It’s that time folks. Time for another astonishing edition of Comic Book Ketchup. Also Sean B. and Bryton share their love of the new Twilight movie.
Books reviewed include:
Fantastic Four #600
Wolverine and the X-Men #2
New 52 #2s
Ultimate Spider-Man #4
Battle Scars #1
Superman and Batman vs Aliens and Predator
Avengers Academy #21
Wolverine: Goodbye Chinatown
Animal Man #3
Trivia Contest:Bullet to the Head #1 & 2 signed by Matz.
Writers: Chris Yost, Cullen Bunn and Matt Fraction
Penciller: Scot Eaton
Inks: Andrew Hennessy
Publisher: Marvel Comics
The introduction of new characters is a tricky thing in comics. Sometimes, it pays off and you get a book like Invincible or Chew that takes off right from the beginning. Most times, this is not the case. With Marvel or DC, it seems they have a much harder time with books that focus on characters that aren’t rooted in the deep history of their respective universe. Usually, it’s got to be an Avengers or Bat-book for the casual reader to take any interest. Battle Scars spins out of Marvel’s previous event, Fear Itself and introduces us to Staff Sargeant Marcus Johnson. What appears to be a brand-new character, It will be interesting to see the long-lasting effect.
The first issue of Battle Scars is a pretty basic one. Marcus Johnson’s story isn’t one of super-heroics or pushing back Hydra, but instead, of him and the guys around him holding off the Taliban in Afghanistan. They don’t have time for news on the attacks on American soil, since they are just trying to survive their own hellish scenario. Days after the attack, he receives notice that his mother has passed away. From here is where it turns back into a Marvel Comic. Mysterious thugs attacking out of nowhere and then the Taskmaster showing up, it goes from something far too realistic into that which we buy books like this for, the escape from the real world into capes and costumes. The stories that spin out of these events tend to be forgotten. The major events themselves even tend to be discarded too but this book has definitely caught my attention. I am such a sucker for the set-up of this issue.
The writing team of this book consists of Chris Yost, Cullen Bunn and Matt Fraction. If I didn’t have visuals to draw me in, I’d probably not have even picked this up. I just don’t follow the work of any of these three too much. Scot Eaton’s pencils are what drew me in as was the cover, of a shaded Marcus Johnson drawing his gun at Captain America and Nick Fury, drawn by Carlo Pagulayan and Jason Paz. Why is Marcus Johnson the most wanted man right now in the Marvel Universe when he doesn’t seem to have any sort of tie to anyone? Obviously, there aren’t many answer with the first issue but it’s a very interesting concept and I’m totally drawn in. I found it to be the perfect storm of a good first issue hook with really good visuals.
With a comic book like this, there has to be some sort of payoff. There has to be more to the main character than what it seems. Is he a forgotten hero? Does his family have someone powerful? Does he know who he really is? Marvel wants us to case, as it seems they are pushing this character into something we’ll see more of after this series concludes. In any case, this 6-issue series starts off with a bang and I’ll be picking this up monthly to find out more.
David Huang goes to this comic book store because he feels the owner, Dan, is going the extra mile to serve his customer, earn their business, and demonstrate his reliability and loyalty.
There is always some form of significant discount or sale or promotion going on to keep bargain hunters on their toes and entice impulse purchasers or lower the barrier of entry for someone trying to get into something new. There’s also a game scene and events, but when Dewey’s puts on an event they bring in creators like Joe Kubert, Paul Levitz, and Jamal Ingle! However, aside from my own positive experiences shopping there, what really left an impression on me was watching Dan deal with a woman who came in with some comics found in their basement looking for a payday. He was patient, polite, informative, and offered earnest condolences to someone who would have likely been scorned, mocked, or rushed away elsewhere. She wasn’t going to bring him business or product, but he treated her with dignity and courtesy regardless, which really shouldn’t be noteworthy except that it sadly is in the comic retail biz all too often. Great service, selection, and presentation.
Dewey’s Comic City is located in Madison, NJ. Make sure to pay them a visit at:
Dewey’s Comic City
13 Park Avenue
Madison, NJ 07940
Writer: Jason Aaron
Penciller: Chris Bachalo
Inker: Jaime Mendoza
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Once upon a time, the X-Men comics were a lot of fun. Huge cast of characters with what seemed real personalities. They started out young and over the years, you saw them grow into adults, villains or whatever turn they took. They had big adventures that seemingly put them everywhere. It’s one of the few comic book franchises that if you followed it for long enough, you could get a real sense of their timeline. The always hunted mutants numbered in the many thousands and even millions although now, the mutant population is nearing extinction. Also, there’s too many X-books and too many of them have Wolverine in them. Usually, that’s a bad thing, but not this time.
In the last big X-Men storyline, “Schism,” Cyclops and Wolverine see that they have huge differences in how the mutant survivors should be. There’s been a huge split in the X-universe. Scott Summers is staying on Utopia with the rest of the big guns defending the mutant race. Wolverine feels that the mutant youth need to be taught, much like the originals and that they need a school and goes back the original grounds of the Xavier school, this time it’s named for currently dead teammate Jean Grey. The big villains for this relaunch issue aren’t the usual ones, like Magneto or Juggernaut, but instead, it’s things like state school inspectors, student bullies and the fact that the entire school is a danger room. And that right there, is Wolverine & The X-Men.
I actually cannot believe how much I enjoyed this first issue. It’s been a few years since there was an X-Men book that I was this behind. I had grown very bored of just about everything that has been done the last few years. Wolverine & The X-Men has a very fresh take on this portion of the X-Men by Jason Aaron, who writes a lot of books each month. Thankfully, he still is able to give each work it’s own voice. Chris Bachalo knocked it out of the park on the art. Sometimes, the X-books just take themselves too serious and I hope that as more issues of this come out that the book stays fun and weird, but weird in a good way. This book already has a great supporting cast and showcased a preview of some interesting things to come.
This could be the beginning of a book in the X-Universe that is as fun or as complex as Grant Morrison’s or Joss Whedon’s run. The X-Men have always been one of these storied groups that writers do best when thinking big. With this first issue, it seems someone remembered this. While this book deals primarily with Wolverine’s side, Cyclops and the rest of Utopia are featured in Uncanny X-Men, which also got relaunched with a new #1.
Wednesday Warriors is a podcast for everyone counting down the days every week until Wednesday when the new comics hit the stands. With discussions about what’s going on in the industry, reviews of current and older comics, and a wide variety of opinions from well-read fans.