Journey Into Mystery #628 – Written by Kieron Gillen, Art by Whilce Portacio and Inked by Allen Martinez. Loki and his group of evil fighting to stop the Serpent take center stage in this “Fear Itself” tie-in. However, the whole thing didn’t make much sense to me and was very hard to follow. It would be easy to blame Whilce, but this actually seems to be some of his better work, although I still didn’t like it. Nothing seemed to flow, we’re hopping around in a place I’m not really sure about, but I’m assuming it’s Dark Asgard? Nothing really confirmed. Sloppy writing and the art wasn’t very good. It was utterly confusing. Allen Martinez did his best to make Portacio’s work palatable, but Whilce’s work does not fit the type of coloring that’s done here. It just doesn’t work. There were moments where I felt what Loki was doing was important, but you just weren’t sure if it was going anywhere in the end. I think the final couple of pages are important, but I’m sure this is will show up in the main Fear Itself title. Overall, a confusing hodge podge with poor storytelling and poor art make this one a MUST skip. Journey into mystery of what the hell is going on.
Venom #7 – Written by Rick Remender and Art by Tom Fowler. A lot of this issue has some great moments of irony that act to contrast the situations Venom/Flash Thompson face in different areas of his life with that of what Anti-Venom is preaching to the masses. Flash can’t forgive his father while Anti-Venom is preaching forgiveness gives us a stark contrast as to the emotional battles he might be facing. The fight between Venom and Anti-Venom is great, but in the end, I did have difficulty that the symbiote would pass up a chance to kill Brock or at least remedy himself of Anti-Venom. A leap of faith I guess? I felt that Tom Fowler’s art really created a good flow to this issue and everything felt very fluid. I have no real complaints here. The issue really ties in well with Spider-Island and the events here are meaningful things that I think will have a big impact on what happens. I really like the Anti-Venom character and they get some good mileage out of him here. A few moments of missed logic, but overall a very solid issue and shows why the new Venom is a pretty darned good title.
The Amazing Spider-Man #670 – Written by Dan Slott, Penciled by Humberto Ramos and Inked by Victor Olazaba. Spider-Island continues with its fourth installment and this one is a jam packed doozy. Dan Slott shows so much love for Spider-Man, it’s hard not to get caught up in it. This particular issue features Spidey teaming up with Jonah Jameson, aka Spider-Stache as he gets called at one point. Jameson has also gained spider powers and ends up having to fight alongside his rival begrudgingly. As much as some people hate Humberto Ramos, I think his art is fantastic and I really like it anytime he draws Spider-Man. I love how all the tie-ins to Spider-Island ACTUALLY tie-in to this issue. It makes some of those one shots actually feel worthwhile when you see the ramification here. But if you missed them, it gives you enough info to figure out what’s going on. That, my friends, is storytelling at it’s finest. And that’s what Slott and Ramos team-up and do in this issue. Tons of guest appearances from Mr. Fantastic and the Thing, to the X-Men and Spider Woman. An absolutely fantastic read that you should check out. If you haven’t read Spider-Man in awhile, pick up the Spider-Island series or wait for the trade to come out. Excellent stuff here, a MUST buy!
FF #9 – Written by Jonathan Hickman, Penciled by Steve Epting and Inked by Rick Magyar. At first, I was all for the FF or Future Foundation or Fantastic Four or whatever the hell this is. But I’ve always hated the alterna-Reeds floating about. This issue brings most of that to a conclusion (at least I hope) and is one of the better issues as of late. Black Bolt is back and decides to take matters with the alterna-Reeds doing whatever the hell it is their doing. Reed Richards (the main one) doesn’t like it, but Black Bolt basically says, “Suck it Trebek!” without saying that at all or he would blow up everyone in the room. So, lot of fighting, a pretty solid ending, but it still feels like there just wasn’t enough pay-off here. I feel like the last three issues were crap and this was the only one worth giving a hoot about. The art is sub-par and the inks and shadows are just too damned thick and dark and it all just feels blah. Overall, an okay issue, but mostly meh. Next issue might be worth checking out, but until then, don’t bother.
Annihilators: Earthfall #1 – Written by Dan Abnett & Andy Lanning, Penciled by Tan Eng Hurt and Inked by Andrew Hennessy. Dear Lord, the first panel of the Annihilators is awful. It looks like Gladiators has been off the steroids for the past couple of years and is as old as Arnold (or Ahnuld). Ronan looks like a dopey happy kid in the background. I don’t know wtf is wrong with Beta Ray Bill. Ugh! The fight they have it the Universal Church of Truth that I think had something to do with Adam Warlock. Anyway, they fight the church and eventually they find a sect on Earth and fight it. It gets an interesting twist at the end, but overall the story didn’t feel impactful or important. It was more like when you’re paying somebody to work, but you don’t really have anything for them to do, so you make them organize stuff. That’s what this felt like. You have Ikon, Ronan the Accuser, Quasar, Gladiator, Beta Ray Bill and Cosmo. The art sucked on this and it wasn’t very entertaining. I usually expect better of Abnett and Lanning. Thankfully we get… Rocket Raccoon and Groot. Written by Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning and Art by Timothy Green II. This is an entertaining little space bar brawl that had me cracking up. Loved the art, loved the comedic value of these two. It made me question why the whole damn comic wasn’t these two! The only worthwhile part of this is Rocket Raccoon and Groot, the Annihilators themselves, not so much. Skip it! Poor Groot!
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