Comic Picks By The Glick

Marvel Previews Picks: July 2018

April 28, 2018

The good news is that Marvel currently has two titles that are generating lots of buzz and burning through reprints of multiple issues at the same time.  “Amazing Spider-Man” has been generating interest due to the mystery of who the Red Goblin is as Dan Slott builds to the finale of his run in issue #800. As for “Thanos,” its success appears to be down to creators Donny Cates and Geoff Shaw telling a really interesting and unexpected story.  Unfortunately neither of these things are going to be sustainable for the titles in question because “Amazing Spider-Man” is getting a relaunch with a new creative team and “Thanos” is ending with issue #18. I’m sure some of the buzz for “Amazing” will translate to its relaunch in this round of solicitations while Cates’ success on “Thanos” bodes well for his upcoming stint on “Venom” and the “Cosmic Ghost Rider” miniseries which debuts here.  Will any of these titles prove as successful as what came before? History tells me the answer to that is likely to be a firm “No” but I’ll likely be picking up everything mentioned here at some point so I’ll be able to see for myself in time.

Captain America #1:  The Ta-Nehisi Coates run finally gets underway.  Lenil Yu is on board as artist for this relaunch as Cap continues his efforts to restore his reputation in the wake of “Secret Empire” and deals with a new group call the Power Elite who are looking to co-opt his image.  In theory, I should be really excited for this. The problem is that Coates’ run on “Black Panther” just hasn’t clicked with me yet. Maybe he’ll give the character a more political bent, but that didn’t seem to go down all that well when Nick Spencer tried it.  With everyone else, I mean -- I still liked his Cap stories. I’ll be watching the reaction to this relaunch to see if it’s something I can actually get excited about. Meanwhile, speaking of Spencer...

 

Amazing Spider-Man #’s 1&2:  He’s heading up the relaunch of “Amazing” with “Invincible’s” Ryan Ottley as the new artist.  Ottley has shown over the years that he’s one of the best superhero artists around and I think he’s a perfect fit for this book.  It’s going to look great, that I have no doubt about. As for the writing, well, Spencer spent most of the past couple of years polarizing comic book audiences with his takes on “Captains America” Sam Wilson and Steve Rogers.  I’m honestly surprised to see him on a high profile title like this after “Secret Empire” and the storylines leading up to it wound up being as controversial as they were. Still, Spencer’s a witty writer and I think he shouldn’t have much trouble capturing Spidey’s voice.  The fact that Peter is also going to (unknowingly) have the supervillain known as Boomerang as a roommate pleases me to no end after seeing him in “Superior Foes of Spider-Man.” I think all this sounds very promising, but your mileage will definitely vary depending on how you feels about the writer.

 

Cosmic Ghost Rider #1 (of 5):  Straight from the pages of Cates’ “Thanos” run with new artist Dylan Burnett onboard.  I’ve been spoiled for the character’s identity and, thanks to the solicitation text it seems, his fate in the “Thanos” series.  All you should know going in to this miniseries is that the Cosmic Ghost Rider is a famous Marvel character who died, made a deal with Mephisto to be Ghost Rider, and another deal with Galactus to become cosmic.  Now he’s out to make the universe a better place in a story that looks like it’s starting at crazy and aiming to get wilder from there. I’ll have a better idea of what to expect from this once I read “Thanos Wins” though it sounds pretty interesting already.

 

X-23 #’s 1&2:  So… Laura Kinney is no longer the All-New Wolverine.  *deep sigh* If she was still, then I’d consider giving this new series from writer Mariko Tamaki and artist Juann Cabal a chance.  As we live in a world where all comic book characters revert to their original forms at one point I’m just going to give this a pass and let “All-New Wolverine” be Laura’s only solo series on my bookshelf for now.

 

Death of the Inhumans #1 (of 5):  Well it’s about goddamn time Marvel realized that only death can wash away the bad blood generated by their misguided push to make the Inhumans their cinematic replacement for “X-Men.”  The setup is that the Kree have come with a message to the Inhumans, “Join or die!” and now it’s up to Black Bolt and his family to provide a response. Cates will be orchestrating the carnage with Ariel Olivetti on hand to make it all look good.  This is all about drawing a line under the current run of “Inhumans” titles and while the writer wasn’t involved at all in them, we’ll see if he can bring a little craziness to liven up the proceedings.

 

Infinity Wars:  Prime #1:  Buried under all of these other solicitations is the kickoff for Marvel’s next major crossover.  It’s Infinity Gem-centric in case you hadn’t guessed. And Wolverine looks to figure into it because he’s got his hands on one of them.  Mike Deodato Jr. is illustrating the event, which is a good thing in my book, while Gerry Duggan is writing it. ...I still have yet to read another comic by Duggan after he shat the bed with his solo “Deadpool” relaunch a couple years back.  As I’m committed to following the overall narrative of the Marvel Universe I guess I’ll have to get over that and pick this up when it’s collected.

 

X-Classified #1:  Nearly everything about this comic is classified.  Aside from the fact that it’s a new “X-Men” title and has some variant covers from J. Scott Campbell and Skottie Young.  It’s hard to get excited about such a thing when it’s likely either a relaunch of “Uncanny” or “Adjectiveless” or maybe a new solo title for Wolverine.  As it’s coming in July at least we won’t have to wait too long to find out what it is.

 

Astonishing X-Men #13:  Apparently this is going to be the title for various creators to tell the “X-Men” story they really want to without committing to a lengthy run.  This time it’s Matthew Rosenberg’s turn and he’s bringing back the Reavers with a secret weapon that only one X-man knows about. Problem is that said X-man is Havok and everyone is still leery of him after his post-”Axis” turn into villainy.  (When did he turn good again anyway? Did he just slowly turn back to normal like Sabretooth?) I still have yet to read anything from Rosenberg, so this looks like just one more reason to pick up something from him just to see if it’s worth the time to check out all the other stuff he’s been writing for Marvel.  Greg Land provides the art (for this issue), which isn’t as much of a dealbreaker for me as I know it will be for most other people.

 

Star Wars #’s 50&51:  Currently Marvel’s longest-running non-relaunched series.  To celebrate, writer Kieron Gillen and artist Salvador Larroca are unveiling the brand new Rebel fleet.  What’s that you say? The Rebels didn’t have a fleet to their name at the start of “Empire?” Hm… This probably isn’t going to end well for them then.

 

S.H.I.E.L.D.:  The Human Machine HC:  The second half of Jonathan Hickman and Dustin Weaver’s epic tale is finally collected.  Now begins my wait for the softcover edition so both volumes will look nice together on my bookshelf.  Unless I can find this on sale somewhere for half-off or more first...

 

Silver Surfer by Slott and Allred Omnibus HC:  $75 gets you a big hardcover collection of all five volumes.  Absolutely worth it if you haven’t bought them already.

 

X-Men Blue vol. 4:  Cry Havok:  While the regular members of the team are lost in space, Magneto is left to contend with the unleashing of Project:  Mothervine! The brainchild of Emma Frost, Havok, Bastion and Miss Sinister, it’s also been a running subplot from the first couple of volumes so I’m curious to find out just what it is.  Also, as Havok is featured as one of the bad guys here, maybe this will explain his good guy turn for the new arc of “Astonishing X-Men.”

 

X-Men Gold vol. 6:  ‘Til Death Do Us Part:  After decades (DECADES!) of relationship drama between the two of them, Kitty Pryde and Piotr Rasputin are finally tying the knot.  Expect to see just about every X-person who isn’t currently dead or lost in space to be in attendance. Also, it wouldn’t be an X-wedding without a villain showing up to ruin the proceedings.  This time we’ve got anti-mutant activist Lydia Nance and 0101, the most powerful Sentinel, gunning to see everyone at the wedding dead. Which isn’t going to happen because this is being written by Marc Guggenheim, and not George R.R. Martin.  There’ll be lots of drama, but brace yourselves for everything to turn out all right in the end.

 

jason@glickscomicpicks.com

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