Saturday, November 8, 2014

Stack Rundown, 11/08/2014

Not going to lie, this week... the last thing I wanted to do was read comics, and then write about them. Hell, I literally just got done reading this week's books a couple hours ago (and not even including all of them in this post), thus didn't write anything until right now. I don't know, I'm just a bit burnt out at a moment. Oh well, the show must go on.

Swamp Thing #36

A while back I believe Charles Soule was doing a Reddit ama and I asked if he had any plans for Abby Holland in the near future. At the time, he said something along the lines of not right now, which bummed me out… but one Marvel exclusive contract later, and hey, look at that, it’s Abby Holland! Hooray! Her dynamic was one of my favorite parts of the Snyder run on the book, so obviously I’m glad to have her back, and I love the added Romeo and Juliet sort of deal they’ve got now. Outside of that, this issue’s big development was the Metal picking their avatar, the former Swamp Thing Lady Weeds. Given Soule’s time on the title is wrapping up, I think it’s pretty clever of him to bring her back (even though she hasn’t been gone for long) in order to wrap everything up he’s introduced on his own terms. I’ll be looking forward to seeing where this one goes, and I’m glad Soule will be sticking through with this one until Convergence.

Axis: Avengers & X-Men #4

I’m still sort of at a loss as to what the point of this event is, sort of the same way as I was with Original Sin. What’s the big change going to be? Because Original Sin was just basically “I don’t know, Bucky is shooting Aliens and Thor can’t pick up his hammer.” Axis just seems to be “Iron Man is a dick and drinking again.” That said, due to the whole inversion thing, I’m enjoying this more than I did Original Sin, simply because I think it’s funny watching everyone just be a dick now. That’s basically what it is, the heroes are dicks, the villains are bad at being good guys. There’s just some very basic level stuff to appreciate there. But other than that, yeah… the whole thing just seems to be spread really thin, and I hope it shapes up to be something more cohesive and impactful in the second half.

Chew #44

Well, John Layman kept saying this arc would be real bad for the characters, and this would be the issue where shit goes wrong, and good god is it a bloodbath. Two characters seemingly got killed, and there’s potential for more in the next issue. Those still alive in this issue didn’t make it out much better, as they got maimed quite a bit. Post issue #30, this series had a real big tonal shift, and so far this issue is the epitome of that shift, which damn near barely any humor to be found. Though… I will say, things might not turn out the way they’re presented here, because Applebee is in a pretty bad spot in this issue, yet there have been flash forwards to Chew #60 (the final issue) with Mike still telling Tony how much he hates him… so who knows at this point… But “damn” is just about all I can say at the moment.

Nailbiter #7

LOOKIT… It’s Brian Michael Bendis, because why not? That was pretty much this issue’s big hook, bringing Bendis in just because. So Bendis is researching for a horror book he wants to do, interviews some people, gets told to fuck off, that sort of stuff. The highlight of the issue was definitely his conversation with Nailbiter, who compared Bendis to himself, after listing off all the superheroes Bendis had killed. Not gonna lie, the long list just sort of mad me laugh. Despite me not really caring about Bendis (especially after abruptly dropping damn near all the X titles) I still found this issue to be pretty enjoyable. 

Hack/Slash: Son of Samhain #5

So, this was the finale of the series, which I wouldn’t say was unexpected, given that “Hack/Slash: Son of Samhain” is a very specific title more suited for a limited series. I feel like I saw some talk about chances of there being more seem to be pretty good, so I’ve got that to hopefully look forward to, while hoping there are a few changes. I probably sound like a broken record, but this god monster stuff just did absolutely nothing for me. I love Cassie, that’s a fact, and I liked October’s introduction, but the threats they were fighting just fell flat. If we get more Hack/Slash, I’d really like to see a return to form in some respects, and have some more campy elements and enemies thrown back in. I can understand the writing team wanting to differentiate themselves from the series creator and can appreciate the effort, but as a long time fan of the series, I just prefer the campy/tongue-in-cheek horror movie tropes with the skimpy outfits, weird slashers, grimly humorous situations, etc. compared to some race of underground monsters with some mythical god monster or whatever. 

Velvet #8

I’ve got to say, while it seems like there’s a larger than a month gap between issues it still feels like it’s consistently released… where I don’t know when the fuck the next issue of Rat Queens is ever going to hit. Unfortunate for that series, I guess. ANYWAYS. Velvet this month, I liked it, but I thought it was a bit standard. Velvet goes in, does some bad ass stuff, gets out, the end sort of thing. I guess the big question is who that guy is she ordered the release of towards the end. Maybe there’s a hint somewhere, maybe there isn’t, I don’t know! I’ll just wait to see… next year… which is a weird thing to say.

Birthright #2

After what was genuinely one of my favorite last page twists so far this year, I thought it would be kind of difficult for this book to follow up on that, and well, it sort of was. I’ll be honest, with such a great ending to the first issue, there was absolutely no way this one could have been better, but of course, that’s not to say it was bad or anything, you just can’t beat the game changer series twist with the second issue. This month we got a little more development set in the past which I’m sure is going to illustrate how the twist came to be, and meanwhile in the present, Mikey goes a bit HAM, in an effort to start his quest. Looking forward to seeing how this one continues to develop, especially when I came into this title pretty blind.


  1. I definitely agree that the final twist in Swamp Thing was clever.

  2. I thought that Axis was good this week, but at the same time, I have been disappointed in the event overall since I was looking forward to it so much as an event written by Remender. Is it bad that I am already looking forward to the relaunch next year more with the new Uncanny Avengers? I am just losing interest in this current event and do not care as much about it because of all of the stuff going on and it feels like it is dragging. I also thought the Apocalypse reveal had no build up and was too quick.

    1. Yeah, I'm looking forward to the new UA too, because compared to Axis, UA is just more laser focused. So much of UA felt like it was an event already.

    2. Basically what's keeping me around for Axis is 1. faith that Remender will pull something out of this, as he's always seems to have a point and 2. See how the new UA comes about.

    3. Remender writing Deadpool again (his interactions with Evan in #s 2 & 3 were GOLD) is the best thing to come out of the series so far, IMO.

    4. I would agree with your points and that is how I feel as well. To me, Remender has written his comics like events with Uncanny X-Force which was amazing and then Uncanny Avengers too. That is what I liked about them and Remender said that Axis was originally just going to be an arc in Uncanny Avengers that was more focused, but it became bigger and bigger and became an event. I think it would have worked better as one of his arcs that felt like an event like his usual writing style. I will keep reading Axis since I hope it becomes better overall, but we will see.

    5. I agree with you NAIRU, Remender writing Deadpool was been great and I missed that because he writes him as legitimately funny. I still remember the lines from Uncanny X-Force when he talks to Evan and is called a hero along with his funny stuff like with Fantomex and going to the Age of Apocalypse where when they get there, he was hilarious. Deadpool's interactions with Evan have been great in Axis so I do like that aspect.

  3. Honestly, I think the real point of AXIS is just to get to where Avengers and New Avengers are in the "Time Runs Out" arc. However, this is the first Marvel event I've really enjoyed since AVX. I mean, Age of Ultron sucked, Infinity was good but a little complicated, and Original Sin was pretty lackluster. With AXIS, it's kind of the combination of having fun debating who's right again between the Avengers and X-Men (this time around, I'm siding with X-Men) and the disheartening feeling I get from seeing the heroes act the way they are. I think if you're able to feel that way about a comic, they're doing their job right. The only problem I see though is the big continuity issue of Steve being old but he's still working with Tony and Bruce when he found out they were part of the Illuminati when he was still young.
    On a related note, seeing the preview for AXIS #5, I'm kind of wanting Remender to write Spidey now.