S.H.I.E.L.D. 1

shield 1Today, Spencer and Patrick are discussing S.H.I.E.L.D. 1, originally released December 31st, 2014. 
Spencer: Since his premiere in the first Iron Man film, Agent Coulson has been a fan-favorite character, but it was the reveal that he was a dedicated fan of Captain America in The Avengers that truly sent his popularity skyrocketing. Believe me, I was on Tumblr to watch it happen. All of us reading comic books are obviously fans just like Coulson, so there’s just something appealing about a character who shares our enthusiasm and interests. Mark Waid and Carlos Pacheco’s S.H.I.E.L.D. 1 puts this aspect of Phil Coulson front-and-center, showing how Phil’s skills make him an ideal leader but also how those same skills benefit Waid as a writer. Continue reading

Indestructible Hulk 13

Alternating Currents: Indestructible Hulk 13, Drew and EthanToday, Drew and Ethan are discussing Indestructible Hulk 13, originally released September 11th, 2013.

Drew: Hulk is indestructible. It’s a fact so indisputable, Marvel went ahead and put it right in the title of the series. That is to say, there isn’t much tension to be garnered from the question of whether something might destroy him. Like Gloria Gaynor, Hulk will survive. He’ll also likely smash whatever tries to destroy him. There aren’t really going to be any surprises on his part, so much of the interest in the failed attempt to destroy/successful attempt to get smashed must come from the other side of the equation — the one attempting to harm the Hulk. Fortunately, writer Mark Waid is no slouch when it comes to coming up with interesting villains for Hulk to face. Continue reading

Avengers Assemble 15AU

Today, Ethan and Taylor are discussing Avengers Assemble 15AU, originally released May 8th 2013. This issue is part of the Age of Ultron crossover event. Click here for complete AU coverage.

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Ethan: It’s always tempting to poke fun at other cultures. Humans seem evolutionarily predisposed to draw lines between Us and Them, and in the present, enlightened point in the development of our species, we like to use humor to act on that where our paleo-ancestors might have used a nice, big stick. Humor’s got more uses than pushing others away though; sometimes it’s a good way to navigate the gap between the familiar and the different, and to draw people together. All of this is a bit overblown for introducing this issue. What I’m really trying to say is that writer Al Ewing really went to town on those silly Brits in this issue. Continue reading