One, Two, Kapow Comic Reviews
Best of the Week 02/12/14
Title: All New X-Men #23
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Writer: Brian Michael Bendis
Artist: Stuart Immonen
I read a lot of X-Men comics, I’m not going to lie. I pick up most all X titles but in the last couple months, none of them have really blown me away or even been anything special. With this weeks All New X-Men I can finally say that has changed. The Trial of Jean Grey crossover with the Guardians of the Galaxy is now onto part three. All in all, not a lot has happened within three issues, but this was the most amusing issue so far.
Last issue in Guardians of the Galaxy, nothing new really happened; you got to see some down time for the team before they heard the Shi’ar where going after Jean Grey. It ended with them arriving right after she had already been abducted, lining up with the last issue of All New X-Men.
With the story timing lined up for both sides, the combined teams are on their way to save Jean. The characters get introduced to one another for a short period before a Shi’ar vessel attacks them. It looks as though it will be a tough battle, but a mainstay ally of the X-Men, when it comes to all things Shi’ar especially, comes to the rescue. This comes along with a surprise resurrection of character who has been dead for a few years now.
Jean on the other hand arrives in front of Gladiator and is told she will be put on trial, without an immediate explanation to her as to why. After giving her a brief rest, Oracle comes to visit her, explaining that she will be tried for crimes future Jean committed as the Dark Phoenix. Mind reading her, Oracle realizes that this younger Jean has no actual memory of ever being the Phoenix, but tells her that the trial will still proceed either way.
There wasn’t a lot going on is this issue. The ending had the most impact with the surprise character being alive and well. This alone could fill next issue with some interesting revelations and interactions. Besides that, having the young X-Men meet the Guardians was a lot of fun. Of course Bobby and Rocket get some of the best laughs of the issue. A little moment between kindred souls X-23 and Gamora was amusing as well. Immonen’s art was competent enough, I just feel like he isn’t consistent throughout the whole book. Some panels really popped and some just seemed rushed.
As much as I liked the issue, it really makes me worry for the rest of this arc. This could have been a huge event, and so far it doesn’t seem to be living up to its full potential. Last issue in Guardians was a waste of time and this issue didn’t really propel things much further either. With only two issue left, there isn’t much time to go. Hopefully Bendis can keep having the two teams play off each other, but actually get to the final point too before its over.
Title: Kick-Ass #6
Publisher: Marvel Comics (Icon Imprint)
Writer: Mark Millar
Artist: John Romita Jr.
Hit Girl, who has been stewing away in a cell for this entire volume finally hits the spotlight this week. Kick-Ass himself takes a backseat as the issue takes a trip down memory lane with Hit Girl and Big Daddy, which proves to be a great move. This issue is easily the best issue in this volume, and might even be my favorite issue of Kick-Ass in general.
The jail psychologist still believes he can “cure” Mindy by having her remember all of her training with her father and how it affected her. First up is her attempt to board an oncoming train while laying on the tracks and grabbing on underneath. After she gets on top, she lays flat to go through a tunnel and jumps up onto the bridge where her dad waits with her present for completion, her first Schwarzenegger movie, Commando.
After this they revisit her first attempt at killing bad guys. She keeps chocking when the time comes and just can’t do it. Big Daddy had some inventive ideas on how to cure this. He abducted four men who had picked up child prostitutes, put them in super villain masks, and let them try to run while he and Mindy hunted them. Knowing she wouldn’t let her father die, he gets himself caught by the four, forcing Mindy to kill them before they kill both of them.
The psychologist finds that Mindy didn’t want to kill anyone in fear that her mother wouldn’t approve. He brings her mother into the room so the two can chat. The psychologist is very proud of himself thinking Mindy is about to have a breakthrough, but things don’t go as he plans. Instead Mindy’s mother tells her how proud she is of her daughter, and that Mindy needs to escape from jail to do what she does best.
The last few pages of the issue continue with the rest of what is going on with everyone else. The mob find Todd on the street dressed as Ass-Kicker and pick him up, not before shooting him in the butt as he tried to flee. Dave is worried when he can’t reach his friend, but still refuses to put on the costume. Things come back full circle to Mindy, as she is put in her cell while telling the guards she is already planning her escape. Unfortunately for her, the guards tranquilize her as Chris D’Amico comes in with a gun to bring her to Rocco.
The look into Mindy’s training was phenomenal. The lengths that her father went into preparing her were crazy. You can almost imagine a slightly more sadistic Batman putting Robin through this is he wanted to traumatize his ward forever. We always knew her childhood was ripped from her, but it makes for a great story going more in depth as they did here. The scene with her mother was like icing on the cake, they make you think she’s there to talk her daughter down, only to find she reaffirms everything.
The stuff with Dave has otherwise been boring; how many times do we need to see a super hero give up the mask only to find they can’t. It was nice that he was put on the backburner. Everything is going to hell for the super heroes though, and I am excited that to see what is going to come from the last couple issue as they’ve been laying a lot of groundwork for it.
Millar has said that this is the last volume of Kick-Ass. Everything must come to an end at some point, but I really hope that this is not the end for Hit Girl. This issue reminds us why she is the breakout star of this series and why she is so damn interesting.