This week was a pretty solid week for comics. The winner for me though was Superior Iron Man #2. Last issue we saw the debut of Tony Starks new sleek suit and his burgeoning narcissism (thanks to the red skull and fall out from axis), as well as his (dis)utopian app extremis 3.0. This issue starts and ends with a confrontation with daredevil for Tony. Sandwiched in between are more examples of just how far off Tony has strayed from the straight and narrow. This new series asks the question: What would you pay/do to be perfect? All around the Orwellian feel is working on all levels for this comic. The art is fabulous with an overall cohesiveness between art and story that has the makings of something special. I’ll be looking forward to more Superior Iron Man in the weeks to come.
My top pick for this week is Dan Slott’s Amazing Spider-Man #10. In this issue Slott moves the narrative of Spider-verse forward with a new twist in the plot, keeping the reader interested in what will happen next. All the while he introduces us to new Spider-Men (some who last, and some who may or may not last), and simultaneously launches two new titles (Spider-Woman, and Scarlet Spiders). Whew! All that and he still managed to have two battle sequences and a one liner each from Spider-Monkey and Spider-Pig. Slott does this issue right: fast and furious. I give this comic 6.5/10
The Marvel NOW! Cyclops series opens up with our title character (Scott Summers) at age 16. Through a very complicated storyline (I won’t ruin it for ya’ll who haven’t read Uncanny X-Men yet) he is granted the ability to see his future and discovers that he becomes a maybe not so nice guy (who may or may not kill a certain someone [trying real hard for no spoilers here]). At the same time he finds out that his dad, who he thought was long dead, is in fact alive. Not only that but he is a space pirate! Now Scott being the typical 16 year old who has just had his life completely flipped turned upside down does what any 16 year old would do: He runs away and joins his father’s crew of space pirates!
Greg Ruckas’ (Wolverine, Detective Comics), story starts out with Scott awkwardly trying to find his place aboard his father’s space pirate ship. At first he doesn’t know where he fits in with the other crew members, who all seem to have a function. This would be the prevailing theme throughout the story arc. In a way it’s a coming of age/finding your place story. The pace of the comic is fast and furious as Scott and his father fight alien crew after alien crew. In issue one we discover that Scotts father is a wanted (by the law) man, and that he might not be all that he says he is. Scott’s father, Corsair, keeps having to take a “Medicine” that he is unwilling to explain to Scott. Corsair is driven by an incessant need for this drug. It’s this need that leads them into a trap in issue three, which gets Scott and Corsair trapped alone on a deserted planet with no hope of survival or escape (Spoiler: They survive, and they escape).
Ruckas’ Cyclops is a galaxy spanning awkward teenager coming of age and learning your place story. Written in such a way that even if you don’t know the back story of Scott, or the X-Men in general, you can still follow along. He manages to show the strength and the weakness of being a teenager at the same time. That, I feel is his greatest achievement in his time on the series.
The Art was done by Russell Dauterman (Issues 1-3) and Carmen Carnero (making his marvel debut). Daughterman and Canero both did an excellent job of crafting visuals to enhance Ruckas’ story telling. The work of digital design on the space scenes was especially stunning. The color blending was just the right mix between bright and vibrant colors, while still maintaining a level of realism. The only real weak spots as far as art is concerned would be the cover art. The cover art for issues 1, 2, and 5 is abrasive enough to be a real turn off for new buyers.
Overall Cyclops 1-5 is a well-crafted, well-illustrated story that is worth a read. Or two.