Friday, July 21, 2006

NEW COMICS: 07.19.06

First off, my wife and some friends and I went and saw Circus Contraption again last night, and it was as wonderful as last years. I love that show and can't recommend it enough.

Now, on to incoherently rambling about X-men...

Civil War 3 - This was probably my favorite issue of the series so far, if only because we finally got around to having superheroes beat each other up. In addition, I thought that both Iron Man and Spiderman made a few comments that made me a little more sympathetic to the Pro-Registration side, and if anything Captain America comes off sounding a little irrational. Speaking of Cap, I think that biggest weakness of the issue is that Millar doesn't do a very good job capturing his voice, and a few things he says don't quite ring true. I almost felt like, in a place or two, Millar was accidently writing the Ultimates versions of the characters. That said, I enjoyed the issue overall quite a bit. And glad to see the X-men finally mentioned in some capacity. Also, the big reveal at the end was something that I think a lot of people had suspected was coming but still produced a good fanboy "hell ya" moment for me.

Runaways - I generally wait and read this series last, if I have it in my stack, but jumped right into it because I wanted to find out who died. Vaughn basically puts pretty much every kid in peril at some point in the issue, so he successful kept me guessing until the end. And when the Runaway in question finally did die, I have to admit it choked me up quite a bit. It was a well done sequence, and the status quo for all the kids is definitely going to be different in the issues that follow.

Uncanny X-men #476 - Maybe not as good as Brubaker's first issue, but still very solid. Which, after the previous creative teams, "solid" = "good." I've never been a big fan of "X-men in Space," but at least Brubaker is handling it in a competent manner. In addition, he's continuing to set up some interesting team dynamics. Most notably, Warpath and Professor Xavier's little exchange about midway through the issue. Speaking of Warpath, I know he's basically serving as a poor man's Wolerine for this team, but right now I'm honestly finding him more interesting that Wolverine.

Ultimate X-men #72 - I think that there is some law that states that while the Ultimate X-men are interesting, the main universe ones must be boring... so it makes sense in a way that, as the main universe X-men are getting more interesting, I'm loosing interest in the Ultimate ones. Still, while I've had some misgivings about Kirkman's pet character, the Magician, he actually switched things up this issue and it looks like he's setting the Magician to actually be some sort of bad guy. If he does that, it'll actually be a nice twist, since I presumed that this was going to be another one of those (really bland) characters that Kirkman inserts into the story just to serve as his mouthpiece. So, maybe things are looking up.
Rating: (almost a 3)

Civil War: X-men #1 - Spinning off, roughly, from the events in 198, this title already looks to be stronger than its predecessor. The art, while not outstanding, is definitely an improvement for one thing. In addition, the dynamic created by the Civil War on the X-men (who are still suffering after M-Day) is interesting. Finally, this series seems to be giving more attention the original X-men. Which is a good thing because the actual 198 are still a batch of wholey uninterestng characters (and the addition of Domino and Shatterstar to their ranks doesn't improve much).

Speaking of the original X-men, it was sort of fun to see the four of them together again (and Emma acknowledge it). And, I enjoyed seeing them back in their Morrison-era leather suits, even if Bobby looks really stupid wearing a leather jacket with no shirt under it.

Also, I'm enjoying Bishop these days, which is really odd. And I like the stance he's taken in the Civil War. The best moment in the book, for me, was Bishops response when Cyclop's tried to get "holier than thou" with him. I wonder how many other X-men have wanted to do that?

New X-men #28 - Wait, did I just read all the way through that issue without a character dying?! Amazing! Then again, this issue basically is dealing with the fall out of a couple characters death's last issue; so maybe its just a breath until they off some more students next issue.

Still, this was an interesting issue, if for no other reason than to see Emma give Ms. Marvel a psychic smackdown when she tried to convince Scott to have the mutants register. Emma's point about the Stamford incident vs. the incident on their own campus was a pretty interesting one. And one that had to have left Carol feeling like a fool.

X-Factor #9 - Another intersting issue, as long as I'm able to see past Peter David's writting tics. I actually thought it was pretty interesting how both Quicksilver's arrival on the title, X-Factor discovering what happened during M-Day and the event of Civil War have all interplayed in this book. And it'll be interesting to see how Jamie's decision plays out.

Actually, that's pretty true for all the X-titles in relationship to Civil War. I like that the X-men's official stance is that they are neutral, but that both within the team and in its satellite teams (like X-Factor) that isn't always true. There's a lot of interesting debates going on with the team members these days. Also, what's interesting is that the X-men's decision to remain neutral has gotten them in trouble on both ends. In one book you have Bishop arguing against Scott, telling him they should register. In anothe rbook, you have Madrox telling Scott that they need to fight back more against the registration. Meanwhile, Scott's spendin all his time being pissed at Xavier.

I'm sorry to ramble, but I just find it all pretty interesting.

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