I like to think I do a pretty good job keeping up with what's out on the stands, but somehow, some way, I managed to completely miss IDW's Ragnarok from Walt Simonson, Laura Martin, and John Workman, until just this week --- and believe me, I'm kicking myself for it. Ragnarok offers action-packed high adventure and sweeping storytelling from some of my favorite creators in comics, with a story that hooked me from the first page.
Of course, the bright side to coming late to the book is that I managed to catch up on the first three issues all at once rather than wait, and with how much I loved it, I'm pretty sure the bimonthly schedule that the book seems to be on would've been a nightmare. If you've been on the fence about picking up Ragnarok, here's five good reasons to give it a shot.
Welcome back to All For the Wookiee, where we take a look at the recent Star Wars universe offerings from Marvel and pick the most Star Wars-ish moments to share with you, dear reader. Today we're ready to take on the Dark Lord of the Sith himself in the first issue of Kieron Gillen and Salvador Larocca's new ongoing series, Darth Vader.
I've written before about how one of the best things about Batman is how adaptable he is as a character. Owing largely to the fact that he descends from pulp vigilantes but was refined for the world of superheroes, he can work in almost any kind of story, from gritty, street-level crime to world-traveling adventure, and even the occasional trip to space alongside the Justice League. But the one thing that you very rarely see from Batman is a story where he has to deal with the supernatural.
I think there's a good reason for that, and it has a lot to do with his origin. Ghosts and demons and other assorted haints are, after all, an indication of an afterlife, and the more you remind readers that, in comics at least, death is a transitional inconvenience rather than a permanent state of being, the more they start to wonder just why this guy is so mad about a couple of murders. But that said, it has been done on occasion, and it has never, ever been done as well as it was in Peter Milligan, Kieron Dwyer, Dennis Janke and Mike Mignola's Dark Knight, Dark City, which is out this week in a new paperback.
Marvels' Star Wars line has gotten off to a strong start, with the first two powerhouse installments of Jason Aaron and John Cassaday's Star Wars offering up some of the most exciting issues of space wizard comics we've read in a long time. If that wasn't enough, the premiere issue of Kieron Gillen and Salvador Larroca's Darth Vader drops today, promising even more thrills, spills, chills and black-armored grills in that galaxy far, far away.
As great as other Star Wars comics have been, these issues have felt the Star-Warsiest in a long time, prompting us to launch this new feature, All For the Wookiee, where we take a look at the recent Star Wars universe offerings from Marvel and pick the most Star Wars-ish moments to share with you, dear reader. Spoilers follow. You have been warned.
For many collectors, Star Wars is the license that got them into collecting action figures. Since there's hardly been a time when Star Wars figures weren't being made, the fanbase has a real affinity for lesser-known characters getting their moments in the clamshell spotlight. The less screen time a character has, the more fans want a figure to commemorate his obscurity.
Though there's been no shortage of clone troopers over the years, the various divisions of the Grand Army of the Republic have hardly been part of the on-screen action. Sure, we've seen countless grunts on the frontlines in both the films, games and television series, but it's rare to spend any significant amount of time with specific divisions like the airborne or scout troopers, or even the ordnance specialists. That's why it makes complete sense Sideshow Collectibles' latest figure would be based on a trooper that was seen just twice during the six seasons of Star Wars: The Clone Wars.
Hollywood just can't keep its grubby little hands off of our stuff. Last week it was announced that Sony Pictures snapped up the rights to Jeff Lemire and Dustin Nguyen's Descender well before the book's March publication, a practice becoming more common. This type of announcement may cause consternation among some, but you have to take it on a case-by-case basis: If anything Mark Millar writes gets a deal before publication, please, be offended; in all other circumstances, reserve judgment until a "professional" receives an advance copy and dictates your opinion to you. (This is my new persona: hated.)
Descender, on its way from Image in March, is epic, intelligent, and full of heart, and it looks like Sony was right on the money for once.
IDW's Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles comic is exactly my jam. I wrote about it a few months back when I finally dived into the series, and the incredible mix of sci-fi, the supernatural, romance and, of course, teenage mutant ninja action has made it one of those comics where I almost don't want to keep reading because I know I'm going to run out and have to wait around until there's more.
This week, though, I finally got around to digging into City Fall, the big event that the series was building to since it started. I'd been saving that one for when I had some time to go through it, and I wasn't surprised at all to find out that it's great, full of well-crafted character-driven action that brought together everything that happened in the series up to that point. What did surprise me, though, is that I came away from it having actual feelings about Rocksteady and Bebop for the first time ever. Seriously.
Aside from the obvious, I don't usually like to refer to things as being my "favorites." I talk about so much stuff that I love all the time that every time I settle on a favorite, I almost immediately end up contradicting myself when I remember something else that I love, like when I went on and on about how Impulse #3 is my favorite single issue of all time right before I re-read G.I. Joe #21. There's just so much out there that's great that nine times out of ten, settling on a single thing as my favorite ends up being pretty limiting, and if there's one thing I hate, it's having to go back and admit that I might've been wrong about something. For me to actually settle on something as a favorite, it has to be so obvious that it's above and beyond everything else out there that it's self-evident.
So with that in mind, believe me when I say this: Gotham Academy is, without question, my favorite comic on the stands right now, and it just keeps getting better.
A few years ago, around the time that Matt Smith was gearing up to replace David Tennant, I briefly made an attempt to get into Doctor Who. Sadly, it didn't really take -- as much as I liked reading stuff about the show, and as much fun as I had with bits and pieces of it, the show never really hooked me the way that it did my friends, and I ended up being quite possibly the only person in the world who liked Doctor Who Magazine more than Doctor Who.
Last week, though, it all clicked into place with the release of Fred Van Lente, Clayton Henry, and Brian Reber's Ivar, Timewalker #1 and its story of time-spanning action and underlying mystery. Basically, this was the version of Doctor Who that I actually wanted.
The deluge of Avengers: Age of Ultron merchandise is almost upon us, and in some places, it's already begun. We got our hands on some of Hasbro's Age of Ultron All-Star Series figures ahead of their scheduled release, and while they lack the articulation of the Marvel Infinite series, they get the job done well enough.
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