Thursday, March 8, 2012

Renaldo's reviews: Alpha and Omega #3, Children's Crusade #9, Uncanny X-Men #7-8, Fury'sBig Week #5, Winter Soldier #3

Wolverine and the X-Men: Alpha and Omega # 3 –

Brooks and Boschi split on art complete a great job as usual and Wood complies with a well-paced script that sets the finale nicely for Quire, who went from total control to a state of decrepit woe. He lunged Wolverine and Armor into the Construct, trapping their minds there, with Logan’s Berserker persona now adopting his bloodlust and enraged ire towards Quire, which QQ didn’t see coming. Wood does well to deconstruct QQ’s control to one where it’s such a bogged down mess, that he can’t even bring himself to alert Rachel to the quagmire at
hand. Rachel btw has never had a better ass. I digress. QQ’s world is crumbling and we see him fear because he cannot mentally manipulate the Berserker, which has the entire school running behind eggshells. QQ’s breakdown and his subsequent actions to regain control all show that his hubris and gritty pride is what proves a downfall, yet his strongest and most attractive asset. While Logan and Hisako continue their relationship a la Jubilee/Wolverine, it’s endearing how they survive the dystopian construct, and even with a loss of control, QQ’s actions in the construct show that he never thinks he can lose. Thrilling. (9/10)

Avengers: Children’s Crusade #9 –
There are bright spots here and there in this event but it falls short. Terribly. It isn’t as bad as FEAR but it ends pretty horrendously and I do hope to see Cheung/Heinberg try their hand at some other titles because this event botched the Marvel pages. The issue ends with the Avengers and X-Men throwing arms down at the death of a youngster, with no real rhyme, reason or flow to the story. Iron Lad, Vision and Stature are poorly depicted with Scott Lang handled with no caution. The timestream is a factor that should not have been included in this title but much like the throw-in of Doom as a villain, it serves no purpose except the perfunctory aim of selling issues based on names. Doom’s arc takes away from any gravity of Wanda’s past doings and Iron Lad’s function is flawed as this seems a jumbled mess of throwing together all the YA’s past affiliations just to have a big brawl. The Wanda arc is so mucked that I can’t tell if it’s a retcon or a resolution. Again, Doom here was just a forced plot ploy, and  a wayward mechanism to give Wanda free rein to absolve herself. It’s redemption when Steve tells her welcome back which sets her as an Avenger again for AVX. Also, Scott and Steve’s team did battle ferociously and continuity is mucked as this delicately falls pre-Schism. That alone makes it more awful. They tried to catch up to continuity here post some crap speeches by Rogers/Summers that makes boring seem even more bland. There is no real solution and both teams go their way after scrapping with everyone all hunky-dory? The end where Steve offers tokens of appreciation to the YA, albeit with members absent, is just an obvious ploy that this team will be deployed by Rogers as they were in Civil War. Marvel loves heroes against heroes and AVX, Schism and Civil War are why I wonder if the Heroic Age made sense. The forced fit into continuity, the crap ending and the push to AVX had this title in a bundled mess. (1/10)
Uncanny X-Men #7, 8 –
Gillen is masterful on dialogue. Land is decent here but grimacing towards the end of issue 8. Throw in that disgusting Namor-fish-sex antic and that eerie arousal/tension with him and Hope, and these can derail an otherwise spot-on arc. It’s Whedon-esque but Gillen (as in SWORD) seems to have a better grasp on quaint entities and creatures and here, the alien vibe in Tabula Rasa, the extinction and rebirth plot are crafted delicately and to good value. It’s a lovely tale and the X-Men are well written as we see Scott’s team, in all their flaws, trying to help, although we end up with a new Utopia/Genosha-like place that I think will rear in AvX. That aside, Gillen and Land are well-matched for telling Scott’s team and it works. The Immortal Man/Savage characters are very interesting and it’s nice to see defeat in a victory and Gillen ramps things up to AvX with a nice exchange with Psylocke and Erik over X-Force. It sets up much-needed drama and a line that is tender when it comes to that frailty of the Summers camp, sure to be exposed very soon. (8/10)
Avengers prelude – Fury’s Big Week #5
Another fun tie-in by Yost into the movies’ continuity and it’s less talk and more brute here. The action is relentless and we see how vastly key the likes of Hawkeye and Black Widow are. Padilla’s art is a tangent on the work of Ramos/Silvestri but fits the short tale well here. Not much to say on a short but sound script. (8/10)

Winter Soldier #3 –

Bermejo on cover accentuates the usual-kickass job I’ve grown accustomed to from Brubaker and Guice. This is their best issue yet as they show the manipulation and stealth in trying to frame Dr. Doom, and why Nick Fury, even as a bit-part player belongs in their title. Bucky needs to find the sleeper agents he trained as their activation could hinder world peace and this is what Lucia Von Bardas/Red Ghost do with a doombot. Who frames Doom? They do. They faked an attack on Doom and now use a Doombot to ignite a war. Such a classic stroke of genius. Brubaker at his finest. His very best is meshed with Guice’s finesse and it’s all about Bucky and Widow taking their covert op to avert this disaster, but who knocks on Doom’s door without an ass-kicking? Warning or not…Doom does not play nicely and while Bucky still finds his usual few seconds to admire the grace and elegance of Black Widow, while at first I was pissed to see Doom in yet another title, here it makes perfect and structured sense. This is how Doom is used…take note that the inverse was done in that shambled Children’s Crusade. This book remains top quality (10/10)

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