uncanny avengers

ua-lede-1352933199

Marvel Now Part 2

Marvel Now has been out for a few months now and has proven it’s proven itself as more than a gimmick. New titles, reinvented characters, and new rosters make Marvel Now the most talked about initiative in comics in the last 6 months. Adam and Nick go through each title and break down what’s been going on.

Listen to the Episode Directly.

Listen to the Episode on iTunes.

iTunes listeners: HELP US OUT!

  • Rate Us
  • Leave a Review
  • Subscribe

Doing this really helps us move up in the rankings which means more people will find this show!

Have something you’d like us to discuss? Please email us question at info@shortboxpodcast.com with “Listener Topic” in the subject line and make sure to let us know if we can use your name on the podcast. Thanks for listening!

My Favorite 1/23 Comics

january marvel now new 52

My 1/23 Pull List

Marvel Now’s track record is really great with me so far! As I talked about on Episode 33 and 34 of our Podcast, Marvel Now has (for the most part) delivered on their promises. We’re getting important stories from new angles without gimmicks. The creator changes are the most important component as far as I’m concerned. Ed Brubaker on Cap, Bendis on Avengers, and Hickman on FF created some of the most definitive runs for those books but…it was time for a change. We’re getting that with Marvel Now.

DC’s New 52 has been around three times as long so it’s loftier goals have hard a harder time of staying pure. While I believe DC’s titles offer a more diverse subject matter, there percentage of great books are nowhere close to where Marvel now is right now. We’ll see how long Marvel can keep this up!

captain-america-thor-havok-remenderUncanny Avengers #3

Marvel Comics

Writer: Rick Remender

Artist: John Cassaday

Before I get into the book, isn’t this cover one of the best cover’s you’ve seen in a while? It looks like it could be a movie poster! It’s so well composed and clean. Love it! Cassaday does so much for this book it’s a shame he’s also what holds this book back. With the other Avengers books shipping more often and this one coming out every other month, it’s tough for it to feel as relevant let alone the flagship of Marvel Now. This villain is the perfect foil to the new team’s mandate. I wish we could get to know the S-Men more but maybe that will come. My favorite part of this team is that it’s small enough to get character moments that matter (unlike Hickman’s Avengers). The tension between Havok and Captain America really has me interested in that relationship.

___________________________

sam-humphries-ron-garneyUncanny X-Force #1

Marvel Comics

Writer: Sam Humphries

Artist: Ron Garney

Like All-New X-Men, my reaction to this solicit was one of “Huh?” and “This won’t last” but it looks like I might be 0-2 with that line of thinking. This team seemed so odd and so unnecessary with the inclusion of Cable and X-Force and yet…this is the true successor to Rick Remender’s epic run on X-Force. Picking up where Remender’s run ended is no easy task. Taking the character to natural but unexpected places is what impressed me about Humpries’s story. This puts Pyslocke front and center in a way that makes me see it no other way now. This is one of those RARE X-Men comics that has enough explanation that new readers can jump on but also doesn’t bore hardcore fans like me. The major reason I wanted to get this book was because of the book’s future villain and he is barely in this issue. The fact that I enjoyed the book with only a brief appearance by him tells me that I’m in for more twist than just the last panel of this book.

___________________________

simon-baz-new-52Green Lantern #16

DC Comics

Writer: Geoff Johns

Artist: Doug Mahnke

This is the issue that sold me on Simon Baz. The newest Earth Green Lantern (the first since the 1994 introduction of Kyle Rayner…which was almost 20 years ago!) is joining up at one of the most turbulent times of the corps. (if not the WORST TIME ever). His back story is different enough from the other Earth Lanterns that you feel like stories starring him will be unique. With so many different perspectives being told during the Rise of the Third Army, this new set of eyes is giving us an unexpected window on the whole war that is possibly the most engaging. We see that Simon is special even amongst Green Lanterns in a way that I hope gives us even more stories staring this character. This issue also takes B’DG seriously, which Geoff Johns needed to do after how he treated him on the Robot Chicken Special!

___________________________

kirk idw comic Star Trek Countdown to Darkness

IDW Comics

Writers: Mike Johnson & Roberto Orci

Artists: David Messina & Marina Castelvetro

Movie Prequel Comics are usually wastes of time. Many of the Marvel and DC Movie Prequels, for examples were obvious cash grabs that shed almost no real light on the movies that would appear on screen. Then came 2009′s Star Trek: Countdown. I really don’t think you can enjoy that movie fully without reading that prequel. It should be mandatory for anyone who watches that movie. Nero, especially, only makes sense as a three-dimensional character after reading his back story in that book. Which brings us to the Star Trek sequel’s prequel comic, Countdown to Darkness. This first issue seems to be setting the emotional stage of where we find the Enterprise crew before the new movie begins. Only being one issue in, I have no idea how this will stack up to the last prequel but I will say that like Countdown, this book is aimed at connecting hardcore Trekies to this new universe through the inclusion of a character only real fans would be impacted by. I’ll never miss a Star Trek Prequel comic again so I’m committed to reading this all the way through!

Keith’s List O’ Awesome!

Well, here we are.  Another week means another Wednesday and another Wednesday means a new batch comics for us intrepid readers.  So, without any further ado…here’s a short list of the books I think merit your cash this week:

Cobra Vol. 2 #21 

IDW Publishing

Writer: Mike Costa

Artist: Antonio Fuso

Oktober Ends!  The final confrontation between the Joes and the Oktober Guard hits its sure to be brutal conclusion as COBRA bears down on both teams.  This issue is sure to have far reaching consequences for the Joe’s black ops unit.  _________________________________________________________

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Secret History of the Foot Clan #2(of 4)

IDW Publishing

Writer: Erik Burnham

Artist: Mateus Santolouco

Issue #2 of this promising look into the history of the Foot Clan in IDW’s revamp of the TMNT franchise.  Readers of the main TMNT book will know that IDW, Kevin Eastman and Tom Waltz have added some pretty intriguing wrinkles to the TMNT origin and this series, by longtime Ghostbusters scribe Erik Burnham, leads us further into history of the Foot Clan and the ultimate corruption of Oruku Saki.  A must read for TMNT fans.

__________________________________________________________

Harbinger # 8 

Valiant Entertainment

Writer: Joshua D.M. Dysart

Valiant keeps moving us towards the Harbinger Wars and pulling together Peter Stanchek’s Renegades.  This series has been powerful so far and Dysart definitely isn’t afraid to pull punches.  This week the recruitment drive kicks it up a notch with the introduction of Torque.

 

__________________________________________________________

Young Avengers #1

Marvel Comics 

Writer: Keiron Gillen

Artist: Jamie McKelvie

Thank Odin, Keiron Gillen will still be giving the world a healthy dose of everyone’s favorite mischievous ne’er-do-well, Kid Loki.  For those of you who missed out on Gillen’s excruciatingly awesome run on Journey Into Mystery, this is your chance to jump in and right that particular wrong.  Pulling together characters from the previous Young Avengers, as well as a new face or two from Vengeance, this is a book that should merit a spot on everbody’s pull list.  After all, as the solicitation put it, “It’s the book that knows Hyperbole is the BEST! THING! EVER!”

___________________________________________________________

Avengers #3 

Marvel Comics 

Writer: Jonathan Hickman

Artist: Jerome Opena

Occasionally, you pick up a book and you just know from the opening pages that you’re reading something special.  That’s  the case with Hickman’s opening salvo on the Avengers.  Hickman has brought a majestic, mythological feel that this book has been sorely lacking in recent years.  Do yourself a favor and grab this comic.  It’s grand, high concept storytelling as only a select few can provide.  We may not always know where Jonathan Hickman is taking us, but it’s always a hell of a ride.

__________________________________________________________

Winter Soldier #3

Marvel Comics

Writer: Ed Brubaker

Artist: Butch Guice

Ed Brubaker officially ends his incredible tenure at Marvel Comics and his absolutely brilliant redefinition of the Captain America mythos, and perhaps most importantly of Bucky Barnes.   Brubaker was one of the most consistent and talented writers in Marvel’s stable over the last decade and it’s a sad day to see him move on.  On the upside, it’s a guarantee that he’ll finish strong.

__________________________________________________________

Uncanny Avengers #3

Marvel Comics

Writer: Rick Remender

Artist: John Cassaday

It’s a Rick Remender book drawn by John Cassaday.  ’Nuff said.

 

__________________________________________________________

So, there you go.  If you think we missed anything or if you just agree with the picks or something cool happened today…sound off below.

Marvel’s Newest Chapter

x-men avengers hulk

Marvel Now is here!

Between October 2012 and February 2013, Marvel is providing a new Marvel Now title to pick up each week. This is not a reboot, just a jumping on point for new and lapsed readers to pick up these books. New number one issues, new costumes, and new status quo these comics should be approachable and get you hooked.

Many have been released already and I would like to grade what has come out so far. I’m going to skip Marvel Now! Point One and A+X for now and go right into the books that matter.

When grading these books, I needed criteria. The best criteria would be Marve’s own, in my opinion. I’m using a 1 to 5 star rating with 5 being the best. Here is what I am looking for:

1. Approachable to a new reader. Could anyone who liked the recent Marvel Movies pick this book up as their first comic and enjoy it?

2. New status quo. Is this new enough to warrant this new labeling and reboot?

3. New cover designs. Covers will be less dogmatic (logos always on the top) and look more like movie posters.

4. New looks. We have been promised new costumes for established characters.

Round 1

Uncanny Avengers #1

comics relaunch number onecomic book reviews podcasts

The first Marvel Now book is also suppose to be the flagship title.

This book marries the popular Avengers and X-Men franchises in a book that directly follows AvX. Cyclops’s words really got to Captain America on the Avenger’s attitude towards mutants. This team is the result. The team members chosen for this team are really deliberate. Choosing Havok as the leader of the team really works for me because it gives the character a chance to rise to the next level. Scarlet Witch has the most to make up with the mutant community. Rogue, on the other hand, has historically had a problem with the Avengers (attacking them in her very first appearance). Cap and Thor make the team legitimate and Wolverine has been set up as the new Professor X.

scarlet witch x-men

That’s the team that has to take on a renewed threat of the Red Skull. Like this team, his agenda is a logical merging of mutant-related issues post AvX for this Avengers villain. In fact, his hatred of mutants is so obvious it’s surprising it hasn’t happened before. My biggest problem is that there have already been publishing delays on a book that is suppose to be the flagship to this initiative. Cassaday’s art is perfect for this book and will contribute to a great trade paper back. Here’s hoping the delays don’t hurt interest in this book with all the new first issues premiering.

Approachable:

If you have not read AT LEAST AvX, this story makes no sense. A lot of these characters are not introduced in this book. This might work well for lapsed readers (who have at least read House of M) but readers new to comics would be lost.

New Status-Que:

This book has a mission beyond fighting super villains. They are also trying to work on human/mutant public relations. That’s something new for an Avengers book. Adding mutants to the roster, however, is something the team has done since issue 16 of the first volume.

New Cover Designs: 

With all the variants, it makes this less cut and dry. That said, almost ever John Cassaday cover looks like a blockbuster movie poster. This should be the benchmark for Marvel Now covers. These should sell books.

New Looks:

Everyone’s costumes look similar to their iconic looks but slightly streamlined. Thor’s fingerless gloves and spiked wristbands look weird (am I the first to notice?). I’m going to go out on a limb and admit that I really like the revamps to Havok, Scarlet Witch, and Rogues’s looks. Streamlined without looking like New 52 armor.

All New X-Men #1

marvel now comicsThe premise of this story really threw me when I first heard about it. Time travel and the X-Men is not a new plot device. Days of Future Past and The Age of Apocalypse hinge on the idea of time travel and it’s affect on mutants. Characters like Bishop and Cable are both long standing time travelers within the X-Men camp. That said, the idea that Beast would travel back to the beginnings of the X-Men to change his present has the potential for very large implications to the Marvel Universe.

Could this be a way to get a New 52 style reboot to the X-Men universe? We’ll have to wait and see. This book covers three different camps statues quos quite well. The Jean Grey School of X-Men reacting to Cyclops new outlaw X-Men as well as the original team in the past. The connection to all of these teams is Beast. He is really the soul of the X-Men now and was possibly most affected by Cyclops’s AvX decision and rejects him the most.marvel now uncanny x-men

This book really shows the status quo change for the X-Men by introducing Scott’s “Uncanny X-Men” team and goals and how they fit into that of the Jean Grey School’s. Beast’s revelation on his mutation, how he traveled through time, and where it goes from here provide enough mysteries to have readers needing to pick up the next issue. This is another example of a post AvX book that picks up right where that series left off.

Approachable:

Another book that comes our of AvX. Actually, this book comes out of AvX Consequences. You don’t know how things got like this without those books. However, there is so much exposition from different angles that you know what’s going on and you know what’s at stake.

New Status-Que:

This is actually the first appearance of Cyclops’s new Uncanny X-Men Team and what they are about (AvX Consequences is like a prequel). Besides that, the idea that the original team is going to interact with this era feels BIG in what could happen.

New Cover Designs:

I feel that these are traditional but also well composed covers. Besides the first issue wrap-around, the upcoming covers don’t really tell you much about what’s happening in the books.

New Looks:

Costume revamps have yet to come into play in this book. It seems like come of these characters will be getting new looks eventually (Cyclops’s Magneto style helmet) but it won’t be happening in this series first.