The Top of the Pile: Vision #4
Words: Tom King
Art: Gabriel Hernandez Walta
Just as everything is coming together, everything goes to hell. After finally finding love for The Vision, Virginia must respond to the one person who threatens that love – and her response will shock the Marvel Universe. A not-to-be-missed ending that builds to next issue’s breathtaking climax.
The Vision has been one of Marvel’s most popular super heroes, and like other A-listers from the Silver Age, he is burdened with a complicated history and convoluted cannon. This latest Vision series gets back to the core of who or what the Vision is, a cybernetic super-weapon turned hero who wants to live like a normal person. Tom King’s Vision literally builds himself a family and attempts to settle them down in the peace and quiet of suburbia, but inevitably trouble comes knocking at their door. Now we find out how far the Visions will go to protect their family. A dark and fascinating, suburban horror story, Visions feels like the most all-new, all different series from Marvel’s relaunch.
The Mainstream One: Invincible Iron Man #6
Words: Brian Bendis
Art: Mike Deodato
‘THE WAR MACHINES’ STARTS NOW! Something is not right in the house of Stark, and Tony must delve into the nooks and crannies of his international organization to find out what. Plus: The first big clues of major things to come in the Marvel Universe!
Marvel’s teasing their next big event and it seems like it will involve Iron Man and what sounds like a whole squad of Iron Men and Women. MJ officially joined Team Tony last issue and I’m keeping a close eye on that situation. If you remember back in September when Secret Wars Renew Your Vows #5 came out, there was a lot of buzz surrounding the appearance of a certain someone wearing certain armor. The hype quickly died down once readers found out that Renew Your Vows was not carrying over post relaunch, but maybe Marvel was playing the long game. Spider-Gwen and Gwenpool were surprise hits, could Iron Jane be next?
The Indie One: Paper Girls #5
Words: Brian K. Vaughan
Art: Cliff Chang
The first arc of the smash-hit ongoing series concludes with major revelations and another game-changing cliffhanger. MAJOR PLOT POINT Lots of answers to our major mysteries in this issue, as well as a final page that will completely transform the book’s status quo before our series’s first regularly planned hiatus.
This series has been so much fun. Paper Girls has been everything I wanted and nothing that I expected. It’s been one surprise after another. Asides from the crazy, scifi elements, the best thing about Paper Girls is how it honestly captures, for me, what growing up as a child in the 80’s felt like without falling back on tired cliches. There was a multi-page spread in issue #4 where we witness one of the girls, Tiffany, as her life flashes before her eyes, and it’s just scenes of her on the couch playing Breakout on the Nintendo. I have absolutely no idea how Vaughan plans on topping last month’s cliff-hanger, but I’ll be there when he does.
The #1 One: Spider-man #1
Words: Brian Bendis
Art: Sarah Pichelli
Miles Morales has been doing the super hero thing for a while, now, but after SECRET WARS, he’ll be a full-fledged member of the Marvel Universe. Swinging next to The Invincible Iron Man, The Mighty Thor and the All-New Captain America as a card-carrying member of the Avengers is an adventure, but it’s not all fun and games for New York City’s main Spider-MAN! What happened in the eight month gap? It all starts in SPIDER-MAN #1!
Miles makes his triumphant entrance in the Marvel Prime universe and he’s landed the full-time Spider-man gig. Spider-man was originally a story that was painted with teenage angst. Peter Parker was a kid who got picked on by bullies, was awkward around girls and had everyday problems that all ages could relate to. But he grew up, graduated high school and then college, made a career as a photographer at the Bugle, married MJ then made a deal with the devil to erase his marriage to MJ, and rose to CEO of the multinational Parker Industries. We’ve witnessed a huge evolution in Peter Parker’s character and those just aren’t the kind of plot lines that will hold a teenage audience. Enter Miles Morales with his trusty sidekick Ganke Lee and we’re back in New York’s high school system. Another Marvel series, returning to its core.
The One I’m Buying For the Cover: Detective Comics #49 (Neal Adams variant)
Words: Peter J. Tomasi
Art: Fernando Pasarin
Caught up in an cold case from his days on the force, James Gordon grapples with the new freedom he has as Batman to investigate the crimes of Gotham City?and the slippery slope that this freedom can be. Does the system he’s believed in all this time still work? Or is it the only thing he has left to hold on to?
I give DC a lot of credit for their variant incentive program. Their themed variant months have been great. The Harley and Joker months produced some memorable covers, I loved the entire set of Looney Tunes covers, Harley’s Black Books make me feel like Charlie Bucket every time I crack open one of their polybags, and I’ve recently spent hours creating masterpieces out of their adult coloring book covers. These themed variants are fun, they look great, and most importantly they are cover-price.
For the month of February, DC pays homage to the legendary Neal Adams by publishing 25 variant covers drawn by Neal Adams. This month’s variant covers revisit and re-imagine some of the most famous and recognizable covers originally drawn by Adams. The Detective Comics #49 variant is a swipe of the cover to Batman #227, which itself is a swipe of 1939’s Detective Comics #31 drawn by Batman creator Bob Kane.