Archive for the ‘Dr. Doom’ Category

Winter Soldier #5

November 30, 2015

Winter Soldier 05Ed Brubaker // Jackson Guice
July 2012
*****

A two-fisted showdown in a rocket silo! Dr. Doom vs. Super-Apes! Not only does this arc give great spyfi action, it turns the villainess into the kind of super-terrorist Latveria would spawn, & a foe worthy of Doom. Guice draws great hand-to-hand, w/ surprising angles & distances adding kineticism.

last issue: Winter Soldier #4
next issue: Winter Soldier #6

also indexed for Jul. ’12
Captain America #11
Captain America #12
The Fantastic Four #605.1
The Fantastic Four #606
FF #18

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Winter Soldier #4

November 28, 2015

Winter Soldier 04Ed Brubaker // Jackson Guice
June 2012
****

An odd team-up of Kirby creations: Bucky Barnes & Dr. Doom prevent a terrorist bombing at the UN! Effectively Bucky Barnes, Agent of SHIELD, this mag is as good as Brubaker has been since Cap Reborn. It looks great too, as Guice has added Steranko layouts & Adams figures to his arsenal.

last issue: Winter Soldier #3
next issue: Winter Soldier #5

also indexed for Jun. ’12
Captain America #10
The Fantastic Four #605
FF #17

Winter Soldier #3

November 25, 2015

Winter Soldier 03Ed Brubaker // Jackson Guice
May 2012
****

A great match-up: Widow & the Winter Soldier vs. Dr. Doom! Doom wins on his home turf, the Latverian Embassy in NYC. It’s all a sequel to Bendis’ misfire Secret War, a mini that helped pioneer the Marvel vogue for post-9/11 superheroic espionage, a subgenre that this run epitomizes.

last issue: Winter Soldier #2
next issue: Winter Soldier #4

also indexed for May ’12
Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #9 of 9
Captain America #9
Captain America & Bucky #628
The Fantastic Four #604
FF #16

Winter Soldier #1

November 20, 2015

Winter Soldier 01Ed Brubaker // Jackson Guice
early April 2012
****

Bucky finally gets his solo mag, hunting Soviet cryotube killers w/ GF Black Widow. I wouldn’t want to delete Buck’s tenure as Cap but this is what the character’s meant for: a throwback to Cold War superspy stuff rather than the watered-down War on Terror espionage of the concurrent Cap run.

continued from Fear Itself: Captain America #7.1
next issue: Winter Soldier #2

also indexed for Apr. ’12
Captain America #8
Captain America & Bucky #627
The Fantastic Four #604
FF #15
Winter Soldier #2

Captain America: Reborn #4 of 6

September 22, 2015

Captain America Reborn 4 of 6Ed Brubaker // Bryan Hitch
January 2010
***

Cap returns to Now to serve as the host for an uploaded Red Skull. It’s as good as Waid’s ’90s resurrection, but revivals are rarely as compelling as deaths. Here, non-Cap characters (eg Dr Doom) crowd out the book’s cast (eg Zola), with the Vision acting as Cap’s message-in-a-bottle.

last issue: Captain America: Reborn #3 of 6
next issue: Captain America: Reborn #5 of 6

also indexed for Jan. ’10
Fantastic Four #573
Guardians of the Galaxy #20
Nova #31
Realm of Kings #1 of 1
Realm of Kings: Imperial Guard #1 of 5
Realm of Kings: Inhumans #1 of 5

Captain America #23

August 16, 2015

Captain America 23Ed Brubaker // Mike Perkins
December 2006
***

Bucky, Nick Fury’s new recruit, runs ops against SHIELD during the Civil War brouhaha. The fracas also provides time for the Red Skull to make an unlikely alliance with Dr. Doom! CA‘s fill-in artist has a stiffness that’s common to cinematic realists, & pencils some awkward bodies to boot.

last issue: Captain America #22
next issue: Captain America #24

also indexed for Dec. ’06
Annihilation #3 of 6
Astonishing X-Men #18
Civil War #6 of 7
Daredevil #90
Dr. Strange: The Oath #1 of 5
The Immortal Iron Fist #2
Nextwave, Agents of HATE #9
Runaways #21

X-Universe #2 of 2

February 17, 2015

X-Universe 2 of 2Terry Kavanagh // Carlos Pacheco & Terry Dodson
June 1995
*

In a parallel timeline, Marvel’s heroes hijack a space ark, airlift refugees from London, and head for the stars. Lobdell (architect of the AoA X-over) hands his plot to Kavanagh, who seriously obscures it with ’90s clichés. Kav’s only able to write in high dudgeon, and lacks a basic grasp of storytelling. The two capable artists work hard to draw the tale, but they’re defeated by the confusion.

continued in X-Men: Omega #1 of 1
last issue: X-Universe #1 of 2

also indexed for Jun. ’95
The Amazing X-Men #4 of 4
The Astonishing X-Men #4 of 4
Factor X #4 of 4
Gambit and the X-Ternals #4 of 4
Generation Next #4 of 4
Weapon X #4 of 4
X-Calibre #4 of 4
X-Man #4
X-Men: Chronicles #2 of 2
X-Men: Omega #2 of 2

X-Universe #1 of 2

February 16, 2015

X-Universe 1 of 2Terry Kavanagh // Carlos Pacheco
May 1995
*

An alternate reality co-opts the X-mags for a quarter, creating an impressive implied backstory. Naturally, readers wonder what’s happened to the rest of the company’s heroes; here’s the answer. Surviving Avengers & FF provide humanitarian aid & defense. And replacing Peter Parker, KIA, is Gwen Stacy! Pacheco has a nice eye for detail & drama, but he can’t clarify a confusing script’s vague stakes.

continued from X-Men: Alpha #1 of 1
next issue: X-Universe #2 of 2

also indexed for May ’95
The Amazing X-Men #3 of 4
The Astonishing X-Men #3 of 4
Factor X #3 of 4
Gambit and the X-Ternals #3 of 4
Generation Next #3 of 4
Weapon X #3 of 4
X-Calibre #3 of 4
X-Man #3

Fantastic Four #508

December 17, 2014

Fantastic Four 508Mark Waid // Howard Porter
February 2004
**

Doc Doom psychically hops from hero to hero, forcing Mr. Fantastic to blast & kill the Thing. Sadly, in this arc Waid mirrors the ultraviolent sensationalism of ’90s super-comics, which he’d once refuted in Kingdom Come. The melee isn’t even memorable, due to Porter’s erratic, sometimes obscure art.

last issue: Fantastic Four #507
next issue: Fantastic Four #509

also indexed for Feb. ’04
Daredevil #55
New X-Men #150

Fantastic Four #507

December 16, 2014

Fantastic Four 507Mark Waid // Howard Porter
late January 2004
***

Mr F renegotiates his eternal stalemate w/ Dr D by imprisoning them together in a locked dimension. Waid’s given the hero a clenched-jaw gloom that, like the art, is a depressing throwback to ’90s comics; similarly, Doom’s escape (a telepathic takeover of Sue) is extremely, tiresomely violent.

last issue: Fantastic Four #506
next issue: Fantastic Four #508

also indexed for Jan. ’04
Alias #28
Daredevil #54
Fantastic Four #506
New X-Men #149

Fantastic Four #502

December 11, 2014

Fantastic Four 502Mark Waid // Casey Jones
early November 2003
***

This arc’s core is a speech by Ben to his nephew: not “your family will keep you safe” but an admission that tragedy may strike from the blue. It’s got a touch of maturity under a pretty treacly delivery. Ringo takes 5 (again); C. Jones presents a similar manga-eyed, cartoon style w/o flair.

last issue: Fantastic Four #501
next issue: Fantastic Four #503

also indexed for No. ’03
Alias #26
Daredevil #51
Daredevil #52
Fantastic Four #503
JLA/Avengers #3 of 4
New X-Men #146
New X-Men #147

Fantastic Four #501

December 10, 2014

Fantastic Four 501Mark Waid // Casey Jones
October 2003
****

Franklin has gone catatonic after his trip to hell, while his pop sulks in the dark. It’s a Claremont-like beat, to take an issue or two after a costly victory to deal with scars literal & figurative. Note that Waid tasks Johnny to deal with his bro-in-law’s funk, again nailing the character’s voice.

last issue: Fantastic Four #500
next issue: Fantastic Four #502

also indexed for Oct. ’03
Alias #25
Avengers/JLA #2 of 4
Daredevil #50
New X-Men #145

Fantastic Four #500

December 9, 2014

Fantastic Four 500Mark Waid // Mike Wieringo
September 2003
*****

An extra-long ish, given a false sheen by ‘unbooting’ the issue #. Tutored by Dr S, Mr F outwits Dr D by learning humility. He admits magic is beyond him & that he’s outclassed by both men, whereas Doom disrespects his demonic allies & gets dragged to hell! It’s an intense take on Doom that eschews nuance—he muses whose skin to wear on his mystic armor—that plays off the cartoon art.

last issue: Fantastic Four #70
next issue: Fantastic Four #501

also indexed for Sept. ’03
Alias #24
Daredevil #49
JLA/Avengers #1 of 4
New X-Men #144

Fantastic Four #70

December 8, 2014

Fantastic Four 2.70Mark Waid // Mike Wieringo
August 2003
****

Waid’s got a very dark take on the quintessential super-villain. His Dr. Doom has no aristo code, he’s an amoral megalomaniac whose Faustian deal gives him victory in his vendetta w/ Mr F. Are his scenes of triumph ill-served by the Disney-like art or does its clash of tones make for starker relief?

last issue: Fantastic Four #69
next issue: Fantastic Four #71

also indexed for Aug. ’03
Alias #23
Daredevil #48
New X-Men #142
New X-Men #143

Fantastic Four #69

December 7, 2014

Fantastic Four 2.69Mark Waid // Mike Wieringo
July 2003
****

Indebted to Claremont’s X-style (& much stronger than CC’s recent FF), Waid sends his science-heroes crashing to the ground, outclassed by Doc Doom’s sorcery. Ben argues that magic makes Reed feel inferior—a nice insight in a strong scene. But mostly, #69 give the adventure a real sense of stakes.

last issue: Fantastic Four #68
next issue: Fantastic Four #70

also indexed for Jul. ’03
Alias #22
Daredevil #47
New X-Men #141

Fantastic Four #68

December 6, 2014

Fantastic Four 2.68Mark Waid // Mike Wieringo
June 2003
****

Valeria says her first word: “Doom”! The Doc attacks the family thru the baby, having bound her to himself w/ arcane spells at her birth. I’m not sold yet on Waid’s focus on magic for the arch-villain, although the trait is well-established. Or maybe I preferred the earlier issues’ lighter tone.

last issue: Fantastic Four #67
next issue: Fantastic Four #69

also indexed for Jun. ’03
Alias #21
Daredevil #46
New X-Men #139
New X-Men #140

Fantastic Four #67

December 5, 2014

Fantastic Four 2.67Mark Waid // Mike Wieringo
May 2003
****

Dr. Doom hunts for his onetime GF, a gypsy who cut contact when he chose science (& a Western education) over the occult. Now he corrects that choice by sacrificing her to demons to gain mojo! Wieringo’s ebullient style shows its limits here, bringing little horror to a tale of Faustian villainy.

last issue: Fantastic Four #66
next issue: Fantastic Four #68

also indexed for May ’03
Alias #20
Daredevil #45
New X-Men #138

The Fantastic Four #611

January 3, 2014

Fantastic Four 611Jonathan Hickman // Ryan Stegman
December 2012
****

Hickman condenses his third act into one too-brief ish, couched in a biblical 3rd-person style. Doom has resurrected a dead ‘verse in his image & been unthroned by his own creation. Stegman has a compelling, rough stroke but lacks the psychedelic imagination to draw a tale of comic-book divinity.

last issue: The Fantastic Four #610
continued in The Fantastic Four #1

also indexed for Dec. ’12
FF #23

The Fantastic Four #605.1

December 23, 2013

Fantastic Four 605.1Jonathan Hickman // Mike Choi
July 2012
****

The “bonus” ish is less a jump-in point than another JH done-in-one w/ set-up for a later payoff. It flashes back to sketch a member of the Council of Reeds, who destroyed his alt-‘verse where the FF were Nazis! Choi’s work is better than his covers suggest, w/ lovely colors from C. Peter.

last issue: The Fantastic Four #605
next issue: The Fantastic Four #606

also indexed for Jul. ’12
The Fantastic Four #606
FF #18

FF #16

December 20, 2013

FF 16Jonathan Hickman // Nick Dragotta & Steve Epting
May 2012
*****

If all of John H’s FF run had Nick D on art, it’d be second only to Kirby/Lee! See a heavenly moment of adult Franklin & Galactus viewing sunrise from orbit. This ish, post-grand finale, centers on Hick’s best char: supersmart toddler Val. Even her adult self mistrusts her! And in a coda, Doom.

continued from The Fantastic Four #604
last issue: FF #15
next issue: FF #17

also indexed for May ’12
Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #9 of 9
The Fantastic Four #604

FF #14

December 16, 2013

FF 14Jonathan Hickman // Juan Bobillo
March 2012
*****

Thru chrono-hero Nat Richards, Hickman explains his mag’s cosmology of time. The Kree v. the Annihilation Wave, Galactus v. Celestials: all are inevitable but they can be hastened or delayed. So Dr. Doom, full of Miltonic grandeur, will hold the bridge btw dimensions alone against Kirby Titans!

see also The Fantastic Four #602
last issue: FF #13
next issue: FF #15

also indexed for Mar. ’12
The Fantastic Four #602

FF #13

December 14, 2013

FF 13Jonathan Hickman // Juan Bobillo
February 2012
*****

A pack of kids, incl. reality-shaper Franklin, face Kirby Gods on an interdimensional space-bridge! But the prime mover is Nat Richards, planning contingencies for potential futures in a Kirbytech harness. Bobillo’s art = elaborate cartooning, yet it has the cosmic grandeur that the tale demands.

see also The Fantastic Four #601
last issue: FF #12
next issue: FF #14

also indexed for Feb. ’12
Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #8 of 9
The Fantastic Four #601

FF #12

December 12, 2013

FF 12Jonathan Hickman // Juan Bobillo
January 2012
****

Hickman’s run goes biweekly; F4 follows the original Four while FF features the Richards children & pals. Val, a delightful schemer, teleports the team’s HQ to Latveria, where she & Grandpa Nat ally w/ Doom & the evil alt-Reed. Bobillo’s art is rough & scratchy but big eyes add a cute feel.

continued from The Fantastic Four #600
last issue: FF #11
next issue: FF #13

also indexed for Jan. ’12
The Fantastic Four #600

The Fantastic Four #600

December 11, 2013

Fantastic Four 600A-story: Jonathan Hickman // Steve Epting
B-story: Jonathan Hickman // Carmine Di Giandomenico
C-story: Jonathan Hickman // Ming Doyle
D-story: Jonathan Hickman // Leinil Yu
E-story: Jonathan Hickman // Farel Dalrymple
January 2012
A-story: **** // B-story: ***** // C-story: *****
D-story: **** // E-story: *****

A king-size #600. The A-story picks up the threads of FF, pitting every NYC superhero against a pair of alien invasions; a surprise twist has the late Johnny Storm break the Annihilation Wave! Then Hickman shows that Torch did die in #587, only to be resurrected in a gladiator scenario. That piece has a Euro look that meshes w/ the bug-‘verse setting; like all the back-up pencilers, it puts Epting to shame. Much of the art is “ugly” yet lovely, accentuating how creative JH’s whole run is.

continued from FF #11
continued in FF #12
next issue: The Fantastic Four #601

also indexed for Jan’ 12
FF #12

FF #10

December 9, 2013

FF 10Jonathan Hickman // Barry Kitson
early December 2011
****

Hick & Kit charge a scene btw Mr & Mrs Richards with a lovely sense of marital intimacy. But their best moment involves the father/son theme of JH’s run, as Nat Richards reaches out to a doppel-Reed whose father he & Doom killed in #582. But JH still misuses Spidey, who just quips in the background.

last issue: FF #9
next issue: FF #11

also indexed for Dec. ’11
FF #11

FF #9

December 8, 2013

FF 09Jonathan Hickman // Steve Epting
November 2011
****

Epting’s in his element as he draws a massive, chaotic battle btw Inhumans & Moloids. On the field of combat, Hickman’s characters act like chesspieces, as Black Bolt captures a pair of Mr F’s duplicates (& Reed himself) while the fourth Richards takes Dr. Doom hostage & flees to Latveria! Awesome.

last issue: FF #8
next issue: FF #10

also indexed for Nov. ’11
Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #7 of 9

FF #8

December 7, 2013

FF 08Jonathan Hickman // Steve Epting
October 2011
***

Back down to Earth, literally & figuratively, after the cool flashback of #6-7. Epting’s Hollywood realism can’t encompass Hickman’s imagination; it’s just bland, confusing—maybe rushed? Less plot than usual too, as the Future Foundation’s villain-allies fight the Reed-doubles & Inhumans in a melée.

last issue: FF #7
next issue: FF #9

FF #5

December 4, 2013

FF 05Jonathan Hickman // Barry Kitson
August 2011
****

The prophesied war ignites! First the doppel-Reeds & Mole Man destroy Old Atlantis, then they face the Inhuman space-city at the strange Forever City. And kudos to Kitson: tho’ his Reed is bland, his Thing is expressive &, even rarer, his Sue is a strong presence, matching Hick’s portrayal.

last issue: FF #4
next issue: FF #6

also indexed for Aug. ’11
Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #6 of 9

FF #4

December 3, 2013

FF 04Jonathan Hickman // Barry Kitson
late July 2011
****

Can Sue stop alt-Reed from building a planet-wrecker?! Kitson relieves Epting, an incremental step up in quality since his bright, flat style (akin to C. Swan) mirrors this mag’s optimism. He’s also better at monsters, which means (a) a better Thing, & (b) a great face-off btw Atlanteans & Moloids.

last issue: FF #3
next issue: FF #5

also indexed for Jul. ’11
FF #3

FF #3

December 2, 2013

Jonathan Hickman // Steve Epting
FF 03July 2011
****

The first symposium of the Future Foundation, hosted by Dr. Doom, asks “How to defeat Mr. Fantastic?” The enemy: the Council of Reeds, trapped on Earth. Various foes pick one side or the other, as the Reeds devise an Earth-shattering gateway home using the fantastical cities of last year’s issues.

last issue: FF #2
next issue: FF #4

also indexed for Jul. ’11
FF #4

FF #2

December 1, 2013

FF 02Jonathan Hickman // Steve Epting
June 2011
****

The gang helps Doom, suffering from brain damage, with a cerebral software patch. In return, he joins the Foundation! JH continues to surprise w/ twists. Epting may be his strongest regular partner so far, but that grungy photorealism fits poorly w/ the title’s weirder elements—esp. his Ben Grimm.

last issue: FF #1
next issue: FF #3

also indexed for Jun. ’11
Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #5 of 9

FF #1

November 30, 2013

FF 01Jonathan Hickman // Steve Epting
May 2011
****

Effectively #589, but the new title marks a shift to the team post-Johnny. His slot is given to Spider-Man, who fits in better here than on the Avengers—after all, he attempted to join back in ASM #1! The bigger surprise is Doc Doom, who’s been invited to the Future Foundation by goddaughter Val.

continued from The Fantastic Four #588
next issue: FF #2

also indexed for May ’11
Avengers: The Children’s Crusade: Young Avengers #1 of 1

The Fantastic Four #588

November 29, 2013

Fantastic Four 588A-story: Jonathan Hickman // Nick Dragotta
B-story: Jonathan Hickman // Mark Brooks
April 2011
A-story: ***** // B-story: ****

Hick finally gets a partner who matches his calibre: Dragotta, who apes Kirby’s dynamic grunts but draws a Sturm-like indie line. Silence signifies mourning as Johnny Storm’s family & friends grieve. It sells the moment w/o sentiment—unlike the B-plot, where Spidey helps Franklin mourn his uncle.

last issue: The Fantastic Four #587
continued in FF #1

The Fantastic Four #583

November 24, 2013

Fantastic Four 583Jonathan Hickman // Steve Epting
November 2010
*****

When Val lets a quartet of alt-dimension Mr Fs loose on Earth, she asks for help from their worst enemy: Uncle Doom! Brilliant recasting of the hyper-intelligent toddler as equivocal, a potential bad seed. Epting’s coarse realism, tho’ v.g., isn’t the best fit for Hickman’s non-linear imagination.

last issue: The Fantastic Four #582
next issue: The Fantastic Four #584

also indexed for Nov. ’10
Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #2 of 9

The Fantastic Four #582

November 23, 2013

Fantastic Four 582Jonathan Hickman // Neil Edwards
October 2010
****

Heavy-breathing fans will enjoy the rare spate of violence that leads off #582. Reed’s dad can’t kill his evil double, so he has young Doom it! But the second half shows why Hickman’s run is A-1. Part of a father-son tale, adult Franklin rescues granddad by kicking him into a wave of spacetime.

last issue: The Fantastic Four #581
next issue: The Fantastic Four #583

The Fantastic Four #581

November 22, 2013

Fantastic Four 581Jonathan Hickman // Neil Edwards
Sepember 2010

Another audacious issue from Hickman, who shifts focus to the adult Franklin. He’s part of a family time-team, staging a multiplex plan. Step 2 has Grampa Nathaniel draft college-era Mr F, Thing & Doom (!) to fight double in a deathmatch, a dangling plot from SHIELD, Hick’s occult oddity.

last issue: The Fantastic Four #580
next issue: The Fantastic Four #582

also indexed for Sept. ’10
Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #1 of 9

The Fantastic Four #571

November 12, 2013

Fantastic Four 572Jonathan Hickman // Dale Eaglesham
November 2009
***

Mr Fantastic of the main Marvel U gets a grand tour of the utopian works performed by the multiversal Council of Reeds: granary planets, battles w/ Galacti, and (a red flag) lobotomizing each ‘verse’s Dr. Doom. The SF narrative has a thrilling audacity, but it keeps one eye on his marriage.

last issue: The Fantastic Four #570
next issue: The Fantastic Four #572

also indexed for Nov. ’09
Dark Reign: The List – The Avengers #1 of 1

Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #9 of 9

November 5, 2013

Avengers Children's Crusade 9Allen Heinberg // Jim Cheung
May 2011
****

A:TCC‘s strongest issue, prob’ly cuz it plays to Heinb’s strengths: character & dialog, and his core team of Young Avs. Some closure as Iron Lad, by killing Vision 2.0, accepts his destiny as Kang the Conqueror. The catastrophe gets treated w/ emotional weight, as the team drifts apart over months.

last issue: Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #8 of 9

also indexed for May ’11
The Fantastic Four #604
FF #16

Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #8 of 9

November 4, 2013

Avengers Children's Crusade 8Allen Heinberg // Jim Cheung
March 2012
****

There’s no good way to retcon a bad story, so A:TCC provides multiple ones for Wanda M’s haywire episodes, incl. the possibility that Doom was behind it all. Now he’s got cosmic powers, unluckily for Cassie Lang. The storytellers play fairly, trading her life for her father’s resurrection.

last issue: Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #7 of 9
next issue: Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #9 of 9

also indexed for Mar. ’12
The Fantastic Four #601
FF #13

Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #7 of 9

November 3, 2013

Avengers Children's Crusade 7Allen Heinberg // Jim Cheung
November 2011
***

With 4 superteams in this ish, it’s no surprise that characters get lost in the melée. The mag’s real point is a retcon of Av Disassembled & reversal of House of M. Offpage, the Scarlet Witch had allied with Dr. Doom to tap into a “life-force” that gave her reality-altering powers.

last issue: Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #6 of 9
next issue: Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #8 of 9

also indexed for Nov. ’11
FF #9

Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #5 of 9

November 1, 2013

Avengers Children's Crusade 5Allen Heinberg // Jim Cheung
June 2011
****

Kid Kang, AKA Iron Lad, returns from the future; if Young Avs had been Heinberg & Cheung all along, this would be a thrilling development. Anyway, his time travel allows for this maxiseries remit: to “correct” the catastrophic plot of Disassembled, such as a broken Scarlet Witch & dead Scott Lang.

continued from Avengers: The Children’s Crusade: Young Avengers #1 of 1
last issue: Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #4 of 9
next issue: Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #6 of 9

also indexed for Jun. ’11
FF #2

Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #4 of 9

October 30, 2013

Allen Heinberg // Jim Cheung
Avengers Children's Crusade 4March 2011
***

Scribe Heinberg places his legacy team-up against some heavy foes: Dr. Doom, Magneto, the Avengers… Ironically, the “heroic” team is the most violent & unambiguously motivated. In the melée, many of the Young Avs get shrifted, tho’ Heinberg’s favorite member, Wiccan, shares the focus with Wanda M.

continued in Avengers: The Children’s Crusade: Young Avengers #1 of 1
last issue: Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #3 of 9
next issue: Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #5 of 9

also indexed for Mar. ’11
The Fantastic Four #587

Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #3 of 9

October 29, 2013

Avengers Children's Crusade 3Allen Heinberg // Jim Cheung
January 2011
***

Talky but still stronger than Bendis’ Avengers comics, whose failures this mag seeks to correct. In fact, A:TCC casts those New Avengers as villains, which makes sense considering their smug bullying. Meanwhile, the kids have uncovered the Scarlet Witch, amnesiac and affianced to Dr. Doom!

last issue: Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #2 of 9
next issue: Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #4 of 9

also indexed for Jan. ’11
The Fantastic Four #585

Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #2 of 9

October 28, 2013

Avengers Children's Crusade 2Allen Heinberg // Jim Cheung
November 2010
***

To find his “metaphysical” mother (the Scarlet Witch), Wiccan & the gang team up w/ Magneto & Quicksilver for a trip to C. Europe. As if guided by destiny or plot necessity, they learn that she’s a Doombot! Trad super-team comics in a modern idiom, driven by character dynamics & fannish continuity.

last issue: Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #1 of 9
next issue: Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #3 of 9

also indexed for Nov. ’10
The Fantastic Four #583

JLA/Avengers #3 of 4

October 6, 2013

Avengers.JLA 3 of 4Kurt Busiek // George Pérez
November 2003
****

JLA/Av retcons annual super-teamups btw Marvel & DC, a late-era Crisis (in DC terminology) complete w/ overlapping Earths. The art of mature Pérez is even better than in his ’80s Crisis. Busiek writes a tighter plot, tho it suffers from self-reference & (surprisingly for KB) a lack of central protag. For superhero lovers rather than casual readers, but those fanboys will be truly satisfied.

last issue: Avengers/JLA #2 of 4
next issue: Avengers/JLA #4 of 4

also indexed for Nov. ’03
Alias #26
New X-Men #146
New X-Men #147

JLA/Avengers #1 of 4

October 4, 2013

Avengers.JLA 1 of 4Kurt Busiek // George Pérez
September 2003
****

As the walls btw DC & Marvel collapse, a pair of cosmic beings make a wager to pit the heroes in a race to collect cosmic artifacts. As hoary as the scenario is, Busiek & Pérez (auteurs of a great Avengers run) lend vivacity to what should be mere fan service. Ex: Busiek makes distinct the thin difference btw the imaginary universes, as Superman reacts viscerally to the MU’s antiheroism & bigotry.

next issue: Avengers/JLA #2 of 4

also indexed for Sept. ’03
Alias #24
New X-Men #144

The Fantastic Four #352

July 11, 2013

Fantastic Four 352Walt Simonson
May 1991
*****
An ingenious issue of SF comics! While the team escapes from Doom’s traps, Mr F duels the Doc across a half-hour of time-jumps. The issue’s time-coded so readers can follow the action linearly or hop achronologically with the combat. Even the cover, a flashback to #350, is a panel in the story!
[continued from The Fantastic Four #350]
[last issue: The Fantastic Four #351]
[next issue: The Fantastic Four #353]

The Fantastic Four #336

June 26, 2013

Fantastic Four 336Walt Simonson // Ron Lim
January 1990
***
In a unique victory, Dr. Richards defeats Congress! He pokes enough holes in the concept of a federally mandated registration act to table the bill (HS 39110). Then a Doombot ends Acts of Vengeance & Grimm, in his robosuit, kayos an android. Also note: the covers to #334-6 are their own comic!
[last issue: The Fantastic Four #335]
[next issue: The Fantastic Four# 337]

Captain America #453

October 3, 2012

Mark Waid // Ron Garney & Pico Rinaldi
July 1996
****
How can Our Hero reach Camp David from the Balkans quickly so he can stop a cyborg from stealing nuke codes out of Clinton’s hand? He asks a favor from Doom—his second alliance w/ a despot in Waid’s run! Garney does his best work on the series, tho’ it’s undercut by a mediocre associate.
[last issue: Captain America #452]
[next issue: Captain America #454]

The Avengers #25

June 26, 2012

Stan Lee // Don Heck
February 1966
***
Lee sets up a match w/ the inestimable Dr. Doom; too bad Heck draws a mediocre plot. His Avengers don’t win so much as get trapped & then escape as Doom unholsters ray-guns. Still, the creators remind us of the mutant sibs’ coded origin as Holocaust survivors, & sideline the FF via diplomacy.
[last issue: The Avengers #24]
[next issue: The Avengers #26]