Archive for the ‘Beyonder’ Category

Annihilation: Silver Surfer #3 of 4

January 22, 2014

Annihilation - Silver Surfer 3 of 4Keith Giffen // Renato Arlem
August 2006
***

In Annihil‘s spine, Giffen stages intrigues among the big bads. Annihilus dissects cosmic beings & arranges an alliance w/ Thanos! And the Surfer moves in narrative retrograde, pledging fealty to Galactus in return for more power. If only Arlem didn’t photoref classic scifi images (BSGStar Wars)…

last issue: Annihilation: Silver Surfer #2 of 4
next issue: Annihilation: Silver Surfer #4 of 4

also indexed for Aug. ’06
Annihilation: Nova #3 of 4
Annihilation: Ronan #3 of 4
Annihilation: Super-Skrull #3 of 4
Astonishing X-Men #15
Civil War #2 of 7
Nextwave, Agents of HATE #6
Young Avengers #12

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Thanos #10

January 8, 2014

Thanos 10Keith Giffen // Ron Lim
July 2004
**

Giffen proves he has a handle on Thanos’ character (a rarity) by showing him in control of the sitch even when his adversary is a mad cosmic being in a mortal shell. But Lim’s confusing art really hampers the writing, which is already burdened by heavy use of quirky, character-specific idioms.

last issue: Thanos #9
next issue: Thanos #11

also indexed for Jul. ’04
Astonishing X-Men #1
Daredevil
#60
Fantastic Four #513
Fantastic Four #514
The Pulse #3
Secret War #2 of 5

Thanos #9

January 7, 2014

Thanos 09Keith Giffen // Ron Lim
June 2004
*

The infamous Beyonder (who swapped genders in the ’90s?) has somehow caused a riot in an intergalactic prison. The creative team’s really fumbling: Lim draws generic physiques in a dated style, while Giffen masks essential bits of exposition under SF-boiled dialogue & slow-burn subplots.

last issue: Thanos #8
next issue: Thanos #10

Secret Wars II #9 of 9

February 22, 2012

Jim Shooter // Al Milgrom
March 1986
*
The series takes a truly weird twist as its protag invents a Kirbytech “birthing module” that allows him to be reborn as an omnipotent mortal (the turn echoes Shooter’s similar, infamous “Rape of Ms. Marvel” plotline). Every superhero in Marvel Comics wants to stop the cosmic being, leading some to propose infanticide! Instead, the nebbishy Molecule Man & his homely g’friend save the universe.
[continued from The Fantastic Four #288]
[continued in The Avengers #266]
[last issue: Secret Wars II #8 of 9]

Secret Wars II #8 of 9

February 21, 2012

Jim Shooter // Al Milgrom
February 1986
*
The Beyonder, annoyed w/ the enigma of existence, contemplates destroying it. #8 epitomizes what’s wrong w/ SW2. Shooter, having imagined godlike beings such as Korvac, wants to draw an omnipotent Hamlet—all introspection & inaction—but he’s no Shakespeare. The ersatz philosophy is fun to read.
[continued from The Defenders #152]
[see also The New Mutants #37]
[see also The Amazing Spider-Man #274]
[continued in The Avengers #265]
[last issue: Secret Wars II #7 of 9]
[next issue: Secret Wars II #9 of 9]

Secret Wars II #7 of 9

February 20, 2012

Jim Shooter // Al Milgrom
January 1986
*
The Marvel U’s version of Satan aims to destroy the Beyonder w/ Kirbytech & a battalion of supervillains. Luckily, the Thing has Big B’s back. Since last ish, the godling has gotten lost in meditation. His passivity & fiendish temptation could be holy, but in Shooter’s hands it’s just dull & inert.
[continued from Power Man & Iron Fist #121]
[continued in The New Mutants #36]
[last issue: Secret Wars II #6 of 9]
[next issue: Secret Wars II #8 of 9]

Secret Wars II #6 of 9

February 19, 2012

Jim Shooter // Al Milgrom
December 1985
*
After getting his consciousness raised elsewhere by Dr. Strange, the Beyonder turns superhero. His resolution to eliminate death pits him against Marvel’s 1970s cosmic entities, a pantheon inspired by quaaludes. Shooter aims so high & falls so far short, while Milgrom gets increasingly sketchy.
[continued from The Fantastic Four #285]
[continued in Cloak and Dagger #4]
[last issue: Secret Wars II #5 of 9]
[next issue: Secret Wars II #7 of 9]

Secret Wars II #5 of 9

February 18, 2012

Jim Shooter // Al Milgrom
November 1985
**
The Beyonder picks a fight w/ Kirby space-gods, a good concept wasted by dull fight choreography. The protag does have an emotional arc—unable to return to his home dimension, he’s now sulking w/ a mutant teen runaway—but his moods are impossible to follow if you don’t get every crossover issue.
[continued from The Avengers #261]
[continued in The Thing #30]
[last issue: Secret Wars II #4 of 9]
[next issue: Secret Wars II #6 of 9]

Secret Wars II #4 of 9

February 17, 2012

Jim Shooter // Al Milgrom
October 1985
**
The Beyonder dabbles w/ romance, but since he’s omnipotent there’s no tension to his wooing. He also stumbles into Alpha Flight, where he rescues a heroine from a strange fate. This mag’s love object, MTV mutant Dazzler, isn’t given a personality, but she is granted cosmic awareness.
[continued from The Incredible Hulk #312]
[see also Alpha Flight #28]
[continued in Dazzler #40]
[last issue: Secret Wars II #3 of 9]
[next issue: Secret Wars II #5 of 9]

Secret Wars II #3 of 9

February 16, 2012

Jim Shooter // Al Milgrom
September 1985
**
A self-contained humanist parable, #3 is closer to a ’50s SF one-off than an ’80s superhero adventure. The childlike, omnipotent Beyonder gets tutored by a seedy mobster, exerts his will over every molecule on Earth, then gives it all up to challenge himself further. He also gets an MTV makeover.
[see also The Avengers #260]
[continued in Daredevil #223]
[last issue: Secret Wars II #2 of 9]
[next issue: Secret Wars II #4 of 9]

Secret Wars II #2 of 9

February 15, 2012

Jim Shooter // Al Milgrom
August 1985
*
The Beyonder, a universe incarnate, wanders NYC. In one low point, Peter Parker must toilet-train the omnipotent being! SW2 is a true crossover: you gotta read other titles to follow the plot & vice-versa. An FF arc gets scrambled in with this mag, as an evil super-empath corrupts Sue Richards.
[continued from Captain America #308]
[see also The Uncanny X-Men #196]
[see also Fantastic Four #281]
[continued in Web of Spider-Man #6]
[last issue: Secret Wars II #1 of 9]
[next issue: Secret Wars II #3 of 9]

Secret Wars II #1 of 9

February 14, 2012

Jim Shooter // Al Milgrom
July 1985
**
Despite its plodding pace, bad characterization, & awful action, Secret Wars sold comics so it earns a sequel. Luckily, SW2 seems to have a smarter concept than  “good v. bad”. Its blank-slate protagonist, a godlike entity called the Beyonder, seeks experience & wisdom on Earth—& finds superhero violence.
[continued in The New Mutants #30]
[continued in Captain America #308]
[continued in Iron Man #197]
[next issue: Secret Wars II #2 of 9]

Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars #12 of 12

February 13, 2012

Jim Shooter // Mike Zeck
April 1985
**
An anonymous roster of artists, betrayed by a diversity of styles, help Zeck complete issue #12 on time. The motives of the Beyonder (such a terrible name!) again get teased but remain obscure. Doom’s final battle w/ the entity is a sound-&-light show, while the heroes get resurrected offstage then return home via Kirbytech. And so the Wars wrap up patly, tying up ends left dangling since #1.
[last issue: Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars #11 of 12]

Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars #11 of 12

February 13, 2012

Jim Shooter // Mike Zeck
March 1985
**
Rule #1: never show Doom’s face! Tho’ the now divine Doc has removed his mask, he hasn’t quite left behind his human desires. Presumably that’s why the heroes, chatting at a conference table <yawn>, get zapped by lightning. Plus, Colossus gets busy w/ an alien chick, to the fury of Pryde fans.
[last issue: Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars #10 of 12]
[next issue: Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars #12 of 12]

Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars #10 of 12

February 12, 2012

Jim Shooter // Mike Zeck
February 1985
***
Shooter’s flaws (bad dialogue, brute combat) haven’t vanished, but he pulls a twist! While the heroes cower, Dr. Doom wins the Secret War! With Miltonic self-regard, he syphons off the cosmic power of Galactus then challenges the godlike “Beyonder”. Finally, the series’ scope equals its remit.
[last issue: Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars #9 of 12]
[next issue: Marvel Super Heroes Secret Wars #11 of 12]

Marvel Super Hero Secret Wars #1 of 12

February 1, 2012

Jim Shooter // Mike Zeck
May 1984
**
The original event-comic maxiseries! A godlike entity kidnaps superheroes & -villains & demands they battle on an alien world. The hoary plot is as childish as the ’40s JSA formula, & lifted only a little by the moral ambiguities of Doom & Magneto, by the cosmic grandeur, & by Zeck’s rubber faces.
[next issue: Marvel Super Hero Secret Wars #2 of 12]

The Mighty Thor #363

April 6, 2011

Walt Simonson
January 1986
***
Secret Wars II arrives at Thor’s doorstep, having roped Beta Ray Bill into its mini. The Beyonder supercharges a thug to wallop Thor. But w/ assistance from the Power kids, Thor teaches the omnipotent naïf about family & ironic motives. The last, a surprise, shows Simonson’s confidence w/ his mag.
[continued from Power Pack #18]
[last issue: The Mighty Thor #362]
[next issue: The Mighty Thor #364]

The Fantastic Four #288

February 18, 2011

John Byrne
March 1986
****
That Doom/Secret Wars snafu gets resolved via time loop. That is, the Beyonder pops in from SW2 to reconstitute the Doc & send him to Battleworld, May ’84. If you ask me, it’s a solution to a non-problem, but I’m less OCD about continuity gaffes than some fans. Anyhow, Sinnott’s inks are glorious.
[last issue: The Fantastic Four #287]
[next issue: The Fantastic Four #289]

The Fantastic Four #285

February 14, 2011

John Byrne
December 1985
**
Vamping for time, Byrne folds FF into Secret Wars II once again. It’s a tacky bit of sentiment about a latchkey kid who immolates himself to emulate the Torch. His sacrifice inspires Johnny to remain a hero. Blech. The story might play out in a comic-book world but it has no real-world relevance.
[continued from The Fantastic Four Annual #19]
[continued in The Avengers #263]
[last issue: The Fantastic Four #284]
[next issue: The Fantastic Four #286]

The Fantastic Four #282

February 9, 2011

John Byrne
September 1985
***
The plot hiccups, even if you’ve followed it thru Secret Wars II. The Four zoom into a pocket ‘verse to face an old Kirby baddie… but when did they learn he was their foe? Sue’s belligerent & hysterical cuz of the arc’s mind-rape. But the Microverse & Franklin’s prophetic dreams both look snazzy.
[continued from Secret Wars II #2 of 9]
[see also Secret Wars II #3 of 9]
[last issue: The Fantastic Four #281]
[next issue: The Fantastic Four #283]