What's up folks!? Did you miss me!? I was on vacation last week. Like most vacations, it was way too short. Though, I am glad to be back. I missed this. I missed it so much, that I posted something on Tuesday as well. A small piece about why the PS4 Spider-Man game is a great thing for Marvel video games. Anyways, I digress back to comic books. Last week while I was on vacation Marvel released the third issue of the main Civil War II book. I will touch on that briefly, but not much. As the kids say, that is last week's news. As far as new comics this week, it feels like I scaled down from previous weeks. Over the past few weeks both Marvel and DC have filled the selves with new stuff. So naturally, I want them all! This week I only have two DC comics that I am currently covering. Regarding Marvel, there is only one in the chamber for this week. It is a tie-in to the Civil War story arc. Like I have mentioned before, lately I have been buying all my comics at 901 Comics. Make sure you get over there. If you still haven't been, you are missing out! Again, glad to be back and helping my fellow Memphis nerds in the comic book department. Give us a shout @Nerd_901 with any fun comics you are reading, and as always leave a comment or two. All the best everyone!
Civil War II #3
The higher these issue get in the number count, the more I am starting to realize two things. One, the artwork is absolutely stunning. It's one of the key things that make me keep coming back to this arc. Not to say that I wouldn't without the artwork, but it is a big help. The second thing that I have realized, is the slow burn to the main conflict. It feels like it is taking forever to get to where the story needs to be to truly gain momentum. Three main issues and tons of tie-ins in, and we still haven't gotten to a true tipping point. Granted, a key person to the long time Avengers team was murdered (more on that in a moment), but that didn’t feel like it gave this series the shot in the arm it needs. It felt rushed and out of place. It would have meant more if the drama was able to build. Before I go into that murder I will let anyone who wants to skip this part do so now.
If you are still here, this is how it went down. Last issue Ulysses had a vision of The Hulk going on a killing spree. Captain Marvel and Iron Man rushed off to find Bruce Banner. We start this issue with them finding and confronting Banner. Arguing takes place, and they find out that Banner has been experimenting on himself again with dead Gamma cells. Though the purpose of those experiments is to keep him from 'Hulking out". This leads to more arguing, then the next thing we know an arrow is shot and kills Bruce Banner. That's right the original Hulk has just killed. And said arrow belongs to Clint Barton aka Hawkeye. While this should be a drama filled moment, and shock the world. It feels, like I said, flat and rushed. We discovered that some time prior Bruce Banner meets with Barton to instruct him to kill him, if he ever feels like The Hulk would resurface. Fast forward to the present, and Hawkeye notices the signs that Banner is about to 'Hulk out". So, Barton acts quickly and strikes down Banner. That's how it goes, just as quick as I can type it. Not to mention it happens within the first ten pages of this issue. There was no build, no drama, or something that the reader was suppose to be caught off guard by. Only a bunch of arguing, followed by a death. I felt nothing. One of the more pointless deaths I have ever read in a comic book.
I will continue to stick with this series and arc. Mainly, because it will end in a huge shake up to the Marvel comic book universe. But, I truly hope the plot thickens, and there is more depth to the conflict in the future issues.
Don't let the title fool you. This isn't the Peter Parker version of Spider-Man. This is Miles Morales. This is the official introduction to the Civil War tie-in for Morales. It's the reason I'm doing a review that is on it's sixth issue. Like the other tie-ins I have previously wrote reviews for this arc. The first half of this issue continues the story line in the previous five issues. Dealing with Miles with his roommates and the fact that they know his secret identity. Though, we quickly get to see Miles be pulled into which side he wants to stand on with the current Civil War story line. That has a lot to do with the fact that Tony Stark himself calls up Morales to speak with him. Seeing that Brian Michael Bendis writes not only the main Civil War II story arc, but this one as well; it makes sense that Iron Man would want to get Miles Morales on his side. Stark feels like he can needs to connect with the kid. Tony Stark is a smart person, so he knows what notes to hit to help make Miles understand what is going on within the superhero community. Telling the young Spider-Man that if they use Ulysses' powers, it can be similar to profiling. It truly is a fun few moments between Stark and Morales. You can see Bendis' talent in writing these two characters in a few short panels. Speaking of those panels, the art is outstanding. Artist Nico Leon is able to draw them with great detail. His work is without a doubt expressive. If Marvel keeps this series for a few issues as tie-ins to Civil War, then count me in for the future.
I am not entirely familiar with the villain that seems to be the focal point early on in this series. His name is the Eradicator. He is a villain from the 90's and is a Superman impostor. It is a Kryptonian entity that seems to have the same motive as General Zod. Help rebuild a new Krypton. Superman discovers him in the Fortress of Solitude. Clark, Lois, and their young son, Jon are there to help Jon heal. He is still out of it from his fall out of tree from the last issue. When they arrive they discover The Eradicator there petting the dog of Superman. After a brief fight, we learn that Eradicator is not there to fight Superman. Though, he does turn his focus to Jon. Bad move Eradicator. This won't make Clark happy at all. The villain starts a process that seems like he is trying to absorb Jon. Next thing we know the Superdog jumps in the way. Becoming the victim of the bad guys powers. What follows is a cool turning point for Jon. As his father and the villain go at it again, we see Jon holding the cape of his fallen pup. Tears quickly go from sad to anger. Jon is about to have his first moment of rage with his powers. Things can only get more fun from there. I can't wait for the next issue to see what kind of pain the young boy has in store for The Eradicator.
I was starting to wonder when we were going to find out the identities to Gotham and Gotham Girl. This issue started to fill in some of the holes. We learn that as a young boy Gotham, named Hank Clover, was helped by Batman. His story could have been much like Bruce Wayne's terrifying past. Hank and his parents were strolling down an alley in Gotham when a man tries to rob them. Just as the man is about the pull the trigger to murder Mrs. Clover, Batman shows up to deal with the criminal. From that moment on Hank becomes obsessed with living a good life. An inspiration that only Batman could give to a young child. He wants to one day do good for the world. Along side his sister, Claire, they go to third world countries to help out the needy. What we don't learn is how the two gain their powers. Tom King, the writer, hints that they used a lot of money gained from their father to possible get those powers. But how? Well, that was left out this issue.
My only complaint about the series is the lack of attention given to Gotham Girl. I hope that in the next couple of issues they focus on why she wanted to be a part of her brother's journey. Who know, it could be as simple as she wanted to be like her big brother. We will see how much attention King wants to give her.
Lastly, this particular issue was a quick read. It had a lot of narration in it. Something that I normally love. Sometimes with comics the narration and art work alone can carry the issue. This issue is no different. It shows how Hank was inspired by Batman as a young child. Even as an adult the reader can see that Hank hangs on every word Batman says to him. In his defense, who wouldn’t be that way in Batman's presence!? When we first met the two heroes, I wondered if they would be a problem for Bruce Wayne. It has become clear that they are more than willing to become his allies and not try to take the mantle of Gotham's heroes. They want to help. It is a bit more interesting to do this, than to make them instant villains to the Bats. I am glad King went in this direction. That becomes clear in the issue when a bridge explodes and they are the first to respond. Doing what the can until Batman arrives to help secure the bridge. They aren't going out of their way to be heroes. They know that they are new to this, and without Batman's help they would be lost.
Batman continues to be one of my favorite series in this Rebirth process. I am happy to know that it comes out twice a month. The end of this issue hinted at knowing more about the two new heroes. I hope to discover more about them moving forward. Especially if Gotham Girl is given more depth.