Blog Archives

The New Ultimate Spider-Man! Someone’s listening!

Have you heard about the new Spider-Man featured in Marvel’s Ultimate line of comic books? If you haven’t yet, I’m impressed. It was reported by various news outlets before issue 4 of Ultimate Fallout hit the newsstands. In fact, that’s a bit unfair to readers who want to be surprised with each issue. It’s just continually interesting that the happenings of Marvel comics are regularly reported in the news. DC fanboys weep because Time Magazine will never report on the fact that Sinestro is now a member of the Green Lantern Corps. and Hal Jordan has been kicked-out for pushing his ring to attack and kill a rogue Guardian.

This isn’t about me bashing on DC, though. (I love their characters, I swear!) This is about my somehow continued coverage of the “Death of Spider-Man” and Ultimate Fallout storylines. I didn’t expect the new Spider-Man to be introduced so soon, although nothing has been revealed about him in the comics except for this: Read the rest of this entry

Advertisements

New Mutants – help is hard

New Mutants is quickly becoming my second favorite X-title, right behind X-Factor. It started a few issues back when Cyclops decided that the team should be used to tie up loose ends. Not only does this put the younger X team in a position for interesting stories that confront plot holes, but it also marked a stylistic shift toward more concise writing. You can’t have a book devoted to tightening things up that simultaneously makes such errors itself. I think the writing team knew that.

Issue 28 struck exactly the right chord with me. I’ve always wondered what a (somewhat) realistic therapist would make of characters in comics. In walks Gus Grim, a horribly named therapist described by Emma Frost as both a “cowboy and an Indian.” The narrative tone of the issue with definitely humorous, but that was stricken with some poignancy. Grim appears to use a variant form of Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy.I always thought the most concise summation of the practice was, “Get over yourself.” Grim would agree. Read the rest of this entry

Ultimate Fallout

“The Death of Spider-Man” storyline clearly irked me. This Ultimate Fallout book subtitled “Spider-Man No More” seems to be a clearly indulgent cash grab. Six issues of mourning for the alternate version of Marvel’s most celebrated character. I don’t need to mention again that Spider-Man is my favorite superhero, nor do I need to mention that I absolutely loved the Ultimate version up until the ultimatum wave hit. (Yeah, it was a weird thing that happened. Magneto reversed the magnetic poles of the Earth.) I’m definitely going to read about the funeral for this character, especially as it seems that despite the crap he received as a superhero, almost all of New York seems to be attending his funeral. It’s touching. Read the rest of this entry

Ultimate Spider-Man 160: My god, it’s full of holes

At least it's not titled "Spider-Man No More", right?

I have to admit that I have been a fan of Ultimate Spider-Man for at least five years, maybe longer. For some reason, people complain about the writing of Brian Bendis. People used to complain about the decompressed storylines requiring three issues to tell one story – rather than one issue per story or the blended storylines that have become the Marvel vogue since the launch of the Ultimate line of comics. I love Ultimate Spider-Man. I even stuck with the story after the change of status quo in Ultimatum. It was interesting and seemingly going somewhere.

Then came the “Death of Spider-Man” storyline, which was tied into the ever interesting but hyper-compressed Ultimate Comics Avengers vs. New Ultimates books. This does not retroactively eliminate my love for this specific Spider-Man title, but the legacy of the book is lost. Not because killing Spider-Man is horrid. It isn’t at all when it is done poignantly. When you kill the heart of the Ultimate Marvel Universe, you better make sure to bring your A-game. Unfortunately, they did not. Read the rest of this entry

Thor: The Thunder God who Somehow Controls Lightning

Thor is by no means a great film in this day and age, but the circumstances of the movie make it a surprising one. One of my least favorite comic book characters is Thor. What fun is it to read about a god? There is little drama to be had there because even if he does there are many means for him to come back – more so than most comic book characters. I was not looking forward to Thor and have made it very clear, although I said that marketing would have problems with the movie. I’m silly. The Marvel movies are their own brand that people will give a watch at least once. Thor was an easy number one in the box office this weekend. Good for Marvel!

But the movie works, and that requires some exploration. Besides the fact that it was a movie that managed to balance its humor, action, and pseudo-drama, the movie seemed to speak to its primary audience of children born in the 80’s and 90’s. Thor and Loki were born into a generation of privilege. Their parents and the parents before them fought in wars and had to establish kingdoms or households, and the kids do not know how to be humble or ever want for anything. The results are arrogance and envy. Read the rest of this entry