w. Jonathan Hickman
a. Jerome Opena & Dustin Weaver
Why?: Because Hickman has been sewing seeds for this event since his FF run, and the cosmic event of the century is barreling to a close. Hickman continues to wow me issue after issue, with both the action and the scope of this mini-series.
Across the galaxy, planets fallen to the Builders rebel against their conquerors. Captain America leads the Avengers and the surviving fleet to victory after victory, all planets rallying under the same banner… a giant A. Avengers World starts here!!!!
Meanwhile, Thanos’ invasion of Earth reaches a finale, his wayward son is found, and he now has control of the Illuminati’s antimatter planet-killer bombs. Earth surely seems doomed.
Hmmm ….if only there was a group of Avengers with a space fleet full of allies waiting to repay the favor!? Issue 6 is going to be hotttttt!
4 out of 5 Space Monkeys
Why?: Yeah I know. I didn’t expect it on here either. But I really enjoyed Fialkov’s I, Vampire and his and Leonard Kirk’s Hunger mini was great. He took the mess left over from Ultimatum and used lesser known members of the ultimate universe and managed to work it into a nice Age of Ultron aftermath / Cataclysm prelude that had lots of cool moments.
This was just as cool! The Ultimate Vision (from way back in the early days of the Ultimate universe) senses the presence of the newly merged Galactus/Gah Lak Tus, and after warning her lover, the Falcon and contacting both Sue Storm and Tony Stark, she flies out into deep space to confront him. This doesn’t go as planned, since the upgraded Galactus is resistant to her advanced weaponry, and shrugs off her attempt at merging with him. But not before she learns a few things about the 616 Galactus that convinces her the Ultimate earth doesn’t stand a chance. Except one: Reed Richards. Too bad the ultimate Reed is a raving mad lunatic villain!
All in all a nice set up for the Cataclysm event rocking the Ultimate universe this winter
4 out of 5 Space Monkeys
Why?: Because Damian was the best Robin ever! And if you think I’m wrong, read the first two trades of Tomasi and Gleason’s Batman and Robin, and then comeback here and say “gee, Bob, you were right, I was so very, very wrong ”
I have heard writers and artists alike refer to characters or stories they write as their children. And it’s very apparent in this case. Andy Kubert co created Damian with Grant Morrison in first arc on Batman, before Flashpoint and the New 52, and you can tell he cares a lot for the character.
Set in an alternate future (or maybe not, you never know these days), Batman is killed in an explosion, right before Damian’s eyes. The son of Batman, feeling guilty over the death of his father sets out on a quest for vengeance the likes of which Gotham has never seen, bringing him into confrontation with his mother, Talia and his grandfather, Ra’s Al Ghul, Alfred, and the most notable of Batman’s rogues. And judging by the final page, someone a lot closer to Damian…. who really shouldn’t be showing up in the Batcave!
Kubert is a fantastic artist, it’s just page after page of awesome Batman-ness, he uses a wide range of full-page, double paged, and single panel splashes effectively through out the issue with tight sequential panels as well. And he is no slouch in the writing department either. Mirroring Batman’s loss and grieving in regular continuity, Damian’s grieving process is just as intense, but totally his own, as you can tell by the amount of blood on his hands by the end of the issue…
5 out of 5 space Monkeys
Sandman: Overture #1
w. Neil Gaiman
a. J.H. Williams III
Why?: Devine. Simply, Devine! This is the Gaimain I’ve been waiting to see. Teamed with Williams III, they take the Sandman out of the dark recesses of your mind, where, he has been hiding all this time, and elegantly smear him across the page and create a true dreamscape to tell this tale. The story is open and inviting, so even if you never read a Sandman story, you should just buy this book and jump in, see what you missed. If your a big Sandman fan, prepared to be delighted. Some old familiar faces are back, The Corinthian, Death, Destiny, Lucien, and a few other nods to previous Sandman tales. And we also learn what happens when aliens dream???
Williams III is at the top of his game, taking Gaiman’s script and turning it into pure artistic gold. It’s trippy , it’s stylized, its bright and beautiful, it’s dark and scary. It has a center gate-fold spread that explains what a Concatenation of Dreams is, that is worth the cover price alone.
These two creators were meant to work together.
5 out of 5 Space Monkeys
Wild Blue Yonder #3
w. Mike Raicht, Austin Harrison, &
a. Zach Howard
Why?: Because its been too long! I really dug this Steampunk-Dystopic-Air Pirate story’s first two issues and have been waiting to see this on the shelves. As Tug continues to work his way into the crew of the Airship Dawn, passes the last test to become a Gun. Guns are dudes on jet packs who fly out from the airships and wreak all sorts of havoc on enemies. See, cool stuff like that is packed into this book by the creative team. This issue shows how the crew spends some of there down time as the Dawn continues to flee from the Executioner’s Black Fleet. We hear of the near mythical pilot “The Judge’, we see Tug chug some airship moonshine with Cola’s dad, and some really cool mid air battles, resulting in a rescue that earns someone a nice kiss! Where will Tug’s loyalties lie after this issue’s final page?
(*This is my pick as well – Chuck the Editor Monkey)
3 out of 5 Space Monkeys
Edgar Allan Poe’s
The Raven and the Red Death
Dark Horse Comics
w. & a. Richard Corben
Why?: Because I’ve been a fan of Corben, and his unique art style since I stole a copy of Heavy Metal when I was 13 and first met Den, his rather well endowed warrior character from the land of Neverwhere. I couldn’t think of a better artist to capture Poe’s creepy darkness then Richard Corben. And he succeeds. Staying true to Poe’s stories, yet rendering them in his detailed animated way, makes for a modern day version of a good E.C. story from the past. Nicely done!
4 out of 5 Space Monkeys
Last Weeks Surprise Pick:
DC Universe vs. Masters of the Universe #2
w. Keith Giffen
a. Dexter Soy
MAJOR SPOILER (Highlight the text below to read the spoiler)
Because He-Man kills Superman! Yep. Stabs him right through the chest with the Sword of Power.
See! Told you this was good. Remember when you snickered at this when you saw it in previews ! Whose laughin now???
DC continues to prove the New 52 is not the lame and tame DC we all knew and were bored with.
Oh yeah, and Skeletor comes to Earth and takes control of the League. Can the decidedly demonic duo of John Constantine and Evil-Lyn save the League and the Masters?