May 2013 Marvel Comics Diamond Previews Review
The latest Previews has been out for a couple of weeks and I have spent quite some time pouring over it. I am taking a big leap this week and switching to trades on more than half of my titles currently on my pull list, and dropping a few titles, while starting to pick up back titles featuring creators I have grown to appreciate in my nearly 3 decade long love of the comic book art form. I am excited about focusing my collecting, and my bank account will like it too.
Let’s take a look at Marvel. First let me actually insert a disclaimer, for most titles I am dropping it is not a matter of quality more a matter of relevance when looking at my collection as a whole, and what I like to read. Now back to Marvel.
Early indicators point to Marvel Now being a success but sadly it wasn’t for me, with most titles I tried, never making it past the third or fourth issue, some outright stopping at one. There are a handful of titles that have kept me interested and they will all be moving to trade waiting status. This was a difficult choice because the books I still follow represent, in my opinion, some of the more exciting ideas to come out of Marvel Now, and each title has such a strong future. A future that we are seeing built right before our eyes. The Marvel Universe has become even bigger than we ever imagined.
First up is what I consider the flagship of the entire Marvel Universe, the Avengers. Issues #15 and #16 continue on the prelude path to Infinity. As much as I want to see how Thanos becomes relevant once again I will wait to pick up the hardcover that is sure to be just down the road. For monthly purchasers though these are must have issues with the beginning of the first Marvel Now crossover storyline. Speaking of Infinity, over in New Avengers #8 we have another prelude tie in. This issues looks to further address the rift that has formed between T’Challa and Namor over Namor’s destructive acts to the Wakandans, while possessed by a portion of the Phoenix.
July is the month when the after effects from The Age of Ultron begins to be felt, and what better way than to launch another Avengers monthly? (Sarcasm is tough to convey while using a keyboard.) This one definitely seems to tap an interesting angle by being a team of artificial lifeforms, and is led by Hank Pym. Avengers A.I. #1 is written by Sam Humphries with art by Andre Lima Araujo, and will be coming home with me. I will try the first 3 issues to see if this will become a part of my trade waiting books.
One of the most interesting side effects of the Age of Ultron story is the introduction of the Neil Gaiman created, and one time Spawn cast member, Angela, to the Marvel Universe. Issue #5 of The Guardians of the Galaxy has her first post Age of Ultron appearance. If that isn’t enough to intrigue you then perhaps the addition of Neil Gaiman as co-writer should be enough to make this a must read. I lost interest right off the hop with this series but I cannot pass up the chance to check out a book that may or may not break the internet.
Another tie in to the Ultron saga is one shrouded in secrecy is Age of Ultron #10 U.C.. Nothing is known about this title, not even the creative team, and the acronym U.C. remains a mystery. Curiosity is making me add this to my order.
I have been a fan of the What If books right from the first volume and I am excited that we get a new What If series in July. This time it is a 4 issue mini-series that shows us a radically different path of events for the Avengers Vs. X-Men crossover. Jimmy Palmiotti (W) and Jorge Molina (A) brings us these four issues with the hopes that this brings about a more regular publishing schedule for the Marvel Alterniverse.
Dead characters are brought back again, this time as the Four Horsemen of Death in the pages of Uncanny Avengers #10. What happened to the other three Horsemen? Haven’t characters been brought back enough? First the multitude of Living and Unliving Legions, to Necrosha, to Chaos War, this has been done. Here’s hoping the storyline is bringing something new to this over used plot idea.
It will be interesting to see if the Captain Marvel crossover with Avengers Assemble did anything to help save the series. I expect to see a final issue notation in a near future Previews. This one is definitely not due to quality. Kelly Sue DeConnick has done an amazing job of writing Carol Danvers story and I for one hope that it survives this possible cancellation. Issue #14 of her series sees the final chapter of “The Enemy Within”. This could be one of those character defining stories that will set the standard for who Carol is. This book is worth a look.
Superior Spider-Month is an exciting time to be a fan of the wall crawler, at least for those that didn’t explode after reading the latest issue, as Marvel launches 3 new Spidey centric comics. Superior Spider-Man Team-Up #1 replaces Avenging Spider-Man on the publishing roster and the first issue features the creative team of Christopher Yost (W) and David Lopez (A). With recent developments it will make potential team-ups all the more interesting.
Carnage returns more deadly than before in the pages of the Kevin Shinick written and Stephen Segovia drawn Superior Carnage #1, the first in a four issue mini-series that introduces a new Carnage to the world, one that is more dangerous and unpredictable than any before.
The final launch is The Superior Foes of Spider-Man, a villain centric book from Nick Spencer (W) and Steve Lieber (A). This is an ongoing and considering it’s focus will be villains, it may have a tough road ahead for it. Nick Spencer has proven that he can handle the bad with his work speaking for itself in the pages of Morning Glories.
I am assuming that Marvel is trying to bump up Morbius a bit as issue #7 is a tie into Superior Spider-Month. The main thrust here will be sales. This is an interesting book and while I didn’t love the first few issues, I didn’t hate them either. If the Morbius series fails then maybe Marvel could give the Midnight Sons another go?
It has been heavily speculated that Indestructible Hulk #11 could be Age of Ultron effects spilling over into the Marvel Universe with the very ominous sounding “History’s breaking”, in the solicitation.
Dexter #1 is solicited again…not going to say much as this is the third time this has been solicited. I will believe it when I see it.
First he killed the Marvel Universe, then he killed some of the most beloved characters in literature, now he completes the circle, turning his attention onto himself in Deadpool Kills Deadpool #1 (of 4). Deadpool aficionado Cullen Bunn writes and Salva Espin draws what is sure to be the most violent entry into the Deadpool Killogy.
Even though I am switching to trade for All-New X-Men, this is an issue that would be tempting to pick up as Jean Grey faces off against Mastermind, again. He was responsible for Jeans downfall in the past, will this happen again or will Jeans time in this new future have developed a side of herself she never knew? We have already started seeing a slightly darker Jean, and I am hoping to see more.
In a move that is meant to intrigue readers of Fables to hop on the Marvel train by releasing an original Once Upon A Time Premiere Hardcover that ties into the television series continuity. The focus is one of my favorite characters, the evil queen, and features another attempt by her, to capture Snow White. I am not familiar with the team of Dan Thomsen (W) and Corinna Bechko (A) but being a fan of the show I will be checking this out. It ships in August.
That brings an end to our look at Marvel, next we visit their distinguished competition, DC.