Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Not-Very-Deep Thoughts: The September 21 Edition (HERE BE SPOILERS!)

Civil War II #5:  Given how ridiculously delayed this issue (and entire series) is, it's absurd that the only significant event in this issue is Ulysses' vision of Miles holding an impaled Captain America in front of the Capitol.  I have no idea how many issues we have left, since Marvel has a habit of adding issues when a story is already going badly.  But, it's getting harder and harder to stay engaged here as the schedule slips and the story doesn't progress.  It feels like we're heading to a big revelation about the true nature of Ulysses' power, but it's getting harder and harder to see how that's going to lead us to a resolution.  If Tony is proven correct and Ulysses' biases impact his predictions, does Captain Marvel just shrug and apologize?  Does Clint then produce a still-alive Bruce Banner and say, "Hey, the other guy was a LMD, I was hiding Banner in a cave, gotcha!"?  If Carol is proven correct, do we have predictive justice forever in the Marvel Universe?  That's always seemed unlikely, which partly explains why this series has lacked any drama, since it's been pretty clear what the conclusion was going to be from the start. Beyond just the unwieldy plot, we have a huge characterization problem here.  I subscribe to a lot of series with tie-in issues, and the events in those issues don't seem to be well represented in this main title.  For example, Kamala and Miles have made up their minds here to join the anti-Carol forces, despite the fact they haven't come to those conclusions yet in their own series.  Peter very explicitly made the decision to support Carol at all costs at the end of "Civil War II:  Amazing Spider-Man," but he's shown (I think) emerging from the shower while the fight occurs as if he's just a bystander.  The original X-Men are shown in the title page as siding with Tony, but we don't see them (as far as I can see) in this issue, despite the obvious draw of a fight between "old" Iceman and young Iceman.  In fact, in their own series, they're not even in the same place -- Hank is hiding in his lab, Scott is still recovering from his beating at Toad's hands, and Evan and Idie are helping Bobby score some peen in Miami.  In other words?  It's a mess.  It's hard to believe Bendis and the editors planned for us to be where we are now, but it doesn't matter, because here we are.

Civil War II:  X-Men #4:  Just like the main title, this series seemed to have been going in one direction but veers significantly as a result of a vision Ulysses has.  Here, Magneto finally makes his way to Ulysses.  However, Ulysses shows Magneto a vision of Storm's team and his team essentially killing each other, so Magneto leaves New Attilan before it gets to that point.  The problem is that said vision doesn't really make much sense.  If Magneto did kill Ulysses, it seems much more likely his team would be facing the Inhumans and Carol's side.  Sure, Storm and her team would be part of that larger squad, but it seems unlikely they'd be the only ones coming after Magneto and his team.  But, nothing about this event has made a lick of sense, so I don't know why it'd start now.

Justice League #5:  Honestly, I have no effing idea what happened here, just like the last issue.  I get Hitch is setting up some other story -- one focused on whatever the Kindred was trying to achieve here.  But, you have to make sure the actual story you're telling makes sense, and this one didn't at all.  Magic singing crystals in Atlantis?  An alien race called the Purge that looked like Cyborg?  Three hidden bombs in the Earth's core?  It just made not a damn lick of sense.  I don't understand how an editor could've read this story and thought, "Oh, I totally see where Hitch is going with this one, how clever!"?  I'll give it one more arc, but "Justice League" just went to the top of my "cancel" list after this one. 

Mighty Thor #11:  There was a period there a few issues ago where I felt like this series was dragging, but, man, it is not any longer.  Aaron and Dauterman are just on fire here.  Both of them do such an amazing job crafting characters.  I want Exterminatrix and Silver Samurai to battle Dario and Thor every issue.  Aaron does such an excellent job of giving everyone a distinct voice.  I loved Jane's conversation with Roz at the end, as Roz babbles after Jane shares her secret.  But, it's not all about characterization.  The plot is also getting more interesting by the moment.  Aaron totally plays up the likelihood a shape-shifting Loki helped Jane keep her secret identity, but instead we learn it was an apparently sentient Mjolnir.  It speaks to the point Aaron has frequently made, about how Mjolnir speaks to Jane -- now literally -- in a way it didn't to Thor.  Meanwhile, in the background, we've still got the war in the Ten Realms and now the war between Dario, Exterminatrix, and the Silver Samurai.  When you add in Dauterman's rendering of Jane holding up a gold-clad Roxxon Island before it crashes into New York, you realize it's a golden age of Thor indeed.  (Sorry, I couldn't help myself on that one.)

Also Read:  Amazing Spider-Man #18; Batman #7; Nightwing #5

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