Tags Matching: brian m bendis

Powerloss…

The Avengers have been top dog for a while now, but sometimes amongst the mayhem, confusion, and nausea of the massive crossovers the good books have been getting lost in the shuffle. Enough, I say Marvel, enough. New Avengers has long been standing on it’s own as the best mainstream comic, but too much in and out of major storylines has created a lack of flow… hopefully the storm is over. Prior to the SIEGE crossover, Brian Michael Bendis and Stuart Immonen dropped a killer storyline prelude that hit on every note necessary – the story had depth but moved quickly, the art was had perfect pitch and control, and the overall feeling was that you were reading a complete awesome comic book. Immonen is quickly becoming one of my favorite artists – I’ll save gushing detail on that for another post – but for now do yourself a favor and scoop this trade up…

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Top 100 Summer Comics #57

Alright, let me just put this out there.

I am a goddamn SUCKER for 1970’s Marvel characters. That makes the past 7 or so years of modern Marvel action right up my alley. And also a very cliche’d and ill received vibe by those more refined comic illuminati. But you know what?

Don’t care, don’t care, don’t care, don’t care… doooonnnn’t care.

JESSICA DREW. SPIDER-WOMAN. BOOM.

#57 – New Avengers 23

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Top 100 Summer Comics #72

Single issue, self-contained stories are the foundation of a good comic series.

If you have a character or characters that are interesting enough and you can craft a great story around them in 22 pages… chances are you’re doing something right.

Ultimate X-Men wasn’t always good. Sometimes it was straight up ugly. UGLY. But this was a damn good issue.

#72 – Ultimate X-Men 41

Wolverine has to check in on some poor mutant kid who can’t control his power. His power, you ask? Blowing up everyone around him.

Check in, you ask? Yeah, he has to kill him.

Top 100 Summer Comics… #73

Spider-Woman made a huge comeback in the last few years.

I am all for it. For about 15 years, she was completely misused, abused, and overshadowed.

When Jessica Drew finally came back, Bendis did it right.

#73 – New Avengers 23

This was an awesome example of that. After the events of Secret Invasion, I don’t know where this issue stands. Was this Jessica Drew, or was it some Skrull queen? I don’t know. I don’t want to. Bendis and Oliver Coipel did a killer job of helping define a character so flawed she seems screwy even by Marvel standards. Vulnerability is rarely a trait that defines a character, but the creative team did just that while maintaining a strong character without falling into any typical prat falls of female “weakness”. Dig it. Keep it up.

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100 Days of Summer Comics… #97

It’s amazing what a creative team can do.

Often we forget, and I think the comic companies do too, that a great character is absolutely nothing without a great writer and artist behind him.

The Avengers have often been a testament to that.

So when Brian M. Bendis and David Finch stepped up to the plate, it was like watching Shaquille O’Neal signing with the L.A. Lakers – greatness reborn.

#97 – Avengers 500

Things had gotten weird. Chuck Austen didn’t exactly knock it out of the park. In fact, it was a really weird combination, a quick modern writer writing snappy and snippy Avengers stories. I think I enjoyed it more than most, and I still get shivers thinking about some of his lower moments.

And so starts the true beginning of the Bendis Age of Marvel. The house of ideas had some cracks in the foundation. Tear it down. Rebuild. This laid down the groundwork for House of M, Civil War, Secret Invasion, and Siege. Essentially 60% of the Marvel catalog can give credit to Avengers #500 as an ancestral story root.

For comic fans of any and all eras, this is a comic book you can pick up and jump in. I really enjoyed how accessible comics were for a few years in the early 2000’s at Marvel – they knew the best way to get people on board was to open all the gates, and this issue is a great example of that. The art is perfect, some of my favorite David Finch work – think Jim Lee on crack – hyper realistic with just a touch more grit.

New “Avengers”. Not “New Avengers”

It’s been a long time coming.

Few things in comics are certain. But one to stand by is “no one stays dead forever”.

And that counts doubly for good team books.

I can say that the Avengers hit some skids. The stagnation level was at an all time high as far as I’m concerned through much of the first part of this decade. Even the good creative teams were muddled by continuity, convoluted character development, and no guiding focus. The Avengers were everything that comics had moved away from – bloated, stiff, and always one page flip from being skipped. I don’t think I bought an issue of Avengers from 1995 until 2003. And when I did I was disappointed.

But then Brian Bendis came in, cleaned house, and BOOM, the Avengers, Marvel’s mainstay, was cancelled at issue #503. To be replaced by an all new, exciting enterprise that became the flagship book for Marvel for the next 5 years. New Avengers did away with the old rules and made their own. And now…

I don’t want to gush about these books too much. New Avengers had it’s flaws, but overall it was a great ride. With the reset to AVENGERS #1, I was nervous. I don’t really want to see Hank Pym and Cap and… etc… through regurgitated Kang adventures over and over.

But here it is, issue #1, and who’s that? KANG. But man, he looks good. John Romita Jr.’s Kang is killer. The grit in his lines gives Kang character that I’ve never really taken, and at the least the best interpretation since John Buscema. And there’s a newness to the book that feels nice. I have high hopes, so here’s to a nice start – a rather quick first issue but I prefer that to one that reminds me why I gave up on the series in the first place. If Marvel can avoid the annual company wide crossover that dominated a little under half of the New Avengers series, then this incarnation of the Avengers could be the best one yet.

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One last 70’s retro trip…

I apparently woke up with bell bottoms on this morning, as well as coming across an absolute treasure chest of 70’s Marvelmania.

With vinyl making a comeback, it would be incredible if these came back. 

But somehow I doubt it. Strongly. 

I had a couple of these record + book combos. Both DC, one Superman, one Batman, both actually really cool. But this looks amazing. An origin issue? Who’s doing the voices? The cover art is redone, is the interior a redo of FF #1? These are questions I need answers to. At $9.00, that seems like a pretty worthwhile price tag. I’m scared off a bit by not seeing the vinyl however; given that these were primarily made for young children, I can bet that most fall well short of any passable VF/F or G/VG grade for the vinyl. Someone should take the plunge.

Dear Brian M. Bendis,

I’m not sure where your educational career ended. You seem fairly educated, but no details were divulged on your wikipedia page (you might want to update that) regarding higher education. 

As I’m sure you’re aware, the Ipad has made quite a splash on the… consumerism scene this week, and at some point in the not too distant future, it could render text books nearly extinct. As someone who experienced purchasing expensive college textbooks, I am happy about this innovation. Down with textbooks. 

But I know of your true passion. He’s above. He’s around. He’s… ready. Not for some new Avengers spin-off (I enjoy them all), but to be put to use before it’s too late. Do the right thing. Buy this, now. There’s an option for that. That’s actually your only option. Enroll in a class. Any class. It doesn’t matter what as long as you have a textbook. And, as Randy Bachman would ask, take care of business
 

Sincerely, 

RMS

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