From worst to best of what I bought.
The odds that this was going to win me back in the final issue were low, and sure enough, it didn’t. It’s as I complained with #7 – if it’s Solomon, it’s obvious, if it’s not, it’s a cheap diversion. And by building it up as a mystery, Aaron opens space to not like the outcome. Which I don’t. At least, not compared to Solomon. Ros Solomon as Thor would be more interesting than Jane Foster is Thor, but being Thor makes her breast cancer worse, a setup that is mainly notable for making her expiration date and the restoration of Man-Thor inevitable. And I still don’t understand why anyone thought a mystery arc was the way to go. What was this supposed to accomplish? Why is this better than just debuting the concept eight months ago would have been? All in all, a disaster – will probably buy Thors, but can’t see myself returning post-Secret Wars.
Man, I’m cooling hard on this book. It’s good and I see all the very smart stuff it does and… I just don’t remember the characters or plot well enough month to month. Still, this is in with Chew and the other books of the Sunk Cost Fallacy club, and maybe one day I’ll dig up all the floppies and reread it and enjoy it. Or, more likely, I’ll torrent it even though I own it.
Darth Vader #5
That this is third from bottom is a mark of how good a week this is. I’m not entirely convinced of the plot twist, which, for me, runs into the axiomatic problem of a licensed comic like this, namely that it’s introducing better ideas than anything in the source material, but it’s going to have to put all of them back in the box at story’s end. But equally, it’s an interesting and cool plot twist, and I’m perfectly happy to follow it.
As with many an Ellis book, this was a slow burn, and it finally gets to where it’s doing interesting things. Still far from my favorite Ellis work, but at least I’m not just buying it out of obligation now.
Angela: Asgard’s Assassin #6
Well this certainly kicked off very nicely. Love the final twist, and yeah, Gillen and Bennett have built Angela into a usable and interesting Marvel character, which is no small feat. Curious where this will go as Gillen recedes into the background and Bennett takes over, but definitely on for the ride.
Ms. Marvel #15
Exactly what this book is for, through and through. Really enjoyed this arc when all was said and done. Look forward to the next.
Secret Wars #2
OK, I’m won over, at least for now. The basic operating principles of Battleworld are clever, and this strikes an ideal balance between “it’s an alternate world” and “it’s the Marvel Universe. Good high concept stuff, and Hickman’s philosophical ramblings work well in this context. I am reasonably enthused about the direction of this event. Good. Also, holding back 616 Reed for the entire issue was brilliant.
Captain America and the Mighty Avengers #8
Man, Ewing just killed with this one. Small-scale character work of heroes facing the end of the world. The Ruby Neal page is the single best page of the week. Seriously, seriously brilliant. And I love that Monica, who was, of course, part of the original Secret Wars, gets to pass moral judgment at the end, and do a better job with it than Steve Rogers did. Great stuff.
A walking set of Warren Ellis cliches in many ways, and thank God he explained the premise online, because he sure as hell doesn’t here. Doesn’t matter. This is smart and weird and uncanny and Warren Ellis at his best, drinking in the ideas from other writers and then crafting something that responds to all of them without ever being anything other than pure Ellis. And the punchline’s a hoot. Definitely check this out. Providence is gonna have some stiff competition for best first issue of a weird fiction comic published in May of 2015. Which is not a sentence you really expect to be true.