This article contains SPOILERS. If you haven’t read the issue yet, proceed at your own risk!
Patrick: I love the moment in every episode of X-Files or Buffy the Vampire Slayer where whatever otherworldly threat our heroes are facing reveals itself to be alarmingly similar to some current societal ill. Sometimes it comes late to the story, and it’s not until two episodes into a three-episode arc that you realize these demons are riffing on toxic masculinity. I suppose that’s been the M.O. for science- and genre-fiction forever: lure the reader in with the hook and then gradually reel them in to the message. Writer Saladin Ahmed and illustrator Sami Kivelä work that formula in reverse in Abbott 1. The setting, a racially divided Detroit in 1972, and the supernatural mystery are slowly collapsed into one cohesive experience. Continue reading →
Today, Ethan and Drew are discussing Age of Ultron 2, originally released March 13th, 2013. This issue is part of the Age of Ultron crossover event. Click here for complete AU coverage.
Ethan: In recent years, after the financial markets fell screaming into their perennial nosedive, the city of Detroit hasn’t done so well. Workers who had spent their lives with a company were laid off, branches were closed, businesses died, buildings were abandoned. Over time, the violence of the changes and departures faded as the temperatures, wind, and microorganisms went to work. Materials that we associate with longevity — brick, stone, even plastics — took on a distinctly alien appearance of decay. The effect even got a name — “ruin porn” — and photographers from across the country flocked to capture the scenes. Reading through the second issue of Age of Ultron evokes the same mix of wonder and horror, albeit the decay is in much fresher stage, and the characters are fictional. Bryan Hitch continues to deliver impressive vistas of metropolis in its death throes, and writer Brian Michael Bendis fills these images with sparks of life as the heroes try to find their place in the new world.
Today, Patrick and Shelby are discussing G.I. Combat 5, originally released October 3rd, 2012.
Patrick: True story: when we were deciding what series Retcon Punch was going to cover after zero month, we sorta hemmed and hawed about G.I. Combat. We’re generally fans of Jimmy Palmiotti and Justin Gray’s writing, and I (for one) am drawn to stories that explore the relationship between identity and military service. But on the flip-side, some of the previous stories have been trite, and the art wasn’t always hitting home. Plus, the major selling point (i.e. DINOSAURS) was going away. But when Drew and Shelby and I checked out the solicit to see whether or not we should continue to pick this series up, we saw the title “The Haunted Tank.” That’s just silly enough to work. Let’s explore The Haunted Tank and Unknown Soldier one-at-a-time. Continue reading →