Friday, September 12, 2008

Four Color Fiend - I MARVEL at all this!

A few spoilers this time, but I’m not going to bother with making you scroll down. This is just a quick rundown of some of the titles I’m currently reading.

I continue to pick up most of the SECRET INVASION titles from Marvel. As I’ve said before most of them are decent or better, giving you a nice “what has gone before” page at the beginning and generally allowing you to figure out who is who. Only a few times have I had to go to Wikipedia to check out a character or two, mostly from AVENGERS: The Initiative. In many cases they appear to be old characters with new names or new characters assuming the names of older ones.

The SI storyline seems to be at the mid-point, at least in the main title, but it may be ending sooner or later in the books that currently tie-in. The two main Avenger titles (Mighty & New) continue to bring us the back story on how various heroes were replaced and how things on the Skrull home world developed up to the beginning of the actual invasion. Tony (Iron Man) Stark has been led to believe that he may be a Skrull double-agent, but still is working to repair the damage done by the actual aliens. It looks as if Reed Richards may be getting back into action and on his way back to aid his allies on Earth. As it appears that it was Richards’ mind which held the secret the Skrulls used to hide among us, it is probably Mister Fantastic who will discover the means to correct the situation.

Both INCREDIBLE HERCULES and CAPTAIN BRITAIN & MI: 13 are showing how the Skrull invasion is taking place in the realms of magic (in the case of CB) and among the immortal gods (IH). The events and characters in both books have enough appeal to me that I may continue to pick them both up after the Skrull storyline ends. Dr. Faiza Hussain, particularly, may be one of the most interesting characters to have appeared in quite a while, at least in my reading of the Marvel Universe books. It will be interesting to see where writer Paul Cornell and co-creator Leonard Kirk will be going with her in the next few months. In the Hercules book, it is Amadeus Cho (the 7th smartest person on Earth) who is the most interesting of the hero’s companions and I fear for the fate of his puppy, Kerberus (“Kirby”) at the hands of the Skrulls.

While I’m still reading MARVEL 1985, I feel a bit disappointed that Mark Millar is going a so dark. Considering the other things the man has written, I guess I should not have been surprised. I would have preferred a little lighter tone as the main character in the book, Toby Goodman, is only a young teen in the story. I certainly don’t remember the various Marvel villains being quite this blood-thirsty (in some cases almost literally), especially back in the mid-80s where this is supposed to be taking place. It remains a good read and it will be interesting to see where Millar will eventually take this.
Finally, at least with the Marvel books, I found THE TWELVE ½ among my ‘pulls’ at Nuclear Comics last week. While the covers are new, as well as a summary of the series on the inside front cover, the rest of the book contains reprints of the early adventures of three of the heroes who now find themselves in the 21st century. Rockman, Mr. E and the Fiery Mask all have a moment in the spotlight. Of note are the origin of the Fiery Mask by Joe Simon and a Rockman tale by Basil Wolverton.

I’ll probably have more on other comics either later today or next Monday.
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