October 30, 2009

Ramblings and Reviews

Welcome ladies and gentlemen to the calamity known as Ramblings and Reviews. So this goes to all my fellow freaks out there, holler if ya hear me! I’ve got six issues to rant and rave about so get ready.

phpThumbhercthorFirst up we have The Incredible Hercules #136. This issue had me hooked because Thor is on the cover and he’s my favorite hero.
Writer(s): Greg Pak & Fred Van Lente
Artist: Reilly Brown
Publisher: Marvel

Let me start off by saying that this is some of the best comedic writing I’ve seen in comics in a while. Lately Hercules has been parading around dressed as Thor and claiming to be him as well. For obvious reasons this doesn’t sit well with Thor himself, and just as Herc and his new woman are about to enter a portal to Asgard to try and take over, the real Thor shows up dressed as Hercules. Most people know the long history between these two guys and how they are both good friends, but when they see each other in the other one’s costume it’s almost too much for Thor to bear. He challenges “Hercu-Thor” to a fight and the wackiness ensues. We see the dreaded nurple, a wedgie, and a groin kick for the ages. This was a really funny issue all around and delivered a lighthearted story for all to enjoy. 4 out of 5

phpThumbvoodoo#1Next, we have Doctor Voodoo: Avenger of the Supernatural #1.
Writer: Rick Remender
Artist: JeftePalo (cover by Marko Djurdjevic)
Publisher: Marvel

OK, so this being a number one issue it needed to start out with a bang and it delivered. The first thing we see is DV confront none other than Dormammu; in his very own dark realm to boot. We then see DV return home to find Dr. Strange waiting to talk about the experience and continue his training with becoming the new Sorcerer Supreme. After some dialogue, Strange leaves and Jericho goes to the clinic he works at, being, well, a doctor. He is attacked by some demon which seems pretty scary until Dr. Doom shows up! He demands that DV hand over the Eye of Agamotto to him because he is more deserving of it. After a battle with Doom whooping Voodoo, he grabs the Eye and it shows him something that is coming and it scares the crap out of Doom. He then exits and tells Voodoo the Eye will do him no good anyway. In the back of the issue there is some back story on Jericho Drumm to educate people on his previous exploits. Great first issue; artwork was solid and the writing was right on target. 4.5 out of 5

phpThumbuxm516Thirdly, let’s talk about Uncanny X-Men #516 (Nation X).
Writer: Matt Fraction
Artist: Greg Land
Publisher: Marvel

This issue has two plots cooking at once, something I’m not a big fan of usually, but Fraction pulls it off rather well. We first see Scalphunter being tortured and told by some nobodies that if he doesn’t do what they say he’ll get tossed into a pit full of Predator Xs. We then turn to Utopia, where Magneto has returned at full strength and is confronting the X-Men on their own turf. He surprises the X-Men by telling them he wants peace and is impressed by the strides that Cyclops has made with mutant-kind. This little visit doesn’t sit well with Charles though; he tells Magneto he isn’t welcome and psychically assaults him, but then Cyclops interferes and tells him to let it go. We then hear from Erik about how he and The High Evolutionary were trying to give depowered mutants their powers back by some process using the head of a Celestial. After this story we see Scalphunter on an airplane trying to trick the X-Men into letting him onto the island, but unknown to them, he has an airplane full of Predator Xs. This was a great issue for several reasons, but the main reason is the most obvious. Magneto is back! Good artwork by Land and Fraction’s writing was right on target. 4 out of 5

phpThumbswdrNext I present Dark Reign The List: Secret Warriors (one-shot).
Writer: Jonathan Hickman
Artist: Ed McGuinness
Publisher: Marvel

I am really enjoying these “List” one-shots. The Avengers issue was awesome, and this one doesn’t disappoint either and for one reason – Nick Fury. Nick at his best (or Hickman, I guess) is a really cool character and gives you that Batman feel. You know, regular guy up against super powered beings, but still manages to come out on top. This issue starts out with Fury and Dugan on a stealth mission to invade Avengers Tower. We see how Ares has made some backdoor deal with Fury to let him get past security and into Osborn’s bedroom for a one on one. Fury tells Normie that they have a problem that needs special attention. Basically, Hydra is planning something new and very secretive that they need to figure out before it blows up in everyones faces. The last page shows Fury decrypting some device that he stole from Osborn, which shows some Hydra secret information that scares the beejeezus out of him. There is a short Fury backup story in the back of the issue as well. This was fantastically well written and drawn. 4.5 out of 5

phpThumbxmvsaoaLastly we have X-Men vs. Agents of Atlas #1 of 2.
Writer: Jeff Parker
Artist: Carlo Pagulayan
Publisher: Marvel

Well I can’t say a ton of great things about this issue as far as the writing; the artwork on the other hand was visually stunning. I did think the story was OK, and it’s always cool to see different superheroes at odds with each other. The Agents sneak into the X-Men’s former base to steal Cerebra to locate their missing colleague, Venus. She has been kidnapped by a centaur and taken to some secret location to face an unknown threat. The X-Men find out that the Agents are breaking into the facility, and they confront them and a battle ensues. The Agents get the upper-hand on the X-Men and steal Cerebra. We then see the Agents ’port home, but the X-Men are tracking them and use Cloak to transport there to even the score. 3 out 0f 5

I also purchased Official Index to the Marvel U. Obviously it doesn’t really need to be reviewed, so let me just say that this series is a great reference tool for characters’ appearances and publishing info. Well that’s it for now, but more to come very soon. Have at thee!

Billy Dunleavy



  1. InfiniteSpeech

    you just HAD to go and review Dr. Voodoo huh man lol I planned on picking it up to give it a look see i’m glad it seems worth it

  2. Billy

    @Speech-you wont be disappointed. This issue was packed with action along with a good teaser for next time.

  3. eli

    Why, oh why couldn’t Doctor Voodoo: Avenger of the Supernatural #1 have come out right before our contest of champions battle Billy. Doom may well have won it. Ok, I’m done crying.

    That Fury story also looks good, and with Dum Dum Dugan, cool.

  4. Woah, woah; THOR is your favorite hero!?

    This issue of Incredible Hercules was absolutely hilarious. From the nipple pinch, to the Elvish Tickler- just flat out comic gold!

    I also really liked Uncanny X-Men, but Greg Land’s art is just… bleh.

    “We see how Ares has made some backdoor deal with Fury to let him get past security and into Osborn’s bedroom for a one on one.” Backdoor? Bedroom? One on one? Oh my Billy, what comic were you REALLY reading?

    And I thought Parker’s writing in XMvAoA was great! I’m glad to see you dug the art too. Issue #2 comes out this week!!

  5. Billy

    @Andy-the “tickler” was hilarious, especially when Zeus asked about it and they replied…”we’ll tell you about it when you get older”. lol

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