting issue. So there is a trial… but what authority does this court have? And what lengths are they willing to go to establish that authority? A schism was pretty much guaranteed at that point.

Best line: Oh no, you might see the skin around my eyes.

MIGHTY AVENGERS #2 (Ewing / Land / Leisten / D’Armata) Marvel

I have been a vocal opponent to Blue Marvel in the same way I was a vocal opponent of Sentry. Skewing the power level is DC’s thing. Marvel is better than that, usually.

Having said THAT, I really liked Adam in this comic. I may not like him when he starts fighting, but as the elder statesman, he was great.

Is this going to be the best Avengers book being published? Despite the Greg Land inclusion, signs point to yes.

ALL-NEW X-MEN #17 (Bendis / Immonen / Von Grawbadger / Gracia) Marvel

President Blaire, hey? Interesting twist… followed by the real twist. I missed the Wolverine issue but I don’t feel like I missed anything. Not much of a selling point there.

Still, this story is good, if slow. Lots of X-Teams from lots of times…

LAZARUS #4 (Rucka / Lark / Arcas) Image

This book is getting better and better. It was nearly #1 for me this week. Johanna is evil. I mean, REALLY evil.

So not all Larari are the same, I take it. I don’t think our star is as… metallic as Joaquim. I really liked the remove of the battle as the Carlyle’s tried to follow it through her biotelemetry.

Good book. Great art.

SWAMP THING #24 (Charles Soule / Andrei Bressan) DC

The reveal of who Seeder really is was excellent! I love the dichotomy between Swamp Thing and Seeder. (And Seeder is a lot better name than his pre-Alan Moore name.)

And the end with the Parliament NOT taking sides… wow. Charles Soule is the best Swamp Thing writer in a long time, in my opinion.