Today, Michael and Taylor are discussing Chewbacca 4, originally released November 25 2015.
Michael: Remember in Revenge of the Sith when Anakin Skywalker was arguing that from his point of view the Jedi were evil and we all laughed? Flawed storytelling aside I think comic book fans can agree that the big difference between heroes and villains is their perspective. “History is written by the victors” is probably an overused statement but nonetheless true. Simple Star Wars logic dictates: Rebel Alliance = good, Galactic Empire = bad. I’m not sympathizing with The Empire here, but Chewbacca 4 had me examining the actions of our “heroes.”
Today, Taylor and Drew are discussing The Mighty Thor 1, originally released November 18th, 2015.
Taylor: By now we all know the premise of Breaking Bad: a chemistry teacher diagnosed with lung cancer turns his skills to dealing meth and things spiral out of control from there. While this is an interesting premise, it’s not what makes the show great. What makes it great is the colossal character study it became. The show ponders why Walter White does the things he does and what drives him to do it. Naturally, his cancer diagnosis is a catalyst for much of the action Walter takes. And while his disease spurs him on to nefarious pursuits, others react to the disease more nobly. Case in point: Dr. Jane Foster aka Thor. Rather than let cancer eat away at her body and her sole like Walter, Jane uses it to motivate ever greater and more altruistic deeds. Continue reading →
We try to stay up on what’s going on at Marvel, but we can’t always dig deep into every issue. The solution? Our weekly round-up of titles coming out of Marvel Comics. Today, we’re discussing All-New Hawkeye 1, All-New Wolverine 1, Secret Wars 7, Spider-Gwen 2, Thors 4, Uncanny Avengers 2, and Web Warriors 1.
Today, Ryan M. and Taylor are discussing All-New, All-Different Avengers 1, originally released November 11th, 2015.
Ryan: Though the Avengers have yet to assemble, the five of them that are featured in this issue have a shared problem. They have internal issues with how they are perceived by the outside world. Captain America is not happy to have his behavior scrutinized for racial implications, Iron Man is still seen as a titan of industry even though his wallet is literally empty and Spider-Man, well, to borrow a phrase, he can’t get no respect. In the second story of the issue, Ms. Marvel struggles with her ability to prove herself to a fellow hero and Nova can’t make headway with a pretty girl. These guys will soon have to work together to save the world from war-mongering aliens, but they each have something else to prove to others.
Today, Taylor and Spencer are discussing the Ultimates 1, originally released November 11th, 2015.
Taylor: Canada recently elected a prime minister. His name is Justin Trudeau and people basically seem to love him. Maybe this has to do with his dashing good looks or maybe his liberalism is a nice shift from Canada’s previous, more conservative PM. Whatever the reason, he made headlines a week or so ago and further endeared himself to many when he was asked why half of his political cabinet are women. His answer: “Because it’s 2015.” Whatever your views may be on Canada’s new PM, this frank and forward thinking answer is certainly welcome in a world ready for a new breed of politician. “What does this have to do with comics?” you might be asking. Well, similar to politics, the comics world is prime for a new, fresh perspective, at least from the major publishers. Enter The Ultimates 1, a comic that promises to be progressive and different despite its trappings as a traditional title.
Today,Taylor and Drew are discussing Uncanny X-Men 600, originally released November 4th, 2015.
Taylor: In my junior year of college I took a creative writing course that required each student to have at least one of their stories workshopped. This involved everyone in the class reading your story and then picking it apart in front of you during class. All the things your peers thought about your story, both good and bad, came out during this process. I remember it being a humbling and somewhat traumatic experience. It’s hard to put something you created out there in the world for everyone to scrutinize and it takes a thick skin to not let the negative comments beat you down. In Uncanny X-Men 600, the final of writer Brian Michael Bendis’ run on the series, Beast is put on trial by his peers for actions. In doing so he attempts to defend his actions and those of the author who gives him life. Continue reading →
Today, Patrick and Taylor are discussing Gotham by Midnight 10, originally released October 28th, 2015.
Patrick: Opinions very pretty wildly on whether or not Quentin Tarantino’s contribution to Grindhouse, “Death Proof,” works. It’s a talky flick, even by Tarantino’s standards, and the film’s sharp divide between two discrete halves makes it kind of an endurance test for the audience. By the time the movie reaches the final chase sequence, viewers are either totally bored or totally invested in the characters and the mythology. Those that invested during the first 80 minutes are rewarded with a harrowing vehicular action sequence, which would no doubt be impressive on it’s own, but which means tremendously more for all the groundwork laid before it. Gotham by Midnight 10, continues the talkiness of the interrogation-heavy ninth issue, but ultimately rewards them with — you guessed it — a thrilling car chase. It’s a testament to Juan Ferreya’s impeccable visual storytelling skills that this sequence it’s every bit as explosive and exciting as the most white-knuckle chase scene in the movies.
Today, Taylor and Drew are discussing Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 51, originally released October 28th, 2015.
Taylor: One of my favorite places to eat at here in Chicago is called Cozy Noodles and Rice. It’s a little Thai place that’s cheap and has robots hanging on the wall. It also has a BYOB policy so it’s not uncommon for my friends and I to bring some beer or wine to enjoy with our meal. Thai food is really flavorful and spicy, however, so often I find that the taste of the alcohol I’m drinking clashes with the taste of the Thai. Separate, they are both delicious. But when combined they just don’t mix well. The lesson I’ve learned from this is the need to cleanse the palate after a heavy meal or thick drink. TMNT 51 is the first issue after the momentous issue 50, and in many ways it acts as a swig of water between two distinct tastes. It prepares us for a brand new turtle adventure while still letting us savor the events which proceeded it.
We try to stay up on what’s going on at Marvel, but we can’t always dig deep into every issue. The solution? Our weekly round-up of titles coming out of Marvel Comics. Today, we’re discussing 1872 4, Astonishing Ant-Man 1, Amazing Spider-Man 2, and Invincible Iron Man 2.
Today, Ryan M. and Taylor are discussing Gotham Academy 11, originally released September 9, 2015.
Ryan M.: The idea that genetics are destiny can be disturbing. We all want to believe, especially when we’re teenagers, that we can control our fates. That the choices of our parents need not define us, that our lives are more than what we were born to. For me, that meant looking at my Mom’s gray hair at 30, my Dad’s loud laugh or an off-hand racist comment by a relative and saying to myself “that’s not going to be me.” I got to thirty without any silver but can’t control my guffaws, so two out of three isn’t bad. In Gotham Academy 11, Olive is facing a much darker familial legacy and no one seems confident that she will escape it.