Teen Titans #1
I really liked Scott Lobdell's work on Superboy and Red Hood and the Outlaws this month so I'm hoping he can make it three for three with the Teen Titans. We start things off with a building on fire, but much less interesting than you'd think since all there's no one trapped inside. Kid Flash shows up, and seems more like Impulse which is fun, as he's trying to help and make an impact on television for his "adoring fans". When Kid Flash runs inside and throws a door open, he causes a back-draft that blows both the building and Kid Flash away. The firemen are all safe, as Kid Flash lays in the grass, barley conscious with a burned up costume. Meanwhile, the news reports that a metahuman took a small controlled fire and turned it into a roaring inferno in seconds. We then cut over to Tim Drake, former Robin and current Red Robin, keeping up with the news of a ton of incidents that have been caused by super powered teens, as we see Kid Flash, Static, Raven and Miss Martian. Interesting note is they say a spokesman for the Justice League says Kid Flash has no ties with The Flash, hm... Surprisingly, Tim is not alone, as we see a few masked people with guns sneak up behind him and hold Tim at gunpoint, while their supposed leader mentions that Tim has been blogging information about the group. Tim says that he's aware they've been kidnapping super powered teenagers, and after being offered a job which Tim denies, he tells the members of N.O.W.H.E.R.E. that they'd best head for the hills, because his room was rigged with explosives that would detonate in eleven seconds. The cowardly gang run while Tim jumps out of the window before deploying his wings and jets and flying off as Red Robin. He mentions that he's tried to work in the shadows since his time as Robin but now he realizes he'll need help, before heading out to gather a team. We then see Cassie Sandsmark driving a car she clearly stole when she is pulled over by a police officer. It turns out the officer is actually an agent for N.O.W.H.E.R.E. and tries to strangle a surprised Cassie before the agent is knocked out from behind by Red Robin, good timing right? He introduces himself to Cass and explains the deal with NOWHERE (I'm done adding the periods for that acronym.) but Cassie denies that she has powers. That is until a giant helicopter comes down and opens fire on the two, Red Robin is protected by his wings which are apparently bullet proof, which causes Cassie to power up, and she apparently HATES being called Wonder Girl. The super powered femme fatale makes quick work of the gunner before telling Red Robin now that these people know her identity her life will never be the same again. On the other side of the world, we see something we saw a bit earlier in Superboy #1, as NOWHERE releases Superboy to go after the Teen Titans as this issue ends. Well this was interesting, I hated how they went from one second of Tim in his room to just thrusting us into this NOWHERE thing, but I did like how well Tim was written. Tim and Bart (?) came off sounding like Tim and Bart, and I like Cassie as she's written powerful but apparently still wishes to have her normal life as well as her hero life separate. I'd give this first issue of Titans a 7/10, nothing amazing but I'll definitely stick around for the ride.
Cassie: I'm serious Red... DON'T call me Wonder Girl.
Ultimate Spider-Man #2
HA! We start things off with Miles running down the street top speed, and overhear a guy saying "so I said to the guy: You never read the book yet you go online and talk about it as if.." Nice inside joke by Bendis for all the Miles haters. Anyway Miles jumps over the guy and his co-worker that are moving a giant TV, which of course draws a crowd. Miles runs away, obviously feeling weird as people proclaim him a mutant. Miles waits for a bit, still stunned, before walking home. On the way home, Miles is about to be robbed by some delinquents, but when one of them grabs him, he touches them and they get zapped. Well alright then, apparently one of his powers is electricity based, as he zaps the guy again and knocks him out, before running away as the robber's friends once again call Miles a mutant. Miles then runs to tell his best friend, because there's always the obligatory best friend that must know when a teenager gets powers. Static Shock anyone? Miles tells his buddy Ganke to watch as he tries to turn invisible, but he can't do it for some reason. Maybe he's like Kel Mitchell in "Mystery Men" and can only turn invisible when no one's looking. Next he tries to show Ganke his electric powers, which he successfully does, and once Ganke turns his back, Miles turns invisible as well. Ganke is amazed by this new powerful, invisible Miles and tells him how great it is that a spider turned him into a mutant, but Miles isn't happy about it. His father then shows up at Ganke's house and takes Miles with him, he tells Miles that he has to stay away from his Uncle Aaron because he's a thief and Miles shouldn't be around that. He then mentions that both Miles' father and his Uncle Aaron had been to jail prior to Miles' birth, but he's turned his life around and that he's tried to make good choices every day since then. This was basically the Great Power speech but worded different and from a different man, but it had the same effect and came off very well. He then tells Miles that he can tell him anything, and before Miles can tell him about his powers, The Human Torch and Iceman fly by, which prompts Miles' dad to say how the mutants should all just leave New York alone. Smooth move, jackass. Later that night, Miles is awoken by a text from Ganke that says that Spider-Man was bitten by a spider, and links to an interview that Ben Urich did saying how Spidey got his powers, he also mentions that Miles has chameleon like powers like some spiders do and he has a venom strike like some spiders, before asking if Miles is Spider-Man. The issue ends as Miles climbs the wall and realizes that he does indeed have spider powers. I enjoyed this issue, I love finding out about characters and Miles discovering his powers, the was no action but there was a lot of well written dialogue and storytelling. I'd give this issue a 8.5/10.
Miles: Prepare to be freaked out like you've never been freaked out, before.Ganke: Please don't take off your pants. (Best...friend...duo...ever.)
We kick things off with the announcement of a new Daily Planet, a building that is more futuristic than it's past self, but more importantly it's bigger than hell and it's owned by the new boss of the Daily Planet, Morgan Edge. Meanwhile, Superman is seen floating above the debris of the old Daily Planet building, seemingly paying his respects before flying away after being seen by Jimmy Olsen. It was around this time that I tried to continue on and saw such things as guys wearing the clown masks from The Dark Knight movie, Superman/Clark Kent saying "Bull!", and some big weird alien blowing a horn like Satchmo and so many text bubbles it would make Brian Michael Bendis go crazy! Well, that's it, I'm done. No more Superman for me in this reboot, N/A!
Bendis: Damn, that's a crap load of speech bubbles!
Another awesome cover in the Venom series! Venom may be my favorite new series since Bryan Q. Miller's Batgirl started two years ago. We start things off with the former Venom and current Anti-Venom Eddie Brock, in a church healing a bunch of people that are turning into giant spiders due to the events of Spider-Island. Once The Queen finds out about Brock curing people, she sends the Spider-King to go kill him, unaware that he's actually Agent Venom, Flash Thompson, in disguise. Flash sends this info to his superiors, who then alert Reed Richards that the cure lies in the blood of Eddie Brock, so they all send someone to get Brock so they can synthesize a cure. Flash heads over to the church, while talking to Betty on the phone. She reminds Flash that his dad doesn't have long to go on this Earth and if he doesn't make amends before he dies, Flash will regret it forever, so Flash assures her he's on the way. Once Flash arrives at the church, he says the Symbiote reacts to seeing Eddie, and feels jilted but assures Flash that they are a better team. Flash intends to shoot Anti-Venom with a tranquilizer and move him to Horizon labs for tests when suddenly Brock attacks him. Anti-Venom tries to cure Venom, saying the symbiote is a cancerous demon sent from hell. After a fight and conversation, Flash realizes Brock is right, and the symbiote has slowly changed him. Suddenly the symbiote jumps off of Flash and onto Brock, as he's been weakened from healing people. Brock tries desperately to remove the symbiote from himself before it reunites them as Venom, but he fails. Flash claims he doesn't want the symbiote now, but he needs it to save the city because if it stays on Brock it would wipe out his anti-bodies. He tells the symbiote he needs it and that Eddie will always reject him, and the symbiote agrees and binds back with Flash. Later, a webbed up Anti-Venom is left at Horizon Labs, where Richards says he's going to help the city whether he likes it or not, but Eddie says he's happy to help. He mentions how Venom never asked him to help and that Venom is no good guy. Over at the hospital, Flash finally see's his dad, and his dad apologizes for always letting Flash and his family down and asks for his forgiveness. Flash tells his dad he wouldn't trade him for any other dad and that he loves him, and Flash's father passes away as this issue comes to a close. I enjoyed this a lot, especially the symbiote wanting Brock, and clearly alluding to another Venom vs. Anti-Venom fight that's far from over. The stuff with Flash's dad was pretty quickly touched upon but I enjoyed it all, and had no complaints. I'd give this issue a 9/10 rating as I frantically wait to see those two face off again.
Anti-Venom: Everything you've done since putting on that suit has been the symbiote's decision. Everything.
The Amazing Spider-Man #670
We start off seeing a bunch of people around the city like Randy Robertson and Hawkeye turning into giant spiders. Meanwhile, Mary Jane is being chased by giant spiders and Spidey is too busy trying to remember which giant spider was Carlie. On the other side of town, we see the spiders are all heading to see The Queen, Adriana Soria, a woman that apparently has spider powers and super soldier powers. We get a quick recap on her past, and that she apparently used to date Steve "Captain America" Rogers. We see that he stumbled upon her hiding spot not too long ago and she knocked him out, considering they are both super soldiers, which led to Steve being one of the first test subjects, and now being a giant brute of a man-spider known as The Spider-King. Unbeknownst to her, the Spider-King has been replaced by Flash "Venom" Thompson, using his camouflage powers. We then see a glimpse over at the church to see Anti-Venom healing people, as I touched upon in the last comic review. As Jameson and his motorcade leave Horizon Labs, they're attacked by giant spiders, so Spidey goes to help, and he gets some unexpected assistance from the Sensational Spider-Mayor. Meanwhile, The Queen realizes she has the Mayor infected and could use this to her advantage, but before Flash can do anything about it, she sends him to go kill Anti-Venom, which we also already heard about via the last review. Back with Spidey and Jameson, they head over to conduct Jonah's plan, where he questions The Spider-Slayer, Alistair Smythe, the man that murdered Jameson's wife. He asks him how to stop the spiders but Smythe is in no mood to help Jameson, and even calls him the Black Widower. It's during this time that The Queen gets into Jameson's had and makes him angry using memories of his former wife Marla, to turn Jameson into a giant spider. We then jump around and see Anti-Venom fighting Venom, the Heroes for Hire protecting a tower from spiders, and Mary Jane saving herself as she finally develops spider powers. Over at Horizon Labs, Anti-Venom tells Reed he's happy to help, but Reed says they'll need every antibody in his suit, and he'll have to give up being Anti-Venom! Back with Spidey, he's frantically trying to hold Jameson back, and a freaked out Smythe says he'll spill the info and is about to tell them how to stop the spider infection when suddenly Jameson bites his neck and seemingly kills him as this issue comes to a close. Man, this was a crazy issue, it was pretty action packed but it jumped around so much it seemed clunky and slows down at parts that I was really getting drawn into the story at. I'd give this issue of Spider-Man a 8/10 rating.
J. Jonah Jameson: You can't do anything, can you?! We should just call you Mr. Can't-Tastic!
(Okay... that was genius.)
Kick Ass 2 #4
Mother Russia is one big chick. We kick things off with Hit-Girl talking about how boring her life has been up until seeing the news story that a New York City hero was killed by the returning Red Mist, now known as The Motherfucker. Mindy wants to go take care of him, but Marcus tells her she's an eleven-year-old child and this doesn't concern her, before sending her to her room. Meanwhile, Kick-Ass and the other heroes meet at a diner and try to decide what to do next, especially since the villains say that this is only the beginning. It only gets worse as The Motherfucker and a few of his cronies decide to pay Kick-Ass' girlfriend or ex-girlfriend or whatever she is to him, Katie Deuxma, a visit. While looking for her, MF opens fire and kills a bunch of kids and civilians. They bust into Katie's house and MF shoots her dad point-blank in the head, punches Katie in the mouth then rapes Katie. Well damn, I know he's evil but killing kids and raping women?! Outside the cops arrive but their all dealt with by Mother Russia and a very powerful gun. After taking off, we see at the police station that reports show that twenty-seven people were killed and over eighty injured. Man, that's insane. We then see that they've traced the IP addresses of the twitter and facebook accounts and plan on hitting the houses with five hundred men, but Kick-Ass' name is also on the list, showing they're going after the heroes and villains. They then arrest a bunch of people, including heroes, and when they come to Dave's house, they arrest his father since he claims he's Kick-Ass. Well that's a good dad. As Dave and his friends all stand over an unconscious Katie in the hospital, Dave feels remorse that she was attacked because of him, when he gets a text from MF that says he should be worried about his dad, and Dave rushes home. Dave arrives home to see his dad arrested on his behalf as the issue comes to a close. Man, this issue was insane. It moved so quick, MF and his team are insane and you gotta wonder what Hit-Girl can do to join the fight and how Kick-Ass and his crew will strike back. I'd give this issue a 9/10 rating and I hope the next issue comes out soon.
Hit-Girl: We need to hunt this fucker down and make him wish his dad had finished on his mother's tits.
And just like that, this week's R&R comes to a close. I enjoyed most of my issues this week and I'm always interested in what you guys think. Before I get out of here I want to remind you to vote on this week's newest poll as well as check out the results of last week's extremely close poll. Well that's it for me everyone, until next time, I'm your friendly neighborhood Blogger-Man, Jason Todd, signing off!
Last week's poll asked "Following the events of Schism so far, who would you side with?"
Last place with 27.3% - Team Cyclops and "I didn't read Schism."
Winner with 45.5% - Team Wolverine (It was tied yesterday!)
Next Week on Ratings and Rantings
Animal Man #2, Detective Comics #2, Justice League International #2, Deadpool #44, Invincible #83, and X-Men: Schism #5!