Not too much read this week, which is alright because I’ve moved across the country and realized the nearest comic book store is a forty minute drive away. Cue tears.
Spoilers ahead for Fantastic Four, X-Force, X-Men Second Coming, Cloak & Dagger and She Hulk Sensational.
Fantastic Four #577
Writer: Jonathan Hickman
Artist: Dale Eaglesham
This current Fantastic Four story arc has been setting up for a war of four cities, three of which now have representatives in the four themselves. While the arc’s been slow going at times, it’s a pure Fantastic Four; exploring for the sake of it, making friends of new civilizations and races.
However, this issue finally introduces the main problem the Four will have to face. The Inhumans on the moon aren’t the only Inhumans – there are four other races spread out over the universe, and they’ve all come to the blue side of the moon to join together under Black Bolt’s leadership. The problem? They want to colonize Earth.
I can’t even describe how excited I am to see how this plays out. The Inhumans have always been allies of a sort, friends of the Fantastic Four, and for them to finally turn and do this, with all their power and Black Bolt? Ahhhhh! Can’t wait.
Eaglesham’s art pleases me so much. It’s very Kirby like, which works so well for the F4.
Writer: Craig Kyle & Christopher Yost
Artist: Clayton Crain
The problem with including a series in a crossover event is that they’re given a certain amount of time to do it in, which means the writers can’t work in their own comfort zones – often to their detriment.
Kyle and Yost often turn out great stories, but X-Force’s Necrosha arc could have been done in maybe three issues at the most. Instead they had to stretch it out, adding unnecessary filler, killing off random mutants and dampening whatever emotional impact Wolfsbne suddenly being pregnant (side note, WTF?), Warpath finally letting go of his big brother, and most of X-Force leaving had.
Let’s not even talk about Crain’s art, which is dark and moody at best, and blobs of nothing at worst. Sketch out some panels and set down some line art before picking up your stylus, man.
X-Men Second Coming, Chapter 1
Writers: Craig Kyle & Christopher Yost
Artist: David Finch
This is what I mean by Kyle & Yost being at the top of their game when they have the leeway to do what they want. Though I think the events leading up to Second Coming (mainly the Cable ongoing, which I love but thought went on too damn long) were stretched out a bit too much, the highly anticipated event finally kicks into gear. A now 17 year old Hope and Cable finally make it to our current time, though they show up at the Xavier School and find it destroyed, unaware the X-Men have moved to Utopia. The Cuckoos sense Cable’s arrival and Cyclops immediately dispatches everyone, explaining to a questioning Nightcrawler that he had to have faith in what Hope means for the mutant race.
It’s nice to see Cyclops’ point of view, to know that everything he’s been doing for the past year in Uncanny, Legacy and X-Force has been for a reason. The art isn’t perfect, but Finch has a fast pace that will be perfect for everything coming up.
Cloak & Dagger
Writer: Stuart Moore
Artist: Mark Brooks
I really enjoy Cloak and Dagger in that ‘see each other every couple of months and have a good time’ sort of way. I don’t know much about them in depth, but I love the idea of them, and it was about time for another night out with the pair.
The story was a little too overdone for me. Dagger is fitting in with the younger X-Men on Utopia, but she isn’t truly a mutant (her and Cloak’s powers coming from a drug, not the x-gene) and isn’t truly accepted. Yeah, I know. The race most oppressed in the Marvel universe, and they won’t accept two powered people because of their genes. Anyway, the story’s been done before; Cloak and Dagger growing apart, Cloak being led into a trap by an old girl he used to know back in the hood, evil guys trying to convince him his powers can be taken away, Dagger saving him and the X-Men swooping in at the end to help them out but Cloak and Dagger respectfully refuse to stay on Utopia. There’s nothing new, and unfortunately, there’s nothing too memorable about it.
Well, no, I’m still trying to figure out if Cloak and Dagger are actually together together, not just a team. The last page was sort of ambiguous, and like I mentioned before, I’m not too familiar with the pair. What I enjoyed most was the art. Holy hell, I love Mark Brooks – he’s one of my favorite artists right now. His faces can be a little blocky, but everything else is clean, clean, clean and Walden Wong’s colors only serve to amp it up. A decent story with exceptional art.
She Hulk Sensational #1
AHHHH! I love She Hulk. She doesn’t get nearly enough exposure, if only because of her more famous cousin and Deadpool’s a little more popular when it comes to breaking the fourth wall. Whatever, I don’t care! This special issues kicks both their asses into the stratosphere. It’s a collection of three brilliant stories, highlighting what’s so great about my favorite green skinned superheroine.
This is a hell of a book, enjoyable even if you know next to nothing about She Hulk. Hell, pick it up if only for the awesome Stan Lee cameo and the She Hulk, Ms Marvel and Spider-Woman team up.