…Okay, before anyone sees that title and asks, no, I don’t hate the X-Men in any way, shape, or form. I love the X-Men. In fact, I think it’s that love of the X-Men that helped me realize this issue of mine. See, a few days ago, while discussing the possibility of the X-Men and Fantastic 4 being phased out in terms of importance to the Marvel Universe, I mentioned how, and I quote, “the X-Men’s continued plight as being loathed by humanity becomes more absurd the more you think about it and the more time goes by”. I also mentioned how I’d like to see Marvel Studios come to some kind of deal with Fox to be able to incorporate the X-Men into the Marvel Cinematic Universe, if for no other reason but to have Wolverine potentially join the Avengers for a mission or two. However, looking back on that, I think that would only make the same problem I have with the X-Men in the comics present in the movies. And for those wondering what that is, I will spell it out for you: The X-Men and mutantkind in general being hated and mistrusted by ‘normal’ human beings MAKES NO SENSE when they exist in the same universe as the Avengers, who are seen as the legitimate heroes of Earth. Hell, it doesn’t make any sense when presented in the same universe as ANY superhero team that has super-powered members of any kind. Every excuse I’ve ever heard, be it that they’re too powerful, too different, were ordinary humans changed to be superhuman, can read minds, none of them have any kind of leg to stand on when you really analyze them. And, if you’ll allow me, I’d like to present my evidence in a very simple bulleted list.
- The Avengers have plenty of super-powered individuals that can be seen as being as powerful or more-so than the average mutant. And don’t split hairs with me, you know what I mean by average. The number of mutants that could take Thor or the Hulk in a one-on-one fight are probably a bit on the short side. So, those that fear that mutants are too powerful have clearly never taken a good look at Earth’s Mightiest Heroes.
- Members of the Avengers have come not only from various walks of life on Earth, but from different worlds and even whole different realms of existence. And while I’m not saying that people aren’t afraid of Thor for being different, I would go out on a limb and suggest that they are considerably less than the number of people that fear mutants for the same damned reason.
- There exist plenty of superheroes both on the Avengers and other superhero teams (hell, EVERY MEMBER of the original Fantastic 4) who were ordinary humans that were altered, empowered, or transformed in some way, shape, or form that all get free passes from prejudice and hate. Now, granted, there are those that ARE feared and hated, too. Probably the biggest example of such would be the Hulk. However, let’s look at the biggest example of a human being who was changed and became able to perform superhuman feats: Steven Rogers, AKA Captain fucking America. Granted, at the end of the day, he’s still a human being with basic human weaknesses, but he can lift more and run faster than any non-enhanced human being, and can process information quicker than the average person too. And while I wouldn’t wanna make an ass outta you and me, I’m nonetheless going to assume that significantly fewer people fear Captain America than mutants.
- Mutants aren’t the only individuals in the Marvel Universe that possess a form of telepathy. Granted, the list of humans that can use telepathy and aren’t considered mutants is pretty frigging short, and mutants employ several of the best telepaths in the universe, but they aren’t the only ones. Hell, Sam Wilson has a telepathic connection with his fucking bird, and no one raises an eyebrow. Look, I get it, the idea of people able to read our thoughts can be kinda creepy, and there are those in the mutant community that don’t exactly do a great job of diffusing such fears. I’m not even necessarily talking villains here, either. Recently, the time displaced Jean Grey of the past (long story short for those that don’t know, the original five X-Men of Cyclops, Jean Grey, Iceman, Angel, and Beast were brought to the present and have refused to go back until they fix the mess their future selves made) revealed that Iceman was gay by going into his brain and reading his thoughts without his consent and continued to do so even after he asked her not to. Still, it’s not like that’s a scenario exclusive to mutants. Oh, and speaking of which, I can’t help but notice that Earth in the Marvel Universe has, like the real world, become a place where we’re becoming more accepting of people of different races, religions, orientations, genders, and anything else that could divide us as a species…and yet, mutants, which have been used as a metaphor for all of those things, are still not accepted. That’s a problem. lol
Anyway, I think that pretty much covers most of… … … … …Oh wait, I almost forgot…
Even before the Unity Division, AKA the Uncanny Avengers, X-Men members like Wolverine, Storm, and Beast have joined various incarnations of the Avengers. Hell, Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver have been longtime members of the Avengers, and they used to work for the Brotherhood of Mutants. Y’know, the bad guys? Don’t recall that ever being a problem, or if it was, I never heard of it being so.
So, with all of that said, the only conceivable answer I can come up with for why mutants are still loathed and feared in the Marvel Universe when there are people like the Avengers and the Fantastic 4 running around is because humanity is either immensely hypocritically bigoted, or it’s fucking stupid. And, as I’ve said before, if a story only works because the characters involved are morons, the story ultimately fails… … …which, to be perfectly frank, is probably why the X-Men and the struggles of mutantkind being pushed aside a bit in the grand scope of the Marvel Universe, and not being an element of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, are good things. And again, I love the X-Men. I love seeing the characters show up and be awesome, and watching them take part in big, epic events to save the world is great. And the stories that focus primarily on them are still good. It’s when I’m asked, in a story involving the Marvel Universe in general, to believe that they’re still despised by humanity in spite of every reason why they shouldn’t be that I find the severe logical problem in storytelling, which is one reason why I REALLY didn’t like Avengers vs X-Men… … … … …And oh God, do I ever dread the day when I’ll have to give my full thoughts on that event. -_-
Anyway, those are my thoughts on that particular subject. Lemme know what you think of it in the comments section below, and be sure to bamf back here the next time I have a random thought about how a comic idea can kinda fail sometimes. Ja né!
So, a while ago, I talked about characters I’d love to see make it into the new Marvel Universe when the dust settles and Secret Wars is over. As such, let’s talk a bit about some superhero teams I’d love to see either be a thing or continue to be a thing post-Secret Wars. Now, technically, we already know of one team that’ll exist, as we’ve learned that Captain America, Ms. Marvel, Vision, Ultimate Spider-Man, Iron Man, Nova, and Thor will be teaming up as the All-New, All-Different Avengers. But will that be the ONLY Avengers team? I highly doubt it, honestly. And frankly, there’s at least ONE other Avengers team that exists in the new universe. So, might as well start there. These are the five superhero teams I’d like to see in Marvel Comics post-Secret Wars, starting with the aforementioned Avengers team I’d like to see post-Secret Wars…
Potential Members: Captain Marvel, She-Hulk, Spider-Woman, Black Widow, Storm, Medusa, Angela, Wasp, Sif
As I’ve said before, a team of Marvel’s greatest superheroines? YES PLEASE! 😀 That said, while I get the feeling the version in Secret Wars will pretty much be damned near EVERY Marvel superheroine, I’m thinking the post-Secret Wars team should be a bit more streamlined. Captain Marvel, She-Hulk, or Storm would all be good choices to potentially lead the team, while the rest of the team should really be varied in terms of powers and walks of life. Of course, Black Widow works great as the least super-powered of the group, Angela or Sif would be good choices for representatives from Asgard, and there should at least be one Mutant and one Inhuman. And of course, there’s always room for long-time Marvel heroines like Wasp or Spider-Woman.
Potential Members: Steve Rogers, Thor Odinson, Rogue, Scarlet Witch, Wonder Man, Sabretooth, Quicksilver, Wolverine
Honestly, I see no reason to put the kibosh on this team. In fact, it might even be to the benefit of those that want to see Steve Rogers and Thor Odinson continue as key players of the Marvel Universe if they rejoined the team. Rogue, Scarlet Witch, Wonder Man, and Quicksilver all work as members too. As for Sabretooth, I can see him sticking around, though it may make things awkward if Wolverine DOES, in fact, return from the grave and rejoin his old team, considering their long and bloody history. And speaking of which…
Potential Members: Cyclops, Jean Grey, Havok, Beast, Emma Frost, Angel, Dazzler, X-23, Iceman
Would not shock me if, after Secret Wars, the All-New X-Men are more or less done away with, but that their future selves are influenced by their actions and thus end up in Cyclops’ camp. Would certainly make for an interesting scenario if Jean Grey, back in her adult form, was brought back, and now is on the same team as Cyclops and Emma Frost. Still, hopefully with the reboot, we can start to see Cyclops distance himself from his douchey and at times blatantly evil behaviour and try to make something better of himself. As for the other X-Men, well…
Potential Members: Wolverine, Storm, Nightcrawler, Rachel Grey, Jubilee, Psylocke, Colossus, Pixie, Rogue
As I said before, I’m pretty sure the return of Wolverine is all but inevitable. As such, seeing him return to the X-Men would be a huge plus. And while I showed the logo for Astonishing X-Men, really, it doesn’t HAVE to be. It could be Amazing X-Men and be just fine. And, of course, all the big names in that particular camp of X-Men would be among its roster, though I wouldn’t be shocked to see some of the other students at the mansion and other X-Men join in from time to time. Now, while I would like to see Adjectiveless X-Men continue, there is one OTHER superheroine team I’d like to see get picked back up for the new Marvel Universe…
Potential Members: Valkyrie/Annabelle Riggs, Misty Knight, Dani Moonstar, Warrior Woman, Clea, Elsa Bloodstone, Ren Kimura, Nova (Frankie Raye)
I’m sorry, but I gotta know what the hell next happened with these characters! I haven’t seen them since the book ended, except for Valkyrie, and her appearances (that I’m aware of) didn’t allude to Annabelle or the team at all! Did they stick together? Did they split up? Are they still fighting Caroline and Morgana le Fey? Did Valkyrie, Annabelle, and Red get into some kinda twisted love triangle? Did they eventually end up fighting Galactus like Cullen Bunn wanted? WHAT’S HAPPENING?! lol
Anyway, those are five teams I’d love to see make it into the new universe. Got one that wasn’t here? Lemme know in the comments, and we’ll see what becomes of the Marvel Universe in September. Ja né!
Spider-Gwen Announced – THANK YOU, MARVEL! :’D + News On Upcoming Wonder Woman Books + The Difference Between Marvel & DC
No, your eyes do NOT deceive you, Marvel has in fact listened to the fans and decided to give the Gwen Stacy Spider-Woman her own book. Apparently, it’ll be launching in February, under the name Spider-Gwen. Now, the name of the book is a little weird, but I’m guessing it’s because they already have a Spider-Woman book coming out, and unless they name it ‘Gwen Stacy: The Insert-Cool-Sounding-Adjective-Here Spider-Woman’, it’s gonna confuse people (actually, I think that would be the most awesomely hilarious name for a book EVER). So, I don’t mind the name.
What’s hilarious about this is that this news broke at the same time as myself and a group of my friends on Twitter were ranting about a cover advertised for an upcoming Wonder Woman book, as drawn by David Finch, where she looks…well, look.
…Yeah, pretty dumb, huh? And really shows why the Finchs are probably people that shouldn’t be doing Wonder Woman, because they don’t get the character. Although, on the flip side, check out the cover for the upcoming Wonder Woman ’77 book, drawn by Nicola Scott.
Pretty frakking epic. Really shows the difference between DC and Marvel. DC has these AMAZING digital first books that people love, and they take ZERO advantage of them, instead pushing the bleak as all heck New 52 books. Marvel sees that something sells well, they go “Hey, we’ve got a new product that sells great! So, let’s roll with it!” And maybe it won’t do as well as they hope, but the point is they’re giving it a try. They’re giving Silk a shot too. So we’ll have, on the Marvel side of things, female led books like Storm, Captain Marvel, Silk, Spider-Gwen, Spider-Woman, Ms. Marvel, Adjectiveless X-Men, Squirrel Girl (…no, seriously, it’s happening, lol), and so many more. In DC’s main line, their female led books are Supergirl (has been kind of a confusing mess lately), Batgirl (new team doing the book does awesome work in my opinion, but I’ve noticed that reaction to the new book is pretty divisive online), Gotham Academy (looks cool, but not my cup of tea), Harley Quinn (ruined Poison Ivy in the New 52, has an upcoming drug-scented book), Batwoman (was forced out of getting married and turned into a vampire anti-hero), and Wonder Woman (see above image, and the God awful relationship with Superman). Meanwhile, they have a HUGE roster of women they could push in their books! Aside from the ones I mentioned already, they have Raven, Wonder Girl, Troia, Stargirl, Spoiler, Bluebird, Poison Ivy, Mera, Aquawoman, Jesse Quick, Jade, Huntress, Power Girl, Fury, Equinox, the list goes on and on! And yeah, some of them are in books currently, but they’re hardly marketed by DC. They don’t know how to market their products, unless said product is involved with Batman, and they don’t know how to get people pumped for new stuff.
But anyway, I just wanna thank Marvel Comics, Jason Latour, Robbi Rodriguez, and everyone else involved in Spider-Gwen for bringing this to us. Lemme know your own thoughts on this upcoming book, and we’ll see how awesome this gets when it hits in February. Ja né!
What I Bought This Past Week – Talon #10, X-Men #3, Batman Annual #2, Batman Incorporated #13, Fearless Defenders #7, Watchmen on DVD, The Hexagon Artwork (WARNING – SPOILERS)
Oh hey, it’s Wednesday, and it’s time to take a look at…
…Yeah, I kinda neglected to do this last week, and you’ll understand why when we get to it. Also, it ended up working out pretty well, since I bought something yesterday, and received a little something that I paid for a week ago and was expecting to receive at Harbour Con, but was ready for me a couple of days early. So, let’s start with what I bought last week, Talon #10.
The reason why I didn’t talk about this is because I wasn’t really all that inspired to talk about it. Maybe it was just kinda underwhelming, maybe it was because I had other stuff to talk about, or maybe I’m just used to doing bunches of comics all at once nowadays. Regardless, not much really happened. Calvin Rose got into a fight with one of Bane‘s goons, got cornered by a whole whack of them, but then was saved by Casey Washington’s buddies, which led into a much bigger fight on the horizon with Bane himself. The only thing of real relevance was that Casey managed to get herself free, and I was kinda expecting she would anyway. I will say that I DO feel delighted to know I correctly assumed the lead woman in this story, who is not a superhero, would be able to take care of herself just fine when kept in the Court of Owls‘ headquarters. 🙂
Adjectiveless X-Men #3 had a bit of a delightful mislead: Rather than the box with the ticking timer being a bomb, it instead is an override device that pretty much sets the X-Mansion against Kitty Pryde and the students, though they seem to be able to get out of danger just fine thanks to Bling (Hey, I’m finally learning people’s names! ^_^ ). Meanwhile, the rest of the team go with Sublime and track Arkea to a hospital. It seems she’s been busy with the patients, enslaving their minds, but Psylocke holds her at…erm, blade-point, while she’s in Karima’s body. She seems hesitant to go through with taking her down, though, but Karima manages to regain control just long enough to take Psylocke’s blade and damage herself enough to seemingly force Arkea out, though she leaves herself in critical condition. Overall, another great issue of a series that is definitely my favourite Marvel book thus far, with some awesome moments with Jubilee and her kid, and I honestly kinda hope Karima recovers well enough that she joins the team. Just seems like the logical step to make given how much time they used to establish just how much she means to the X-Men.
So when I learned that Batman Annual #2 was gonna be a tie-in to Zero Year, and then saw the preview pages showing him walking into Arkham Asylum in the costume to be locked away, I naturally was like “WTF?! They locked him up?!”. However, it seems Scott Snyder was kinda trolling us with those first few pages, as Batman’s actually there to test the new security systems. So how does this tie-in to Zero Year? Well apparently, while looking through files at the Asylum, he attracted some unwanted attention by a woman staying there who can walk through walls, referred to as the Anchoress. Essentially, she’s there because she actually WANTS treatment, but over the years, less attention was given to her as Batman started sending additional villains there. She breaks out when she finds out he’s present and nearly traps him in an inescapable prison of his own mind, but thanks to some help from a new guy working at the Asylum, he manages to stop her and return her to her cell, all the while the new guy arranges for the Anchoress’ treatment to be restored. Overall, a nice read, and much better than the last Batman Annual.
Fearless Defenders #7 promised major change to the status quo, and it has. As you’ll recall, last time on Fearless Defenders, fan favourite Annabelle Riggs died to stop Valkyrie’s rampage as the Maiden of Rage. Well, good news to fans of the character, she’s alive again!…Sorta. I’ll admit, I’m a little confused, but long story short, Valkyrie goes to Valhalla where she finds Clea and asks her to resurrect Annabelle. Clea says it can only be done with a sacrifice of some sort, though it appears to work just fine, and they all return to Misty Knight‘s safe house, Valkyrie stating that Clea would be safer with the Defenders. However, upon arriving, only Clea and Annabelle are present, until Annabelle turns into Valkyrie, Clea stating that the two will need time to get used to some changes. I read that and was like “…Wait, WHA???” over and over for a good fifteen minutes. As near as I can tell, Annabelle’s spirit has been bonded to Valkyrie’s, and they essentially are now, as SongbirdDiamond on Twitter referred to them, the Superior Valkyrie…Except, y’know, not stupid. lol Either way, colour me intrigued.
And now, the big one: Batman Incorporated #13, the end of Grant Morrison‘s run on Batman, and……..I feel kinda underwhelmed. Now, before ANYONE calls me out on this, I am NOT saying this is a bad comic by ANY stretch of the imagination. However, I did see a couple of things coming from a mile away, namely that the mystery woman who kidnapped Jason Todd was Kathy Kane, the original Batwoman, and that Talia was going to die, killed by a bullet to the skull by Kathy. All of this is being shown to us as Bruce narrates the events to Commissioner Gordon at the GCPD, following his arrest that we saw in Batman Incorporated #1 of the New 52. He tries to be a bit vague, though, as to keep Jim from knowing that he and Batman are one and the same. However, some inner monologue boxes from Gordon suggests that he’s always had a hunch that they are but keeps it to himself, mainly because it doesn’t really matter to him who Batman really is. Then we learn that some woman (most likely Kathy) has bailed Bruce out and gotten the charges against him dropped. All the while Bruce was contemplating shutting Batman Inc. down, but a returning Alfred gives him reason to stick around: Damian and Talia’s graves, both dug up and their bodies missing. And as this goes on, Ra’s al Ghul has retaken control of the admittedly battered League of Assassins and is now breeding an army of Damian clones.
So why do I feel underwhelmed by this issue? Well, because this is the LAST issue of Grant Morrison’s run, and despite it ending where it began, with Bruce and Talia and Damian, I’m left with so many frakking questions! How did Kathy Kane bail Bruce Wayne out of all his charges and lift the ban on the Bat Symbol? What’s Jason Todd’s plans now that it’s been revealed he was actually working for Talia but betrayed her? What happened to Talia and Damian’s bodies at the end? If the Fatherless was the actual individual to become Batman 666, why are we getting a ‘What If?’ mini-series about how Damian becomes Batman 666? With so many Damian clones being created, does that make it possible for the real one to come back someday? Is the British Government really going to resurrect Knight somehow? What’s the status of Batman Incorporated as a group now that the book is cancelled? Is there any chance they’ll let Chris Burnham do a Batman of Japan series? And most important of all, WHO’S GONNA FEED BATCOW?!?!
Now, of course, I expect that all these things will be answered soon enough. However, if Grant Morrison was going to create so many major changes to the status quo, you’d think he’d wanna give the resolution himself, unless of course it turns out he wanted to but for whatever reason he couldn’t. Either way, it leaves a lot unresolved for his LONG run with Batman. Still, as I said before, it ended where it began, and that’s oftentimes the best place for a massive story-line to end.
So, I finally rectified a mistake I’d made for quite some time and bought Watchmen on DVD. And if you’re wondering what took me so long, the answer is simple: I honestly thought I already had it on DVD somewhere. lol Yeah, not sure why I thought that, but whatevs. I have it now. Of course, I’ve already seen it at least a couple of times, and it still remains a great flick. And yeah, I know they made it without the slimey squid, but I don’t really think that’s anywhere near as low as the standards of the 90’s Kid. 😛
And finally, my friend Nikki-Lee Dyckow drew this picture of The Hexagon, my superhero team (which, I promise, I will get back to eventually). I LOVE this so much, and she even made some improvements, like giving Strix boots that more resemble an owl’s talons, and The Bard a more medieval look…She also gave her slightly bigger boobs, which is a little odd, and was a little disturbing to N. Harmonik, but at least it provided a good laugh from me while explaining it to her. 😀
So that’s it for this week. Next week, we check in with The Movement and their attack on a police headquarters, and venture back to the world known as Earth 2. Ja né!
- Fearless Defenders #7 (comicvine.com)
- DC Histories: Grant Morrison’s Batman (ifanboy.com)
- Threat Level Wednesday – Angels, Bats, Wolves, and Physics! (whatchareading.com)
- Guide to Reading Batman Comics in the New 52 (residinginthefifthdimension.wordpress.com)
- Comicbook releases 31/7 (justpressplay13.wordpress.com)
- Bunn’s “Fearless Defenders” Protect the Marvel Universe (comicbookresources.com)
- COMICS: Preview ‘BATMAN ANNUAL #2’ And ‘DETECTIVE COMICS ANNUAL #2’ (comicbookmovie.com)
- Review: Talon 10 (comicbooked.com)
- This Week’s Essential Comics: 07/29/13 (comicvine.com)
- 5 Suggestions for Marvel’s Valkyries (houseofgeekery.com)