Weekly Comics Roundup (12/09/12)
THE BEST OF MARVEL
Quite possibly the best premise for a crossover event since Marvel vs. DC in 1995, AvX has managed to tear fan loyalties just as much as Civil War did, only with a world-destroying cosmic entity instead of politics. The title is a little inaccurate now, since it’s not so much Avengers vs. X-Men as it is everyone on Earth-616 against the catchily-titled Phoenix Five. The Avengers have managed to take out Namor, Colossus and Magik, but that’s only served to make Cyclops and Emma Frost stronger. What follows is an all-out war, with a climax that is just… wow.
Honourable mention here must go to Uncanny X-Men #18 (writer: Kieron Gillen; artist: Ron Garney) for its commentary on the proceedings- Colossus and Magik deal with the aftermath, but the ordeal isn’t over for poor Colossus yet; and Scott and Emma have the most psychotic dinner since Hannibal Lecter tried to find out what goes well with red wine. Creepy as all hell, but brilliant.
Still carrying on the Clone Saga from almost 20 years ago, Scarlet Spider gets major points for sticking with it rather than the old standard of having the clone die/go away and live a normal life never to be heard from again. Spider-Man clone Kaine is giving this whole hero-ing thing a try. And when I say “giving it a try” that’s exactly what I mean. He has no idea how to be a hero, he doesn’t particularly like it, he doesn’t like the other heroes he’s wound up working with in this arc, and he can’t see any sort of reward for it. But he keeps trying. He’s stoic and cynical where Spidey’s a chatty optimist, but they both share the drive to do good. I love the direction they’ve taken with Kaine, and I’ll be adding this comic to my list of new favourites.
It was a kind of blink-and-you’ll-miss-it moment, but during one of the AvX battles, Magik dragged Rogue into a portal and sent her away to an alien planet gripped by civil war. If you’ve read the last couple of issues, the conclusion of this arc won’t come as any surprise to you. Actually, if you’ve read any comics ever, you can pretty much figure out that she doesn’t just shrug and leave them to it. She manages to make them see they’re not so different, and should work together for a brighter future, in a plot conclusion directly lifted from the My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic episode ‘Over a Barrel’. So, if this issue was predictable and unoriginal, why is it in my top picks list? Because it’s so well-written that it doesn’t matter. Because Rogue is so badass she takes time out of a war to go fight another war, and then goes right on back to her original war. And also because I like ponies.
If you’re interested in the whole alternate universe thing but can find them a little hard to follow, X-Treme X-Men is here for you. A group of familiar faces from unfamiliar dimensions team up with our Dazzler to kill all the evil Charles Xaviers. It’s kind of a whistle-stop tour through all the dimensions the creators can come up with (this month: steampunk Utopia!) and it is SO MUCH FUN. Highlights include Xavier’s head in a jar, a possibly gay Wolverine, and Dazzler singing a song in every issue. If you like your comics to be gritty and down-to-earth, you should give this one a miss, but if you like stuff that can be truthfully described as “zany” then go buy it. And then put Dazzler’s songs to music and stick them on YouTube, because I would totally watch that.
DON’T WASTE YOUR MONEY ON
Uncanny X-Force #31 (writer: Rick Remender; artist: Phil Noto)
It hurts me to say this, but Uncanny X-Force isn’t doing so great at the minute. I love it, I do, but they’ve taken seven issues deciding what to do with Evan, aka Genesis, aka Kid Apocalypse, and they still don’t have a clue. Psylocke is pretty adamant they should let him live, Deadpool is pretty adamant they should let him die, and everyone else is kinda shuffling their feet and shrugging. It’s times like this I wish I had the power to break the fourth wall in reverse, because I would stick my head in there and be like “What is WRONG with you?! You know treating him like a shaken-up bottle of fizzy evil is just going to make him more likely to be evil, right? You want him to be a good guy? How about busting in to the bad guy’s lair, breaking him out, and telling him how worried you were? Expressing some concern for the well-being of the child who’s been abducted by the Brotherhood? Taking him HOME?! JESUS, Logan, you run a SCHOOL! You’re a $@!#. You’re all $@!#s. Except for Betsy. Betsy’s cool.”
Spidey meets Deadpool meets Inception in Avenging Spider-Man #12!
The debut of Loki’s fire-breathing war-dog Thori in Journey into Mystery #643! Plus, Loki and Thor playing classic childhood game ‘The Floor is Lava’… with real lava!
Emma Frost gets smacked down like the bitch she is in New Avengers #30!