Shifting the Narrative in Hunt for Wolverine: Mystery in Madripoor 1

by Drew Baumgartner

Hunt for Wolverine Mystery in Mardipoor 1

This article contains SPOILERS. If you haven’t read the issue yet, proceed at your own risk!

The Bechdel Test

Drew: This particular Dykes to Watch Our For premiered in 1985, and its premise is still ringing in the ears of writers and readers everywhere. Now known as “The Bechdel Test,” these criteria insist on something beyond simple representation (though it’s remarkable how many films fail to satisfy even that first requirement), aiming for a dialogue that features no males (even as subjects of conversation). And that last bit is a huge stumbling block for narratives to this day. Plenty will feature two women and even manage to put them in a scene together, but the conversation will still revolve around the male characters. It’s the kind of problem you might expect to plague any all-female tie-in to the “Hunt for Wolverine” event to suffer from — Logan is necessarily absent, but that fact is likely to be the subject of discussion — but Jim Zub and Thony Silas manage to shift the focus in Mystery in Madripoor 1, pulling the story in totally unexpected directions. Continue reading

Luck vs. Skill in Domino 2

by Drew Baumgartner

Domino 2

This article containers SPOILERS. If you have not read the issue yet, proceed at your own risk!

Is privilege just luck that we don’t recognize as luck? The failure to recognize the benefits afforded by our race, gender, class, nationality, or any other number of inborn factors in our lives? That is, a privileged person is a lucky person, but specifically one that misattributes their luck as merit or skill. This helps protect Domino from coming off as too privileged — she absolutely recognizes how lucky she is — though Gail Simone and David Baladeón take pains to make it clear that she’s not that lucky, and that much of her success is ultimately attributable to her skills, too. Continue reading

Dialogue and Internal Monologue as an Introduction in Domino 1

by Spencer Irwin

This article containers SPOILERS. If you have not read the issue yet, proceed at your own risk!

First issues have an almost impossible amount of work to do. They have to introduce (or reintroduce) the lead character, their supporting cast, their unique perspective, the series’ premise, and they have to do it all within 20 pages. Every creative team has their own unique approach to this task, and for Gail Simone and David Baldeon in Domino 1, that approach largely comes down to dialogue and internal monologue. Continue reading

Phoenix Resurrection: The Return of Jean Grey 2

by Drew Baumgartner

Phoenix Resurrection 2

This article contains SPOILERS. If you haven’t read the issue yet, proceed at your own risk!

Does anyone remember the “flash sideways” device from LOST‘s final season? The show mined a lot of fun out of the mystery of just what the heck that other world was — a parallel universe? a new timeline? purgatory? — but I never really found the guessing all that fun, as the magical/metaphysical nature of that particular mystery meant that any and all of those things could be equally right. I tend to feel that way about most mysteries that delight in building up red herrings to look as likely as the ultimate answer (perfectly demonstrated in Clue‘s multiple endings; the culprit can only be found by the movie telling us whodunnit, not through any deductive work on our own), but it’s particularly pronounced in stories with a fantasy or sci-fi element that might defy our own experience of the world. That is, if we’re operating in a world with a magical island, is it possible to rule out even the most absurd theory? These are the thoughts running through my head as I read Phoenix Resurrection 2. Continue reading

Longshot Saves the Marvel Universe 1

longshot 1

Today, Patrick and Ethan are discussing Longshot Saves the Marvel Universe 1, originally released November 6th, 2013.

Patrick: This summer at E3, two of the biggest brands in video gaming had to pitch their new systems at an audience that hadn’t had to think about new consoles in years. It’s an absurd proposition when you think about it: spend $400 dollars on one of these boxes so you can play games (oh by the way, you can keep playing games on the boxes you already own). Technologically, the boxes are nearly identical, but something has to separate Sony from Microsoft, so the small differences suddenly became the biggest. In one of the biggest dick-moves I’ve ever seen come out of the conference, Sony specifically pointed to all of those tiny flaws in Microsoft’s XBox One, and said “yeah, we’re not making those mistakes.” There’s something refreshingly honest about Sony embracing the ‘us vs. them’ mentality that the fans have been espousing forever. Especially in light of DC’s reboot and their current editorial woes, Marvel is well-poised to make few quiet assertions about what they’re proud to be… and a few things they’re proud not to be. Continue reading

A + X 10

a+x 10

Today, Shelby and Taylor are discussing A + X 10, originally released July 17th, 2013.

Shelby: I don’t expect a lot when I read A + X. I figure stupid fun at best, and just stupid at worst. Usually I’m dead on the money, but sometimes these stories give me a little more than I expect. It doesn’t happen every time, and it almost never happens twice in one issue, but I’m always pleasantly surprised when it does.

Continue reading