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©The Variant 2015

All-New, All-Different, All a Bit Better...

February 15, 2016

 

So last week (or the week before, I forget) I did a series of flash reviews for Marvel’s All-New, All-Different line of titles. I wasn’t too thrilled with most of them. This week I’ll be doing the same but hopefully (no guarantees) it won’t be a tragic list filled with re-hashed ideas and already done concepts. Let’s begin shall we?

 

Unbeatable Squirrel-Girl – While this is a relaunch of USG I feel like this is one of the few books that picked up right where it left off and is just continuing on with new fresh ideas. Ryan North’s writing and Erica Henderson’s art is fun and as enjoyable as it was in the original run and this is a funny, smart and charming all-ages read. 

--Definitely buy this book

 

Spider-Woman – What a difference eight months makes! Dennis Hopeless took this opportunity to take Spider-Woman eight months into the future and make her eight months pregnant. This is a really smart move and while some of the covers come off just a little bit creepy and while I’m not sure Jessica Drew being a parent is the best idea, I’m interested. I want to know who the father is. I love the little asides as she has bouts of vomiting or weird cravings. Her interactions with Carol Danvers are spot-on and I would love to see Hopeless picking up the Captain Marvel title at some point as well as his Carol is a testament to her writers before him.  

-–Definitely buy this book too

 

Contest of Champions – This is a great idea but after seeing the ad for the mobile app game in the back of the book… It’s just Ovaltine… a crummy commercial. Don’t get me wrong, some of the best franchises in comics and cartoons started as commercials. They could probably do a successful kids show with this, but make no mistake; this title is there to sell the app. While never having read the original CoC from the 80’s I do love the concept. It’s not a bad read, it just left a bad taste in my mouth that it’s only really here for selling the game and that to me shoots down all legitimacy as Marvel U canon.   

-–I’ll probably finish the series but under duress

 

All-New All-Different Hawkeye – I was a HUGE fan of the Fraction run of Hawkeye. When Jeff Lemire picked it up I was a little skeptical that it was just going to be a copycat style. The first run was different than Matt’s and great and the second run still continues that greatness with the back and forth time-jumps and the banter between Clint and Kate. If it ain’t broke… Who’s the best Hawkeye? Only time will tell. 

-– Check it out!

 

All-New Inhumans – I love the writing of Charles Soule. This book he co-writes with James Asmus and while it’s a good story, I just don’t find myself interested in these characters. Having a team of Nu-Humans (Inhumans newbies) led by Crystal and a crippled Gorgon reminds me more of a bad X-Men story from the 90’s than the previous run of Inhuman by Soule. I know Marvel is trying to push the hell out of the Inhumans since they have a movie to headline but making them the new “mutants” of the Marvel U seems more like a big “Why bother?” than anything. Super powers? Check. Crazy odd mutations? Check. Hated and feared? Check. Mentor in a wheelchair? Check? Again, just not feeling it. 

-–Giving it a few more issues out of loyalty to Mr. Soule but more than likely dropping it

 

Guardians of Infinity – I grabbed this book not knowing what it was about and after reading it I realized they took Guardians 3000, and Guardians Team-up and just mashed it all together into one book. I’m a fan of the Bendis run of the main GotG book and the original line-up and while I do like the inclusion of Kitty Pryde (a guilty pleasure) I feel like she’s an afterthought in all the Guardians titles. She’s gone from main cast X-Man to Peter Quill’s stand-in girlfriend. Before Secret Wars even happened Sam Humphries did an outstanding job collaborating with Bendis on the Black Vortex crossover and keeping Kitty as the major player she’s become in the Marvel U. I don’t really know any of the Guardians 3000 and honestly don’t care enough about them to keep reading this title. 

-–Dropped this title last week… I think... I’ll have to check my bag

 

Guardians of The Galaxy – As I mentioned before, I loved the original Bendis run of GotG. I loved the crossovers with X-Men and I loved when they added Kitty Pryde to the mix. Adding the Thing seems to be more of a way to keep the character in the Marvel Universe now that the Fantastic Four has been “Secret Warred” out. They did the same with Johnny Storm having him pop up wherever it seems to fit but really neither of them fit anywhere else but their own FF book. Also Rocket’s in charge which makes zero sense. Kitty is the fill-in Star Lord and they go visit Peter Quill who is now the King of Spartax. I don’t hate the story. I hate change.  I feel like it’s just a matter of time before the band gets back together and I’ll still be reading and waiting for that day.  

-–Worth reading, keeping it on the sub

 

Rocket Raccoon and Groot – I liked the first Rocket Raccoon run by Skottie Young. The solo Groot book was OK as well. This book starts off with the premise that Rocket and Groot are missing and presumed dead. Wait? What? When did this even happen? I read all those books and I read Secret Wars and GotG and pretty much any title that included both of them and… I got nothin. No idea when this happened or if it was just something Hickman stuck into Secret Wars as an afterthought (there were A LOT of those). I think this is a mini-series but I have no idea as Marvel doesn’t put the “1 of 4” or “5 of 12” or whatever stamps on any of their books anymore. So confusing.  

– If this goes longer than a 6 issue mini I’m dropping it

 

Star*Lord – This book is quickly becoming one of my favorites as Sam Humphries took the first arc into “Star*Lord: Year One” territory. It’s a great read, funny and has a much needed Peter Quill: The Wonder Years feel to it. Adding Yondu to the mix is a great idea and I read everything he says in Michael Rooker’s voice now. I never read anything from the older GotG runs with Yondu in it so I was never really familiar with the character. Now he’s Merle… in space… And I love it.  

-–Go add this book NOW!

 

Vision – OK the Vision was never one of my favorite characters. I didn’t hate him, but I also didn’t love him either. I still don’t but this story is AMAZING. The Vision has built himself a family and they live in the suburbs. It harkens back to the old Vision and the Scarlet Witch series from the 80’s but instead of having that icky “She’s screwing an android!” feeling we instead get an icky “The androids are screwing!” feeling, but in a not as creepy way. Without spoiling anything, the main protagonist of the story is unexpected at best and it plays out perfectly. It’s scary and creepy and definitely has a feel of dread looming overhead as the Vision goes about life as naively as possible for a super computing android / Avenger. If played into Marvel continuity right this book could lead into so many bigger and better Ultron type storylines and I’m hoping this title is an on-going and not a mini. 

–Cannot recommend this book enough!!

 

Well I’m leaving these flash reviews at 10 and next week (hopefully) I’ll be back with more as I finally ripped through my beloved X-Men titles. With a MUCH better list of good reviews this week than last I think Marvel has redeemed themselves and are starting to live up to the All-New, All-Different moniker.

 

 

 

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