Archive for August, 2006


The Top 100 What If Countdown: Part 7

August 31st, 2006 Posted by Gavok

What if I just got straight to the article itself for once?


Issue: Volume 2, #54
Writer: Simon Furman
Artist: Geoff Senior
Spider-Man death: No
Background: Oh, boy. Where to begin?

There’s a good chance you’re scratching your head, wondering who the hell Death’s Head I is and why he would deserve his own What If issue. First off, stop scratching your head. It’s a disgusting habit. Death’s Head I was a character from the 80’s created by Simon Furman and integrated into the Marvel UK Transformer comics. Death’s Head I was a charismatic and likeable bounty hunter, striking some of the same chords that Deadpool would years later. A robot from the future, Death’s Head I spoke through a voice box on his face, usually turning his statements into questions, like a French guy trying to speak English. Like for instance, he’d likely tell you, “Refer to me a freelance peacekeeping agent, yes?” He was weird like that. It was neat.

Death’s Head I mainly hung out in the year 2020, but had a tendency to time travel, usually leading to crossovers with guys like the Fantastic Four and She-Hulk. During the 90’s, Marvel decided to reboot his image. AIM had created Minion, a powerful robot with the ability to absorb the instincts, skills and knowledge of whoever he destroyed. He’s like an evil Megaman, except he looks like a blatant Predator rip-off. Minion was mainly created to destroy a mysterious threat named Charnal. I’m not savvy on the details here, but Minion ended up going up against Death’s Head I and Mr. Fantastic in our present. He killed Death’s Head I and absorbed his mental workings. It was too much for Minion to handle and parts of Death’s Head I’s personality caused Minion to override into something new. Now calling himself Death’s Head II, he and Marvel’s heroes fought the merging of villain Baron Strucker’s soul and the remains of Death’s Head I’s body. In other words, Charnal. Death’s Head II was victorious and went on to have some extreme 90’s adventures. Yay?

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Lobo’s back’s back.

August 30th, 2006 Posted by david brothers

Just a few quick bullets on what I’m thinking about in the world of comics right about now.

– This week’s 52 was good. Lobo’s reintroduction was great, and his origin, completely with pompadour, was a good look, too.

– I have a new issue of Kabuki to read. I’m positively giddy. I may wait until tomorrow to read the latest issue of the best non-monthly series ever.

– All-Star Superman, by The King of All-Comics and Frank Quitely, delivered. Lex Luthor’s eyebrow and sheer arrogance come through perfectly and hilariously.

– Mike Carey’s first issue of Ultimate Fantastic Four? Way better than Millar’s entire year, of which I read approximately the first three months. It’s that good.

– Black Panther’s World Tour has started up, and it’s going to be a doozy. Doom gets what’s coming two different ways. Next month is the Inhumans, I cannot wait for that.

– The Boys 02 is the second issue in a row to feature, er, doggy-style. Pun possibly intended. This is one of the most mean-spirited books I’ve read, but we get some good character insights in Billy Butcher and friends. I’m definitely interested, and Robertson’s art? It’s great.

x-men 190 Have you guys seen Chris Bachalo’s cover to X-Men 190? It’s incredible. The scene it depicts happens a little different in the comics, but that’s water under the bridge. There’s precious little Rogue in this book, but her old costume is lovely and her new assertiveness fits a character who’s been a mainline X-Man for years now. She isn’t just “Sugah sugah mope mope mope.” She’s a fighter. Carey is doing a bang-up job on this series. This guy is remarkably good in the Marvel U. His Hellblazer was good, but Lucifer never grabbed me. His Marvel stuff, though… too good. Loving it.

Mythos HulkMythos: Hulk by Paul Jenkins and Paolo Rivera is a four dollar bundle of joy. The Mythos series (right now just Hulk and X-Men) is a retelling of Marvel origins. They are updated for the modern era and boiled down to their essences. Rick Jones isn’t dared by friends to go onto the testing site, he’s an intern who isn’t paying attention. That sort of thing. They’re good stuff, and Rivera’s art is a treat. Highly recommended, and I hope they collect all of them into a handsome hardcover down the line.

– I read Wonder Woman 02. I’m done with the series. I realized that the moment I saw Wonder Woman start to do that stupid spinning thing from the TV show. No sir I do not like it. The Dodson’s art is great, as always, but Heinberg leaves me flat. Not quite Young Avengers flat, but flat. It wasn’t just the spinning what done it, either. It’s a book that seems to be trying very hard to get me to care, but does a poor job of closing the deal. Giganta is smart and tall… okay? Donna Troy is Wonder Woman and sucks at her job… okay? Wonder Woman is sneaking around and hiding… why bother? It’s weird. My favorite portrayals of Wonder Woman have been in the Morrison/Waid/Kelly JLA era. Doug Mahnke drew the absolute best WW ever. The wet hair look was way better than the usual comic book poofy hair. He drew her lean, but powerful, and his Angry Wonder Woman was something to behold. So, uh, now that I own the first 90 or so issues of JLA in trade form, I guess I’ll go read those when I want to read about Wondy.

Titans – Someone explain this image to me. Is this from the new issue of Teen Titans? I found it linked off SomethingAwful’s BSS forum and it… bleh. Johns, what are you doing, man? That first row, save for Aquagirl and Speedy is worthless, and I like Speedy despite Judd Winick’s handling of her. The second row has Beast Boy and Offspring and they’re cool, but the rest of that row is worthless, too. I realize I’m prejudging here, but Little Barda is too much. DC just needs to leave the Fourth World alone. Give it to Morrison and a good artist and just keep it out of anyone else’s hands. It’s cool to see Mas y Menos and Captain Marvel Jr, but again, the rest of the characters? Bleh. On the bottom row, I think that the two Daughters are interesting ideas, if pushing the gimmick a bit, and I like Ravager, and that leaves Osiris. If Osiris turns out to be Isis’s brother, he’s got the most poorly thought-out code name ever. It takes a lot for me to read Titans. Introducing a bunch of no-names and go-nowheres isn’t really drawing me in. The series hasn’t really grabbed me since Titans Tomorrow, to be quite honest. Maybe it’ll pick up, but I basically have read Teen Titans for two years of my life. I can do without it. It’s turned into the JSA, in that it’s a book about a team full of characters who should be guest-stars at best.

– To be quite fair, Whedon’s Astonishing X-Men is boring me, too. Ha ha, Wolverine, yes, but the rest of the book is cute references up the wazoo and SHOCK REVEALS. It’s very pretty, but I’m not even remotely interested in the story. It feels like it’s treading water, with Neat Callback Scene (Kitty Pryde in the sewer last issue made me roll my eyes hard) to Neat Action scene with no meat inbetween.

– Just to complete the custom combo, I found Serenity boring and Firefly decent to middling at best.

– Cameron Stewart is awesome. You all know this, yes? His upcoming book about Vietnam looks like the bee’s knees. However! He and his Royal Academy of Illustration and Design cronies are having a draw-off, and Harley Quinn was the pick for today. Harl is probably my favorite bat-villain, so go check it out. I kind of like Cam’s, since it’s classic Bruce Timm style, but all of them are good. Go look!

– Oh man, I’m totally going to pitch DC Joker Loves Harley Quinn and do it in the Spider-Man Loves Mary Jane style, but with more mayhem. Yes.

– Here’s an interview with Georges Jeanty, artist of The American Way. He’s a great talent, and TAW is totally a sleeper hit. It gets better and better. It’s telling a great tale of superheroics in the 1960s and actually deals realistically with race. I’m loving it, and 4l member Thomas Wilde likes it, too. He doesn’t like anything but Barb Wire, Vampirella, and other bad comics, so him liking a good book is astonishing. I’m kidding! He doesn’t actually like any of those books. However, if he doesn’t write for the blog, I’ll tell everyone that he does and then kill him while he sits in shame.

– I’ve gotten a buttload of trades over the past couple weeks. X-Men: The Coming of Bishop, Birds of Prey: Sensei & Student, Starman: Sins of the Father, X-Men: Golgotha, some JLA v3 trades, Ghost Rider/Wolverine/Punisher: Hearts of Darkness, Spider-Man: The Assasin Nation Plot, The Punisher/Wolverine: African Saga (Carl Potts and Jim Lee! Whatever happened to Carl Potts?), and Monster volumes 3 and 4. Also Absolute Kingdom Come, though I don’t like Alex Ross’s art very much at all, but I love extra content in hardcover comics. I sometimes fear that I have bad taste in comics, but I love them too much to quit.

– So, summing up: Comics are great right now, Wonder Woman’s series is blah, Teen Titans is blah, but comics are still great, the internet is awesome, and I’ve got bad taste in comics. This ended up a lot longer than expected. It was supposed to be a short post!

– Peace!

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Cool Comics Love-in

August 28th, 2006 Posted by david brothers

Stairs! You know what’s cool? Wolverine, that’s what.

He was overexposed in the ’90s, and up til now, yes, but listen. Gavok put it best when he said that Wolverine’s problem was never overexposure, but overimportance. Wolverine was suddenly a Big Deal, and well, that kind of sucks. I like my Wolverine to be the guy whose idea of a disguise is putting on an eyepatch, a cowboy hat, and demanding that people to call him Patch. It worked.

Do you know why it worked? It worked because it was obviously Wolverine, and he was obviously insane if he thought that people were going to believe that stupid disguise. So they played along and pretended that an eyepatch was as good of a disguise as a pair of eyeglasses and a slouch. Wolverine is crazy. Do you know what crazy people do when you point out that they are, in fact, crazy? They cut you up with foot long adamantium claws, that’s what!

I didn’t mind the issue of Wolverine where Nitro blew up all his skin and they grew back in something like two minutes. It was goofy and stupid, but it was pure Wolverine and pure pop comics. It was that crazy action I want to see Wolverine get into.

I’ll be honest. I hated Mark Millar’s Enemy of the State. His dialogue and characterization were off and poorly done. But… Millar had good ideas. I’m not so fond of Wolverine Beats Up The Marvel Universe/The Hand/Everything/Superman, but having him fight hordes of ninja is what Wolverine is all about. Johnny Romita’s art was on point even when Millar’s story left me flat.

Punch! Wolverine is a guy whose gimmick is six sharp claws, a bad attitude, and a crazy healing factor. Instead of running down the stairs with Frank Castle and Danny Ketch like a normal person, he’s going to SLIDE DOWN THE BANNISTER screaming about how he’s the best he is at what he does, and what he does is bannister-sliding, bub, don’t you ferget it! When he gets down to the bottom, he’s going to oh, I dunno, punch Cyclops in the stomach a few times, call Jubilee “kiddo” or something, then go off and cut something with his claws, all the while screaming about how he is the best he is at what he does, and what he does isn’t pretty/is calling Jubilee kiddo/is punching out Cyclops/eating Wheaties.

You know, this may be the reason why Marvel Comics won’t return my calls. I’d write Wolverine so well that they’d have to go back and retroactively fire anyone else who ever worked on him.

Wolverine rocks, so give the poor guy a chance. There is a reason why he became so popular during the ’90s. He’s a good character with a neat hook. The ’90s were rough on him, but they were rough on everyone.

What characters do you folks inexplicably like? We got any Shatterstar, Boom Boom, or USAgent fans in the house?

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The Top 100 What If Countdown: Part 6

August 28th, 2006 Posted by Gavok

Writing intros for so many installments is hard. Gives me more respect for the Watcher, who thought up over a hundred variations of, “I’m going to show you stuff that didn’t happen, based on stuff that didn’t actually happen anyway.”


Issue: Volume 2, #55-56
Writer: Len Kaminksi
Artist: Craig Brasfield
Spider-Man death: Yes
Background: Galactic Storm was based on the war that was brewing between the Kree and the Shi’ar. Earth was going to be their battleground and the Avengers made an attempt to stop it. Their plea for peace got them in trouble and the team split up based on different ideas of how to handle the Kree. Captain America and others were taken prisoner by Kree rulers Ael-Dan and Dar-Ben. In regular continuity, the Shi’ar killer Deathbird appeared and assassinated the Kree men, but here, Captain America senses her and prevents their deaths. He finds that this one heroic gesture leads to unfortunate consequences.

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Just a look…

August 26th, 2006 Posted by david brothers

Here’s a peek into my private life.

I don’t have many posters. In fact, I just bought my fourth poster the other day. It’s the cover to JLA Classified #1 by Ed McGuinness.

Here’s the wall that has all my posters. Spider-Man 2 movie poster, JLA Classified #1, Astonishing X-Men #1 (I would’ve preferred some Jim Lee, but you take what you can get), and a Fight Club poster/one-sheet (?) that I picked up somewhere.


We should be back in working order next week! Stay tuned, true believers!

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The Top 100 What If Countdown: Part 5

August 24th, 2006 Posted by Gavok

That hiatus was long enough. Let’s get back to business.


Issue: Volume 1, #33
Writer: Dan Fingeroth, Steven Grant
Artist: Mike Vosburg, Don Perlin
Spider-Man death: Yes
Background: Two stories here, neither have much to do with the other. First, there was a time when Terrax, Galactus’ then-herald, schemed behind his master’s back and ended up in a black hole for his troubles. Because Dazzler was a bit overpowered at the time, she was chosen to bring him out of the black hole to stand trial. Galactus decided that Terrax had learned his lesson from the black hole and reinstated him. So what if he wasn’t so forgiving? As for the other story, there was a storyline where Dr. Doom and Iron Man ended up in Camelot via time travel. After a little adventure, the two banded together to return themselves to the correct point in history. Here, Doom is more of a bastard and really isn’t bright if you think about it.

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August 24th, 2006 Posted by david brothers

Slight interruption of service!

I just started back college, so I should probably, uh, focus for the first week of class before I start back goofing off. I’ll be back to posting regularly probably on Saturday, but until then, you’ll have to scope out some low-content/no-content from the David side of things. Gavok may have some good stuff for you soon, though.

Til then, have an image from Casanova #1.
Casanova #1, Fraction and Ba

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DC Solicitations, November 2006

August 22nd, 2006 Posted by david brothers

You can find the list, plus covers, over at Newsarama.

My commentary on the interesting books lies after the jump, and I’ve included the solicit text for them, too!
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August 21st, 2006 Posted by david brothers

Here’s some trivia for you–

Apollo and Midnighter were not the first gay couple in comics.

That honor goes to Donner and Blitzen of the Shadow Cabinent, back from Milestone Comics. Nobody likes to talk about them much, though, huh?

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The Price of Gold Declines: Supernova Speculation

August 21st, 2006 Posted by Gavok

For the past week, I’ve been on vacation in Phoenix (hey, it’s a nice place), which explains the lack of What If updates. Thankfully, hermanos is an update machine. I was lucky enough to find a comic shop, where I bought enough new stuff to keep me occupied. Green Lantern Corps ended with one of the most hilarious ownings in recent memory. Ultimate Fantastic Four included a jaw-dropping two-page splash that’s more than worthy of being a wallpaper.

52 Week 15, on the other hand… well, that just gave me a new reason to be annoyed at DC. Let’s not mince words: Booster Gold is dead. I don’t feel too bad about spoiling this, since DC already spoils the crap out of it with the issue’s cover. Booster, in an attempt to make himself look better than his mysterious rival Supernova, blew himself up from absorbing too much radiation and has been reduced to a skeleton in futuristic threads.

Hopefully, the writers of 52 won’t hold out on the aftermath for too long. For all we know, the next issue could be Black Adam dancing the Charleston for 20 pages, followed by a two-page bio of Mirror Master. Still, we know that Booster is gone. No matter the reaction by his peers and the public, it doesn’t change that he’s as dead as Ted.

But what of Supernova?

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