Musing about comics (the Marvel edition) ….

March 10, 2009

So my brother-in-law told my wife the other day that I should write a second blog, which would just focus on comics……

At first I scoffed at the idea because I rarely have time to update this blog ….. but then I got to thinking about it and realize that he had just given me an idea for my next blog post.

So here are some of my thoughts on a few of the Marvel titles that I’m currently reading … and who knows? Maybe I’ll encourage someone to pick oneof these titles up ……

Punisher: Max — This is not for kids. In fact, it comes with a huge “Parental Advisory” label on the front of it. Why? Because the Punisher kills a lot of people …. and this title does not skimp on the blood. Add in the language and the types of issues that the book deals with and you have probably one of the best “for mature readers” titles currently being offered. Now I started reading this title right after Garth Ennis left and when Gregg Hurwitz came on for his six issue arc entitled “Girls in White Dresses.” This arc featured on the Punisher coming into a small Mexican town to discover why all the women in this town are disappearing …. and then reappearing as corpses. The issues of this arc are a little hard to find, but Marvel just released the entire arc into one trade paperback. The title currently has Duane Swiercynzki as its writer, with his “Six Hours to Kill” arc at its half-way point. Crime novelist Victor Gischler (Gun Monkeys) will taking over for a six-issue arc afterwards.

Amazing Spider-Man: I’ve been reading Spider-man since I was a kid and I have to admit, the current Brand New Day timeline in this title has me hooked. It started off slow, but kicked up with the “New Ways to Die” arc (currently available in hardcover). Currently the title is the midst of the “Character Assassination” arc where it is wrapping up the past year’s worth of plotlines. From there, the march to issue #600 begins. I cannot wait ………
Captain America: Even before they killed the previous Captain America, this was still once of the best comics that Marvel was publishing. Ed Brubaker has not written one bad issue during his 47-issue (and counting) run. The first 42 issues of his run — including the three-act “Death of Captain America” act — are currently available in either softcover or hardcover trade paperback form. Highest possible recommendation.

Ultimate Spider-Man: I got hooked on this title as a fluke back on issue #4 …. and now 127 issues later, I still look forward to when this title is included within my “pull list” at my comic shop. Granted, the current storyline that ties into the Ultimatum crossover in the Ultimate titles has slowed down things a bit (and add to the fact that this title is going to come to an end next month), but regardless, you still have one of the best renditions of Spider-Man around. I’m looking forward to the end of this title next month, and also when they relaunch it this summer. (sidenote: Brian Michael Bendis has written every issue of this series, and will continue to write it when it is relaunched).

Dark Avengers: Two issues in and I can’t wait to see what happens next. This title ties into Marvel’s “Dark Reign” theme that cross-overs several titles. The premise of Dark Reign is this — Norman Osborn has been placed in control of the nation’s defense network following Secret Invasion and in response, he has created his own Avengers team. This team consists basically of psychopathic killers — Bullseye, Venom and Moonstone — as well as a couple of other ancillary characters — Ares and the Sentry — with Norman as their leader, the Iron Patriot. (The costume for the Iron Patriot is basically an Iron Man suit painted with the red, white and blue of America). It gets even better — Venom has been drugged so that the symbiote has devolved into the old black Spider-Man costume; Moonstone is now called Ms. Marvel and wears a classic Ms. Marvel costume; and Bullseye is now Hawkeye (mainly this was done by Osborn to rub it into the classic characters’ faces that he is in charge now). Crazy stuff from Brian Michael Bendis. I read the first issue four times and it never got old. I can’t wait to see where Bendis takes this team of “Avengers.”

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That’s it for now folks ….. I’ll probably get to the DC titles in the next post … Keep smiling:)

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Novel recommendations: When One Man Dies by Dave White; The Cutie by Donald Westlake; Scavenger by David Morrell; and The Reader by Bernhard Schlink.

What I’m currently reading: Stick by Elmore Leonard

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2 Responses to “Musing about comics (the Marvel edition) ….”

  1. andrewwales Says:

    The Captain America series has me hooked too. At first I thouht, “Bring back Bucky?! Kill Cap?!” But the idea of a world without CA and how would they replace him is an excellent story.

    Right now I like Fantastic Four too, and The Hulk for “big dumb fun”.

  2. jonnymommy Says:

    Yeah! This is what I was talking about! Look at all that knowledge! So vast! So … knowledgeable. So glad you told me about each title so I know what NOT to let our son pick up anymore!

    I love the section at the end where you are putting what you are reading…etc.

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