Saturday, September 14, 2013

Phase III: The New Pull List Review

It's been awhile since I've done a Pull List Review. Since moving to MA, my Pull List has reduced in size pretty dramatically. Most of the series I dropped were simply because I preferred something more and was trying to limit the amount of books I'm getting.

Now I hope to get to my local comic shop (back at Rubber Chicken Comics in MA, though I will miss Joker's Child in NJ) once every week or two, and I'll do Pull List Reviews quicker due to having less items to read.

For now, here is where I am with the issues that made the cut:

Saga #13
The Writer and our Narrator.
The writing/art break is over and the series has started up again! As much as I dislike having to wait so long for my favorite series currently on the shelves, I am very happy that they can keep the same artist and writer by giving them the necessary time.

Quote of the issue: "No one makes worse first impressions than writers." This issue picks up Marko depressed at the death of his father while on the hunt for the author of the book that brought him and Alana together. They eventually find him on a planet covered in death and, well, it's really not the greatest first impression. Elsewhere, The Will and his crew are trying to get back on track, though he seems to be a bit out of touch with reality, having visions of The Wisp. Two new characters, journalists of some kind, are shown early in the issue; no doubt we'll see more of them soon.

Nothing super exciting in this issue, but the writing and art are still top notch and I'm looking forward to what comes next. 8/10.

Superior Spider-Man #15 and #16
In these issues, Spidey-Ock has it out for the Hobgoblin, who has been able to avoid his Spider-Bots due to the programming edit the Green Goblin (who still hasn't been revealed) did several issues back. The Green Goblin doesn't want Spider-Man too suspicious of the Spider-Bot error, Spidey does manage to get enough tracers on  Hobby to learn that his identity is Phil Urich, which he then broadcasts to all of New York City in the hopes of apprehending him quickly. This culminates in a tense showdown at the Daily Bugle, which brings to a head Phil's status at the newspaper and his relationship with Nora Winters, as well as putting a small rift between Robbie and Spidey.

The issue ends with Phil arrested and then freed by Menace, who is working for the new Green Goblin (or the old one, I guess, though I don't expect it to actually be Norman). Gobby gives Phil his own Green Goblin attire, calling him the Goblin Knight, which will be interesting when the current trio of Goblins throw down with Spider-Man. Next issue, though will see the return of Spider-Man 2099, for which I'm super excited

Yeah, this could work.
These issues were a 9/10. Still want Peter back, but as it stands, the story is interesting enough.

Scarlet Spider #21
If you listen to the most recent The Podcast is a Lie episode (whenever we actually publish it...), you'll here me rant a bit on this issue.

The cover shows the original Scarlet Spider fighting Kaine. The cover reads, "Because you demanded it, Ben Reilly the original...". Fairly early on the fight starts between the two Scarlet Spiders. The original says it's Ben, Kaine confirms this when the original is unmasked, and there's a quick-but-acceptable background given as to why he isn't dead (well, I would have bought it).

Then, at the end of the issue (and this is potentially a spoiler if you weren't expecting it), it is revealed to actually be Kraven the Hunter. Kaine is seeing Ben due to the poison injected into his system (which we see in the beginning of the issue in an airport.

BAH HUMBUG. Issue isn't bad in and of itself, but this playing with my heart results in a 1/10. Maybe, if I was being impartial, I could see it landing a 7/10, but I think this was a cruel move on Marvel's part. :(

Thor: God of Thunder #12
If you don't like the character of Thor, I strongly suggest picking up this issue. It is a downtime issue, where Thor simply visits with his friends and does good deeds around the planet, but it has some really wonderful character brush strokes and makes me feel very confidant that, even with the God Butcher arc closed, this title will still continue to be awesome.

Also, the final panel showing Future Thor standing on a future-wasteland Earth is pretty promising too.
Cover isn't that bad, sans Marvel graphics.

This issue is a solid 10/10 for me, I really connected with it. I'd love a better cover though, this one just didn't pop enough compared to how much I enjoyed the content.

Superior Carnage #2
The plan.
The Wizard is still at it, now having Cletus in his grasp. Alongside them is Klaw, whom we get more insight to in relation to his employer, the Wizard, and a new face, a wheelchair-bound  scientist named Dr. Malus. Malus quickly recognized that the Wizard is insane, which we are shown pretty clearly during this issue (at one point, Klaws points out that the Wizard has labeled and image of the Tarantula as "Agent Venom"). Klaw defends the Wizard as he considers him family due to their extended and colored history, which involves a few resurrections of Klaw by the Wizard.

Due to Cletus being lobotomized, the Wizard can't control his mind, though he tries multiple times while almost dying in the process. It also doesn't work on the Carnage symbiote. Then he gets the idea to transfer the symbiote to someone he can actually control, and settles on Dr. Malus, mostly due to the fact that his is crippled in a similar fashion to Flash Thompson, Agent Venom. We'll see how that goes next time.

I actually enjoyed the Wizard losing his mind and the dynamic between him and Klaw, but I find the Carnage aspect to be really minimal and I'm upset that we were promised a more lethal Carnage with its host lobotomized, but now we're going to get a new, randomly introduced guy as the host. Meh. I would have been more interested if they tried it on a face we knew.

Overall, issue is a 6/10, but I'm still holding out hope that they'll surprise me.


For the rest of the list, I still have to read Star Wars Legacy #6 and the last issue of Five Ghosts, but I'll add them to the next review.

The only series I actively dropped in disgust was Red Hood and the Outlaws. The art has changed dramatically and is inconsistent from panel to panel, much less issue to issue. The story is also boring and, for a title with his name in it, the Red Hood has been side-lined for months. Sad, because that was my last DC pull.

Keep an eye out for future PLRs and I'll be supplementing them with Trade Paperback Reviews as well.

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