All posts by Ryan Duelfer

This coming of age tale begins with a boy and his pack of sly ferrets; braving one of our countries’ most culturally rich and thus made beautiful city, Chicago! My role models consist of sci-fi heroes such as Scott Summers, leader of the feared and hated group known as the X-Men; cross that with likes of Arthur Pendragon from the film “Excalibur”, and you can only imagine that my hopes lay high in the sky, awaiting the inevitable coming of Galactus or the sweet terror of a zombie apocalypse. I’m one to engross myself in Tolkien’s beautifully crafted mythology, than spend a night by the television watching our own tear each other apart across this vast biosphere we found ourselves secluded on. Love thy neighbor, live long and prosper and don’t forget to shut off the lights on your way out.

Review: Uncanny X-Men #8 ‘Tabula Rasa Concludes!’

Uncanny X-Men #8
Writer: Kieron Gillen
Artist: Greg Land and Guru eFX

‘Tabula Rasa’ comes to a close on a very high note. Though this arc had a solid story, it was plagued with awkward pacing. The arc had a solid conclusion within the last issue. Here, we pick up the loose ends as Colossus delves deeper underground to find his sister, Magik, who has been captured by ‘mole’ natives. We also tie up Hope and Namors diplomatic expedition underwater; both of these story beats were introduced within issue 6, so you can see the pacing problem. Again, this arc does concludes on a high note, portraying some fantastic character development.

To get you up to pace, ‘Tabula Rasa’ is a rapidly developing ecosystem  created by Archangel (possessed by Apocalypse), during ‘The Dark Angel Saga’ within the pages of Uncanny X-Force. This wildly advanced and growing ecosystem was left unchecked and Psylocke, whom inadvertently took part in the events leading up to the creation of ‘Tabula Rasa’, brings its existence to Cyclops and his Extinction team attention. Upon arrival, the X-Men discover a humanoid race, who revere Archangel their God… carnage ensues.

As noted before, Kieron Gillen filled these pages with shocking character moments; further exploring Peter Rasputins transformation into the Juggernaut. Hope and Namors adventure underwater was humorous and downright nasty, revealing Namors fishy fetishes. This allowed penciler, Greg Land, to draw a jaw dropping image of Namor locking lips on a undwater squid queen! Just what I was hoping for when I cracked this baby open.

Greg Land produced solid pencils throughout; with woman well endowed, as always, yet he kept a proportionate female frame. One terrifying image comes to mind of Colossus giving into the demon Cyttorak, himself being disfigured and looming over his sister, Magik. This was a great scene, as Magik motivates Colossus to remember who he is and that the demon is only a part of that. Magik having her own personal demons to have overcome, this turned out to be a powerful scene.

Overall, this arc has a strong backbone of a story, but is oddly paced which made the overall arc feel stale. But again, this concluding issue was great. The closing scene is one I’ve been dreadeding to come and see the light of day, the first crack in Magneto’s ‘hero’ charade (unless you’ve been reading Magneto:Not a Hero mini). This larger than life team is revealing a lot of chaotic elements where I can’t imagine the statue quo surviving the upcoming event of ‘Avengers vs. X-Men’. But it’ll be a hell of a last song!

Story: 8
Art: 8

Personal Recommendations for the week:
Swamp Thing #7 – This series has been gold! The return of Swamp Thing!
Age of Apocalypse #1 – Surprised me, considering the state of affairs the universe was left in Uncanny X-Force.
Avengers: The children’s Crusade – Just give the Young Avengers back their own book already!!!!

Follow me on Twitter @ddsuperbatnix

Avengers vs X-Men #1 7-page preview! (It’s Coming?! No, it’s finally Here!)

For months Marvel has set the internet on ablaze with up-coming “Avengers vs X-Men” interviews, covers and promo art. Finally, Marvel has unveiled a seven page preview of issue #1!


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Will you side with the renegade mutants? Or join Earths Mightiest Heroes, The Avengers?

Get ready, Avengers vs X-Men hits your local comic shop this April!

Your First Look At AVENGERS VS. X-MEN #1!

This April, prepare for the biggest super hero war in comics history as Marvel is pleased to present your first look at Avengers Vs. X-Men #1! From the powerhouse creative team of Brian Michael Bendis, Jason Aaron, Matt Fraction, Jonathan Hickman, Ed Brubaker, John Romita Jr., Adam Kubert and Olivier Copiel comes a groundbreaking event pitting Earth’s Mightiest against the X-Men with the entire Marvel Universe at stake. Cyclops and his team believe the arrival of the Phoenix Force will save mutantkind, but Captain America is convinced it will destroy the world! But who is right? Don’t miss out on all the action in Avengers Vs. X-Men #1 in comic shops worldwide and on the Marvel Comics app this April!

Which team will reign supreme? Join the conversation on Twitter with #AvX!

For more on Avengers VS X-Men, please visit

FOC – 2/27/12, ON SALE – 4/3/12

Review: Winter Soldier #1 “Bucky Confronts his Past as the Winter Soldier”

Winter Soldier #1
Writer: Ed Brudbaker
Artist: Butch Guice and Bettie Breitweiser

James “Bucky” Barnes has lived one tragically long life. Recently, within the pages of Fear Itself, we believed Bucky (aka Captain America) to have found peace at the mercy of Sins Asgardian hammer. But thanks to Nick Fury and his stash of a version of the Infinity Formula, Bucky was revived by a heartbroken (Black) widows request. The Marvel universe now believes Bucky to be dead and only Nick Fury, Black Widow and Steve Rogers know the truth: Bucky Barnes has revived the legendary Russian agent, Winter Soldier! Bucky is back within his element, cast in the shadows. His plan? To tie up loose ends from his days as the puppeted Winter Solider agent during the Cold War. He won’t be alone, it seems that the Black Widow is a permament partner.

This issue kicks off with the Winter Soldier and the Black Widow entering a retired soviet base, presently disguised with a casino sitting atop it. Both Barnes and Romanov being natural spies, they quickly make way to a secret door leading to the underground base. The couple make a cute game of “First to be seen buys the mornings breakfast” as they incapcitate gaurds along the various complex corridors. They come along a familiar stasus pod, much like the pod the Winter Soldier was kept “preserved” inbetween missions. But this pod is clearly marked with the name: Zephyr. Could there still be undercover agents exectuing covert assassinations within the Marvel universe? If so, who controls them? And what does it all have to do with Dr. Doom!?

Winter Soldier creator, Ed Brubaker, launches the series as writer. Brubaker was a big pull for me, as he truly understands these characters and their personal voices. This is officially a continuation of his Winter Soldier mythology, first started within the pages of Captain America. And spy espionage dramas are both, Brubaker and Barnes expertee!

Penciler Butch Guice draws one fluid comic wide ation sequence. His detail on charcter expressions and faces has greatly improved from his last arc “Gulag” within the last Captain America volume. A handful of panels almost seem like he penciled over actual photographs, much like Alex Maleev’s art style. These panels crafted strong story beats that made the moment personable… if not a bit distracting. Guice’s panel placement need be commended, though he stuck to the basic rectangular box- it’s the way they were compressed and stacked that lead the eye and made the action and dialogue flow perfectly.

This is a solid beginning for a promising series. I forsee a long life with Brubaker leading the charge. This issue was everything you hoped and waited for, plus fun twists in choice of villian! And i’m not referring to the clocked tin man. Though I’m sad to see Bucky no longer wearing the flag, I’m glad he’s not dead: Long live the Winter Soldier!

Story: 9
Art: 9

Recommended this week:
Avengers X-Sanction #3 – Two unexpected guest crash Cables party!
Uncanny X-Force #21 – Fantomex undergoes mutliple Lobotomys. Reviewed here.
Swamp Thing #6 – The Rot inches ever closer to cutting off the Green.

Follow me on twitter @DDsuperbatnix

Review: “X-Men Legacy #261” When an Exodus comes a knockin’

X-Men Legacy #261
Writer: Christopher Gage
Artist: David Baldeon and Jordi Tarragona

Rogue, Gambit and Frenzy have arrived at the Jean Grey Institute and they barely have time to unpack their bags before something big and bad comes knockin’ upon their door. In this case, as the cover depicts, the big bad is ex-Acolyte leader Exodus. Last we saw Exodus was  in issue #225: Charles Xavier had persuaded Exodus to drop his scheme to reign supreme over the mutant race and instead band together and fight the good fight.  Here, he returns for an admirable cause–to reunite both Cyclops’ and Wolverine’s teams once again, as everyone agrees in ‘strength in numbers’ and that ideal has more than proven itself warranted during the time spent on Utopia.

So, Exodus puts forth an Ultimatum: come with him back to Utopia, freely or, if necessary, by force. Of course, no one likes to be told what to do, especially our southern bell Rogue. Admirable cause aside, it was a terrible presentation, so battle erupts! But here in the Jean Grey Institute, all children must evacuate to safety as the X-Men control the situation. I do enjoy Cyclops’ mentality that all mutants are active X-Men combatants, as the situation is ever so dire, but THIS is a breath of fresh air! And the teachers at the institute make one hell of an X-Men Team.

Christopher Gage crams this issue with content, which is always highly appreciated. The issue kicks off with Rachel picking Rogue’s brain on the current status of her relationship with Magneto, who is currently residing with (as Rogue perfectly states) his “heir to his legacy,” Cyclops (scary thought). Rogue and Magneto’s relationship, I believe, is bound to fail, between long distance and/or Magneto eventually ripping the world asunder once again. Personally,  I’m rooting for them (and Magneto’s prolonged good streak), as I’m a huge fan of their iterations during the Age of Apocalypse.

Penciler, David Baldeon’s cartoon expressive style accompanies the book’s brother title, Wolverine and the X-Men, perfectly. Both have the cartoon detail that adds a youthful tone that works well for the attempt to make these kids seem vulnerable, though we know most are well seasoned soldiers. As Gage’s script demanded, Baldeon formed his pages to read fluently and not seem crammed. Along with the cartoon style comes over the top effects and colors, which poops off the pages; it’s quite a bit of fun. Beast sports his new uniform, only shown in preview art for the upcoming arc in the Secret Avengers, and it looks great as his old uniform was awkward fitting… almost as if it was crafted by Emma Frost.

This issue was fun and has brought Exodus back into the forefront. I only hope he brings battle to Magneto and then inevitably joins the X-Men, ’cause everyone’s invited! Hell, I predict Mr. Sinister will be an X-Man this time next year. Jumping back, I may add that I’m extremely glad that Rachel Grey has been added to the cast, her history brings a lot of possible story devices and she’s part of the Summers/Grey clan–gotta love em’ all. Kudos to Mark Brooks on a fantastic cover. The next issue’s cover of a battered Rogue tops it!

Story: 7
Art: 8

Also recommended this week:

Justice League #5It gets real! -Reviewed Here!
Angel & Faith #6There’s a horrifying mosquito demon on the loose…and that’s just scratching the surface.
Secret Avengers #21.1The prelude to the formation of Hawkeye’s new secret espionage team!

Follow me on Twitter @ddsuperbatnix

Review: New Mutants #36 “Bringing Chicago down to it’s knees!”

New Mutants #36
Writer: Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning
Artist: David Lopez and Val Staples

Finally, the conclusion to this series current arc! The New Mutants past few issues have the team trying to locate Blink, under Cyclops’ orders as he’s trying to tie up all loose ends and Blink has been a pretty big loose end since the end of “Necrosha”. Blink has her own vendetta as she attempts to follow a touring metal band, Diskhord, who appear to be causing erratic natural disasters everywhere they play. This time, Diskhord has their eyes on our very own city, Chicago!

This arc has been really slow-moving with a really boring plot to top it off. I was expecting to hold my breath the whole way through, but to my surprise and delight, issue 36 turned out to be a really enjoyable read. We find, within the first few pages, how Diskhord came to have this chaotic power: An alien force  living on “chaos energy” has fractured into pieces, spreading all over the universe and it’s attempting to bring itself together by the use of random, chaotic events. This time being… an earthquake in the heart of Chicago! This arc wouldn’t have suffered as much, if this explanation of the alien force was revealed last issue or earlier.

I’m not too familiar with Abnett and Lanning’s previous work, other than that they revamped Marvel’s “cosmic” titles. Which I find it very possibly that this event of the chaos energy alien breaking apart, possibly happened in a previous issue of another series they handle. That’s just speculation though.

Magma steals the show this issue, though she doesn’t stand in the forefront of battle; instead she sits down and attempts to have a talk with the shifting plates about to bring Chicago down to its knees. This was an incredible show of power and I’m always happy to see a character shine in such a way. Blink was a fun, yet brief, addition to the cast, though it’s possible we won’t be seeing much of her. I was a huge fan of Nate Grey “X-Man” joining the team, but since his arrival he has contributed nothing to the story, nor to the dialogue. Other than his one scene where he’s training with Hope Summers in the danger room, has he really shined. And for the record, I’m very much into the idea of Nate and Hope building a close relationship together, as he is essentially a much younger version of her god-father, Cable.

David Lopez’s art was good and the action was smooth, but his lack of detail on the backgrounds, if there was any attempt at a background at all, was scarce. David’s character’s are always dead on. Facial expressions are always enthusiastic and his big bold eyes are entrancing. I very much enjoy his take on Cypher, as he always seems strung-out and exhausted; with the nature of his power, I find it very appropriate.

So, this arc was slow and I’m glad to be moving on, but this specific issue was very engaging and wrapped the story up nicely. Next issue, Magma must pay the price for the deal made with the devil during “Fear Itself”… date night with Mephisto!

Story: 7.5
Art: 6


Also recommended this week:

Batman #5 – Best Issue Ever…
Uncanny X-Men #5 – Dealing with “Tabula Rasa” a fallout of “The Dark Angel Saga”
Daredevil #8 – “Devil and the Details” pt2  Team-up with Spider-Man and Blackcat!


Follow me on Twitter @Ddsuperbatnix

Avengers Vs. X-Men: Round 1! Part 3: Vote Now!

To get the masses excited about upcoming story “Avengers Vs. X-Men” Marvel has been releasing images drawn by Marvel’s top artists; each portraying a one-on-one battle with one Avenger and one X-Man.

Here is the new slew of images recently released! Don’t forget to vote on who you think would win!

 Can Emma Frost shut down the Hulk with her telepathic powers before HULK SMASHES!


Is Beasts intellect and agility enough for the impenetrable skin of Luke Cage?




A battle between a Devil and an Angel… no one wins here…


For the fate of Hope Summers… one team will prevail.



Review: Buffy the Vampire Slayer S.09 #5 “A Really Gross Hickey…”

Cover Artist: Steve Morris

Buffy the Vampire Slayer S.09 #5
Writer: Andrew Chambliss
Art: Karl Malone and Andy Owens
Cover: Steve Morris

Issue five of Buffy the Vampire Slayer is a stand alone tale within Season Nine of the series. Artist Karl Malone substitutes as penciler, with regular series penciler, George Jeanty, returning next issue. Writer, Andrew Chambliss, puts a lot of new cogs and devices into play and drastically changes Buffy’s up and coming status quo. All exciting concepts awaiting to be fleshed out within this new series.

Surprisingly, this issue does not pickup issue fours cliffhanger; as “Freefall” arc’s villian, Severin. in defeat gains an unexpected yet familiar ally. Instead, this issue begins with our slayer experiencing strange reoccurring dreams. Remember the first slayer, dressed in tribal rags and face paint… usually has the stance of a Lowland Gorilla?… Well she’s back to once again harass Buffy’s subconscious while bearing cryptic messages about B’s future. She reveals that there may still be power contained in Buffy’s broken scythe (a legendary artifact to be passed down the slayer line), but is Buffy the one capable of accessing it?? You’ll have to pick up this issue to get the rest of the goods, as all this occurs within the first six pages, and you truly cannot pass up the cliffhanger, especially if you call yourself a fan of the Buffyverse.

Stand-in artists, Malone and Owens, craft a grounded and fluent presentation. Not quite the detail Karl Malone’s proven in the past, for example: Joss Whedon’s slayer of the future “Fray” and Frays arc within Season Eight was also pencilled with greater detail by Malone. As the backgrounds suffer most, his facial expressions are expressive as ever and accents Adrew Chambliss’ shocking story beats well. Also worth mentioning art wise, is Steve Morris’ beautiful with a touch whimsy cover art. He has been producing imaginative covers for “Buffy” and “Angel and Faith” since the beginning and I can only hope he’s in it for the long haul!

I’m very much enjoying Chambliss’ interpretations of our slayer as he hits Whedon-esq moments pretty flawlessly. It’s an incredibly important style that any writer must perfect before jumping into any Buffy character. With the events of Season Eight, primarily with the destruction of the life seed and Giles unfortunate end, we have a much smaller cast as must of the Scooby Gang is A) Dead or B) trying to live out the rest of their lives as normally as possible. That means we get a lot of Buffy time and that is a good thing.

Andrew Chambliss puts a lot into play for the series future and I’m finally feeling the excitement and the building momentum of Season Nine. The cliffhanger at the end of this issue opens the door for the series to crash head first into Christopher Gage’s “Angel and Faith” book. If you are by some odd chance reading “Buffy” but not “Angel and Faith”, I’ll have to kindly ask you to head to your local comic book shop and pick them up as they have been consistently enjoyable starting with issue one. And it also picks up heavily from the fallout of Buffy Season Eight. I’m ecstatic at the idea of the inevitable crossover between these two series!

Make Mine Whedon!

Story: 8
Art: 7.5

Also Recommended this Week:

Magneto: Not a Hero #3 – Magneto battles Josephs cloned version of the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants!
Wolverine and the X-Men #4 – The fallout of “The Dark Angel Saga” has dramatic repercussions on the Jean Grey institute!
Batgirl #5 – To save the life of Bruce Wayne…

Follow me on Twitter @Ddsuperbatnix

Review: X23 #20 ‘Laura chooses a side…’

Cover Artist: Kalman Andrasofszky

X23 #20 “Girls Night Out part1”
Writer: Marjorie Liu
Artist: Phil Noto

Laura Kinney begins her last adventure, before the unfortunate cancellation of the series with the next issue. Unfortunate indeed, as this series has been superb from start to finish.  It was dark and touched on subjects that I wouldn’t have expected, like underage prostitution and trafficking. Considering Laura’s upbringing, that shouldn’t have been a surprise and this series wouldn’t have been as truthful to X’s character if these weren’t the paths taken. The series could take a complete twist, being fun and mystical, with X battling dragons or being the vessel for a cosmic entity. I thought this series had it all! Also, Marvel’s collection is highly lacking in female solo books… the only one after X23 is Ghost Rider… and her face is on fire!

With that said, Marjorie Liu has penciled one hell of a run.

This issue kicks off with a four person touch football showdown, starting with a lighter note! May I add that it is always a pleasure to see X interact with X-Men that she regularly wouldn’t and for this instance, it’s Iceman! Laura’s mind works like a computer, always analyzing but never feeling anything, so there’s always an interesting dynamic when she interacts with new characters. The inevitable question gets poised: Which side will X23 take, progressed by Wolverine and Cyclops ‘Schism’. Thanks to Vampy-Jubes (Vampire Jubilee) who steals Laura away before she could answer for a night on the town and, you guessed it, adventure ensues! The plot gets a little heavy, as is Liu’s style but then ends on a happy note!

Artist Phil Noto does a fantastic job within. His subtle style is perfect for the grounded storyline.  I must add, that Noto does both art and coloring, which makes every panel personal. The color tones and highlights are perfect. Worth adding is a scene within a nightclub and every other panel had a different solid color tone, to mimic the changing lights; reminded me when I used to watch Batman Beyond when I was younger.

Cover to X23 #21 Series Finale!

I’m incredibly saddened to know that issue 21 will be the last. Laura has already begun her next adventure within another title and though I have very much enjoyed her character from her time spent with the students as the ‘New X-men’, I will not follow her exploits as a “superhero”. I was mad to here that the series was getting the boot and I was pissed to hear where she’s ending up, until I read this issue. There is a female guest-star, I won’t spoil who, her interaction made it all click. This series has been about Laura trying to find life inside of her, to make herself feel again and the progression into hero-dom now makes sense, I just feel it was forced on too soon due to the books cancellation. This series still had great forward moving potential and if there’s a petition out there to keep this series going, sign me up!

Story: 9
Art: 9.5

Follow me on Twitter @Ddsuperbatnix

Review: Generatioin Hope #14 The Lights Ignite!

Generation Hope 14 Cover Arist: Ibraim Roberson

Generation Hope #14
Writer: James Asmus
Artist: Ibraim Roberson

Last issue ” Regenesis” kicked started ( a story wide change within the X-Men’s numerous titles) and I admittedly believed that Generation Hope would continue down a lack-luster path. Previous issues have had high points, dealing mainly with the series leader, Hope Summers. But coming along into Regenesis brings new writer, James Asmus and artist, Ibraim Roberson, who have a new vision for our team of struggling youngsters. 

Generation Hope’s last issue set the stage for a possible new “light” appearing in Pakistan. Last issue, the crew also lost a member, Idie who joins Wolverine at the Jean Grey Institute but we get a fan favorite addition to the cast, Pixie. Pixie has already proved herself to be a valuable member as she acts as the groups resident teleporter. Hope brought her to the team so they can effectively travel across the globe at any notice of a new mutant/light appearing. If you haven’t read past issues, new mutants developing their powers are having an incredibly difficult time grasping them and are often a danger to themselves and others. For an unknown reason, it takes nothing but a gently graze on the hand by our little messiah, Hope Summers to assimilate the lights powers to a functioning state. With that being said, the team heads out to Pakistan to confront this new mutant, only to find the light isn’t some kid in need, it’s none other than Sebastian Shaw himself.

This is an obvious story thread placed by previous writer, Kieron Gillen, as he set the stage for Sebastian Shaw near the end of Uncanny X-men vol. 1. This discovery certainly adds much-needed tension within this teams dynamic, its new writer, James Asmus, that really makes this issue shine.

My main problem with this book before Regenesis was the slow development of the new mutants consisting of Hopes team. With the past two issues, I’ve witnessed more character development than i’ve seen in 12 issues before it. Kenji makes an impressive show of his physically limitless powers, Gabriel finds that his speed power is also accelerating his age, while Laurie toughens up a bit realizing the delicate state of the mutant race and that sometimes, violence is necessary to survival. Hope, now more than ever, has all the qualities that made Cable a great leader, from father to daughter.

Artist Ibraim Roberson has certainly upped the quality of this series. I first took notice of Ibraim’s work within “Escape from the Negative Zone” and I wasn’t really impressed. He had impressively detailed character designs, but his detail to backgrounds made each panel plain and monotonous. A few months back he did a fantastic one-shot tale within Uncanny X-Men, featuring none other than Hope Summers and Wolverine. Ibraim fired on all cylinders for the one-shot and has brought his “A” game with him in these past couple issues. One fault I have that deals with the art, is  a scene during a firefight, the team is trying to locate Pixie, whose been captured by the enemy. The whole time they’re talking about where she could be, though she was drawn in the background the whole time! Gabriel, the resident speedster, runs off the panel and brings Pixie back in his arms saying that he found her at a hidden location being guarded by her captors… no, she was with you guys the whole time trying to get your attention as you looked through her as if she were invisible.

Generation Hope may not have been at the top of my pull list, but with Regenesis comes new life to the series. We can only hope (pun intended) to see the series escalate to greatness before the coming war between the Avengers and X-men. Also, this issue has one of my all time favorite cliffhangers featuring my favorite, Scott Summers. Don’t miss it.

Story: 8
Art: 8.5

Also Recommended this week:
Wolverine and the X-Men #3 – This issue closes out the first story arc, introducing loads of new interesting characters.
Batman #4 – Bruce Wayne further investigates into the mysterious “Court of Owls”
Daredevil #7 – And Matt Murdock takes a group of students on a field trip, through hell… not literally, But damn!

Follow me on Twitter @DDsuperBatnix – Happy Holidays!

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If you’re a huge Tolkien fan or just a fan of Peter Jacksons superb interpretation of “The Lord of the Rings” Trilogy, feast your eyes on Jackson’s new addition, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey!

Join a much younger Bilbo Baggins as he sets on a grand yet unknown adventure, that leads to him finding the ONE Ring to RULE them ALL! If this movie is anything like the novel and Jackson continues to put the love and care that went into the original trilogy, this movie is going to be great!

Set your calendars for a year from now, The Hobbit releases in theatres December 2012.

Review: Magneto Not a Hero “And the clone returns…”

Magneto: Not a Hero
Writer: Scottie Young
Artist: Clay Mann & David Curiel (present)
Gabriel Walta & Rachelle Rosenberg (past)

Once upon a time, in the mid 90’s, Magneto had a clone named Joseph. Joseph was “created” by Astra, one of the founding members of the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants. Joseph, fallen under amnesia from a battle with Magneto,  was shortly found by a nun, who cared for him. Inevitably,  Joseph found his way to the X-Men, as he truly believed to be Magneto. His time spent with the X-Men was a great run; fighting toe-to-toe against Onslaught to traveling light years away, going on “Stars Wars” esque adventures. And then he sacrificed himself, undoing a wrong beset by the real Magneto, during the Magneto War.

Now, Joseph has returned, along with Astra; whose been busy cloning Joseph his own Brotherhood… though she’s lost her touch cause these guys are physically beyond normal. From there, you’ve gotta pick up the book to read the goodies inside. But I will tell you, this was a fantastic book. This wasn’t just a giant brawl of magnets, there is great characterization fleshed out by both Erik and Joseph. Scottie Young has a knack for portraying Magneto, as a powerful, yet refined force. Also, double kudos must go out to Young, as I know him mainly for his art and have only read his short tales from X-Men mini series.

Clay Mann was a perfect choice for this series. I fell for his portrayal of Magneto during his run on X-Men Legacy alongside writer: Mike Carey. Clay’s action has a great flow, you can almost feel the metal fragments float on page; which brings to mind one of my favorite scenes; where Erik and Joseph have a conversations the way only two Magnetos could, while walking upwards on floating metal pieces, above the Alps! Gabriel Walta joins the art team with this issue, penciling and inking a flashback sequence. Honestly, I didn’t realize going in that another artist contributed in this issue , so I thought mid-way through the flashback, Clay Mann rushed these pages, so i confer that I wasn’t moved by Waltas portion.

This mini series has been great thus far. There’s been a lot of character set up within the first two issues and I hope the next two continue to move the plot along and bring to life more dramatic tension between Erik and Joseph (the bag of ideas is endless here)  before they rip each other apart. I do also hope that Rogue makes an appearance before all is said and destroyed, as she was once romantically entangled with Joseph, as romantically entangled you could be with a gal like Rogue back then.

I am really grateful for this series though, cause I’ve loved the idea of  Magneto joining the X-Men since the Age of Apocalypse and I savor every moment I’m getting with his semi-new status quo… cause we all know, Magneto is NOT a hero.

Story: 8.5
Art: 8.5

Also Recommended this week:

Uncanny X-Force #18 – Reviewed by Roger Riddell, Here.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer S.9. #4
Avengers X-Sanction #1

Follow me on Twitter @ddsuperbatnix


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Review: Haunt #19

Haunt #19
Writer: Joe Casey
Artist:  Nathan Fox

The Haunt comic has been re-birthed with this weeks issue; welcoming new creative team consisting of Joe Casey and Nathan Fox. Here’s a quick recap of who the Haunt is, no spoilers, promise:

The Haunt is a symbiotic entity  that consists of a former priest, Kurt Kilgore and his deceased brothers ghost, Daniel Kilgore, an ex-agent of a mysterious military group known solely as, “The Agency”. The Haunt’s power is within his ectoplasmic/malleable body, which can create constructs that seem to fit whatever the Haunt can imagine.  The Haunt, in previous issues, worked for “The Agency”; helping to bring down the current kingpin of crime, Mr. Hurg. Other than Kurt Kilgore being a ghost and the recent introduction of “The Apparition”, the book has taken a real world approach to the stories and it’s characters. But with this new creative team, we seem to be jumping head first into the Other-Wordly.

The first couple pages introduces us to an avatar of chaos, obviously on some hell-bent mission to bring on an apocalyptic scenario to our not-so-seasoned protagonist, Haunt. His motives are unclear, but we understand he’s powerful and has a taste for destruction. This foe seems quite overwhelming for the Haunt, basing his actions from past events; Kurt and Daniel Kilgore have a lot to learn, in a short amount of time. There’s also a new demonic tone that Joe Casey brings, one that I was expecting from issue one. Though the idea was seeded throughout previous issue, the build-up was incredibly slow. So, this issue may be jarring to the senses, much to do with new artist: Nathan Fox.  But truly, I’m excited to finally get into the thick of it and find out what a Haunt, really is.

Insert from #19 Art by Nathan Fox

The art style has radically changed (as mentioned above) with the coming of artist, Nathan Fox and colorist, FCO Plascencia. Fox’s pencils are relaxed with thick lines, which works good with the nature of Haunt’s power. The action can get quite confusing, which is understandable when bodies are being shredded apart, with the blood and all.  FCO’s colors are rich and vibrant, making Fox’s imagery less hectic and more defined; the duo works well together. One thing that I truly did miss, were Greg Capullo’s splash pages! Honestly, most of his old splash pages, which were many, I used to think were a waste of space. Pretty? Sure. But a waste of space. Here, almost every other page I was expecting/secretly hoping, to find a sexy splash page of Haunt flipping in the air or of him flying above the city using wings constructed from his suit.

The Haunt series has just turned over a new leaf. One that was unexpected and hard to process, but a necessary one for the series survival. Hopefully new readers were drawnto the bitchen’ cover and hopefully old readers didn’t feel too lost. I for one, will be here for the next issue, as I’m interested in the direction Mr. Casey is going with the Haunt mythology.

Also, why was Daniel such a prick in this issue? You better have answers coming my way Joe!

Story: 7
Art: 8


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Review: The Walking Dead #90

The Walking Dead 90 Cover

The Walking Dead #90
Writer: Robert Kirkman
Artist: Charlie Adlard

“We Are The Walking Dead!”- Rick Grimes, Issue #24

They must be, cause there sure aren’t any zombies to be found in this issue. Usually, I wouldn’t be okay with such madness, if it had been in any other zombie medium. But with Kirkman at the helm, you’re sure to get a great character pieces.

This issue, like always, follows directly after the cliffhanger of the previous book.  Which in comparison to dozens of other past issues, this one is fairly light. The community, that Rick and company resides in, are beginning to fear them as they’ve shown a heavy dose of violence (competence) to recent life-or-death situations. As our gang is well oiled in almost every post-apocalyptic scenario imaginable (note to self *Not Possible.) this sheltered community fears they’re abrasive-ness and their will to survive in any given situation. They’re the alpha dogs and of course Rick nails the point in. The whole time Rick spouts a speech, stating that he doesn’t want to kill anyone that came before him, but he wants to protect everyone, while holding a gun dead to the face of the communities instigator. Don’t get me wrong, I believed every word that Rick said, just someone should have pulled him aside and said: “This is kinda why they fear us”.

As I’ve said before, there is not one zombie to be found in this entire issue; so kudos to Robert Kirkman for scene after scene of progressive character development. Like I’ve said in past reviews, I can’t help but get excited when I know the writer of a comic has passion and is excited as well to work on a project. This goes doubly for Kirkman as he is the creator and writer since the beginning of this series. So every character feels completely genuine to me. I never doubt if Rick is acting out of character, or if Carl is jumping in front of the wrong bullet. Some issues can get redundant, with minimal characterization. But then you get issues like this one and you can’t help but fall in love all over again. I can only hope that when Kirkman is finished, that Image Comics allows him to put the series to a close… and we’ll always have the television show which has endless material to play in and if you’re not watching AMC’s The Walking Dead, shame on you.

Charlie Adlards art is what we’ve seen issue in and issue out. He hits all the emotional beats, as he’s greatly improved drawing proportionate faces, which adds to weight of the drama. Though I’d say his backgrounds have taken a slight hit from the latter; but with great dialogue, the focus on the close-ups proved effective throughout the book.

This issue ends with yet another cliffhanger; not of terrifying proportions, but on the note of love. A love I’ve been dying to see come to pass! Cause again, with Kirkman at the helm, it just feels right.

Story: 9.5
Art: 8.5

And to send you all off, check out what my boyfriend bought me this weekend:

Rick Grimes B&W Variant - McFarlane Figures

That’s right, be jealous. =]

Follow me on Twitter @ddsuperbatnix

Review: Uncanny X-Men #544 “It’s the end of the X-Men as we know it, and I feel fine!”

Uncanny X-Men 544 Cover

Uncanny X-Men #544
Writer: Kieron Gillen
Artist: Greg Land

This issue of Uncanny X-Men is one of many issues depicting the emotional anguish from the fallout of Schism. It also marks the ending of volume one for this series, which is always sad and rarely justified; especially with the fact that volume two is right around the corner: coming in November. Mr. Sinister takes a role in this issue as narrator, walking us through the events that caused the break between Cyclops and Wolverine. As this event is still very fresh in our minds, his part in this issue was a complete waste of space in a comic that should have fired on all cylinders as a tribute that was the past 48 years of X-Men history. Granted, there was a scene within showing Sinister being, “birthed”?, from a mechanical sphincter and yes, it’s hilarious looking! Sorry for that spoiler, but from here you can run wild imagining the context around such event!

But, when you judge only half an issue on its content, it seemed mildly worth it. This series’  just coming out of an epic event with Colossus becoming the Juggernaut as a sister story of Fear Itself, which I think may be the best concept coming out of said story. So congratulations there! I was ready to wind down from these “larger than life” events marvel continues to weave, so the content between Scott Summers and the few X-men they could fit in, was touching. Beast had to fly himself to Utopia to make one last personal jab at Cyclops, cause we hadn’t heard it enough from him. Beasts’ character has certainly taken a hit; since they turned him into a whiner, thank goodness for Iceman in this issue!

Writer, Kieron Gillen, really attempts to set the stage for volume two of Uncanny X-Men, cue Mr. Sinister. I think everybody’s  “Hype-O-Meter” is soaring surrounding X-Men titles, that the necessity to plant seeds in this issue truly wasn’t necessary and really hurt the underlying emotional turmoil that this “family” is breaking. Never the less, I’m extremely excited for volume two, because ever since Gillen has come on board with X-Men titles, he’s been producing great work. Generation Hope took a while to find its wings, but it’s certainly starting to pick-up.

Uncanny X-Men Sketch, By: Greg Land

Artist, Greg Land, does a good job this issue. I am a fan of Land, though I agree his anatomy of a woman is tweaked to appeal to the perv in all of us. But he conveys emotion very well and holds weight in this issue with scenes of Cyclops packing away old photos with not a word spoken. Also, i commend the way he pencils Cyclops overall. Over recent years, Scott Summers has been built up to be a  commander of a truly powerful army and you have to almost have a Steve Rogers confidence and appeal to pull such a feat off and Greg Land really paints that image of him well.

This issue is an unfortunate send off to such an influential run. Though this sure doesn’t dampen the excitement for upcoming volume two! I mean, have you seen the roster, this team is going to rule the world within Cyclops and Magnetos iron grip! X-fan’s it’s an exciting time,  so save your pennies!

Story: 6
Art: 8

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Review: Batgirl #2

Batgirl #2 Cover

Batgirl #2
Writer: Gail Simone
Artist: Ardian Syaf

Batgirl leads in directly from the last issues tense cliffhanger; The newly established villain known as “The Mirror”, has a gun poised directly at Barbara Gordon’s Achilles Heel, her spine! The events that conspire present the vulnerability and doubt that Batgirl carries with her from her time in a wheelchair. Gail Simone excels at showing Barbara’s humanity when under the cowl of Batgirl. Where Batman almost feels legendary and bulletproof, in this issue you really feel the danger at present; Batgirl even makes a point that she’s not Batman and has to fight more with her Witt, than brawn.

Batgirl is the first Gail Simone series I’ve tackled and I’m quite impressed, though I’m certainly not surprised, I’ve heard nothing but rave reviews for her previous work on DC Comics “Birds of Prey” and “Suicide Squad”. Though this issue consists mainly of action sequences, there’s a perfect ratio mixed in of Barbara’s personal life and her father, commissioner Gordon, which I’m very excited about his plot thread!

The Mirror gets a quick back story, which delivered his motive, a touch similar to the modern-day cinema serial killer, Jigsaw. But i really am enjoying his character and at this point in the series, I see him as more a vigilante rather than a villain.

Batgirl #3 Cover

Ardian Syaf’s art is detailed and dynamic. his action sequences fail to bore; I always enjoy a good brawl, fought in a well drawn rain storm. Syaf’s character design sells the new villain: The Mirror, hands down. I feel he draws the villain with slight more care than with Batgirl, which i find surprising since Batgirl is sporting a pretty intricate new suite.

Overall, I’m very excited about this reincarnation of Batgirl. I’ve read that Gail Simone love Barbara Gordon, as a character and I can’t wait to see where she flys with her. It’s hard not to get excited when you know the creator is truly passionate, I can only hope that Gail Simone stays for the foreseeable future and beyond.

And still the gnawing question as to how Batgirl miraculously gained the use of her legs is again dangled in front of us with no satisfactory answer. The motive behind The Mirror makes the tension between these to quite exciting; as is seems to be closely tied to the recent mobility Barbara has found. Mix this with the pure excitement that comes with next months cover, really makes this series a sure pull.

Story: 9
Art: 9

Also, highly recommended this week:

Buffy the Vampire Slayer S.9 #2
Batman and Robin #2
Uncanny X-Force #16 – Reviewed by: Roger Riddell, Check it out @


Follow me on Twitter @ddsuperbatnix

Review: X-Men Schism #5

  X-Men: Schism #5
Writer: Jason Aaron
Artist: Adam Kubert

The end has finally arrived!

Jason Aaron you have successfully, hands down and without a doubt written a brawl between Scott and Logan that’s never been recorded in history. Was the merit of the fight a bit childish? Sure! But, did it make for a great story? Why, yes it did.

Going into Schism, I was not quite expecting the story that was delivered. Sure, I was a bit mislead by the mini series “Prelude to Schism”, where it was depicted as if all the X-Men were on Utopia awaiting some coming onslaught, of what is assumed to be sentinels, to reign doom upon their heads and that there was little hope for survival. Which also, I might add, Wolverine and Cyclops were at the height of their friendship by mini series end. But I don’t blame Mr. Aaron for that; I blame Marvel for taking advantage of the hype surrounding Schism as a whole. But, either way, the mini series did contain some great characterization and we got to hear the voice of Professor X, as he’s been oddly absent for months.

Well, lets go back to the fight! Ohh, the fight. With the way Schism number four ended, at the beginning of this brutal battle, I was sure that issue five would conclude with: Cyclops taking Wolverine’s right hand and Logan  cutting out Cyclops’ left eye; thus bringing upon “The Age of Apocalypse”!?! Though that didn’t quite happen, Jason Aaron did not disappoint. I mean, take a look at the so conveniently placed image to your right. And that’s the first panel of page one!

But let it be known that this issue was not just one big brawl, it actually had a lot of character work throughout the X-Men members. And you better bet that Sentinel that was inching it’s way to Utopia surely went down with a bang. Adam Kubert is great at framing action scenes, which built momentum. Though his art this issue seemed a bit rushed. Some panels I could’ve sworn were artist Ron Garney, which has a sketch style where Adam has defined lines. I had high expectations for each artist due to the fact that they only had to contribute one issue. So, I was hoping for the best. But ultimately, Adam Kubert’s art was good and most importantly he caught all the emotional tension on panel.

Now I’d like to nit-pick here, for the reasoning behind this fight hasn’t quite mad sense to me. I’ll be getting a little spoil-ery here, only making reference to what Marvel has already released online, and previous “Schism” issues. First, why does Wolverine want to blow up Utopia? Does he not remember that Emma, Magneto and company are incapacitated within the island? Or, that there is a whole Atlantean civilization beneath the shores suspending Utopia? Apparently he doesn’t much care for the livelihood of those Atlantean kids. Which brings me to how Wolverine finds himself on this moral high ground to open a school for youngsters after all is said and done? Is this not a cold blooded killer of men we are talking about? One who can’t go six issues, within any of his various comics, without falling into some rage or mind control. Sure, he’s had young side kicks in the past, but all he’s ever done is brought them in harms way. So, i guess my question being, why was it that Wolverine was chosen to provoke this “schism”? I feel if it had been Iceman, one of the original X-Men alongside Cyclops, had made the stand instead of Wolverine, then there would have been a large emotional weight and it would’ve just settled better in my stomach.

But nonetheless, Jason Aaron wove a fantastic tale, and even created a re-imagined and memorable incarnation of one of the X-Men’s greatest foes, the Hellfire Club. I’m excited to see how this group further antagonizes our mutants within upcoming title, “Wolverine and the X-Men”. Which will be written by Jason Aaron and I am ecstatic that he will be taking on an X-Men team going into “Re-genesis”.  The future is looking bright for our merry mutants, so sit back and enjoy the ride.

Story: 9/10
Art:     8/10

Also, highly recommended this week:

X-23 #15 MARVEL
Animal Man #2 DC COMICS
Swamp Thing #2 DC COMICS – Reviewed by: Mike DeVivo. Check it out@

Review: X-Men Destiny 360/PS3/Wii

X-Men: Destiny
Xbox 360, PS3, Wii

Let me start out by saying: “I am an X-Man”. I say this because I deeply immersed myself within the X-Men mythology at a ripe age of seven; reading issues written by Chris Clairmont himself (right before his steady decline; the man can only have so many incredible stories to tell and told he has!). When I first heard that X-Men Destiny was in early stages of production I couldn’t help but be ecstatic at the idea of controlling my much loved characters once again on a platform console. Also worth mentioning, the game is written by comic book scribe, Mike Carey, who does really great work writing X-Men’s title, “X-Men Legacy”. Unfortunately, soon after I read the announcement of the game, I come upon an article stating Silicon Knights grand idea to assimilate three brand new main mutants for you to control, and to hopefully create an unbiased experience thru the X-Men universe. Was this really a grand idea? Not so much.

But enough talk, let’s play!

The game begins in San Francisco during a mutant rights rally, featuring the X-Men as protagonists to the mutants freedom cause. The rally then falls under attack by who obviously seems to be Magneto, time will tell. Impending dangers ensues and you find yourself ready to choose from one of the three new playable characters, they are as follows:  

Aimi Yoshida, born in Fuji, Japan by her mutant birth parents, who decide to send Aimi away to America in fear that she’ll develop her own mutant abilities and be persecuted due to them within Japan. Why they believe America would better understand her “condition” was never made apparent.

Grant Alexander, born in Sandersville, Georgia, is a college freshman with the hopes of becoming a professional football player, and I know, these back stories are incredibly overwhelming!

Adrian Luca (the one that most grabbed my attention), born in Los Angeles, California, is the son of a martyr to a anti-mutant extremist religious group, known as the Purifiers. 

Finally, you get to choose one of three abilities for a main base power. One allows you to control your own density, by rocks forming in and around your body? Sure that makes sense. Or you can have the control of energy manipulation, which will eventually allow your character to supernova, becoming a tiny star. And last but not least, you can obtain the dark energy known as, the Shadow Matter. Shadow matter allows the player to create sharp knives that form around your hands, much like the power “Density Control”.

Now, the endless slaughter of Purifiers, U-Men and MRD agents can begin! Wave upon wave of bad guys will flock to you, which is the premise of most missions, destroy a specified amount of bad guys within the time limit and unlock an x-gene ability! Each non-playable mutant has three x-genes and a costume you can find through out the game and equip at any time. This leaves a large margin to really make your character something special. Most x-genes can be leveled up multiple times which is a welcome addition to the bland game play


As you play, you come across a plethora of mutant characters (both good and bad). Each character will have a short “mission”, if that’s what we have to call it, to determine whose side you’re on. Will you fight alongside the X-Men, in hopes of peaceful coexistence, or fight alongside the Brotherhood, terrorizing humaninty at every turn? Either way, it really dosen’t matter! These “decisions” will very marginally take you away from the main track which is the backbone of the story. Even your choice of character dosen’t change the story, more the way your character reacts to what’s going on around you. Whether you decide the Brotherhood over the X-Men, you still end with the same boss fight and same conclusion. The only difference being, during the end battle there is a forty second cut scene in which twenty of those seconds change depending on your decision to fight for good or bad. Now, if this would be your decider on whose side you’re going to choose, I’d side with the X-Men; Cyclops really blows you out of the water during those twenty seconds!


Fighting alongside the various X-Men and Brotherhood is a great joy. If there is one thing that Silicon Knights got right, it’s the action! You can’t have a proper button masher without great fighting mechanics. Your AI battle partners, which you’ll fight alongside most of the game, are a lot of fun to watch as they tare holes through groups of baddies. Most non playable characters kick butt and have fun moves, which is a pro and con. Pro: it’s an honor to fight alongside beloved mutants with incredible powers. Con: I want to be these beloved mutants with incredible powers!! Really, why can’t I just be Cyclops! You let me wear his themed costume and equip specific x-genes that resemble his powers, just let me play as him! This is exactly why DC Online never caught my eye. Sure it’d be fun to fight alongside your favorite heroes, but at the end of the day, don’t you just want to play as them?

Overall, the action sequences are fun; for instance, there’s a battle with Cyclops and yourself against Magneto and Juggernaut, on a chunk of the golden gate bridge that Magneto in suspending over San Francisco. As an X-Man fan, it blew me away! Honestly, it’s Cyclops and Magneto that steal the show every time they’re onscreen. It really solidifies the fact that I wanted to play as them in this war, not as their pawns. The idea of this game being that you can create your own destiny is laughable. And that’s beyond the fact that the game can be completed in one night.

So, if you’re looking for a fun X-Men game, keep looking, there are others out there. Like X-Men Legends, which lives up to its title. Here you can be the actual X-Men, fighting other powered mutants such as Magneto and battle the hate fueled machinations known as the Sentinels. And if you really want to be the bad guys, then look no further than X-Men Legends 2, where you can put together a four man group of just Brotherhood or mix it up with some X-Men! Your destiny truly is your own to create!


Score: 5/10

Review: Captain America and Bucky #622

Captain America and Bucky #622
Writer: Ed Brubaker and Marc Andreyko
Artist: Chris Samnee

Issue 622, being the third chapter into the new direction of the series, really hits the ground running. Ed Brubaker and Marc Andreyko delve into the early 1940’s, war torn Poland, crafting a modernized origin tale of Captain America’s young side kick, James “Bucky” Barnes. Brubaker has shown repeatedly in past issues how well he can write super-hero period pieces and this new direction for the series greatly reflects that unique voice.

If like me, you were a big fan of Bucky’s short term stint as the shield wielding Captain America himself and were side swiped by his unfortunate demise, then this series was created for you. The story shows the humanity of a non-powered teenage boy, fighting in a war alongside titans and at that, holding his own. With that said, the Invaders were a welcoming addition to this issues cast. While reading this issue yesterday, it marked the first time i truly realized the shoes bucky filled in his early career.

Steve Rogers takes a back seat in this one, falling victim to a crazed nazi’s mischievous schemes; really forcing our protagonist, Bucky, to step up and be the man he need to be and not the “mascot” Namor so eloquently jabs at him earlier  in this tale. And step up he does. Not only do we get to see the rise of the man Bucky is destined to become, but you get the sight of Bucky wielding the shield for the very first time!

I could go on all day about the affection i’ve grow towards Chris Samnee’s art (and I probably will in a future review), but i’d like the spotlight to be moved unto colorist, Bettie Breitweiser, who compliments Samnee’s images beautifully. In my opinion, one of the worst paradigm shifts throughout the evolution of art within comics, is the modern, overly enthused colorists, who cake on layer after layer of color shades and tints in attempt to hit a sense of realism. Colors “pop” in a two tone color scheme, like Breitweiser’s done in this issue. I can only hope that this pairing of artist and colorist has a long, lively run.

Overall, this was a solid issue. My one qualm is with the relevance of the series. It’s obvious i’m highly enjoying the ride thus far, but era pieces chronicling Cap and Bucky’s WWII days have been told countless times over the decades. Will this series pave the road to the inevitable return of our beloved hero? Will this series have ramifications for the modern day Captain America? One way or the other, Brubaker and Samnee are crafting an epic story that’ll be on the top of my pull list month in and out.

Story: 8.5/10
Art:     9/10

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