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Non-’90s Bargain-bin Finds

Usually when hitting the bargain bins, I’m grabbing ’90s stuff. Mostly DC and Marvel, and other randomish stuff. But this time, I found some stuff much more recent, from just the last several years, that totally made my day to find.

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First, I was surprised to discover several TPBs in the 25-cent bins–so much so that I actually asked if they were supposed to be in there. I recall seeing this Turok book a few years ago, but $14.95 seemed too steep for what it is. Of course, for 25-cents it’s an awesome purchase. The Sigil books are quite worthwhile at the price as well–one for me, one for a friend.

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While I’ve refused to pay $3.99 for certain comics, I can’t deny my interest in the Regenesis phase of X-Men stuff. I’ve told myself for awhile I’d backtrack via bargain-bins…I just expected $1-bins, so 25-cent bins I will definitely take advantage!

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I have several gaping holes in my X-Men run, that this bunch begins to plug, though just barely. I missed a few years where I was all but unaware of what was going on in this title; I’ve since caught up a bit (a couple of these issues I bought digitally during a comiXology sale a couple months back), but again…25-cents is a steal for issues so recent.

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I saw a set of these four Magneto issues at another comic shop a few weeks back–while I don’t recall the price, I think it was around $16…I thought these were $3.99 issues but looking now, they’re priced at $2.99 (further example of Marvel losing up-front sales from me for “training” me to believe anything they put out is more likely $3.99!). I’ve been interested in the title, and my waiting has CERTAINLY paid off here.

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Finally, I grabbed the two issues of X-Men Legacy I saw, and for 25-cents can afford to try The First X-Men (heck, if it still has the download code, that alone is “worth” the 25-cents!).

The entire bargain-bin haul for the week barely cost me what any two issues would have cost me new off the rack as recently as this past summer.

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The Rest of the Stack: Week of June 13, 2012

The Rest of the Stack is my general mini-review coverage of new comics for any given week. It’s in addition to (or in place of) full-size individual reviews. It’s far less formal, and more off-the-top-of-my head thoughts on the given comics than it is detailed reviews.

AVX: VERSUS #3

Well, this concept has worn totally thin on me. Yeah, yeah…nothing-but-the-fight, no plot, blah blah blah. I don’t mind just a fight, but darnit, put some intelligence to it! And really…”AR” here? I should NOT have to bust out the smartphone (note to writers, editors, publishers: *I* might have a smartphone to have the app, but not everyone will!) just to be able to read half the dialogue! The Colossus/Thing battle’s nothing but punching, basically…big hairy deal who wins. The Black Widow/Magik fight…basically the same. And why would the Widow–in battle with a Russian girl–keep arbitrarily switch between Russian and English? I don’t care if there’s low to no plot…but geez, have some consistency other than “hey, look what we can do if you use an app!” Ugh…this might make me break from the completist mentality and see if I can drop the rest of this series. Absolutely NOT even BEGINNING to approach anything worth $4…this should be one of those supplemental freebies Marvel sends to the comic shops to GIVE out. “Hey, look at this fight! Look at the sweet art! If you want art AND story, pick up the series this is based on!” (4/10)

AVENGERS #27

I don’t know what it was about this issue, but nothing to it really struck me as all that good. And I feel like I’ve missed something outright…I mean, aren’t these characters also involved with the Captain Marvel “resurrection” stuff, too? I don’t mind the art on this issue…there’s one panel in particular that I really like of Thor. But this stuff with Protector or whatever his name is…I just don’t feel at all invested, and so I don’t care about the character (or maybe it’s the other way around). Given this arc ties in with the main series, it also seems rather odd that a week after #5 of AvX ships, we have an issue concluding a story that takes place before #4. BUT…at least we have some notes now to place stuff in the overall timeline. I guess part of what’s soured my mood is thinking about the price of these issues. Yeah, there’s that download code thing, but I don’t have an iPad or a physically roughly-the-size-of-a-comic screened tablet, and if I’m paying to get the physical comic, I’m probably gonna read that, not a digital copy. Shame it’s not a case of buy a physical $3.99 issue, get a free digital copy of “any” new issue. I’d be all for that. Looks like a new story arc with the next issue…maybe that’ll work better? (6/10)

X-MEN: LEGACY #268

Ok…so this is basically a one-shot spotlighting Frenzy. Who until a few days ago I didn’t give a crap about. But having recognized the name, it seems this character actually dates back to the X-Men “relaunch” of 1991 or so…or at least the Fatal Attractions crossover of 1993…unless it’s coincidence that one of the Acoyltes was named Frenzy? Anyway…not a bad issue here, and it’s kinda nice getting a done-in-one story on a character within the context of the overall AvX thing. Story’s good–we get some insight into Frenzy as a character, what she’s been through and come from as well as seeing her making at least the overall attempt to be a better person and all that. The art’s not bad, either. Definitely the best of this week’s AvX issues! (8/10)

UNCANNY X-FORCE #26

I dropped this title a few weeks back, but had to finish out what the LCS had already ordered for me. And now with AvX and half hoping this title would tie in, I find myself still snagging it off the shelf. On the one hand, I don’t care for this idea of Omega Red’s powers being split amongst a group of assassins, but something about this title makes it work. And while I don’t know how long this title will last, even when I want to ignore it or give it up due to the $4 price and not always following the subtleties…it’s one of the better, creative titles I’ve found, and so help me, it keeps me curious over what happens next. Some of that helps from seeing that “Kid Apocalypse” (Genesis) was a development being used in the greater X-universe and not just this title…which lends more to this title actually mattering. I guess I’m taking it a month at a time until I miss an issue and don’t miss the read and simply don’t bother to pick it up…and leaving it off my pull list will be the extent–for now–of my official protest of the price of this title? (7.5/10)

TMNT COLOR CLASSICS #2

I absolutely love these color reprints of the classic TMNT material. I’m not sure if the “micro series” one-shots will be tossed into this series’ numbering or be their own things…I sorta hope this keeps in line with the original series’ numbering, though, to keep stuff straight. Whatever the case…this issue reprints the original TMNT #2 which introduced April O’Neil, the mousers, Baxter Stockman, and showed that the turtles weren’t just themselves a one-shot thing. I like the combination of the original art with the new colors…it’s the best of both worlds. The writing/story is a bit rough, but it was what it was, and picks up by the time we get to one of my favorite arcs in the Leonardo one-shot and issues 10-11. Whether new fan interested in older stories without springing for those huge hardcovers or an old fan looking to pick up single issues at a relative bargain, or whatever…you can’t really go wrong with this series, at least this second issue in. (9/10)

EXTERMINATION #1

Boom‘s got one thing right–the price point. Their recent launch of new titles have wound up in my hands due to a standing order with my LCS for $1.00 and under issues. For $1 (or $.50 or $.25) I’m willing to give stuff a look where even $2 or definitely $3 or $4 would be more than I care to gamble. This takes a Batman-esque character and has him teamed up with one of his old villains as the two try to survive in a post-apocalyptic/alien-invasion world. I have a lot of questions, and it took me about half the issue to make the distinction visually between “present day” and “flashbacks,” but overally I found this issue quite worth the $1…even though it took me an extra week to get around to reading it. I’m curious about where it’ll go…but I’m very hesitant to plan to continue due to the $4 cover price. It’s also a bit of a principle thing for me with the price and the “variant covers are standard issue no matter the issue number” thing, and since it’s not TMNT it does not fall into my conscious exceptions category. If my attention’s grabbed by one of the covers for #2 and it’s a small week, I might give it a continuation to really draw me in for the story. The art’s good, so if $2.99 and pinups-instead-of-variants was standard fare, I’d be far more likely to dive in. (8/10)

The Rest of the Stack: Week of May 9, 2012

The Rest of the Stack is my general mini-review coverage of new comics for any given week. It’s in addition to (or in place of) full-size individual reviews. It’s far less formal, and more off-the-top-of-my head thoughts on the given comics than it is detailed reviews.

X-MEN LEGACY #266

avxxmenlegacy266Rogue, Gambit, and the rest of the adults at Wolverine’s school struggle to decide which side of the conflict they’re going to fall on, though they want to still present a unified front to the students. When Avengers show up at the school, they’re asked to remain a specific distance away from the mansion and do their “watching” from there. Of course, not all the adults want to remain strictly conflict-free, and after some provocation, the Avengers vs. X-Men battle arrives at the Jean Grey School. As things spiral out of hand, the Avengers call in a Big Gun. This is another AvX tie-in, and seems to be set fairly early in the overall story–possibly before last week’s Avengers Academy issue. (I do wish there’d be a timeline published to situate the tie-ins with the main AvX title). Art’s good overall; I followed the visual side of things quite well here. Story-wise, not bad…it’s been awhile since I last checked in with these characters, so it’s interesting seeing them again, and I look forward to catching up with ’em over the next couple months’ worth of tie-in issues. Not sure how well this fits in terms of ongoing plot-points, but as another of these many tie-ins, it continues to fill in extra details on the deeper/more thorough side of things beyond the “core” plot points of the main AvX title. (8/10)

WOLVERINE AND THE X-MEN #10

avxwolverineandthexmen010Cyclops and Co. show up at Wolverine’s school seeking momentary sanctuary. Their presence of course isn’t trusted at face value. Meanwhile, Genesis (“Kid Apocalypse”) and Angel deal with their own lack of belonging–Genesis for everyone believing him to be (or capable of becoming) Apocalypse, and Angel for having the appearance of an original X-man but with no memory or trace of the original’s personality. While the Avengers Call comes in, Gladiator’s agents arrive on Earth with a mission that may not be immediately tolerated by the Jean Grey School’s mutants. I don’t care much for the art with this issue…but darned if there aren’t some interesting concepts here! It’s kinda cool seeing Angel and Genesis here–that even if not serving as focal points in Uncanny X-Force the characters aren’t being forgotten as mere plot points but are actually being developed. This might be a book that if I can get myself to tolerate the art I might actually track down back issues for and maybe continue with beyond AvX. Story’s not bad, though pulled down a bit by my distaste for the art…but a solid issue. (7/10)

NEW AVENGERS #26

avxnewavengers026Hundreds of years ago, a new candidate for the Iron Fist is chosen. After an accelerated training period, she tests to become the Iron Fist. She may also be a vessel of the Phoenix and the only hope for the Earth’s survival. I sure hope this retconning in of the Iron Fist vs. Phoenix thing becomes a key point in the main series, as otherwise I really don’t much care about Iron Fist History, and other than the thematic tie it otherwise seems outside the AvX story as a whole. The story itself isn’t bad, and for the most part I really dig the art…especially the cover (misleading though it is). I have the feeling I’m going to “get” more out of these New Avengers tie-in issues once the arc’s further in and I have more context for the character and the “flashback” is fleshed out a bit more (especially now that I realize this entire arc may be a flashback). As I’ve temporarily suspended my avoidance of these Avengers and X-Men titles over the $3.99 price point, I’m trying to just enjoy ’em as part of this unintended immersion…this issue may well be what “hooks” me on the Iron Fist, but it’s sure not something I would have sought out or cared to bother with without the AvX banner. (8/10)

WALKING DEAD #97

walkingdead097Rick’s group encounters their new opponents and sets forth “the” new ultimatum they’ll be operating under. Rick and Andrea have a moment and further process some recent interaction, while Maggie has some important new for Glen, and the rest of the survivors continue about their lives. Nearly half a series beyond that story leading to issue #48 or so and I still haven’t grown all that attached to non-early characters. And things are ramping up toward the big 100th issue, though that seems likely to fall mid-story arc. I’m sorta indifferent about this issue. It’s another issue (second in a month, which I don’t mind so long as it keeps to the $3 price point), meeting with usual expectation overall. Solid story, solid art. Maybe the only downside is that the cliffhanger isn’t quite as “major” as some others have been. I am finding this series to be blurring a bit on the issue-to-issue basis, and am starting to think of stepping back again from the singles and just get the collected volumes…or hold off reading til I have 2-3+ issues to read in one sitting, as some of these issues seem particularly short. Still…I love that even coming late to the party as I did (around issue 32 or 33, perhaps?) I’ve been onboard for 2/3 this series’ existence. (7.5/10)

HIGHER EARTH #1

higherearth001Seems there are multiple Earths if you can punch through the wall between universes. Some are aware of these other Earths, and there’s a system in place to regulate travel between the Earths. Some are considered better than others, and the further “down” you go, the less prestige an Earth has. The “prime” Earth is called “Higher Earth,” and is above the others. We open on a lower Earth, where some sort of warrior arrives in search of a resident, who he has to educate on the fly about the existence of these other Earths, and convince her to travel with him to another. He does this while dealing with “locals” as well as being chased by other forces seeking to stop his quest. This wasn’t a bad $1 issue (which is why it wound up in my purchase…part of my pull list is a standard pull of $1.00-ish or less issues exactly like this). I like the concept, and as a first issue, it does what I’d hope–introduces the premise, a couple main characters, an antagonist or few, and leaves one with something of a “hook” to come back for the next issue. The art’s solid–nothing spectacular, but really nothing to complain about. Incidentally, the older warrior and the young red-head puts me in mind of Cable/Hope from Marvel…which has me curious and interested in where things go. Unfortunately, as with the other week’s $1 premiere of Fanboys vs. Zombies…the trouble comes in the fact that while the issue’s definitely worth the $1 and probably would be at $2.99, I’m assuming this is another $3.99 book…which means that I’m not going to come back for #2 “off the rack.” I may eventually come back to Higher Earth either from bargain bins or a good price on a collected volume, though. (7.5/10)

TMNT COLOR CLASSICS #1

tmntcolorclassics001Continuing the wealth of TMNT material from IDW, this issue re-presents the original TMNT #1…but in color. This is the original comic book that started it all, the original presentation of the TMNT, Splinter, Shredder, and the origin. Though originally in black-and-white, the issue has been colorized by Tom Smith’s Scorpion Studios. If you’re not already familiar with the Turtles as they originally appeared, their story began as they were attacked by a street gang–the Purple Dragons. After a brutal fight, they return home–all having survived. Splinter deems their skills to be at their peak, and reveals to them their origin–of ninjas in Japan, of a doomed love, revenge, and a strange ooze. The turtles challenge the killer of their master’s owner and his wife, and soon the turtles do battle with Oroku Saki–the Shredder. Even though I’ve read this story plenty of times before this week…I quite enjoy revisiting it…especially at the hope of re-reading the original adventures of the TMNT in color on a monthly single-issue basis. I like the colorization of the issue, and will eventually have to compare it to the First Graphic Novel edition. There’s something to the way this was done that–for lack of better phrasing–“respects” the original art, while presenting it in color and thus making this edition “new” rather than “merely” a reprint. Highly, HIGHLY recommended if you’re a TMNT fan and haven’t yet read the original Mirage #1 story! (9.5/10)

The Rest of the Stack: Week of September 28, 2011

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The Rest of the Stack is my general mini-review coverage of new comics for any given week. It’s in addition to (or in place of) full-size individual reviews. It’s far less formal, and more off-the-top-of-my head thoughts on the given comics than it is detailed reviews.

ANGEL & FAITH #2

angelandfaith002Faith finds herself questioning Angel and his intended actions, as well as what effect her going along with him–or not–would have. While she does and as they battle some demons, we also get reference all the way back to early in Angel season 1, which I rather enjoyed because it’s a deep continuity reference that even I can “get” with my limited exposure to the tv series. This is one of those series that I think is going to take a bit of a concerted effort to get through. In a way, it’s not one I necessarily want to read in and of itself from the cover alone. Even now, just a couple days after having read the issue, I can’t even remember what the cliffhanger was. And it takes flipping back through the issue to refresh my memory of exactly what went on in the issue, at length. So on the surface, it’s not something that overly engages or interests me. And yet, when I actually read it, I enjoy it. (I also realize that I have got to read those final two volumes of Buffy Season Eight!). I won’t let many series go like this, but at least for now, I’m sticking with this. I didn’t follow the last Buffy series in singles because I hadn’t yet watched the tv series enough to want to (I’d watched 3/4 of season 1, and wasn’t interested in jumping clear across 7 full seasons). This definitely is a series for long-term fans of the tv series–Buffy and/or Angel. I do definitely like that this series allows us to follow Angel and Faith without taking up space in the main Buffy series, allowing all a better shot at the spotlight and character development and depth. (7.5/10)

FEAR ITSELF: HULK VS. DRACULA #2

fearitselfhulkvsdracula002This series is still building up to the actual battle that gives it its name. Normally I wouldn’t like this, but 1. it’s Gischler–whose writing I’ve come to quite enjoy–and 2. it’s only 3 issues at $2.99 per, which seems quite tame compared to the $3.99 monstrosities that abound with Marvel. On the whole, this is definitely a side-story, but I’m finding it interesting enough to be explored. I’m not particularly enjoying Fear Itself on the whole…but this at least does something with the concept, fleshing out the impact one of the hammer-carriers has simply by existing, simply by being present. Until Gischler‘s Curse of the Mutants arc last year in the new X-Men title, I knew only that Marvel‘s Dracula was a vampire, had had some dealings with Storm and had apparently interacted with Blade. Since then, with the development of the various vampire factions, I’ve come to realize that the vampires can be very much their own culture within the Marvel Universe, much as the Atlanteans or Inhumans or the Shi’ar. Still, 3 issues seems quite short and not a lot of room for intricate development…but it’s a darned sight better than some uber decompressed 6-issue arc. I’d’ve enjoyed something like this at its length being something like one of those Marvel Must Haves, as a triple-sized issue for $6-7. I daresay if such a thing was done, and they were of the quality of this, I’d buy more tie-ins. The art’s not bad, either. It’s sorta cartooney and over the top in a way, but not drastically so, and certainly works to the favorability of this issue. Probably the only drawback to me is that it doesn’t seem like it’s been a month since the previous issue, almost like the series was held and now being rushed out. This’ll be for more die-hard Hulk fans that want everything Hulk; but primarily for the vampire/Dracula fans, or fans of Gischler himself, I think. (8/10)

X-MEN LEGACY #256

xmenlegacy256OK…I think I’m officially–if I wasn’t already–following this book out of habit. I want this story to end. I’m interested in Rogue and Magneto, in their relationship…and I’m not opposed to the writer playing with the Rogue/Gambit/Magneto triangle. I’m interested in Havok, Polaris, and Rachel in terms of whether or not they’re coming back to Marvel Earth or to remain in the “Marvel Cosmic” realm of things. But this story in general just isn’t doing it for me. I’m trying to like the series, I’m trying to engage after enjoying Age of X. But right now, I’m pretty much ready to throw in the towel and keep up via Wikipedia. I don’t care for the “X-Men in Space” thing, and that holds just as true in this issue as earlier. The art’s pretty good overall, though doesn’t blow me away. It’s certainly not good enough to “carry” the book on its own. All in all, I’m pretty disappointed here–in the story not holding me, and in myself for continuing to buy this series despite rapidly-declined interest. (4/10)

The Rest of the Stack: Week of September 14, 2011

restofthestack01It’s been a long time since I’ve used this Rest of the Stack heading for this blog. But while I’ve lacked the patience to compose full reviews, following my mini-reviews of the DC New 52 books, I decided to post mini-reviews/comments on other issues I bought and read this week. And realized that hey…I did this a few times back in ’09 and used this heading. So without further rambling…here’s the rest of the week’s stack.

X-Men #17

xmen017This came out last week or the week before, but I hadn’t gotten around to reading it right away–probably distracted by the first wave of the New 52 from DC, and a weekend trip. Read it this weekend, and it wasn’t bad, though it didn’t really suck me in. There’s an air of continuity here that I don’t totally “get,” as I am unfamiliar with all the characters from Cyclops and the FF’s past. The FF’s uniforms really stand out against the X-Men uniforms–the white/grays against the non-white colors. While this story is purported to be in another dimension, I can’t quite separate it from being another take on the “Savage Land,” which is a bit disconcerting. Though it’s another dimension, the Savage Land has been so overused (to me) that this just doesn’t seem all that different. Granted, the alien creatures are a bit different than what would seem to fit the Savage Land. The differences in Magneto and Doom seem rather apparent here, and I wonder how this story will affect the main FF book, if at all. While this seems a tangential title in the X-corner of the Marvel Universe…there’s something endearing about Gischler‘s take on the characters that makes them feel more “real” or “grounded” than other titles. This also feels like a weird sort of self-contained: it deals with facets of the Marvel Universe and yet doesn’t seem to tie directly to anything else. That’s both good and bad, as it can be enjoyed on its own as its own title and story…but it also does not feel essential to the goings-on of other titles and their stories. Recommended. (7/10)

X-Men Legacy #255

xmenlegacy255Though I can “appreciate” the “X-Men in Space” stuff for what such stories have meant to the characters and their history, I don’t tend to ENJOY them all that much. This is shaping up to be another such story–interesting enough in a way, but not all that engaging. I do wonder if this is the story that’ll bring Polaris and Havok back to Earth, and that can have definite implications on the X-Books, especially with the Schism stuff going on, I guess. I’ve stuck around from the Age of X, but unless this arc wraps up quickly, it’ll probably be what sees me right back off this title. The story itself isn’t bad, and the art’s pretty good overall. But it’s also weird seeing Magneto as part of this grouping of X-characters the same week that I read X-Men #17 that sees Magneto and others in a dimension much like the Savage Land. There’s a certain disconnect. The cover of this issue is probably the most interesting part to me, as it’s easy to forget the family bond between Polaris and Magneto. If you enjoy X-Men in Space, you’ll probably enjoy this arc–which kicked off last issue, I believe. Otherwise, you’re probably gonna be just as well off waiting for the next arc when these characters return to Earth. (7/10)

Uncanny X-Force #15

uncannyxforce015I swear this title is shipping far too frequently of late, especially as I don’t really even recall any feeling of it being “late” at any point. The Dark Angel Saga continues, this is chapter 5. Archangel–through Genocide–has blown up a small town of a few thousand residents, and then with The World and the Life Seed, created a pocket of rapid evolution that goes from a scorched-earth blank-slate to a relatively modern-ish culture that evolved 100+ million years in a few hours. Provided all goes well, Archangel intends to do the same to the entire planet, and it’s left to X-Force to stop this from happening. Though this is indeed called The Dark Angel Saga, it seems to be taking Warren down a dark path whose implications absolutely will not be able to be ignored in general X-continuity…and it seems strange to see the character taken to these depths. The art on this book continues to be good stuff, and very stylistic, marking this as a much different side to the X-corner of the Marvel Universe. I’m not sure how long this arc is, though the next chapter–if this fits the 6-issue pattern–should conclude things. After a couple of 4-issue arcs, I wonder, though. If you’re following this title anyway, well worth picking up. Otherwise, you’re best off waiting for the next arc at least. (7.5/10)

Fear Itself #6

fearitself006I don’t know why I’ve stuck with this title/event. It really doesn’t seem to hold the “feel” that I would expect something called Fear Itself to have. The events of the story seem far too all-reaching for any normalcy to come back out of it. This seems more like the setting for some alternate universe, as the event that makes the other universe different from the main Marvel universe. There’s something that’s gotten to seem so generic about this…and yet, 6 issues in I’ll get the next issue just to see how this story “ends,” though I gather from news I’ve seen around online that this is yet another major event whose ending won’t be a true ending so much as something that’s just going to lead into the next few months’ “status quo” of Marvel stories. If you’re not already following this event or at least this core title, this isn’t for you. If you are…well, nothing I say’s really gonna change your mind. The art’s quite good, and though I don’t care for the story, the writing isn’t all that bad in itself: it just doesn’t work for me as an overarching story. Not particularly recommended. (4/10)

Fear Itself: Hulk vs. Dracula

fearitselfhulkvsdracula001Gischler‘s become Marvel‘s vampire guy. I’d love to see him take on a Blade series. This mini, though, ties in to Fear Itself, and begins the side-story of that event, focusing on Dracula and his vampires dealing with the sudden presence of the amped-up Hulk possessed by one of the Serpent’s hammers. The story’s more interesting than I expected at first glance, showing how Dracula’s people work together to get the intel the vampire needs to deal with the Hulk. This does not stand out as being anything essential to the overall Fear Itself story…but it’s rather enjoyable to see how the vampires are impacted by the goings-on of Fear Itself, to remind us that they exist, and keeps their story moving forward after the events in the early issues of X-Men. I picked this up as a fan of Gischler‘s work, and the concept…and enjoyed it. I’m also highly glad the issue is only $2.99, though…I’m still often caught by surprise at Marvel deigning to put a tie-in like this out for only $2.99 after their years-long fixation on the $3.99 price point. If you’re a fan of Gischler or Marvel‘s vampires, or just want to see more of what “Hulk” is up to during Fear Itself, this is definitely recommended. (7/10)

Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season Nine #1

buffyseasonnine001This certainly didn’t open quite the way I would have expected…even though I don’t even know what I did expect. I got into Buffy early this year when I re-watched the first episode of the tv series, and then spent the next 14 weeks in a dash through all 7 seasons. I experienced the first half of “Season Eight” via the motion comic Blu-Ray edition, and then the next couple TPBs from the local library. I read the final issue, having picked that up, so I have some context for this issue. Things open with Buffy going about life with new roommates and unsure of things with her friends, given the events that ended Season Eight. She then encounters a new horror this issue that seems so out of place that I’m not even sure if I can take it seriously–it’s like something from some comic strip rather than the next chapter of the Buffy story. The art fits what I’ve gotten used to seeing for this incarnation of the comics, and the writing’s on par as well. Nothing fantastic, nothing horrible. As a new “season,” this does a good job introducing new characters and old as well as a little about what they’re all about. But also as the start of a new season, there isn’t a whole lot to go on quite yet. Where a tv season goes a few months, I believe this is slated to run a couple years, so there’s plenty of time for things to develop. If you enjoyed Season Eight chances are you’ll enjoy this, for a continuation of that story, and of the Buffy saga on the whole (remember, this is set in the same continuity as the tv series). If you’re not a Buffy fan, you probably won’t care for this, though if you’re willing to go old-school and jump in while figuring “everything” out later, this is about as good a jump on point as anything. And the cover I went with…that’d be an AWESOME poster. (8.5/10)

Super Dinosaur #4

superdinosaur004I picked up the first issue on a whim. Got the FCBD issue shortly after. Picked up #s 2 and 3 as they came out. But truthfully–I didn’t even read ’em right away. Then I did, recently…and rather enjoyed the over-the top campiness of this. A mutant dinosaur in a robotic suit, a genius kid, and the two are best friends…fighting against the forces of some mad scientist that used to work with the kid’s father…and loads of other mutant dino-people in the mix. But…this is fun. And while this issue was apparently quite late…it was right on time, for me. Rather than having multiple issues to catch up on, I caught up, and was already set for this as a new issue this week. Plus, this is “only” a $2.99 comic, so it feels about as well priced as we can really expect for current comics. As campy as this title has already seen, the cliffhanger pushes it into even greater campiness…even as it leaves me grinning at the prospect of what’s to come. This is just a comic, but it feels like a cheesey Saturday-morning cartoon that would’ve come out in the early 1990s. And though just a comic…this beats the heck out of most of the current cartoons out there. If you trust Kirkman‘s writing sensibilities, take a chance and pick this series up, or at least the upcoming collected volume. This really seems like a great “all-ages” title…kids ought to enjoy it, and I can say that as an early-30s adult, I’m enjoying it myself. Even if you’re charged for the Free Comic Day issue…there are only the 5 issues so far, so it’s feasible you might be able to to scoop up the whole lot at once, so it’s not too late to get in at the beginning. Highly recommended. (9/10)

The Infinite #2

theinfinite002Above I commented about Super Dinosaur that it’s worth checking out of you trust Kirkman‘s writing…and I hold to that here. Of course, the writing is really overshadowed by the visuals. Looking at this cover, I see Cable…with bigger shoulder pads, smaller guns, younger and without the cybernetic/glowey eye-thing going on. For the interior, I had to keep reminding myself one character is NOT actually the Heroes Reborn Steve Rogers (Captain America) and another character made me think immediately of Gladiator from the X-Men comics. There’s a lot of time-travel stuff involved here, and it essentially seems like the main time-traveler is one of a two-man team–either he or his partner would have gone back, in order to try to prevent the future (their present) from happening. All they had to go on was some basic information, and in the past (now the present) the younger versions of these soldiers are being trained to fight against the coming darkness. It’s rather cliche and very ’90s-esque…but darnit, there’s something that just makes this work…maybe it’s a trainwreck waiting to happen and I’m waiting for that, but I picked this up after getting the first issue, and I’m pretty sure I’ll be back for #3. If you’re a Kirkman fan and can “handle” Liefeld‘s art, this is worth checking out…surely Kirkman‘s got something in the works for this. If you’re a Liefeld fan, can’t go wrong with that matched with Kirkman‘s writing. And heck…if you’re a Cable fan, this even reads a little bit like an alternate universe Cable story, so you could check this out and skip the last 18 years of Marvel‘s continuity. (6/10)

X-Men Regenesis Checklist [Checklist]

Following X-Men: Schism every mutant must choose a side: Cyclops’ or Wolverine’s. With the X-Men cut in two, things will never be the same again. Choose Your Team.

OCTOBER 2011

  • Uncanny X-Men #544
  • X-Men: Regenesis #1
  • Wolverine #17
  • Wolverine & the X-Men #1

 

NOVEMBER 2011

  • Uncanny X-Men #1
  • X-Men Legacy #259
  • Generation Hope #13
  • New Mutants #33
  • X-Men #20

 

DECEMBER 2011

  • Uncanny X-Force #19

 

JANUARY 2012

  • X-Factor #230

 

SOURCE: Marvel Retailer Postcard-Checklist

Walt’s Weekly Writing Wrap-Up: August 22-28

August 22 – August 28

Non-Review Content:

mynew52dcupicksMy picks of the DC: The New 52 books

My weekly participation in the Booking Through Thursday meme, this week’s topic: History

Some thoughts on the TMNT as my weakness and exception to rules I set for my own comics purchasing habits

Thoughts based on the non-Wednesday purchase of several comics, and the effect of the $3.99 price vs. $2.99 for single issues

Reviews of comics released Wednesday, August 24:

teenagemutantninjaturtlesidw001Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #1(IDW Publishing)

Action Comics #904(DC Comics)

Brightest Day Aftermath: Search for Swamp Thing #s 1-3(DC Comics)

DC Retroactive: Superman – the 1990s(DC Comics)

X-Men #16(Marvel Comics)

X-Men Legacy #254(Marvel Comics)

Uncanny X-Force #13(Marvel Comics)

actioncomics904searchforswampthing001searchforswampthing002

searchforswampthing003dcretroactivesuperman1990sxmenlegacy254

uncannyxforce013x-men016tmntidw001leo

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