The GeeksverseWeekly Reviews For 11/21/12

Weekly Reviews For 11/21/12
Published on Wednesday, November 28, 2012 by

A big week for Marvel Now!. Sif gets her own book, Hulk joins S.H.I.E.L.D., Captain America goes to Dimension X, Peter Parker gets spoiled

Journey Into Mystery #646 ($2.99, Marvel Comics)

Journey Into Mystery #646, cover by Jeff Dekal

  • Writer: Kathryn Immonen
  • Art: Valerio Schiti
  • Colorist: Jordie Bellaire
  • Letterer: VC’s Clayton Cowles
  • Assistant Editor: Jacob Thomas
  • Editor: Lauren Sankovitch

I like the character of Sif, always have, but I don’t know if she’s strong enough, or deserving enough, to warrant her own series. Of course, like most of Marvel Now seems to be, this could be story arc specific and she doesn’t star in Journey Into Mystery for more then the opening arc.

As for the first issue of Sif’s starring turn, it’s very Asgardian heavy. That works for it, but works against it. It works because Sif is even more Asgardian then Thor is. It’s in her blood, its what she is, always having to prove herself over the men. It works against the book because it weighs it down. The script is dense, long winded. Jason Aaron didn’t do enough of the Asgardian speech in Thor, Immonen does too much in Journey.

There’s nothing here to set Sif apart, make her unique. We’ve seen Valkyrie in the Marvel Universe, so what makes Sif so different from Val? The plot is fairly muddled, in that there really isn’t one. It’s hard to tell what is going on and what Sif is looking for.

Not the strongest of starts for the title, but the artwork by Schiti is excellent. He’s a rising talent.

3 out of 5

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Indestructible Hulk #1 ($3.99, Marvel Comics)

Indestructible Hulk #1, cover by Leinil Francis Yu

  • Writer: Mark Waid
  • Art: Leinil Francis Yu
  • Colorist: Sunny Gho
  • Letterer: Chris Eliopoulos
  • Assistant Editor: Jon Moisan
  • Editor: Mark Paniccia

Now this is a Hulk idea I can get behind. Most times a Hulk series is built around the Banner vs Hulk, who is in control, arguement. This time it’s approached differently, and in a way that makes sense. Why hasn’t anyone else ever thought of approaching Hulk this way, as a chronic disease? Millions of people go through life having to make adjustments for diabetes, asthma, or any of dozens of other diseases. So why shouldn’t Banner approach it that way?

One thing that always gets overlooked is Banner’s intelligence. Seeing him get frustrated at the mention of Tony Stark helps highlight that. This arrangement with SHIELD will allow Banner to be involved in those scenes that has all the top minds working together, a place he’s been absent from. The comment about Latveria is a nice touch, as is the black mail. It shows that Banner isn’t naive, and he’s not really a nice guy. He’s concerned about his legacy, about his name more then what he’ll actually accomplish.

Waid’s approach is brilliant. I’m not normally a Hulk fan, but I think I’ll like this. One comment though, Maria Hill isn’t Director of Shield, Daisy Johnson is. Marvel needs to make up their mind on that point.

Yu’s work is great. Interesting layouts, dynamic pages. Waid needs to do more with the Mad Thinker.

5 out of 5

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Captain America #1 ($3.99, Marvel Comics)

Captain America #1, cover by John Romita Jr.

  • Writer: Rick Remender
  • Penciler: John Romita Jr.
  • Inker: Klaus Janson
  • Colorist: Dean White
  • Letterer: VC’s Joe Caramagna
  • Assistant Editor: Jake Thomas
  • Editor: Lauren Sankovitch

The two best runs on Captain America have been by Ed Brubaker and Mark Waid, with Brubaker’s in the lead. Both focused on what made Steve Rogers into Captain America, what made him “stand up” (to use Rick Remender’s plot point). They both looked at how Steve could still maintain his morals in today’s world, today’s america. They focused Cap on less cosmic threats. Both runs were excellent.

Now Rick Remender takes over and so far it seems he’s going in a completely opposite direction and I don’t think it’s going to work. The opening does do a good job of setting the tone and place. But is that Steve Rogers? The date doesn’t make much sense. He’s shown to be about 8 or so in 1926, so in 1940(ish) when he goes to join the military he would be 24? And Sharon says he just turned 90, that would mean he would have been born in 1922, which would have made him 22 when he tried to join the Army. He’s shown older and I figured him to be 18-20 when tried to join the military. That sequance just didn’t work out.

The rest of it doesn’t either. So SHIELD hears about a train using an abandoned line and Cap goes to investigate? This is Captain America we’re talking about here, there’s no way he would go into the situation and not be on guard. He’s caught too easily and in a way that doesn’t make sense for Cap. The whole thing doesn’t make sense.

I do like the human elements that Remender added, with Sharon asking Cap to marry her. That’s a nice touch, but sadly it won’t be touched upon again for awhile since Cap will be trapped in Dimension Z for awhile.

And that’s not a place for Captain America. He needs to be on the frontlines fighting terrorism, not trapped in some alternate dimension.

How does John Romita Jr keep getting work, and high profile work at that? His work is horrible.

2 out of 5 (this may be the first time in a long time I don’t read Captain America)

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Amazing Spider-Man #698 ($3.99, Marvel Comics)

Amazing Spider-Man #698, cover by Paolo Rivera

  • Writer: Dan Slott
  • Penciler: Richard Elson
  • Colorist: Antonio Fabela
  • Letterer: VC’s Chris Eliopoulos
  • Assistant Editor: Ellie Pyle
  • Editor: Stephen Wacker

By now everyone knows what happens in this issue. It was spoiled across the internet before it was even on shelves, leading Dan Slott to say that he’s boycott anyone media outlet that released the spoiler. And it was a pretty big spoiler.

But now comes the fun part, seeing how it all plays out.

Slott does a great job with the script. There are moments in the dialogue, where can feel Ock’s influence on Peter’s mind, but it’s done subtly so the end result isn’t given away until the end.

The strength of this storyline will result in how well Slott builds off this issue. What he does with it will determine if it’s along the lines of the clone saga or a defining Spider-Man epic. How far will Slott take this? It seems that it will extend into the new Marvel Now! series but to what extent? Will Peter’s goodness override Ock’s badness?

Should be interesting to watch.

4 out of 5

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One Response
    • Captain America has had some wacky adventures over the years, so why not send him off on something strange for a while to keep it different? I like Remender’s work overall, although it isn’t without its faults at times. I wonder how he makes notes about timelines? It would be easy to conflate Cap’s timeline.

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