This article contains SPOILERS. If you haven’t read the issue yet, proceed at your own risk!
Deadpool is a mercenary, assassin, sometimes hero, and fourth wall-breaking jokester. But after nearly 30 years of quips, kills and general raunch Deadpool has become something else entirely: a lens to see the Marvel Universe through. Deadpool has a funny effect on the characters and setting surrounding him — he Deadpoolifies everything he touches. Continue reading →
Today, Taylor and Patrick are discussing The Mighty Thor 8, originally released June 22nd, 2016.
Taylor: What exactly makes someone heroic? I know, I know – that’s a trite question when talking about a genre that asks some version of that question virtually every day. Still, I think it’s important. By confronting this question we consider what society counts as good and honorable and whether or not we live our lives according to those standards. This question is thrown around often enough that we tend to take these standards at face value and don’t consider their deeper implications. For example, if you take a stand for something you believe in, most would say that’s heroic. However, if the stand you’re taking is for something reprehensible, is the deed still heroic? The Mighty Thor 8 has your answer.
Today, Taylor and Spencer are discussing The Mighty Thor 4, originally released February 17th, 2016.
Taylor: As much as I try, I can’t escape news and opinions surrounding the Democratic and GOP primary elections. Don’t get me wrong, I like to be informed about what’s happening, but every time I log on to the internet (and social media in particular) I’m bombarded by opinions about Trump, Sanders, Clinton, Rubio, Cruz, and yes, even Jeb Bush. It’s not wrong to have a strong opinion about what’s happening in national politics, but I just don’t want to hear what everyone thinks about it all the damn time. There’s a time and a place to discuss these things and there are also a lot of subtle ways these issues can be discussed, none of which involve Facebook and the reposting of articles that support your particular belief. The Mighty Thor 4, as it always has, impresses me not only with its overall quality but, in this case, also with its subtle commentary on national politics.
Today, Taylor and Andy Spencer are discussing The Mighty Thor 3, originally released January 13th, 2016.
Taylor: I recently learned that I have a reputation for being a strict teacher at my school. This revelation came as a bit of a surprise to me since I feel like I’m not any more strict than my fellow teachers. I’m not bothered by having this reputation but I do find it interesting that I had no idea this is how I was viewed by my students. But I guess that’s ultimately the thing about a person’s reputation; no matter how hard you work to craft it or understand it, you ultimately have no control over what it is. For most of us this isn’t a huge issue, we move on with our lives no matter how others view us. If you’re Loki, however, and the fate of the ten realms rests on your actions and how others see you, it’s a completely different story. Continue reading →
Today, Patrick and Taylor are discussing The Mighty Thor 2, originally released December 16, 2015.
Patrick: I don’t remember the first time I saw Star Wars. They were just sort of always on when I was a kid – like E.T. or the first Back to the Future movie. I do, however, remember the first time I paid attention to Star Wars: it was the scene in A New Hope where Luke and Ben meet Han and Chewie in the Cantina. I knew there were spaceships and explosions and epic laser-sword fights in the other movies, but the Cantina scene uniquely made me question the nature of the Star Wars universe. Who are all these crazy looking dudes? Why are they all having a drink together? What’s the deal with this band? No one minds that Obi-Wan just sliced a dude’s arm clean off? I rewatched that scene more times than I can count, and every time, my imagination ignited with what I could only guess their individual stories to be. My imagination isn’t that obsessively active anymore, but a handful of details can still make me feel that a fictional world is real, vital, and bigger than what we see on the screen or page. Jason Aaron and Russell Dautermann’s The Mighty Thor 2 is so packed with these details, it’s like an entire universe unto itself.
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 →
Today, Taylor and Drew are discussing 1872 3, originally released September 23rd, 2015.
Taylor: We just can’t seem to leave the Wild West, can we? Throughout the entire 20th century and well into the 21st the Western has endured in books, movies, TV shows, and of course comics. I guess there’s just something appealing about a world where there is no law except for the gun you hold in your hand. We all know for the most part these portrayals of the Old West are pretty inaccurate. It was neither as exciting or dangerous as one would have you believe. However, that hasn’t stopped artists from visiting a world we just can’t get enough of. Now into its third issue, I think it’s fair to judge whether 1872 is a version of the West we want to visit again and again, or one we let hit the ol’ dusty trail.
Today, Spencer and Drew are discussing Thor 4, originally released January 28th, 2014.
Spencer: Would my life be different if I had a different name? Back in high school I thought Spencer was a nerdy sounding name and that it gave me an automatic handicap when it came to being “cool,” but now that I’ve matured I’ve come to realize that my name didn’t dictate my personality or path in life. Still, as I’ve grown to love and appreciate my name it’s come to feel like an intrinsic part of my personality; it may not have shaped my life, but it’s grown with me and absorbed my qualities, and if somebody took my name away from me, it would feel like I was losing a part of myself. That’s the exact situation Thor Odinson finds himself facing in Jason Aaron and Russell Dauterman’s Thor 4, an issue that firmly establishes the new Thor while also showing just exactly what that means for the old one. Continue reading →
Today, Taylor and Drew are discussing Deadpool 41, originally released January 28th, 2015.
Taylor: When someone mentions Deadpool to you, what’s the first word that comes to mind? Is it lunatic? Madman? Goof-off? Ask a fan to describe the titular character of the most recent run of Deadpool and you might get some of these same answers, but a few might throw in descriptors such as melancholy, complex, and heartwarming asshole. Wade Wilson is many things, and depending on how you read the series, he could be any of the things listed above. However, even though we’ve known Wade for a long time now, can any of us really say we know him? Taking into consideration that the man hardly knows himself, this question becomes even more confounding. Continue reading →
Today, Taylor and Patrick are discussing Deadpool 40, originally released January 14th, 2015.
Taylor: The old saying goes “art imitates life.” we here at Retcon Punch believe comics to be art, so that means these funny little picture-books imitate life the same as your Van Goghs and Shakespeares of the world. Being things that are published every month, comics are perhaps better suited than other art forms at reflecting life since they can comment on real life situations almost as soon as they happen. Given this, we shouldn’t be at all surprised that a title like Deadpool would find time to comment on life, especially considering it’s unique ability to break the fourth wall and speak directly to readers. But who would have ever guessed that the comic would tackle such a loaded topic as environmental policy? Always surprising, Deadpool once again takes a unique approach to story telling in issue 40 and in so doing, enters a major environmental debate. Continue reading →