Tag Archives: issue #1

Issue #1: Mockingbird

Mockingbird_1_CoverTitle: Mockingbird #1 (2016)

Writer: Chelsea Cain

Artist: Kate Niemczyk

The Buzz: Last year, I raved about Chelsea Cain’s Mockingbird one-shot as part of the SHIELD anniversary – and I wasn’t the only one. Mockingbird/Agent 19/Bobbi Morse is a fantastic character with so much potential: scientist, secret agent, martial artist, Avenger. It doesn’t hurt that she is played with great dynamism by Adrienne Palicki on the Agents of SHIELD TV show. Until the recent one-shot, she has never had her own solo series, and I am so glad that Chelsea Cain has snatched Mockingbird to her bosom.

“I’m drawn to Bobbi because she’s a terrific character—she’s brainy and cool and confident, and quick with a quip,” she enthuses. “In fact it turns out we have a few traits in common. We’re not big sharers. We’re control freaks. And we’ve both been married to Clint Barton.  I mean, what are the odds?”

Continue reading →

Issue #1: Black Widow

Black_Widow_1_CoverTitle: Black Widow #1 (2016)

Writer: Mark Waid & Chris Samnee

Artist: Chris Samnee

The Buzz: This creative team have just come off a highly celebrated run on Daredevil, and the previews for this run emphasised the commitment that the team have to working on Black Widow (who has herself just finished up a highly praised run by Nathan Edmondson and Phil Noto) as an old school spy adventure story.

All You Need To Know: Natasha Romanova/Romanoff is a former Soviet assassin, spy, Agent of SHIELD and Avenger, with a hint of ballerina and a drop or two of Super Soldier serum in her veins. She’s badass.

Story: This first issue is more of a statement of intent than a story: Natasha is on the run from her former allies at SHIELD, having stolen something important from them, and the entire first issue is dedicated to her getaway. It does for Black Widow what the pre-credits sequence of a Bond film is supposed to do, and it does it exceptionally well.

Continue reading →

Issue #1: Spider-Man

Spider-Man_1_Cover-1Title: Spider-Man #1 (2016)

Writer: Brian Michael Bendis

Artist: Sara Pichelli

The Buzz: The good news is that Secret Wars/Battleworld is finally over, and I don’t have to feel stupid about it, because NO ONE understood what was going on with that whole mess of an event. But now the much-discussed Ramifications have landed in the Marvel Universe – which, as far as I can make out, pretty much means we get Miles Morales, AKA the Ultimate Universe’s second Spider-Man, AKA the black Spider-Man, in the normal Marvel Universe now. And nothing else has changed, I think? (Spider-Gwen still gets to hang out in her own universe, as I assume does Gwenpool)

Another Big Deal about this particular title is that while Peter Parker is still around in the Revised Marvel Universe that we used to call 616, and is going to have his own comics to play in, Miles gets the official Spider-Man With No Qualifier title, which is a nice way of acknowledging his importance to the Marvel U – likewise Miles is part of the All-New, All-Different Avengers, which is probably a better option than having Peter Parker’s Spider-Man in every possible team book all at once. We all know that only Wolverine can use teleportation to multi-task appearing in so many books at once, right?

All You Need To Know: So there was this other universe called Ultimate that Marvel launched in 2000 as a more modern reboot of their classic characters – and the lynchpin title was Brian Michael Bendis’ Ultimate Spider-Man in which a hapless 15 year old Peter Parker got to suffer and experience his decades of epic storylines all over again. Finally the poor kid was killed off in a horrible, horrible sequence, only to be succeeded by Miles Morales, one of the most popular of the Ultimate universe’s creation. Now he’s here instead, and Peter Parker is alive too, and if you think this title will explain any of that, then you are reading the wrong comic.

Continue reading →

Issue #1: Archie

Archie-2015-001-002Title: Archie #1 (2015)

Writer: Mark Waid

Artist: Fiona Staples

The Buzz: Possibly one of the most famous comics not involving a cape of some sort? Archie is one of those comics I read a lot as a kid and never picked up again, mostly because of the vapid and irritating focus on Betty and Veronica fighting over Archie, endlessly, for decades. But I keep hearing things, you know? About how the Archie comic has changed for the better, about diversity and representation and adapting to the 21st century and so on. I even occasionally picked up one of the fairy tale retelling comics for my daughters because they looked cute…

But this is a hard reboot. A contemporary reframing of Archie – in the hands of two excellent comics professionals at the top of their game. I mean come on, Fiona Staples drawing Archie? I had to check it out.

All You Need To Know: It’s a reboot so you don’t need to know anything! If you’ve ever read or had preconceptions about the Archie franchise, you need to know that this version is almost certainly less annoying than any other Archie comic you may have picked up over the last 75 years.

Continue reading →

Issue #1: The Adventures of Supergirl

supergirlTitle: The Adventures of Supergirl #1

Writer: Sterling Gates

Artist: Bengal (cover by Cat Staggs)

The Buzz: This digital-first comic is based on the CBS Supergirl series, which provides a whole bunch of in built buzz of its own. More to the point, it’s the cute, fun all-ages Supergirl comic that DC should never NOT have been publishing – given the recognisability factor of Supergirl as a character (my daughter fell in love with her based on an image on a drinking glass), this is the perfect gateway title for young girls to get into comics as a source of adventure stories. Check out this article about how much this comic has been needed.

All You Need To Know: If you’ve watched the pilot of the show (or the extended trailer of same) you pretty much have what you need, and if not this 1st issue is pretty good about covering the basics. Story elements specific to the CBS version of Supergirl include her adopted sister Alex Danvers who works for a covert ops aliens-are-of-interest squad who support and study Supergirl, run by Hank Henshaw. Presumably we’re also going to see the Calista Flockhart interpretation of Cat Grant and ditto for the rest of the office staff, but they’re not in this first issue.

Continue reading →

Issue #1: Hellcat (2016)

Patsy-Walker-AKA-Hellcat-1-Cover-807d5Title: (Patsy Walker, AKA) Hellcat #1

Writer: Kate Leth

Artist: Brittney Williams

The Buzz: Marvel made several genius moves with this particular title – announcing it just as Trish “formerly known as Patsy” Walker was winning hearts as the BFF with superhero aspirations in the Netflix series Jessica Jones, and putting together a fantastic creative team whose involvement practically creates its own buzz – writer Kate Leth is a Tumblr comics queen (kateordie.tumblr.com/) who has been making a name for herself in all-ages tie in comics like Adventure Time and Bravest Warriors. Brittney Williams is the current artist on Lumberjanes, one of the biggest hits of the recent wave of indie girl-centred adventure comics.

Continue reading →

Issue #1: Spider-Woman (2015)

spider-womanTitle: Spider-Woman #1

Writer: Dennis Hopeless

Artist: Javier Rodriguez

The Buzz: All I knew about this going in was the cover art with a massively pregnant Jessica Drew looking cheerful. Pregnant superheroes ahoy!

All You Need To Know: The Spider-verse has been pretty damn active over the last couple of years, and I’ve barely got a handle on any of it. Jessica Drew is a former Avenger, SHIELD agent and spy… and now she’s pregnant. This is her maternity leave.

Story: Unlike the Spider-Woman series that launched last year, this one is a genuine number 1! It introduces the characters and set up without you feeling like you’ve missed a bunch – or at least, you have missed a bunch, but that’s because there’s been a time skip, so everyone has too!

Continue reading →

Issue #1: All-New Hawkeye

downloadTitle: All-New Hawkeye #1

Writer: Jeff Lemire

Artist: Ramon Perez

The Buzz: None really? After the epic last run of Hawkeye, the new team got 5 issues to play with before Battleworld/Secret Wars shook everything up – the story was fine, with many elements in common with its predecessor, though it had a weird ending. Now it gets a second relaunch for the year…

All You Need To Know: Kate and Clint are fighting because of a previous mission where they had to rescue some scared test subject kids, who turned out to be super dangerous. Clint came to terms with giving up the kids before Kate was and she’s pissed off about it…

Continue reading →

Issue #1 – Totally Awesome Hulk

Totally_Awesome_Hulk_1_Cho_VariantTitle: Totally Awesome Hulk #1

Writer: Greg Pak

Artist: Frank Cho

The Buzz: A teenage Korean-American Hulk written and drawn by a Korean-American creative team! Amadeus Cho is a fun younger character who actually enjoys a) being a superhero and b) being a Hulk, which is already a fresh take on the old franchise. Check out this interview with Pak and Cho.

All You Need To Know: Amadeus Cho is a teen supergenius who started out as a sidekick to the Incredible Hercules and ended up tangled in all kinds of pantheon shenanigans, eventually replacing Hercules as the head of the Olympus Group, a corporation run by the Greek Gods. Yes, really. I don’t know how he became a Hulk. Shit happens, I guess.

Story: This is a fun ‘Hulk family’ book with appearances from She-Hulk and classic Bruce Banner, though the focus is very much on Amadeus and his sister Maddy who does field support for him via radio and is concerned that he’s not taking his hero business seriously enough. Plenty of banter and humour, this has to be one of the most likeable (non-She) Hulk titles I’ve come across before. As a comics reader who started with DC in the 90’s, I’m a big fan of second generation/legacy characters and this is a great example of that.

Continue reading →

Issue #1 – New Avengers (2015)

New_Avengers_1_CoverTitle: New Avengers #1

Writer: Al Ewing

Artist: Gerardo Sandoval

The Buzz: Let’s be clear here, I’m only reading this because Wiccan and Hulkling are in it.

All You Need To Know: Roberto DaCosta, former New Mutant, has purchased a formerly evil organisation full of Science! And also an island. Some of the Marvel Universe’s young uns are on the AIM team, and also Hawkeye as the official SHIELD traitor spy. No, not the Hawkeye anyone actually wants on a team with Wiccan and Hulkling (sorry, Clint).

Secret Wars is over, the Marvel Universe is more confused than ever, and that’s all I’ve got.

Story: The team of the New Avengers includes my darling sweeties, Wiccan & Hulkling (most adorable teen gay couple in the Marvel Universe, not that you could really tell that from this issue), the usually hilarious Squirrel Girl, and classic Clint Barton Hawkeye. (The team also includes the next gen versions of White Tiger and Power Man, who previously appeared in the Mighty Avengers, but I didn’t stick with that title long enough to get the hang of them. And someone called Songbird) Apparently they’re going to do science and save the world from an exotic island base and that sort of thing, but this issue mostly consists of some erratic plane flying, shooting and a lot of earnest conversations, plus an attempt at banter.

Continue reading →