Off The Rack #105

Monday. August 27, 2018

I noticed that the leaves are starting to change already. It seems early this year. Change is on the horizon and it’s the only constant if life as they say. I seem to be more anxious as I get older when my comfortable routines are disrupted. I’m okay if I get fair warning to prepare myself but find that I freak out a little when something gets sprung on me. I used to be able to just go with the flow but avoiding even minor annoyances is what I most desire now. Maybe I’m turning into a clam. Thank god for family and friends who get me out of my shell.



Silencer #8 – Dan Abnett (writer) Patrick Zircher (art) Mike Spicer (colours) Tom Napolitano (letters). Hell-iday Road part 1. Honor’s mission to kill Talia runs into some unexpected resistance. I love the surprise department of Leviathan that pops up to complicate things and the Freaky Friday twist. It’s rare that a brand new character strikes my fancy and this one does.



Old Man Hawkeye #8 – Ethan Sacks (writer) Marco Checchetto (art) Andres Mossa (colours) VC’s Joe Caramagna (letters). Eye For An Eye part 8. This issue features a stupendous battle between Bullseye and the Winter Soldier. It sets up the face to face next issue for Clint and Bullseye that I’ve been waiting for.



The Life of Captain Marvel #2 – Margaret Stohl (writer) Marguerite Sauvage (art flashbacks) Carlos Pacheco (pencils present day) Rafael Fonteriz (inks present day) Marcio Menyz (colours) VC’s Clayton Cowles (letters). There’s a lot of family drama to slog through before any action happens. Next issue should be more exciting with the super powered alien landing on Earth and going on the hunt. I’m guessing that Carol is the prey.



West Coast Avengers #1 – Kelly Thompson (writer) Stefano Caselli (art) Triona Farrell (colours) VC’s Joe Caramagna (letters). Please welcome the latest team of West Coast Avengers to the racks with a big hand of applause. I liked this a lot but it’s not quite standing ovation material. Kate Bishop assembles a team of super heroes to keep Los Angeles safe and they sure are a fun bunch. The core is made up of Kate/Hawkeye, her boyfriend Fuse, America and part-timer Clint/Hawkeye. The new members are Gwenpool and Quentin Quire ex-X-Man. I’m glad that Stefano Caselli is back on the racks. I was a big fan of his art on Ultimate Spider-Man. This book centered around Hollywood means that there are major media and pop culture references which makes things fun. It’s the attack of the fifty foot woman as a giant sized Tigra menaces Santa Monica. I can’t wait to find out more about B.R.O.D.O.K. next issue. I’m adding this to my “must read” list.



Sandman Universe #1 – Neil Gaiman (story) Simon Spurrier, Kat Howard, Nola Hopkinson and Dan Watters (writers) Bilquis Evely, Tom Fowler, Dominike “Domo” Stanton, Max Fiumara and Sebastian Fiumara (art) Mat Lopes (colours) Simon Bowland (letters). Man, how I’ve missed these characters. Lucien the librarian, Mervyn the pumpkin-headed janitor, Matthew the raven, Tim Hunter the boy magician and all the other fascinating inhabitants of the Dreaming. I don’t remember Dora so she might be new. This $4.99 US anthology will introduce you to four new comic books based on Neil Gaiman’s wonderful creations. The Dreaming #1 hits the racks on September 5. House of Whispers #1 on September 12. Lucifer #1 October 17 and Books of Magic on October 24 which Ottawa’s own Tom Fowler will be illustrating. Sandman fans should be very pleased.



Die!Die!Die! #2 – Robert Kirkman (writer) Scott M. Gimple (co-plot) Chris Burnham (art) Nathan Fairbairn (colours) Rus Wooton (letters). I haven’t read a comic book with this much explicit violence since The Boys. It’s a sign of a good comic when you can tell the origin story of three maybe four identical brother assassins in two pages. There’s a lot of sibling rivalry which makes this story very interesting.



Punisher #1/LGY #229 – Matthew Rosenberg (writer) Szymon Kudranski (art) Antonio Fabela (colours) VC’s Cory Petit (letters). World War Frank part 1. Frank has gone through many changes recently. He’s the Cosmic Ghost Rider now for instance. My favourite incarnation has always been the gun toting vigilante going after the bad guys and surviving every single attempt to stop him from killing. Matt brings back that bad ass to the racks and I’m happy. Frank fights Baron Zemo, Hydra and the Roxxon Corporation in this relaunch and it’s just as bloody good as Die Die Die. The death of a major super villain here was a big surprise.



Action Comics #1002 – Brian Michael Bendis (writer) Patrick Gleason (art) Alejandro Sanchez (colours) Josh Reed (letters). Invisible Mafia part 2. I like a good mystery thrown into a comic book to keep me interested and this issue has two. The cloudy demon is one because Superman is vulnerable to supernatural things. The surprise reunion on the last page is the other. This is the first time that Brian Bendis has given me that gotcha feeling in his DC work.



Avengers #6/LGY #696 – Jason Aaron (writer) Ed McGuinness & Paco Medina (pencils) Mark Morales & Juan Vlasco (inks) David Curiel (colours) VC’s Cory Petit (letters). “Planet of Pathogens” will give you a hint as to how the Avengers cure the Earth of the Horde infestation and defeat the Celestials. Boy, that was a close call. Next issue promises the origin of the Spirit of Vengeance, the very first Ghost Rider. I’m not a fan of Ghost Rider being on the team. I also don’t like the new version of She-Hulk either. If it wasn’t for the awesome art I would bench this book.



Mr. & Mrs X #2 – Kelly Thompson (writer) Oscar Bazaldua (art) Frank D’Armata (colours) VC’s Travis Lanham (letters). Love and Marriage part 2. The newlyweds team up, albeit reluctantly, with Deadpool to protect the egg. First of all, how did Deadpool wind up in space? Never mind, it’s a comic book. They have to keep the egg out of the hands of Technet, a team of bad guys. How do they just happen to be out in space too? I love Oscar’s art so I’m going to ignore all these silly coincidences and find out how this story ends.



Amazing Spider-Man #4/LGY #805 – Nick Spencer (writer) Ryan Ottley (pencils) Cliff Rathburn (inks) Laura Martin (colours) VC’s Joe Caramagna (letters). Back to Basics part 4. One look at the cover and I was thinking “didn’t Marvel learn from the Clone Saga?”. That was one of the most panned Spider-Man storylines and here they are doing it again. I am happy to report that this split isn’t going to last as long and hopefully the Isotope Genome Accelerator will be mothballed for good after this. If they merge Spider-Man and Peter Parker back together in a dumb way I will not be very forgiving.

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