Friday, September 24, 2010

THOR #615 Review!

Thor is the only super hero where you can write his name in all caps and you don't look like you left caps lock on by accident. He's a big Norse god and carries a massive enchanted hammer that can summon lightning. Writing his name in all caps shouldn't just be accepted, but mandatory. For the rest of this review, I will be writing THOR's name in all caps. AS IT SHOULD BE!

THOR #615

Remember how when I reviewed Fantastic Four #583 the other day and I said how you needed to read two trades worth of material to really appreciate it? Well you don't have to with this issue of THOR. That's mainly due to the recap page at the beginning of this issue, that sums up what has happened in THOR's life for the past few years. It's simple, direct, and gets you where you need to be. It's a great issue for jumping on.

Matt Fraction has taken over as writer for this book, and comic fans are rejoicing. Fraction has built quite a resume for himself over the past few years at Marvel, including Invincible Iron Man, Uncanny X-Men, and Iron Fist. He's a fan favorite writer for a reason. This issue of THOR leads me to believe that this will be another successful run for Fraction.

This issue asks the question "If Asgard is here now, vacating their own dimension to come to us, then what moved into their spot?" If you guessed angry, red, monster-people with a penchant for murder, then you guessed right! Granted, that's what I usually guess for every question. It's an interesting concept to explore, and certainly makes the title feel fresh. Fraction's take on THOR is a welcome change from the brooding THOR of JMS's run. He's made him a more gruff and human with his interactions. It feels lighter in tone, which also let's the book be funny. Having Volstagg be the "most brilliant scientific mind" of Asgard was a great choice as well. Those scenes were particularly enjoyable. There were a lot of good writing choices in this issue. Thor fans should be pleased with them.

Pasqual Ferry takes up the art chores and fills in the other half of this great creative team. Since the writing has a lighter tone than previous issues, it only makes sense for the art to adopt that principle. Ferry's lines are crisp and expressive. Every character shows tons of emotion, you wouldn't need the words to figure out what was happening on each page. It's good to see that Ferry kept with the re-designed outfits for the Asgardians. He makes his own tweeks to them, which is expected, but it's not nice to see he kept the modern look. The book feels like it has a lot of energy due to the art and makes for an exciting read.

Overall, the book was a great introductory issue for this new creative team. The characters are represented well. The idea that a new mysterious, evil force is lurking amidst realities is intriguing. I'm looking forward to see how THOR handles this new threat.


Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Quickies 9/22/10

Hey guys! So I totally eff'd up my Spider-Man coverage last week. I know it seems like working at a comic shop is a non stop mega party where everyone gets free pizza and girls run around in bikinis, but that's not the case. I have to do big boy work every now and then and sometimes that keeps me from the blog. SIGH! Luckily I'm back to being in my super fun Andrew W.K. mode and ready to spread some bloggy jam on the toast that is your eyeballs. That sounds gross! I'm sorry!

Fantastic Four #583

The Fantastic Four is a great title because it's not popular enough to have fans freak out over major changes, but just popular enough to avoid being canceled. It's awesome, because it gives the writers the ability to do anything they want with characters that can seemingly do anything! Did you know Dr. Doom made a new set of armor out of his ex-girlfriends skin once? It's true! Only in the Fantastic Four folks!

This issue kicks off the beginning of a major story called "Three". This story will result in, you guessed it, one of the members kicking the bucket. They haven't said which member it will be as of yet, but I'm guessing it's the stretchy guy that keeps F'n with things he shouldn't. That's my official guess!

If you're unfamiliar with the writer on this book, Hickman, then there are some things you should know. Hickman is a fantastic writer, but he lays multiple clues and plot lines in every issue of his now substantial run. At the beginning of this issue, there's a substantial trail of bread crumbs for you to catch up on. While this issue is written flawlessly, I can only imagine that a new reader would be lost when finishing it. I highly recommend starting from the beginning of Hickman's run in order to truly appreciate how great this issue is.

Epting provides the same great art that I've come to expect with every issue. His actions scenes are full of detail and take up the majority of the page. It's always a delight when Epting has The Thing clobbering the hell out of everything. The emotional moments, especially Valeria's encounter with Doom, are intense and full of anguish. He hits all of the right notes in this song. Not that it's really a song, but you get the idea. It's good stuff!

While this is another great issue, the amount of information you need to know in order to fully appreciate it is vast. I highly suggest picking up the two trades of Hickman's FF work before reading this issue. Other than that, this looks like it's going to be an amazing story that really will have those "crack the internet in half" type of repercussions.

Hey guys! Did you know I don't sit up in an ivory tower, casting judgment on all comic books that come my way? It's true! I'm actually very approachable and easy to contact. You can follow me on twitter @chadventure or you can email at Send me messages at anytime and I will get back to you. Send me pictures, tell me your cat is going to vet, tell me I suck. It doesn't really matter. I am here for you guys!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Spidey Week! Part 2!

Hey guys! Today we're going to take a look at a comic that came out last week, Amazing Spider-Man #641.

Amazing Spider-Man #641: This issue marks the end of the One Moment In Time (O.M.I.T.) storyline, and finally answers the question about why no one remembers Peter is Spider-Man except for Pete and Mary Jane. There are a ton of other little plot threads that are tied up in this issue as well, so it's a pretty dense read.

The story is paced well and isn't as jarring as you would expect a story about several different time periods to be. The event that causes everyone to forget who Peter is felt very organic. It very reminiscent of the issue of JMS's Amazing Spider-Man run where Aunt May had found out Peter was Spider-Man. Much like that issue, it felt logical and honest. It made sense for the characters to act the way they do. Even the final fate of Peter and M.J.'s relationship (yes, that's in this issue as well) comes across the same way. It's quite a contrast to One More Day, the story that's the "cause" to this stories "effect".

The art in this book is top noch. The different art styles for the different time periods was a great way to help people know which time period the story is referring to. Joe Quesada captures the tender moments well, while Paolo Rivera handles the more sensational moments with ease. It's a great combination.

The only drawback to this story is that it's steeped in continuity. To really understand everything that's going, you really need to be caught up on Spider-Man. It's definitely a Spidey story for those who love and follow all of his adventures. If you're not too familiar with what's been going, you'll probably be confused and not as invested.

It's time for a confessional though. I got choked up over the last few pages of this issue. As a long time Spidey fan, I needed to take a break after this was over. It affected me deeply on an emotional level. That's all I'm going to say.

Also, did anyone notice that editor Stephen Wacker is listed as the sorcerer supreme in the credits? I thought that was funny.

There aren't a lot of jokes in this review, so here's one that was texted to me earlier today.

Q: Why does a chicken coupe have two doors?

A: Because if it had four it would be a sedan!

Hahahaha! Oh the fun we have, we are good friends.

ALSO! Thanks to the fine group of people who came down from UMA tonight! It's always nice to hear that people actually read this blog. Thank you so much! You guys are awesome!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

My dimensions have been shattered

Were you curious as to why I didn't post anything last week? The answer to that, is that I've been in a Spider-Man coma! So much Spidey in such a short time literally shorted out my brain. So to make up for my vegetative state, I'll be reviewing every Spider book that has come in the past two weeks....starting tomorrow. Today I will be reviewing the amazing new video game, Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions!

Story: Spider-Man ends up destroying (or you might say shattering!) a mysterious and powerful tablet during a battle with Mysterio. The pieces of the tablet end up being scattered into four different dimensions, each with their own Spider-Man (Amazing, Noir, Ultimate, and 2099). It's up to them to find the missing pieces of the tablet. Naturally, the pieces of the tablet fall into the hands of each universes villains and fighting ensues.

The story is pretty solid, and develops nicely while playing through the game. That's not really a surprise though, as it is written by current spider scribe Dan Slott. Slott has a great feel for the character in the comic books, and his writing has translated well to the world of video games. The story is jam packed full of references that any true Spidey fan will pick up on. That's including a reference to the Amazing Spider-Ham! The constant dialogue between Spidey and his rogues gallery is priceless, especially in the ultimate universe. I found myself laughing out loud a quite a bit. It's how Spidey is supposed to sound in a video game, and I think it's awesome.

Controls: The controls are pretty solid as well. I occasionally found myself not wall crawling in the direction I wanted to, but I'm used to that with Spider-Man video games. Web swinging took a bit for me to get used to. Once I figured it out though, I was web swinging all over the place. Besides those two minor roadblocks, I found the controls to be tight and responsive. I especially liked the web swinging marker system, which allowed you to jump to objects using your web lines with ease. Kudos to whoever thought of that idea.

Graphics: Each universe had it's own look, which really helps immerse you into these worlds. The characters models look good, and move fluidly. I dare say fluid movement of the characters is more important for a Spider-Man game, than super realistic graphics. I would say it's on par with the first Bio-Shock, in terms of graphics detail. That was a good looking game, so that's nothing to feel bad about it. It's not setting a new benchmark for computer graphics, but I wouldn't consider that a detriment. The game looks great and I loved the stylized choices they made for each of the Spider-Men.

Anything Else?: Yeah! How about each of the voice actors for Spidey are from four different Spider-Man cartoon shows! That's pretty awesome! It's a lot of little things, like the voice actors, that make you realize that the creators of this game tried to cram as much Spider history into this title as they could. It feels like a labor of love when you play this game.

Anything Bad?: Yeah! I don't like the choice they made for the voice acting for the 2099 Spider-Man. They have the guy who did the voice work for the 70's cartoon, and he is just way too happy to be Spidey 2099. This character should be more brooding and have a deeper voice. He comes from a world that is being destroyed by evil corporations, but he sounds like he's zipping around a roller disco while cracking jokes. It just doesn't feel right. I think it's cool they got that voice actor to work on the game, but he shouldn't have been used for that Spider-Man.

Overall?: I freakin' loved it! It's a blast to play and totally worth it for any die-hard Spidey fan like myself. Buy it!!

Monday, September 6, 2010


Hey guys! Here are the panels that I thought were cool or funny this week!

In this page, The Punisher demonstrates why you don't bring Kung-Fu to a gun fight.

Secret Six reveals what the next SyFy original movie will be about.

Magneto picks his favorite grandson.

Lastly, Taskmaster shoots a guy in the face for being weird.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Quickies 9/2/10

Hey guys! It's still ridiculously hot out! I can't wait for Hurricane Earl to come rolling in and destroy the Sun. What happy days we will all have then!

Taskmaster #1

Here's a B-list villain that only a few people really care about. Luckily, I'm one of those guys. For those of you unfamiliar with Taskmaster, he has the ability to do anything, as long as he's seen someone else do it. Flip like Spider-Man, punch like Captain America, kick like Iron Fist... if he's seen it, then he can do it. That's a pretty cool power, in my opinion.

What happens when you've memorized so many different things, that you can't remember any of your personal memories? That's the question that this series asks as Taskmaster has to figure out who he is, while every assassin group on the planet is trying to kill him. Craziness!

This series reminds me a lot of Deadpool, as it's pretty funny and full of action. Taskmaster does have his own personality though, so don't worry about it being a clone of Deadpool. I'm sure that's a sigh of relief for anyone who feels there is too much Deadpool out there. In fact, there is even a line of dialogue in this book where Taskmaster says that he hopes Deadpool isn't there. Those people who hate Deadpool are probably annoyed that I just wrote Deadpool so many times in this paragraph. Sorry!

Fred Van Lente writes a really crazy and action packed story. Luckily for him, Jefte Palo does a great job of making all this insanity look awesome. This is a really great combination for a creative team. I especially enjoyed Palo's choice of giving Taskmaster more of a cloth mask as opposed to the ridiculous over-sized skull mask some artists give him. It's a nice halfway point between the costume I hate, and Udon's amazing costume they gave him during Agent X (pictured on the right.) That was so bad-ass.

This is a mini-series that I highly recommend. It's friendly to new readers, as it offers bio's on all of the characters and groups featured in this issue after the main story is finished. Fans of Taskmaster (the few and the proud) will enjoy it too. Also, it's full of AIM goons screaming "Death by Science!". I'm a big fan of that.

That's it for me guys, I'm going back to sweating to death in the store.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Quickies 9/1/10

Guys, seriously, it's too hot in the shop for me to even think straight. I apologize in advance for anything that I may write due to heat exhaustion throughout this post. It's like the Human Torch is giving me a bear hug while whispering lewd things in my ear. It's hot AND uncomfortable. IT'S FRIGGIN' HOT!!!!

Here is my review of my favorite comic this week!

Avengers: The Children's Crusade #2:

The spellchecker says that I can't capitalize "Children's". You think you're so smart spellchecker, but you are not. You are dumb, because that is the title of this book. It needs to be capitalized! This is why robots will lose when they rise up to kill humanity.

This series is really shaping up to be something special. Having the original writer for Young Avengers back to write another story for this book was a great idea. Having them try and track down the Scarlet Witch (the mother of team members Wiccan and Speed) is an even better idea. What could possibly make this any better? How about if we add Magneto (father of the Scarlet Witch) into the fray, and make it a real family affair. It's a great idea for a story that is unveiling quite nicely in this second issue.

The only drawback is that the issue is a little steep in continuity. That may turn off readers who are unfamiliar with the characters. They do spend some time in this issue answering any questions a first time reader might have, which is certainly a positive. Kudos to Allan Heinburg for filling in the gaps while progressing the story.

Heinburg also does a great job of handling Magneto. I know some people don't care for the idea of Magneto being a good guy searching for redemption, but I love it. He's always been one of my favorite characters, and it seems logical for the character to progress this way. He's seen the error of his ways and wants to make amends, no matter how many times Wolverine tells him that he'll just go back to his old ways. Heinburg nails his character perfectly.

The art, by Jim Cheung, is amazing as well. He reminds me a lot of Oliver Coipel, in terms of the look of the characters. They look strong, powerful, and just realistic enough. He leaves in a bit of exaggeration to their form and features, which works quite well. It's a beautiful issue. It's hard for me to find fault with his work.

Overall, the family reunion/hunt for the Scarlet Witch is moving along nicely. This issue has some action, mystery, and great dialogue. Plus the reveal of the bad guy at the end of the issue should excite the majority of you. It would behoove you to be reading this series, if you enjoy quality comic books.

Holy cow, I think my brains are starting to melt out of my ears. What a horrible thing to happen! I'll be posting more reviews tomorrow, preferably from a walk-in freezer. Send help, I'm dying!