Tag Archive: Pigs

It’s been a crazy couple of weeks folks, but we are back. A slow week comic book wise and so we look at a pair of Indies and only one DC title as the New 52 really continues to just disappoint on almost every front that isn’t a Batman book. Marvel continues their strong push with a bunch of Avengers books including one we’ll be featuring today. So without further ado, here is this week’s Pullbox!

1) Marvel – Venom #13.4: Blackheart has all the cards and has done the unthinkable and brought hell to Earth, literally. Even Earth’s most magically attuned heroes like Doctor Strange and the Ghost Rider cannot hold back the onslaught and only Venom, Red Hulk, and X-23 can hope to turn the tides. But at what cost? 

This has been an interesting adventure for Venom, the new Ghost Rider, Red Hulk, and X-23, and the fact it has been coming out every week has given a sense of a bigger event than it really is. The best part of this though is the fact that Blackheart, one of the more nefarious and powerful villains in the Marvel universe has been given the spotlight for the first time in a while. And where there is Blackheart, you know Mephisto isn’t far behind. Obviously this is something you should pick up the first chapters to, but this issue’s ending leaves you on a cliffhanger that means the next issue could really shake things up for all the characters involved on a permanent basis.

2) Marvel – New Avengers #22: Norman Osborn’s plan to slander the Avengers continues and the team led by Luke Cage has had enough after Jessica and Squirrel Girl left the mansion with Luke’s newborn baby. And the team is finally ready to start listening to Spider-Man and Victoria Hand looks to be their target at how to get to the bottom of this.

The team finally decided to go after Victoria Hand after they realized she had to have been the one setting them up, but Hand comes up with a story that is almost too unbelievable to be false. So now the New Avengers have to figure out how to take down Osborn while also trying to keep a raging Luke Cage in control as Jessica Jones has left with no trace. The resolution in this issue was key to a lot of loose ends that had been opened in early parts of this story, but it almost seems like things may be coming to a head a bit too quickly. Whatever happens, the New Avengers are going to be shaken to their core and the more interesting secondary story that may be developing is Luke and Jessica’s relationship after the fallout of this event.

3) DC – Batman Beyond Unlimited #1: Terry McGinnis returns with a pair of adventures kicking off this new book. The first sees him investigating a nation wide migration by various Jokerz gangs to Gotham City. The second part sees Terry team up with the Justice League again to take on the terrorist group Kobra who may be working out of Cadmus Labs.

One of my biggest disappointments of the New 52 was the fact that Batman Beyond had been put on hold and so this has been one of my more anticipated new titles to come out in a while. The fact the book is also double wide and features two concurrent story lines makes it easily the best bang for your buck of the week most likely. With each story subtly re-introducing a lot of our favorite characters from the cartoon and last year’s monthly comic run, hopefully this is the beginning of a long and prosperous run for our favorite Batman from the future.

4) IDW – Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Donatello (One-shot): Continuing the series of one-shots that look at each turtle individually, Donatello’s sees him attend a science fair incognito only to find out it is really a front for Baxter Stockman trying to draft scientific talent and now Donnie must save someone he once thought to be an internet rival while also escaping with his own shell in tact.

These one-shots from IDW are great ways to establish the turtles’ personalities for TMNT newcomers and this one continues the success started off with Raphael’s one-shot. Featuring a lot of fun action, great dialogue, and even a dig at Stan Lee and Marvel for the keener comic book fan, this one-shot is a must have whether you’re an old-school turtles fan or someone just starting out. It’s also a big plus for video game fans as we learn that Donnie is a big MMORPG fan and seeing him try to explain it to Leonardo to no avail is a great short scene in the book.

5) Image – PIGS #6: After finding out their inside man had failed at his assassination attempt, the sleeper agents realize they are going to have to get their hands dirty and break into the prison themselves and take out their target. It won’t be easy though as a neo-Nazi inmate is also the high-value target’s number one bodyguard.

We see another stunning form of the sleepers training as kids in a flashback in this book and it helps to explain the widening divide emerge between certain members. As loose ends are tied up by some members of the team, the others really work on the tension that is clearly there by the hesitancy of some members to go along with the more violent plans they wish to carry out. As plans continue to move forward, the big question that is looming is what will the pay off be for this series and these characters once the high value target is eliminated and what is going on in the global picture as hinted at in the first pair of issues in the series. I can’t wait to see the next issue to see just how the sleepers infiltrate the prison and if that long awaited pay off finally comes.

We are back folks! Finally caught up with the back issues I missed over the holiday as well this week’s releases. And let me tell you, that was no easy feat, never mind actually picking this week’s Pullbox. But that was difficult, too. A lot of great comics, especially from Marvel and on the Indie side of things, made for some tough choices this week, but I think that the elite have risen to the top. So here is this week’s Pullbox!

1) Marvel – The Amazing Spider-Man #677: When the Black Cat is framed for a technology theft she didn’t commit, as Spider-Man can attest to since he was with her at the alleged time of the crime, Spidey calls in his old friend Matt Murdock to help him get to the bottom of the case and to help the Cat clear her name.

Although I’ve steered clear of Spider-Man for the most part because I think the character only regresses with every major event he takes part in, this issue sees the start of a brief crossover with a character who has been rejuvenated in past months, Daredevil. And so I decided to pick up this comic and was pleasant surprised. Brilliant artwork and the banter between Spidey and Daredevil is hysterical as they work together over the course of the issue that will be concluded in the next issue of Daredevil. There is also a point in the comic where Spider-Man questions himself and wishes he had Daredevil’s strength of character as he has had more problems than anyone else in the Marvel universe and didn’t really need a cheap character re-launch by pick himself back up. As someone who has been furious at most of Spidey’s writers for a while, that made me feel good.

2) Marvel – Carnage USA #2 (of 5): As Carnage continues his dominance of a small town in the middle of the country, Spidey finds himself getting help from some unlikely sources as he tries to formulate a plan that could finally put down Cletus Kasady for good.

Surprising I know to put a pair of Spider-Man comics at the top, but this mini-series and the last one by Zeb Wells clearly show who should be at the helm of the wall-crawler in the future. His storylines in both these mini-series and the new Avenging Spider-Man show that he knows what Spider-Man fans want. Smart, witty banter between Spidey and his enemies, some cameos from other Marvel heroes once in a while, and to pit Spidey against his more iconic villains instead of working on new threats or some thing more on a global scale that should stick to Avengers stories. Marvel touts that Spider-Man is the world’s greatest super hero. It’s stories like these that actually give them a case in defending that claim.

3) DC – Batman and Robin #5: Damian Wayne has made his choices and has decided that he is sick of being treated like the child that Batman thinks he is. So, when offered a chance to follow “Nobody”, better known as Morgan Ducard, the son of one of Batman’s former teachers, Henri Ducard he took it to satiate his killer instincts. But will Robin actually pull the trigger when the time comes? 

There are a lot of similarities between the development of Damian so far as a character to the original Jason Todd, but the fact this twisted being is in the body of a 10-year-old boy makes it a bit more creepy. With the knowledge of his past mistakes always looming in the back of his mind, it’ll be interesting to see what Batman does to not only win Damian back and if he finally starts to grow into the “father figure” role that Damian so clearly needs, but if he reveals all of his secrets to Damian who so desperately desires his trust just as much as his love. Left open on another cliffhanger ending, the next issue will definitely see some sparks fly and if you want to see just what the future of the Batman and Robin dynamic will be, you’re going to want to start with this issue.

4) DC – Deathstroke #5: Realizing his long thought dead son may actually be alive, Slade Wilson, better known as Deathstroke the Terminator, must also deal with the fact that the closest thing he’s ever had to a friend in Christoph, has just received his head as a very clear message. Along with Peabody, Deathstroke must continue to track down his clearly enraged son while also still dealing with yet another person wearing the Legacy suit. But this newest hunter has some metahuman powers that will put Slade’s own to the test.

Always guaranteed to provide tons of over the top action, this issue continues that trend while bringing up more questions of where Deathstroke goes from here as things just seem to get more and more complicated and he really doesn’t know who to trust as that short list just got shorter. The interesting thing of course will be how he handles this new Legacy and if the running joke of this new character being cannon fodder comes to an end as we also learn the extent of this new Legacy’s powers. We’ve seen some super-strength and some high level telekinesis. It’ll be interesting if there is anything else up his sleeve as he takes on the world’s greatest assassin.

5) Image – PIGS #5: The Russian sleeper cell continues to fracture from within as a new assignment has come their way and requires them to break into a prison to perform an assassination. As the ante has been raised, more of the group starts to hesitate and decides to go with the more subtle approach unlike their first mission, but things don’t exactly go according to plan. Or do they?

With so many comics revolving around super-heroes and crazy powers and worldwide threats from extraterrestrial beings and whatnot, it’s great writing like this that makes me a fan of comics. An espionage thriller like this is a rarity in today’s market, but hopefully it continues for a good long while, or at least as naturally as the story will allow it to. The rift that is forming in the group and knowing everything that is riding on it, you don’t know who to root for as its easy to lose sight of the fact that the story really revolves around bad guys. So now the big question becomes when will the US government start to step in and really up the ante for what is already an interesting and high intensity book.

DC’s re-launch continues while Marvel’s event based barrage tries to win over the hearts and minds of comic purchasers everywhere. Meanwhile, the Indies are putting a strong fight themselves with a barrage of both new titles starting this week and old stand-bys continuing on. So with all these new comics coming out, what should you pick up? Scroll down to find out!

1) Marvel – New Avengers #16 (Fear Itself Tie-In) – It seems like nowadays almost anyone can be an Avenger as a revolving door of characters have been coming through the Mansion over the past couple of years. So when you see Daredevil on the cover, you can just imagine that this is the moment when The Man Without Fear gets his chance at Avengers membership as Marvel continues his recent re-imagining. But what was interesting was how Brian Michael Bendis bookends this issue with more well-established Avengers talking about what it means to be an Avenger and basically sets up a chance for Daredevil to show off his moves so that even if you’re not as familiar with the character or just haven’t paid attention to him in a long time, you realize just what makes this guy so special and why he keeps coming back any chance Marvel gets. As Fear Itself begins to wind down, this is a great pick-up as we can almost start looking ahead to the Marvel universe after this major event.

2) Marvel – Fear Itself #6 (of 7) – I normally don’t like doing a pair of issues from the same event like this, but Marvel had a weak week in my opinion, even though I picked up several comics from them. Fear Itself though finally seems to really be hitting its stride in terms of impact on the Marvel universe. Unfortunately, it almost feels like its going to be rushed now and that things are going to come to a head much too quickly in next month’s final issue as some crossover arcs are starting to come to a close. Still, this was a pretty awesome comic as we saw Thor get his second wind, Captain America reach his breaking point, and Iron Man prepare for the ultimate leap of faith. Meanwhile, the Serpent is nearly back to one-hundred percent in terms of strength and if he reaches his full potential, it all might be too little, too late. This issue is the set up for what should be a very epic final issue in yet another Marvel event and it I can’t wait to see how this shakes up Asgard in the future.

3) DC – Batman and Robin #1 – Continuing with DC’s universal re-launch we go back to Gotham as another Batman series looks to introduce another new villain, one who isn’t very fond of Batman, Inc. and wants to send a very brutal message to Gotham’s Guardian. What’s great about this book though is that is solidifies Bruce Wayne’s return to the cowl as he now tries to not only be a crime-fighter, but a father to young Damian, his illegitimate son with Talia al Guhl, who has now almost by birthright inherited the mantle of Robin. It gives the dynamic between Batman and Robin a unique twist as Damian doesn’t have just the rebellious nature of Jason Todd or the athletics or Dick Grayson or the intelligence of Tim Drake, he has a bit of all of them and his rebelliousness is specifically tailored to being in his late adolescence and looking to rebel against a father who was never there for him, even arguing that when Dick wore the cowl he got more respect with Bruce responding that he still hasn’t earned it from him yet. Brilliant writing by Peter Tomasi makes the decision easy to keep this as a pick up for me every month.

4) DC – Green Lantern #1 – There were a lot of very good comics out there from DC this week so I decided to go with an old standby in Green Lantern. I was curious to see where they would go with Hal Jordan now being powerless and with Sinestro being a Green Lantern again. Although it was somewhat comical how Hal got around without his ring, almost as if it was more influenced by the movie version of Hal than the comic version we’ve seen for decades, but it actually worked and I liked that they moved away from it quickly as, even though it could be a deal with the devil, Sinestro came to Earth to offer Hal a chance at getting his ring back. The long term plans for Green Lantern have me curious, especially since we haven’t seen much of the rest of the honor guard in Guy Gardner, John Stewart, and Kyle Rayner, but at least it looks Hal won’t be powerless for long, which pleases me tremendously because I still think he is the first Green Lantern people think of when you think of ring slinging and it would only hurt the character in the long room to keep him de-powered. Also, the comic continued to portray the Guardians in a pretty unsavory light and it should be interesting if and when that aspect of their budding personalities comes to a head.

5) Image – PIGS #1 – As a bit of a history buff, I was curious when I heard about PIGS. It is the story about a fictional sleeper cell of Russians who were left in Cuba after The Bay of Pigs in the early 1960s. Now in the modern day, the family of that sleeper cell has been awakened and kidnapped the president of the United States. Now, the FBI and CIA must get to the root of all this. All I can is that for as much exposition as there was to set everything up, this was a brilliantly written first issue for this new series and I’m excited to see how further issues will develop this very realistic based story. The first thing I thought after reading this was that people who fans of Jonathan Hickman’s Secret Warriors from Marvel or the story behind Activision’s Call of Duty: Black Ops will more than likely enjoy taking a look at this comic from Nate Cosby and Ben McCool.