Thursday, October 27, 2011

Ratings and Rantings featuring Wolverine and The X-Men #1

Hey Todd Squad, Jason Todd here again with your favorite comic content comment. After a week of the awesomeness that is Batman: Arkham City, I'm back and ready to review six comics that I'm, hoping are damn good. Considering two are new series by Jason Aaron, two are Spider-Island related, one has Deadpool vs. Deadpool, and the other is issue two of the new Teen Titans, I'm expecting good things. So, enough yammering on, let's get underway with Deadpool!

Deadpool #45

This issue of Deadpool starts off with us seeing evil Deadpool hijack a jet to get from the U.K. to the USA, meanwhile Deadpool does the same, via stowing away on a ship. Evil Deadpool along the way lights a billionaire on fire and kicks him out of his own jet, which was as awesome as it sounds. Meanwhile, Deadpool's brain  questions why they hopped aboard a freighter instead of taking a plane back, which reveals that Deadpool picked that freighter to save a bunch of women that were basically kidnapped into slavery, which DP does. Up in the air, Evil Deadpool kills the pilot and co-pilot that he overhears talking about crashing the plane, then kills the flight attendant, before assuaging himself with pretzels. Once he makes it to New York with the girls he saved, Deadpool takes them to someone who can help them that owes him one. From there Deadpool heads to New Jersey but encounters a jumper on the way that wants to kill himself because he has cancer, and once he fidns out Deadpool also had cancer and kills people, he asks Deadpool to kill him. Over in Jersey, evil Deadpool arrives at a chimichanga place that Deadpool was headed to as his jet crashes not far behind him as the issue ends. This was an alright issue, I like that Deadpool is coming off more human and good and evil Deadpool clearly seems evil and heartless. I am curious to see those two interact, this was fun but nothing amazing. I'll give it a 7/10 rating.

Smuggled Woman: The men .. they have guns. Do you have gun?
Deadpool: Heh.. *flexes* Two of em baby. Boom.

Teen Titans #2

Yep, first page we get confirmation that Bart Allen IS in fact, Kid Flash, for anyone who was curious. We start off with Bart being held captive in a cell by someone an hour after his superhero debut. From there we see Tim and Cassie "Don't call me Wonder Girl" Sandsmark (with a snarky new attitude that I love) trying to figure out what to do about NOWHERE as Cass allows Tim to stay the night on her couch, and interestingly enough, Tim wears no costume around Cass but won't tell her his name because he doesn't want to compromise other people he works with....even though Bruce and his cohorts are always on the news. Either way, she thanks Tim and says he's a good guy for helping her out today, as we see Tim is a bit disappointed with that comment, as clearly he wants to be more than a good friend, if you catch my drift. Next we see Superboy in a pod, studying Cassie's movements from when NOWHERE attacked her and Tim, since he's been tasked with bringing her in. In the morning, Tim watches an online report about a bug woman named Skitter, so he goes to investigate and quickly finds out that she's a twin sister of one of the people who reported seeing her, so he questions her and finds out that she's worried about her sister and mentioned her to the government people that asked about her, obviously being NOWHERE. Red Robin goes after this Skitter girl so he can reach her before NOWHERE and runs into some of their thugs on the way. After fighting the goons, Tim finds Skitter, but she seems to no longer be in control as she attacks Red Robin. Red Robin tries to talk her down but she lunges at Red Robin, luckily Cassie comes in and decks her with an instant knockout, before telling Tim that saving metahumans isn't her job and to lose her number, she was just paying him back for saving her. Yep, she looked back at him too, there's definitely something between those two. Red Robin meanwhile picks up Skitter and wonders what he's going to do next. Next we see some guards dumb enough to deactivate the force field on Kid Flash's cell, so he quickly betas them up and escapes, but on the way out he encounters a cell that says Solstice, he peeks in and see's her falling to her knees in pain as she's covered with some kind of black smoke. Awesome ending, I didn't like Solstice but seeing her here like that was interesting, I'm liking the stuff with Tim and Cass, and this new version of Cass may be my favorite rebooted character. Also, Bart came off more likable and intelligent here than the first issue, and SB while he was seen shortly was also impactful as he studied Cass. In short, I really enjoyed this issue, if there's anything I didn't like it would be the fact it wasn't a bit longer, I'll give this issue a 9/10 rating, hell between this and Red Hood I'm quickly becoming a fan of Scott Lobdell.

Red Robin: You followed me?
Cassie: Like you didn't recognize my ass in the clothing store? Right. (I love snarky Cassie, reminds me of Jason a bit.)

The Incredible Hulk #1

We start things off seeing The Hulk underground as he defeats a bunch of gigantic beasts before dragging them back for the underground community that he is clearly the savior of. He often brings them food and as they feast, Hulk sits alone, waiting for the attackers from above ground that he's positive will come, but the eldest member of the community says that Hulk should come and be with them, after all, he came to find peace and now he should enjoy it. As Hulk finally goes to enjoy the community and their festivities, we see a tiny robot that reports that Hulk's identity was confirmed and the move in. Some people in robot suits try to apprehend Hulk but he fights them until one removes her armor, a woman by the name Amanda Von Doom. (She claims no relation to Victor.) She says they came in attacking so Hulk would take them seriously and it's not him they have a problem with, their problem is with Bruce Banner. From there we see two man-sized, talking Boars, as they are grabbing a bunch of animals and dragging them back to Banner, who seems to be trying to replicate the formula that created The Hulk by testing it on animals. This was a fine issue, it was fast and I can't say I'm all that invested in it. I'll probably give this first arc a try and see how things go from there, but I'll give this issue a 7/10 rating.

Amanda Von Doom: It's Banner. Something has to be done about about Banner.

Venom #8

We start things off with Flash leaving Betty in the hospital room with his gun, since he's being called for another Agent Venom mission, this time to eliminate The Queen. Throughout the issue, we see text from a note that Flash's dad left just in case Flash didn't make it in time, which is a good touch, as Flash's dad states that Flash should definitely marry Betty, and if he doesn't it will be the great mistake of his life. As we see Agent Venom try to assassinate The Queen, she stops him and the two face off in hand-to-hand combat. The Queen actually owns Flash, which isn't surprising considering her past, and screeches at him which causes him to lose the Venom suit temporarily. Flash is saved by one of The Queens fed-up subjects that attacks her, which causes a distraction for Flash to grab the symbiote and try to bond with it, but he leaves his dad's touching letter behind before getting to read it, and it burns up in fire. Damn, I'm really disappointed Flash never got to see that letter. Flash tries to get the symbiote to merge with him but it's still a bit shell-shocked, and Flash is bitten by a giant man spider, but is able to get the symbiote to fully form so he can be Agent Venom again. Once The Queen goes looking for Flash, he attacks her once again, but she overtakes Flash once more, and beats him senseless, until he's saved by none other than Steve Rogers, Captain America! Cap and The Queen fight and it seems she has the upper hand due to her getting extra power in ASM #671, but suddenly The Queen is killed by Flash, when he jams Cap's shield into her back. The issue ends as a giant cocoon is formed oevr the Spider-Queen, and the formerly hot vixen is now transformed into a gigantic Spider, as Cap and Venom stand side by side, ready for round two. This was a really good issue, I liked seeing Cap appear, I enjoyed the stuff with Flash's dad's note. The only thing that bothered me was the fact Flash never got to see it, which makes sense, but I think he needed that closure, either way this was a great issue, I'll give it a 9/10 rating.

Captain America: Soldier? You still with me?
Agent Venom: Always.

Amazing Spider-Man #673

We pick up where we left off in Venom with Venom and Rogers getting ready to take on the new and scarier Spider-Queen. Meanwhile we see Peter and Kaine together as Pete has Kaine dress up as Spider-Man just in case anyone questions those two being the same person I guess. Suddenly, Mary Jane shows up at Horizon Labs with a bunch of people that had been cured by Anti-Venom. Reed Richards tells her the reason she's yet to turn into a giant Spider is because the process was slowed due to her being around Peter so much, haha. Peter and Kaine head off (Kaine wearing Pete's Sonic suit) to face the Spider-Queen, as do The X-Men, Venom, Cap and the Avengers. So yep, if someone else were to start trouble on the other side of America, they'd get away. Spidey and Kaine attack the Spider-Queen and Spidey is knocked back, but caught by The Amazing Spider-Model, Mary Jane Watson. Spidey wants to quit since he knows his powers won't make much of an impact, but MJ suggests he build something, and Spidey says "Like what, a spider-slayer?" before finally understanding what Smythe meant. Spidey and MJ go to the precinct and find a box of Doc Ock's octobots and heads with MJ to a large antenna so he can control them. He uses the Octobots to get the cure and then bite infected people, which cures them by the thousands and causes the Spider-Queen to weaken. Kaine and Ms. Marvel take advantage of this to do a move that she and Spidey have, as she spins Kaine with his webs and shoots him at the Spider-Queen, and Kaine uses his blades to stab through the throat of the Spider-Queen as Madame Web remarks that it was Kaine she saw in her vision, crossing the line that Peter wouldn't cross. The issue comes to a close as Spidey and MJ look down over New York together, having helped save the city and the world. I enjoyed Spider-Island, I enjoyed everything it built to, and I'm wondering what the aftermath will lead to, also, Peter/Carlie/MJ love triangle? I'll give this issue a 9/10 rating as well.

Peter: Just hanging with my pal, Spidey. Say something.
Kaine: Um. Wallopin' web-snappers.

Wolverine and The X-Men #1

We start off with Wolverine and Professor Xavier talking about the school opening and all that comes with running the school, which was fun to see. From there we see the inspectors come to look over the school, as Wolverine and Kitty, the Headmaster and Headmistress show them around. The snooty inspectors seem to be jerks as they comment offhandedly while seeing classes being run by Husk and Rachel Grey.  From there we see more of the same until the inspectors finally meet up with Hank, who Logan and Kitty believe can make them change their minds about the facility. Unfortunately, Hank is too busy trying to fix the school up so he's vulgar and very uncaring, which seemed very out of character. From there, Wolverine is told someone is asking for him, so he heads to the gate and meets Kade Kilgore, who for some reason looks 16 instead of like a kid. He basically says he was to blame for the schism and everything else and he plans to ruin Wolverine and everything he's started. This pisses Wolverine off and as he heads back to the school, he's told the school will be shut down for being too dangerous, and at that moment the school is...attacked by the ground or something. Well, I'm done with this series... I loved Schism but I never got into this, a lot of people seemed out of character, Wolverine smiles WAY too much, I get that he was putting on an act for the people but still, and the art just seemed off to me. I'll give this a 4/10 rating and state that after this I make no regrets in choosing Team Cyclops.

Wolverine: Call Scott. See if he's rented out our old rooms yet.

And that's it for this week's Ratings and Rantings everyone, thanks for reading and as always, comments are appreciated and mandatory! :P And be sure to vote on this week's newest poll as well as check out last week's poll results. Until next time, I'm your friendly neighborhood Blogger-Man, Jason Todd, signing off!

Last week's poll asked "Two months in, how do you feel about the DCnU?"
Last place with 27.3% - Tie between "It's okay" and "When is the old DCU coming back" (I'm shocked...)

Winner with 45.5% - I love it more than the old DCU.... This is the most surprised I've been about a poll.

Next Week on Ratings and Rantings

Detective Comics #3, Justice League international #3, Uncanny X-Men #1, Amazing Spider-Man #673, and Invincible #84


  1. Ok, lets see this week, Teen Titans and Wolverine and the X-men are the only books we both have in common and we are totally in opposite sides,

    Teen Titans is not really bad to me but is not blowing my head off, so is one of the DC book I am dropping in favor to some Marvel book.

    And totally loved Wolverine, yes I agree maybe he is smiling to much here, but he is doing a huge effort to not explode at the same time

    So let talk about another stuff, i was reading this

    and make think how stupid Didio is, his argument to change Barbara from Oracle to Batgir was Cuz Barbara is the most recognizable Batgirl, which is thanks to the Batman Animated Series that HE produced, so the real argument is, because HE wanted in that way.
    But at the same time DC launch Arkham City a game that has Barbara Gordon as Oracle in a key role and sold like 4.5 millions of units (while Batgirl sold 80.500)
    So well planed DC well Planed...

    And had you seen the Nightwing trailer?

  2. Wow, I had to skip most of this post on account of not reading most of the comics we both read, but I could not disagree with you MORE when it comes to Wolvie and the X-Men! I've got to say, I am shocked, JT! The weird thing was that from your review you seemed to like this comic, but then just suddenly turned on it. I am def shocked by that one. I really had no qualms with the way the characters were written, especially Wolverine(who WAS putting on an act since he had to get the school up and running) and Beast(who was baffled as to why everything was falling apart). Remember, Beast probably wants the school to succeed more than anybody(prob even Wolvie) just so he can shove it in Lord Summers face. Wolvie did state that Beast designed the entire school grounds, so any failings were his, and it was obvious that he hadn't been sleeping for days, which could explain his brusque behavior. As for the art? Agreed. I've never been a big fan of Chris Bachalo(even during his Gen X days), and this issue didn't change that. Seriously, you can't even tell what was happening in those last few panels!

    "so the real argument is, because HE wanted in that way." And that my friends, is the true problem with the DCU nowadays. It isn't about what the fans want, it isn't about what sells, it isn't about what makes for the best stories, it's all about what Dan Didio and Geoff Johns want, period, end of story. I realized this a few years back when I read some editorial from Didio in the back of a DC comic where he basically admits that he was waiting for years for an excuse to bring Barry Allen back because HE was a fan of the character and was able to find a "partner in crime" in Geoff Johns to help him enact his plan. That's why I've lost so much interest in DC, because it's obvious the entire company has become dedicated to pleasing TWO people, Johns and Didio.

  3. Thanks for the comments guys. The thing to me about Wolverine and The X-Men is mainly the art which I didn't enjoy much. Add that to the fact that I pretty much had to force myself to finish this episode, the ending seemed odd and abrupt (I don't even know WHAT attacked them, was it the ground or some kind of fissure or what?!) and the fact that this whole issue was about the people coming to inspect the school when we KNOW the next issue will have the mutants save the day and the inspectors changing their minds, so that bored me the second I saw the inspectors. I just never really got into this, which I wanted to, especially after Schism.

    Didio and Johns are doing what they wanna do, like you guys said, and it's sad that there's not someone opposing people like Wally being unused because they have a hard-on for Barry and the old school DCU, especially when it's clear how great Miller's Batgirl was after only two years if it still has this much support. I've learned to not even get upset about it because there's nothing I can do other than not buy the books I'm not happy with.

    And yep, that Nightwing trailer was all shades of awesome.

  4. Yeah, the art didn't do this issue any favors. I thought this issue was a fun little read, even if it is somewhat predictable. The humor mixed in was such a nice change of pace for an X-book, since they've been so damn grim for the past 5 years or so. Different strokes for different folks I guess.

    The only person who probably COULD have opposed the Johns/Didio regime would have been Jim Lee, but they appeased/bribed him by bringing so many of his Wildstorm creations into the mainstream DCU. I can't help but get pissed because I WANT to buy DC comic books... Seriously, you've known me for two years now JT, we've spoken at length about TONS of stuff. You KNOW I want to read books like JLA, JLI, Supes, Action, Detective, Flash, Aquaman, etc. I mean I own extensive runs featuring all of the characters I listed above! I SO want to follow DC like I follow Marvel. That's why I get so pissed. Because I KNOW that DC SHOULD be better than all this. And yet all we're gonna get as fans are retreads so TWO men can relive their youth.

    Agreed 200%!

  5. What you talkin bout Willis?! I couldn't resist... although I did like the comment that kid made about missing seeing Emma in the hallways.

    Sad but true X.. I can't really oppose it either. All I can hope is that guys like Snyder (due to his meteoric Johns like rise) and even Morrison who I'm not a big fan of, can help usher a bit of change but I doubt it.

  6. I cant avoid get pissed, cuz
    i see the numbers and Didio saying Barbara Gordon is more acknowledged as Batgirl let put her in the outfit again and then sell 4.5 milloins units of Arkham City with her as Oracle

    Nothing made any sense.
    there is no plan
    i feel like I cant trust in a companny that works in that way.. of course i can trust in guys like Snyder or Lemire but
    I trust in Gail but even she cannot do anything when Didio or Jhons wants his favorite character back

  7. "What you talkin bout Willis?!" HA! Ah JT... You know me though. If the story and art is good, I can usually ignore the art, which I did for all but that last page.

    Sadly JT, I don't see somebody like Snyder making any major moves. Didio really made a masterstroke when he gave Johns an executive position with the company. That means if we were lucky enough to get rid of one of them, the other would still have the clout to nix anything they didn't like. And like Alien says, I honestly don't think there IS any semblance of a longterm plan at DC... Kind of like the E I guess... I still swear that the reboot was probably planned maybe 6 months before it was actually enacted, if not less time. There's no way you can ever convince me that the reboot has been in the works for years, as you'd expect something that massive to have been. But alas, the only thing I can hope is that the sales numbers at DC fall dramatically over the course of the next several months post-reboot to the point that Warner Bros gets alarmed and decides to start clearing out some of the problems in DC editorial...