Hey Comic Impact! Sorry for the delay this week but mother nature got in the way of me picking up comics when I wanted to so I got them a bit late and didn’t get to finish them in time to put together this list. So let’s just get on with the list.
1. Winter Soldier #14 by Ed Brubaker and Butch Guice [Marvel]
This is end, beautiful friend, the end. A little overdramatic? Maybe, but I don’t care because this was one of my favorite comics at Marvel and though I know it’s not ending and yes I will continue to buy it once Jason Latour comes on as writer [And so should you!], this comic marks the last work of Ed Brubaker at Marvel Comics for the foreseeable future. And that my dear readers, is sad. But if you want to get sadder then reading this issue you know how sad it is. This was the conclusion to the Black Widow Hunt and we find out what happens to Bucky, Widow, and Novokov. The entire issue is beautifully drawn by Butch Guice, I love the way he renders rain in comic books and he’s been doing an amazing job the whole arc. It just looks so damn cool, especially the fight scenes with Bucky and Widow and Novokov where there’s lightning and then when SHIELD shows up and they have lights shining down on the cemetery. Actually credit should also go to colorists Jordie Bellaire and Bettie Breitweiser for just killing it withthe mood and making it seem like I have a movie in my hands that I am reading. I have to mention though the one panel flashbacks that Bucky has when he’s thinking of the Black Widow and his love for her.
They are simple yet elegant with colors that make it stand out on the page so you know what is more important to Bucky, or more to show us what he has on his mind and what he’s going to be losing if he doesn’t help the Black Widow. I like that kind of stuff because it makes you think on a different level when reading a comic book. Alas, poor Bucky, though we are use to seeing the good guys win constantly it’s always surprising when they lose. And though Bucky succeeded in saving the Black Widow and returning her to her almost original state, when Novokov brainwashed her he permanently messed up all of Black Widow’s memories with Bucky in them, essentially erasing him from her mind in a very fucked up Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind kind of way. It was a gut punch to see things play out like that and it was heart wrenching for Bucky to the make the decision not to fix her so that she could remember him, but saying that she’s been messed up in the head too many times and he’s not going to put her through that one more time just for him. All this leaves our hero alone, heartbroken, and what I assume to be very, very angry so I wonder how much more Latour is going to punish him when he takes over. I just want to take this time to thank Ed Brubaker for a fantastic 14 issues of a character that he loved and made popular, looking forward to seeing what else he’ll be doing in comics. [Read Fatale] And thanks to Butch Guice and the rest of the art team for drawing, inking, and coloring one of the best comics on the stands.
2. Wolverine and the X-Men #24 by Jason Aaron and David Lopez [Marvel]
Issue #24 is not the first of its kind in this series but it is one of the reasons that Jason Aaron is so god damned good at his job in writing this series. This particular issue is a quiet issue. Not much happens in action or in forwarding any particular arc. What it does do is check in on all the players that we regularly see in this series and some slight glimpses into what might happen in the future. The last time Aaron wrote one of these it ended with something really bad happening to one of my favorite characters in the series and the issues ends with something else happening to this particular character again. But before we get into that let’s take a look at the quiet moments and which ones were my favorites. The issue starts off with Storm talking to her ex-husband The Black Panther and that while their marriage was annulled he still loves and misses her but he’s ok with her doing whatever as long as it isn’t with him, whoever he is. Wolverine gets ordered by Rachel to watch the mansion while the rest of the rest of the staff gets a teachers’ night out.
Then we get to see Kitty and Bobby on their first date and it isn’t going exactly as planned. This is one of my favorite moments because they discuss all the small things that will probably lead them to a doomed relationship and how different both of these characters view everything that is going on in their lives right now. But I also like that they realize that they aren’t normal and that going on a normal date doesn’t work so Kitty decides to take Ice Man swimming in what I think is something really clever, she takes him by the hand and they phase down under the street and we see what Kitty was referring when she said swimming, then they do some heroics around the world before
going back to the mansion and kissing. We get a scene of Idie visiting a comatose Broo with Quentin Quire listening on them. We get a scene of Beast visiting Brand for some alone time but Beast is getting information to see if he can help Broo. We catch up with Sabretooth and Kade Kilgore to see what the Hellfire Club is up to. There’s a pretty funnt scene with Jean Grey and Quentin Quire where he tries to score with her and she turns him down.
The second major story of this issue is the one between Storm and Wolverine. After Wolverine finds out that he has to babysit he goes to the danger room and takes out his frustrations the only way that he knows how, by beating, clawing, and tearing shit up. He is later joined by Storm who asks him for a favor. Two actually, one is her telling him that he needs to stop being afraid of braking the kids in the school and to help them the only way he knows how and the second is to cut her hair into a Mohawk, and then after they kiss. I like these catch up issues with characters because when I read them I know that Jason Aaron loves these characters and they mean something to him and I like reading about them because they mean something to me. This was one of my favorite books last year and it looks like it will continue to be this year.
3. Uncanny Avengers #3 by Rick Remender and John Cassaday [Marvel]
The Red Skull is a monster. I know that. You know that. He’s insane and all his ideas and beliefs are from an era where monsters were trying to take over the world. Well he’s back and he’s trying to take over the world and if that wasn’t bad enough he now has the power of the most powerful psychic of all time in Professor Xavier. Skull is in New York City where he has used his newfound powers to take control of all the humans and make them seek out mutants and start killing them. He succeeds and it’s pretty brutal especially some of the stories we get from some of the mutants that get attacked.
I like that someone like the Red Skull has to use super powers to get his message of mutant hatred across because not only is he being hypocritical but also because he has to force people against their will to commit these atrocities and I’d like to think that people are more open minded when it comes to people that are different from them and I hope that’s what Remender is showing here. The Avengers show up and they have some pretty cool moments. Havok takes the leader position and sends off Captain America and Wolverine to go do what they do. Thor has a pretty cool fight scene with Mzee. Captain America is struggling to fight the mind control trying to take over his body. The issue ends with the Skull’s Team getting control over Thor, but not before Wolverine cuts off one of Skull’s hands.
4. FF #3 by Matt Fraction and Mike Allred [Marvel]
We have to talk about the cover. I mean, look at it. “The FF is dead! If you guys don’t listen to me.” If that doesn’t stop you and make you pick up the comic to buy it, or at leas flip through it then I don’t know what. It’s bold and colorful and declarative. It stops you to at least look at it and make you think about it, job well done Allreds. We jump into the issue where future Johnny Storm tells the story of how Doom, the Annihilating Conqueror, a combination of Victor Von Doom, Kang the Conqueror, and an Annihilus, destroyed the Fantastic Four and that Johnny was the only one to get away. Johnny ends story time by asking what they are going to do about Doom, and we get a glimpse into Scott Lang’s mind seeing his daughter dead at the hands of Doom. But before they can
plan anything Scott goes out to get Darla back to become Miss Thing. I liked that this issue showed us that Darla is more than a pretty face musician and that she feels she can do better than her current situation. As Darla is crying in her room, and Scott shrunken down hiding in a plant, she gets a package from the Yancy Street Gang which turns out to be a bomb with exploding whipped cream, the gang then bursts into her room to take pictures and then Scott and Darla try to chase them down in my favorite bit a dialogue where Scott calls them internet jerks, very funny. The chase scene is beautifully and creatively drawn by Allred.
The scene ends with Scott and Darla in Times Square on New Year’s Day at exactly midnight. It looks like that Darla and Scott are having a moment and they’re going to kiss but Scott tells Darla that they are going to end Doom. And the issue ends with Scott telling the rest of the FF his plan and what they’re going to do. I liked this issue a lot because of how Darla was written but I also liked it because Scott Lang is finally given a reason to go after Doom and destroy him. Not like he didn’t need a reason before, but going to Castle Doom to murder Doom is not becoming of a super hero so he’s finally given a reason and it’ll be interesting to see what comes of it.
5. Stumptown Volume 2 #5 [of 5] by Greg Rucka and Matthew Southworth [Oni-Press]
This volume of Stumptown was a great read. It was a lot of fun and it mixed a lot of different ideas that are part of the stories custom to the private eye and some that aren’t. This is the last issue of the second volume and when you get to the end of the issue you will realize and hope that a third volume comes along soon. This issue deals with the aftermath of car chase from the previous issue where the skinheads that where being chased are captured and it seems that that’s the end of the case. But of course that isn’t the end of the case, things don’t sit right with Dex. Just because her client has back what she was ask to find doesn’t mean that all the questions were answered and a good or at least a stubborn detective the case isn’t over until all the questions are answered.
The particular question is who originally stole the guitar, and why was the case covered in meth, and where did that meth go? All the questions get answered. Later on, Mim, who’s guitar was stolen and hired Dex in the first place, stops by for a visit to give Dex a present which is a brand new car. I’m not a car guy so I don’t know what kind or where to begin with comparing it to another car, so I’ll just call it nice. At the first ride that Dex takes the car on she gets rear ended. Oh the luck of a private investigator.