Archive for the ‘Dum Dum Dugan’ Category

Captain America #18

December 12, 2015

Captain America 5.18Ed Brubaker with Cullen Bunn // Scot Eaton
early December 2012
**

A 3-pronged action climax set in a space base, a rioting city, & an airborne villain’s lair. Yet it’s dense w/ clichéd plots, skipped story beats & fudged explanations—it’s barely passable as super-comics. Eaton adds to the generic quality with 4-panel pages & a style 15 years out of date.

last issue: Captain America #17
next issue: Captain America #19

also indexed for Dec. ’12
Captain America #19
The Fantastic Four #611
FF #23
Winter Soldier #11

Captain America #17

December 11, 2015

Captain America 5.17Ed Brubaker with Cullen Bunn // Scot Eaton
November 2012
**

To attack Cap’s confidence, terrorists cause riots—the sort of cart-before-horse plotting that makes villains super-ridiculous. But Brubaker’s always cast his hero as a neurotic Atlas struggling w/ his symbolic burden. More interesting is the cover’s bout, which establishes a Zemo/Agent 13 rivalry.

last issue: Captain America #16
next issue: Captain America #18

also indexed for Nov. ’12
The Fantastic Four #610
FF #22
Winter Soldier #10

Captain America #16

December 9, 2015

Captain America 5.16Ed Brubaker & Cullen Bunn // Scot Eaton
October 2012
***

People are rioting in DC, influenced by a brain-ray carried via right-wing cable-TV. The hypnosis pattern is groovy op-art! An old plot device gets updated with smartphone screens, & it fits Brubaker’s obsession w/ mind control well. Less convincing is this comic’s widescreen destruction.

last issue: Captain America #15
next issue: Captain America #17

also indexed for Oct. ’12
The Fantastic Four #609
FF #21
Winter Soldier #9

Captain America #15

December 7, 2015

Captain America 5.15Ed Brubaker & Cullen Bunn // Scot Eaton
late September 2012
**

After evil supergoons devastate Times Sq, a Glenn Beck parody attacks Cap’s rep. Behind both plots is a villainous scheme to <yawn> emotionally wreck our hero. Eaton fills his page count, & Brubaker has one foot out the door, so who’s to blame for some terrible work in an opening battle scene?

last issue: Captain America #14
next issue: Captain America #16

also indexed for Sept. ’12
Captain America #14
The Fantastic Four #608
FF #20
Winter Soldier #8

Captain America #14

December 5, 2015

Captain America 5.14Ed Brubaker // Patrick Zircher
early September 2012
***

D-Man (a sidekick from Gruenwald’s long run) gets killed after his brainwashed turn as Scourge (a Gruenwald vigilante ID). This somehow ties into HYDRA’s claim that Cap’s lost the soul of America. But that’s the Achilles Heel of Bru’s run: his Steve R. is long on self-doubt but short on specifics.

last issue: Captain America #13
next issue: Captain America #15

also indexed for Sept. ’12
Captain America #15
The Fantastic Four #608
FF #20
Winter Soldier #8

Captain America #13

December 3, 2015

Captain America 5.13Ed Brubaker // Patrick Zircher
August 2012
***

More adventures in the post-9/11 era, with a firefight in LGA, a spy snagged in DC. It’s solid, but the status quo since Cap’s return lacks the apocalyptic momentum of the this run’s start. Plus I’d like to see it move from the Bush era to the Obama: drone strikes abroad, vigilante racism at home.

last issue: Captain America #12
next issue: Captain America #14

also indexed for Aug. ’12
The Fantastic Four #607
FF #19
Winter Soldier #6
Winter Soldier #7

Captain America #12

December 1, 2015

Captain America 5.12Ed Brubaker // Patrick Zircher
late July 2012
***

HYDRA has added a brainwash case to this run’s long list: Henry Peter Gyrich, who’s aiming to expose SHIELD’s witness protection program while killing its beneficiaries. Cap v. 6 (?!) is what Secret Avs could’ve been: spyfi adventure, Steve Rogers & SHIELD v. terrorist cells & political superspies.

last issue: Captain America #11
next issue: Captain America #13

also indexed for Jul. ’12
Captain America #11
The Fantastic Four #605.1
The Fantastic Four #606
FF #18
Winter Soldier #5

Captain America #11

November 29, 2015

Captain America 5.11Ed Brubaker // Patrick Zircher
early July 2012
***

Someone’s hunting informants and exposing terrorist agents. It’s an ’80s vigilante, nicknamed Scourge, getting a ’10s update from Ed B! The violent spyfi art marks a return to form after slicksters McNiven & Davis. The bullpen’s sent out Zircher, a journeyman drawing in the Bat-mode of Michael Lark.

last issue: Captain America #11
next issue: Captain America #13

also indexed for Jul. ’12
Captain America #12
The Fantastic Four #605.1
The Fantastic Four #606
FF #18
Winter Soldier #5

Captain America #4

November 14, 2015

Captain America 5.04Ed Brubaker // Steve McNiven
January 2012
***

Cap’s trapped in a dreamscape while his pals fight the terrorists who put him there. I do like the idealistic scheme of a fellow man-out-of-time to replace 21C America with the ’38 World’s Fair. Otherwise it’s standard stuff for both the run & the title generally, & McN’s art is pretty but plastic.

last issue: Captain America #3
next issue: Captain America #5

also indexed for Jan. ’12
Annihilators: Earthfall #3 of 4
Captain America & Bucky #624
The Fantastic Four #600
Fear Itself: Captain America #7.1
FF #12

Captain America #3

November 9, 2015

Captain America 5.03Ed Brubaker // Steve McNiven
November 2011
***

One of my favorite facets of Brubaker’s run has been Cap & co Cap & co sparring with giant robots. Here he fights a house-sized double (AKA Ameridroid)! McNiven never quite gives readers the payoff shot (Steve Rogers as Fay Wray) but he’s adopted a cartoony note since CW, paralleling Marvel’s house style.

last issue: Captain America #2
next issue: Captain America #4

also indexed for Nov. ’11
Annihilators: Earthfall #1 of 4
Avengers: The Children’s Crusade #7 of 9
Captain America & Bucky #622
FF #9

Captain America #2

November 7, 2015

Captain America 5.02Ed Brubaker // Steve McNiven
October 2011
****

A WW2 platoon, long MIA in dreamspace, resurfaces as a HYDRA terrorist cell! As a variation on Cap‘s man-out-of-time archetype it’s fairly mind-blowing. And it has the bonus of Bru’s theme of mind & neurosis. Unexpectedly, McNiv integrates the surrealism with his cinematic realism quite well.

last issue: Captain America #1
next issue: Captain America #3

also indexed for Oct. ’11
Captain America & Bucky #621
FF #8

Captain America #1

November 5, 2015

Captain America 5.01Ed Brubaker // Steve McNiven
September 2011
****

Marvel gives Cap a new #1 for his red-carpet rollout, & snaps his status quo back 5 years—pre-Civil War! Brubaker doesn’t break stride, writing an ish that could’ve been v. 5 #22. The funeral of Cap’s WW2 flame produces yet another retconned superspy from the Nazi era: Peggy Carter’s jilted lover.

continued from Captain America #619
next issue: Captain America #2

also indexed for Sept. ’11
Captain America & Bucky #620
FF #6
FF #7

The Marvels Project #8 of 8

October 4, 2015

Marvels Project 8 of 8Ed Brubaker // Steve Epting
July 2010
***

Like much of Brubaker’s Cap run, his WW2-era mini is haunted by the ’01 attacks. His cinematic finale has the H. Torch & sidekick dogfight at Pearl Harbor while the other Invaders prevent an Atlantean assassination of Churchill. A subsequent montage of super-GI mobilization is anti-climactic.

last issue: The Marvels Project #7 of 8

also indexed for Jul. ’10
Captain America #606
The Fantastic Four #579
Secret Avengers #1
The Thanos Imperative: Ignition #1 of 1

Captain America #26

August 20, 2015

Captain America 26Ed Brubaker // Steve Epting & Mike Perkins
May 2007
****

Everyone at Captain America’s wake commends Sam Wilson on his eulogy (much better than hearing it). The Falcon’s cool is a balance to Bucky, who starts a bar brawl. Meanwhile the bad guys gloat & toy w/ their Doom-built time machine. A great scene—it’s a shame Epting couldn’t draw the whole ish.

last issue: Captain America #25
next issue: Captain America #27

also indexed for May ’07
Annihilation: Heralds of Galactus #2 of 2
Astonishing X-Men #21
Daredevil #95
Thunderbolts #112

Captain America #22

August 15, 2015

Captain America 22Ed Brubaker // Mike Perkins
November 2006
****

As the morass of Civil War spreads, the mag keeps itself clean. For one thing, it turns the bad politics of that mini into a commentary on the Bush Admin, with Cap acting as Brubaker’s mouthpiece. #22 also adds a headcase to the files: Sharon Carter has been co-opted by the Red Skull’s shrink!

last issue: Captain America #21
next issue: Captain America #23

also indexed for Nov. ’06
Annihilation #2 of 6
Astonishing X-Men #17
Civil War #5 of 7
Daredevil #89
The Immortal Iron Fist #1
Nextwave, Agents of HATE #8
Runaways #20

Captain America 65th Anniversary Special #1 of 1

August 9, 2015

Captain America 65th Anniversary Special 1 of 1Ed Brubaker // Marcos Martin & Javier Pulido with Mike Perkins
May 2006
****

An anniversary cash-grab doubles as flashback for the mag’s current 2-parter. Late in the war, 19-year-old Bucky falls for a Resistance gamine while he, Cap & the Howling Commandos stop the Red Skull from exhuming a giant medieval robot (built, it seems, by a time-traveling Dr. Doom!). Brubaker fails to sell the romance’s importance, but Martin & Pulido’s matching 2D styles are sublime.

continued from Captain America #16
continued in Captain America #18

also indexed for May ’06
Annihilation: Prologue #1 of 1
Daredevil #83
Iron Man #6
Captain America #16
Nextwave, Agents of HATE #3
The Pulse #14
Runaways #14
X-Statix Presents: Dead Girl #3 of 5
Young Avengers #11

Captain America #10

August 2, 2015

Captain America 10Ed Brubaker // Lee Weeks
October 2005
***

Week’s fill-in art adds little to the long-perspective reminisce that provides backstory for the alt-timeline that’s swept across Marvel’s comics. In one early fork, Cap & Bucky kill Baron Zemo then capture Hitler! But Cap makes enemies in the ’50s “Mutant Scare”—& walks on the moon in ’55!

last issue: Captain America #9
next issue: Captain America #11

also indexed for Oct. ’05
Daredevil #76
Iron Man #4
Runaways #7
Young Avengers #7

Marvel Boy #6 of 6

February 24, 2015

Marvel Boy 6 of 6Grant Morrison // J.G. Jones
March 2001
****

Closure for an origin arc (#1 + 4-6): Noh-Varr the super-Kree helps his GF defeat her megalomaniac dad, then he’s incarcerated by SHIELD. He’s an outsider in the grand Marvel manner, pitted even against that tradition. Such raw potential in this character & also in GM’s style, not picked up till Nextwave.

last issue: Marvel Boy #5 of 6

also indexed for Mar. ’01
Avengers #38
Daredevil #14

Marvel Boy #2 of 6

February 20, 2015

Marvel Boy 2 of 6Grant Morrison // J.G. Jones
September 2000
****

Kid Kree lays waste to blocks of NYC as a punkish, antiauthoritarian declaration. Morrison, impressed by The MatrixFight Club, & other blockbusters of the era, revels in violence that emulates the WTO protests of ’99 but also discomfits the reader who lived through the terrorists attacks of ’01.

last issue: Marvel Boy #1 of 6
next issue: Marvel Boy #3 of 6

also indexed for Sept. ’00
Avengers #32
Thunderbolts #42

Avengers Annual 1999

August 10, 2013

Avengers Annual 1999Kurt Busiek & John Francis Moore // Leonardo Manco
July 1999
**

This action-adventure pits the Avengers against a squad of Sentinels repurposed to replace the once-MIA superheroes. The concept has Busiek’s fingerprints: adoration for the title team & its inspiring effect on everyday citizens. For it’s Jarvis who shuts the robots down, & a support technician who’d programmed them. Standard annual fare, tho’ Manco does good cyber-horror a la Barry Windsor-Smith.

last issue: Avengers/Squadron Supreme Annual 1998
next issue: Avengers Annual 2000

also indexed for Jul. ’99
Avengers #18
Avengers #0
Avengers Forever #8 of 12

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]

Captain America #250

September 3, 2012

Roger Stern & John Byrne
October 1980
*****
Cap considers a presidential bid on a third-party ticket but declines cuz he’s an idealist, not a pragmatist. A boldly introverted issue for a milestone number, #250 hit the racks for the autumn election, when Watergate still cast a black shadow over the Oval Office & the country seemed rudderless.
[last issue: Captain America #249]
[next issue: Captain America #251]

Captain America #248

September 1, 2012

Roger Stern & John Byrne
August 1980
***
A sturdy structure (& Byrne’s long, delicate line) propels the action from last ish to next. A megalomaniac designer of robots has targeted Cap, first w/ that Nazi replicant and now w/ a synthetic dragon (a classic Kirby creation). The issue’s charm, however, is seeing Steve hang w/ his neighbors.
[last issue: Captain America #247]
[next issue: Captain America #249]

Captain America #247

August 31, 2012

Roger Stern & John Byrne
July 1980
****
Byrne, at his peak (see UXM), collabs w/ pal Stern on a classic aborted run. So much potential’s already evident in this tight first issue. The duo nix Gerber’s alt-origin for Cap as false memories for undercover work, then threaten an old Nazi w/ extradition to Israel before revealing it’s a robot!
[last issue: Captain America #246]
[next issue: Captain America #248]

Secret War #1 of 5

May 18, 2011

Brian Michael Bendis // Gabriele Dell’Otto
April 2004
***

Nick Fury has evidence that supercriminals are funded by a post-Doom Latverian proxy—but he’s muzzled by the State Dept because Latv’s our ally! Bendis brings his hard-boiled espionage to the greater Marvel U but he may not be able to pull off the moral ambiguity. Jury’s out on D’O’s painted art.

next issue: Secret War #2 of 5

also indexed for Apr. ’04
Daredevil #57
Fantastic Four #510
New X-Men #153
The Pulse #1