Comic Picks By The Glick

Marvel Previews Picks: October 2013

July 20, 2013

Marvel’s current crossover has yet to even begin and already the ending for it has been somewhat spoiled.  I won’t go into specifics, but if you want you can check out the link to Comic Book Resources’ article on the upcoming “Inhumanity” event.  The short version is that there are now a whole lot more Inhumans out there and the main royal family of Black Bolt, Medusa, Karnak, Triton, et. al. has fractured and split into different factions across the globe.  “Game of Thrones” was given as the main analogue to the conflict and intrigue that’s supposed to define the new “Inhumans” series that will be the centerpiece of this initiative.  I’d like to be excited about it, but it’s written by Matt Fraction who tends to do his best work when he’s working off in Marvel’s fringes rather than in its spotlight.  Compare his work on “Fantastic Four” to the quirkier “FF” or look at how “Hawkeye” is the best thing he’s done with superheroes at the company.  Right now, the most interesting thing about the event is that promotional image with Spider-Man back in his old costume, Wolverine getting a new one, and the fact that Nightcrawler’s init.  Answers will be forthcoming eventually.

Also, just about everything ties in with “Infinity” in these solicitations.  Whether or not the event will be big enough to give them all a boost is yet to be seen.

A+X #13:    This anthology title has been freefalling in sales for a while now, so a change is in order.  While you’ll still be getting two stories this month, one of them will be the start of a six-part team up between Cyclops and Captain America by Gerry Duggan (who wrote “The Infinite Horizon” and is the current co-writer of “Deadpool”) and artist David Yardin.  Given the former’s current status as an outlaw, the pairing certainly sounds intriguing.  That’s all we have to go on, though, as there’s no hint as to why they’re teaming up in the first place.  Unfortunately the other story running in this issue is billed as “the sexiest story in ‘A+X’ history” since it has Howard Chaykin drawing Emma Frost and the Black Widow.  I’ve yet to read any superhero story where shameless T&A has made me more interested in reading about it.  Why bother when I can just go watch real porn?

Speaking of superhero T&A, Adam Warren of “Dirty Pair” and “Empowered” fame has a story in the second “A+X” volume which comes out this month.  With “Empowered,” he’s shown that this kind of stuff can work if it’s played for laughs and is actually built into the premise.  Chaykin has apparently done work like that in the past, but I’m not expecting anything notable about his contribution here.

Cataclysm #0.1:  “CLASSIFIED!” is what the solicitation text says.  Given that the “Hunger” miniseries has Galactus showing up in the Ultimate Universe and this month’s solicitations certainly sound like wrap-ups for “Ultimate Spider-Man” and “Ultimate X-Men,” then I think the end times are finally here.  After all, they’ve already wrecked the world once with “Ultimatum” and broke it some more with the latest relaunch so it strikes me that there’s little else to do except to roll up the welcome mat and shut the lights off when they leave.  I’m not going to be too disappointed as Miles Morales is almost certain to move over to the 616 proper as are any other characters Bendis has taken a liking to.  The Ultimate Universe had a good run, but sales dictated that its time had finally come...

At least until they re-launch it with ALL-NEW CHARACTERS AND CREATORS in another year or two.  The smart thing would be to give it five years, or even ten.  But this is Marvel we’re talking about and the quick buck means everything these days.

Captain America #12:  “The Weapon Minus program revealed!”  It was really inevitable if you think about it...

Fantomex MAX #1 (of 4):  Like the character, have no clue about the person, Andrew Hope, who will be writing him.  Thankfully my time-honored strategy of waiting for the trade will let me know whether or not he’s a good fit for the faux-French mutant and if he has a future in this industry.

Deadpool by Joe Kelly Omnibus HC:  Now I’ve heard that Kelly’s run is the definitive one for the character, but I can’t say that I’m eager to check it out with a $125 price point even if it is over 1100 pages.  I was willing to do that for the “Walt Simonson Thor Omnibus” because it was the “Walt Simonson Thor Omnibus.”  Deadpool just doesn’t conjure that kind of respect from me.

X-Men vol. 1:  Primer:  I was wondering how they were going to package the first part of this title given that issue #5 was part of a crossover.  Unsurprisingly, we’re getting the first four issues plus a reprint of Jubilee’s initial appearance in “Uncanny #244.”  Claremont-era “X-Men” is a lot more readable than the other reprints Marvel has tossed into other collections to beef up the page count so I’m not too bothered.  Also, the first couple of issues of this title from Brian Wood have been getting good buzz so I’m looking forward to reading this paperback (not hardcover, thankfully) when it comes out.

X-Men:  X-Corps:  Joe Casey’s tenure on “Uncanny X-Men” launched with a lot of hooplah, but while his “doing different things for the sake of being different” worked really well in “Wildcats,” it misfired badly here.  Grant Morrison gave us “New X-Men” at the same time and showed everyone that you could do things differently with these characters, you just had to have a good plan.  Or, do things slowly enough that you wake up one day and the idea of Wolverine as headmaster of a school for new mutants and Cyclops as the outlaw leader of an underground mutant strikeforce makes perfect sense given the past few years.  I was buying both Morrison and Casey’s runs in single issue form at the time (this was right when they started to reprint EVERYTHING they published, but didn’t tell me) and gave up on the latter’s after about nine issues because it wasn’t all that great.  It’s a good thing I stopped too, because if I had kept on buying the title, I would’ve wound up in the Chuck Austen run.  I’ve never read anything from there, but its reputation is more than enough to keep me away.

Jason Glick

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