Ok, here’s the update. Greatest American Hero? Sold out. However, they can get me another copy; I just have to wait two weeks. Since I won’t be able to get any comics next week, I’ll deal with it. Ghostbusters: The Other Side? Issue three was way too gross, and since I like to read my comics at breakfast, this is a bad thing. So I’ll be adding the first two issues to the pile of comics I want to get rid of, and not buying the rest. The sad part is I was starting to see the fun back in the title, because apparently the writer only knows how to use Venkman for that. Sad.
So I did get the other comics in my list. Now because I can’t get any comics next week and both the Amazing Spider-Man Family and DC Universe Holiday Special are so long and have multiple stories per issue, I’ll review them next week story by story in a special review. So let’s get into this week’s comics.
Marvel Adventures: The Avengers #31 [Marvel]
WRITER: Paul Tobin
PENCILER: Ig Guara
INKER: Sandro Ribeiro
LETTERER: Dave Sharpe
COVER: Espin & Quintana
PRODUCTION: Paul Acerios
CONSULTING: Ralph Macchio & Mark Paniccia
EDITOR: Nathan Cosby
Spider-Man, Hulk (not Banner, does Tobin hate “Puny Banner”, too), Tigra, Cage, and Iron Man head to California to hit the beach. No word on Captain America, Ant Man, or Giant Girl and we learn Storm is speaking at the UN, while Wolvie’s doing community service due to unpaid parking tickets. (Note to Tobin: THIS IS THE NEXT ISSUE! Or at least a Super Heroes issue. I’ll take a back up story, but THIS STORY MUST BE TOLD! Seriously, Paul Tobin writing about Wolverine doing community service?) Luke and Tony cheat each other at a fishing contest, Spidey is shown up by both the Hulk and Thor (no, that has nothing to do with the cover; see “What they got wrong”.), and Tigra deals with her instinctual fear of water. Things get worse when Namor shows up with a sea monster. Actually, that’s when it get great, but only for the readers! 😀
What they got right: Everything. Seriously, if I were to list everything they did right, I’d have a superlong word count. Ok, I usually do, but even for me it would be bad.
What they got wrong:Outside of denying me a Wolverine-free issue (even when he’s gone, he’s mentioned), the only complaint is the cover. Giant Girl, Storm, Ant Man (check Spidey’s hand, I missed him first few times) Cap, and Wolverine aren’t in the story, Thor has one cameo where he steals Spidey’s autograph seekers while looking for Storm (who he’s dating in the Adventureverse), and that it. The cover makes it look like everyone wants to take down Thor. And why would Hulk not be Bruce while relaxing on the beach, going Hulk when Namor strikes?
Recommendation:Ok, maybe the wrong list was longer than the right list I wrote, but that’s because the right list is everything else, and that a lot of everything else. BUY THIS!
WRITER/LETTERER: Chris Mowry
ARTIST: Alex Milne
COLORIST: Josh Perez
EDITOR: Denton J. Tipton
Set in the movie universe just after The Reign of Starscream, this one of two series IDW is putting out to bridge the gap between the first and second live-action movie, Revenge of the Fallen. Sector Seven hasn’t disbanded yet, and Wreckage (captured in the second Target store exclusive comic, later released with it’s kin in a regular release comic) is brought in for testing. They only have a month before they’re dropped in the ocean, as seen in the end of the movie. Not a moment too soon for the Autobots. Obviously, S7 is not being trusted by the Autobots and their human allies. Meanwhile, Starscream’s back on Earth with a new plan.
What they got right:I like how they’re using the Target comics in official IDW Movieverse canon. Wreckage isn’t in the movie and was one of the toyline exclusive. I do like how IDW has used the non-movie character toys in both this and Reign of Starscream. There are other toy easter eggs, like Ironhide blowing up his G1 namesake’s alt mode, and the hologram Prime uses was also used on some versions of the Movie Prime figure. We get one more look at original character Salazar (from RoS). Starscream even mentions the failed All-Spark 2 and betrayal from the last series. The backgrounds and Transformers are well done.
What they got wrong:Unfortunately, while the normal humans are well enough, the actual movie humans don’t match the actors as well as in the past. Lennox is hurt the most by it and looks nothing like Josh Duhamel, although Epps also loses a bit of Tyrese Gibson’s look. Mikala looks more like a manga version of Megan Fox, and Sam/Shia, while the closest to the actor, is still off target. I’ve never recognised Simmons as John Tuttoro in any of the IDW comics, so that’s nothing. He’s not written as big an idiot as he is in the movie (just like the other movie prequels), so it’s off character, but I find him more believable IDW’s way. Perhaps the actors didn’t sign off on their face usage for the non-adaptations, but at least it’s better than IDW’s Ghostbuster comics.
Recommendation:If you like the movieverse, and IDW’s “fleshing out” of it, it might be worth checking out. Some may decide to wait until the trades, but since I like my comics better this way, this is what I’m going for.
What If? Newer Fantastic Four [Marvel]
WRITER: Paul Tobin
PENCILER: Patrick Scherberger
INKER: Craig Yeung
COLORIST: Chris Sotomyor
LETTERERL Nate Piekos
COVER: Scherberger & Mari
PRODUCTION: Joe Sabino
CONSULTING: Ralph Maccio
EDITOR: Nathan Crosby.
Ok, many names we just saw in MA:Avengers, especially the writer. This should be good. So a shape shifter kills off the Fantastic Four and tries to manipulate Spidey, Hulk (from the old grey days), and Ghost Rider, but they stop her and become the new Fantastic Four. This we’re told on the opening page, so I assume this is based on an older story. No clue which one, although I recall a What If involving those four. Not that it matters, since Ghost Rider is one of the characters wiped out by Thanos’s “new” Infinity Gauntlet. With Iron Man taking Ghost Rider’s place, the new movie team has to somehow fix everything, even those none of them usually handle “Cosmic” matters like the original FF.
What they got right:Having Paul Tobin write seems to always be a good thing. Iron Man does look better in FF colors that Ghost Rider–in fact they all do, but I like blue and the black comes out nicely, especially in the armor and Spidey costume. Of course, I always prefered Spidey’s black costume, just not the shape-shifting, brain-eating one. Hulk wearing the Thing shorts works as well. Wolverine’s gameplan is believable, as is Tony’s attempt to snag himself some new armor. Bruce gets a happy ending, which is nice for a What If?, even if it wouldn’t work in the MU Proper for obvious reasons. The story’s ok, and filled with what I like about Tobin’s storytelling style. However…
What they got wrong:The Infinity Gauntlet was a major event in Marvel (back when such things were rare rather than coming out one after another like they do today), and pushing it into a one-shot story feels packed in. We’re really supposed to believe that these four (well, five, once Hulk and Bruce are seperated) could do in the course of a few hours or days what it took most of the Marvel Universe to attempt originally? Also, I wonder if Ghost Rider (who really looks out of place in a typical FF uniform) being replaced with Iron Man was due to pushing the movie characters (or alternately using them to get people to read the book, which makes grey Hulk an odd choice to stick with) or Paul having no interest in Ghost Rider.
Recommendation: I was never a big fan of the Fantastic Four, but I do like three of the four characters here (is there a comic not featuring or at least mentioning Wolverine and/or non-fascist Tony this month?), and the Iron Man and Spidey suits just look good in FF colors. Besides, it’s Paul Tobin. That should at least be worth a read.
EDIT: Sorry, I don’t have a “Best Scene Of The Week”. MA: Avengers had so many good ones, I couldn’t pick just one.
So next week I’ll review the DC Universe Holiday Special and Amazing Spider-Man Family story by story and give you an overall idea of the series. In the meantime this week, I’ll be letting the site auto-post some of my favorite Christmas stories and music videos. A Merry Christmas to you all!