David's Month in Review

April 2018

 

April 2018 will forever go down in comic lore. Not only did Action Comics #1000 come out but so did Avengers Infinity War. 10 years of Marvel movies have led up to this climatic event and while this blog isn't about the movies, I can't help but mention how much I enjoyed it. 

Not only that but we get to follow up this wonderful week of comics with FREE COMIC BOOK DAY 2018 on the May 5th! If you haven't come by the store for a FCBD before, I hope you can make it this year. We are going bigger and better than ever before. The dice table is now a Dice Thunder Dome and for the first time we will introduce the Gotham Girls cosplayers! 

As for the actual books that came out this week, Action Comics #1000 tops the list but don't sleep on the titles that Image has been producing over the last few months. Oblivion Song and Gideon Falls are both amazing and we finally saw the return of both Lazarus and Sacred Creatures! Next month should be exciting too. I can only assume Avengers #1 by Jason Aaron along with Scott Snyder's revamping of the Justice League will probably make my list of comics to review. 

Not only that but I'm going to change the format a little. I want to highlight the book of the week in an attempt to streamline the blog and make it a little easier to read. It'll also make it a little easy on me if I'm honest. However I don't want to highlight just four books a month so there will be a section under each one month that shows off some of the books I enjoyed the most. 

I hope you enjoy! As always I encourage you to come by and let me know all the books I forgot to include and remember there are...

SPOILERS AHEAD!

Week 1: Wednesday, April 4

Book of the Week

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Amazing Spider-Man #798

W: Dan Slott
A: Stuart Immonen

“Go Down Swinging Part 2” They aren’t kidding either. Now that all the hype surrounding the Red Goblin and his first appearance has passed we finally get to the stories that will make the character go down in infamy. But even before we get to that, the book opens with another spectacular Alex Ross cover with Spidey/Green Goblin that might be my favorite ASM cover of his yet. Just before opening with nothing but classic Goblin goodness. (Seriously you diehard Green Goblin fans out there must be overjoyed.) Every page just builds on Slott’s creepy Goblin monologue before another Immonen moment just blows you away.

Now for that. The Red Goblin. The hype met expectations and then some. After one of the best Spider-Man/Green Goblin fights I’ve ever seen and what looked like another sensational Parker finish, the lifeless body of Norman Osborn rises like a fountain of blood. Complete and utter terror wash over Spider-Man in an instant and you suddenly realize what the scene has completely changed from somewhat bright to complete chaos. The only thing Spider-Man can do is say “#$%& me” before getting blown up, beaten, and forced to hide in an abandoned building. The RED GOBLIN.  It really had everything a Spider-Man book could have. I won’t lie and say I’m not excited for Nick Spencer and Ryan Ottley’s new ASM #1 but these final arc’s from Dan Slott and Stuart Immonen are nothing short of amazing.

Now for a couple of other titles you should keep an eye on.

At the top of that list was Phillip Tan and Justin Jordan’s Curse of Brimstone #1. Set in the smaller-than Smallville town of York Hills, “The Curse of Brimstone” literally refers to a deal with the devil that turns the local budding protagonist into Brimstone, the man made of fire! Yes, it’s basically Ghost Rider with a twist but the twists are good and this Ice Monster thing that Phillip Tan designed is going to be sick. I think Brimstone may have the best chance to be the longest lasting new hero out of all these New Age of Heroes books too and hopefully when this new Justice League Dark book comes out, Brimstone and his Devil get a chance to play a part down the road.

All New Wolverine #33 began Tom Taylor’s new Old Woman Laura story line. A look at what would happen if the world’s most dangerous weapon took over that world.  A utopic society which is policed over by the clone of the clone of the guy that created a way more dystopian future after he was tricked into killing all his friends. Oh and her claws are glowing lightsabers too. Only one problem. Doom. Only Dr. Doom remains to resist universal peace after the Doom World War (in which Doom gut punches Jean Grey apparently). Not to worry though, Old Woman Laura and the new Wolverine have a plan. Murder Doom.

Last but certainly not least was Sonic #1! The first issue since IDW bought the rights from Archie Comics a few months ago. No, I wasn’t reading Sonic before they became IDW’s but I read this issue and it was pretty good. A Sonic/Tails team-up, an over-arching story-line, and a bunch of big bright fight scenes. For you Sonic the Hedgehog fans out there, I imagine this is exactly what you’ve been waiting for.

Week 2: Wednesday, April 11

Book of the Week

IMMORTAL MEN #1

W: James Tynion
A: Jim Lee, Ryan Benjamin

It’ll be interesting to see just how long these New Age of Heroes books are going to last. Each one is pretty obviously new takes on Marvel classics but that doesn’t stop some of them from being really good. I just mentioned Curse of Brimstone earlier and The Terrifics is still my favorite, so far, but if you’re telling me that Jim Lee is the artist on an X-Men knock-off then I’m always in.

Beings with incredible powers have long lived among us but only in the “Campus” can these super humans thrive together. That is until another faction of Immortals come hunting them down. Their only hope may be a young teenager, Caden Park, who has not yet realized the true power that still lie dormant inside him. The Immortal Men themselves are made up of Timber (the female Warpath), Stray (a Beast/Wolverine hybrid), Reload (if Fantomex could lead a team) and Ghost Fist (who uses some kind of green lighting powers). But will that be enough to stop the Infinite Woman (Hela) and her personal assassin, The Windstrinder?

Probably. That doesn’t mean I’m not interested to see what kind of powers they give Caden Park. Keep in mind too, this was the first time we saw The Batman Who Laughs since Metal ended. He may have only had a page of dialogue but he is very clearly still alive and it doesn’t seem like he has lost any creepy Robins either. Plus Jim Lee probably isn’t going to stay on the book for long so they are going to jump right into this story. Metal fans, X-Men fans, or comic fans interested in something new; yet familiar, should all try the new Immortal Men.

Now for a couple of other titles you should keep an eye on.

Even though I thought I would give the spotlight to the Immortal Men, it was clear that Image won the week. The fact that both Gideon Falls and Oblivion Song could be coming out on the same week for the foreseeable future will make it tough for me to EVER think that DC or Marvel will have had the best books for those weeks. In fact, with the way Robert Kirkman consistently gets his books out on time, Image should be using Oblivion Song as a beacon for once a month indie readers to find which week is the best time to stop by for years. Now the books themselves were much of the same from their issue ones, which is awesome, but if you haven’t heard my endorsement already go ahead and read last month’s post!

As for the other books Image books that were released, both The Dead Hand #1 and Crude #1 began stories that should be choke full of death and violence. Personally I enjoyed Dead Hand #1 slightly more. It centers around former American Special Forces agent, Carter Carlson, as he tries to adjust to Civilian life. Of course things are not as they seem but I’ll let you read the issue to see the surprise at the end. Although, what made it stand out was the scale. It looks like we are in store for some high tech weaponry and could see a very literal war.

Crude #1 is also centered around an aging hero, Piotr Petrovich, who’s long history of killing those who stand in his way is finally catching up to him. Now Crude is more of a revenge story than The Dead Hand but I would also imagine it cuts to the chase much sooner too. The stage, a glorified work camp, is set and Piotr is prepared to avenge the death of his son is the Crudest way possible.

As a side note: The Immortal Men #1 was the book of the week BUT the best read was still Thanos #18. It’s the end of Donny Cates’ run and the climatic conclusion to the story so hopefully you’ve all been reading my early favorite for book of the year.

Week #3: Wednesday, April 18

Book of the Week

ACTION COMICS #1000

W: Dan Jurgens, Peter Tomasi, Marv Wolfman, Geoff Johns, Scott Snyder, Tom King, Louise Simonson, Paul Dini, Brad Meltzer, Brian Michael Bendis
A: Patrick Gleason, Curt Swan, Oliver Coipel, Rafael Albuquerque, Clay Mann, Jerry Ordway, Jose Luis Garcia Lopez, John Cassaday, Jim Lee

I’m not going to sit here and harp on the importance that Superman had on today’s comic world. If that’s what you’re looking for, I’m sure you can find someone much more qualified and maybe even someone who’s been around for at least half of Superman’s 80 years. However to pick anything other than Action Comics #1000 as the book of the week would be ridiculous.

Having said that, the book itself seemed like a perfect celebration of the Man of Steel. The first two stories were by Dan Jurgens, Peter Tomasi, and Patrick Gleason. Or, for those not reading Superman, the main creators behind just about every Superman or Action Comics since the beginning of Rebirth. Jurgens kicked things off with a Thank You to the Man of Steel from the eyes of Metropolis before Tomasi and Gleason took a retrospective look through some of Superman’s biggest stories.

Patrick Gleason is incredible by the way. Each page from his and Tomasi’s story will remind you of the decade covers that came out for the issue. It’s also a good thing to see that Gleason will still be on a Superman book (Action #1001) when Bendis takes over.

Before we get to Bendis’ story though I wanted to highlight the three stories I enjoyed most from the book. Geoff Johns, Scott Snyder, and Tom King, once again, showed why they are the top writers over at DC. The three stories went together perfectly and in just 15 total pages showcased why Superman has been able to stick around for 80 years.

Geoff Johns and Oliver Coipel took a look back at the man who caused Superman to throw his car into that massive rock all those years ago. Capturing the awe of a man dressed in red underwear, flying through the sky as he aspires the everyday Joe’s to live their best lives.

Scott Snyder and Rafael Albuquerque followed with a story based much closer to today’s timeline and were the only pair to prominently feature Lex Luthor. Their story highlighted the bizarre relationship between the two. Displaying Superman’s patience as Lex Luthor blatantly moves against him.

Then Tom King and Clay Mann’s story focused on Superman’s consistency throughout the years. Featuring a future we will never see in celebration of a book no of us will probably ever own. A hero that is more about his human traits than his superpowered ones. That’s why Superman is THE superhero and this book attempted to showcase all of him.

Now Bendis is going to re-work history a little and attempt to add an ever-lasting addition to the Superman mythos. He’ll do fine too, just as long as he focuses on the Man and not the Super.

Week #4: Wednesday, April 25

Book of the Week

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HUNT FOR WOLVERINE #1

W: Charles Soule
A: David Marquez

Where is Wolverine? You may have seen him pop up in the backs of some of your titles but just about every “appearance” was useless. We may never learn who gave him the Infinity Gem but at least we know now that it wasn’t the gem that got him out of his adamantium encased tomb. No, Charles Soule went with the logical, and best, route with Kitty Pryde phasing his dead body out of the casing. That doesn’t mean that all of the questions have been answered though. Who ultimately revived him still looms large. I’m also unclear on the time line and it now seems he is being held in some dusty death basement. Was Wolverine really just wandering around the globe trying to discreetly find some of his friends? Or has he been revived for nefarious deeds by someone like Mr. Sinister or the Hand?

Overall the book itself was an excellent read. The Reavers show up to take Wolverine’s body and while flashing between past and present we finally get the full story from immediately after Wolverines death.  The main X-Men (minus all the dead ones) get into a showdown with the Reavers who are trying to steal Logan’s body. Of course “All [The X-Men] had to do was worry about was kicking some bad-guy ass.” So it ended up pretty much how you’d expect. Although you should check one out just to see how savage Kitty Pryde can be when fighting some cyborgs.

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Of course David Marquez was once again fantastic (I already miss the Defenders book) but it’ll remain to be seen if Charles Soule, and others, can grip me through the four, four issue mini-series that will bring back the Wolverine. Of the four, Soule will be writing Weapon Lost, so early money is on Daredevil finding him first. Don’t sleep on the Mystery in Mandipoor though, Jim Zub and Chris Bachalo with Psylocke, Storm and Rogue. Early money on that being my favorite.

Now for a couple of other titles you should keep an eye on.

Hopefully everyone is reading Old Man Hawkeye and The Terrifics by now. Who doesn’t love a classic blind Hawkeye vs geriatric Beetle fight? Heck, Beetle even had to ask Clint for some help into suit before their duel to the death. Next issue will have Demon Dog Venoms so you may want to pick that up… As for the Terrifics. Can someone please explain where the giant War Wheel came from?

The Thanos Annual was, of course, amazing but that’s no surprise. Sacred Creatures #6 coming out is however. I’m not sure when the last Sacred Creatures came out but they made up for it with this triple sized monster. Seriously, wait until you see the size of that trade at the end of May. It features the seven deadly sins, tons of backstory, a murder investigation, and Greed dressed in a monkey suit. It’s kind of like Black Monday Murders mixed with Full Metal Alchemist. Major kudos to anyone who’s read both of those…


Well there you have it. May summed up in 3000 words or less. As always feel free to come by and visit me in the store if you want to critique my picks! 

 
Andy BridgesComment