Secret Wars Rankings: Disappointing Endings Edition

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I know some (very few) people think this was fitting…but I thought it was garbage. At least they redeemed themselves somewhat with their Curb Your Enthusiasm “reunion”.

I get it.  Writing an ending is hard.  There are likely unreachable expectations to live up to.  All the while trying to tie up all the loose ends and plot points your series has introduced over its lifespan.  Some accomplish it better than others and some fail miserably.  In the last few weeks we’ve seen very weak final issues from Planet Hulk, Secret Wars Journal and Armor Wars.  And don’t even get me started on the last issue of Captain Britain.

After the break we’ll look at some of those books among the biggest winners and losers of this weeks Secret Wars Power Rankings.  Tom also drops by with his thoughts on the most overrated and underrated books of the rankings.

Continue reading Secret Wars Rankings: Disappointing Endings Edition

Tom Recommends: Hulk: Future Imperfect

Gabbing Geek Tom Recommends v2

Last week, I wrote up about the “Planet Hulk” storyline.  In that write-up, I mentioned how the Hulk has on occasion been a character that creators have been allowed a certain amount of experimental leeway with.  One such writer is a personal favorite of mine, and one of the better Secret Wars spin-offs was a retake of his earlier work.

The writer is Peter David.  The work was the two-part Future Imperfect mini-series.

Continue reading Tom Recommends: Hulk: Future Imperfect

The Secret Wars Power Rankings – September 21, 2015

powerThe best part of Marvel’s Secret Wars is that virtually every facet of the massive event starts with an issue #1.  This presents 49 different jumping on points.  Some stories may be based on characters you know, some series may be from another event or world you’ve read about, but all of them are different enough that you can pick up the series and start reading.  With that in mind, we’ve harnessed the powers of Jimmy Impossible (who’s actually reading the entire event) to power rank every single Secret Wars series.  Each week the rankings will change as new issues come out, so come take a look at the latest power rankings after the break!

Continue reading The Secret Wars Power Rankings – September 21, 2015

Secret Wars Rankings: Red Skull Edition

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Like this rag tag Marvel version of DC’s Suicide Squad? Don’t, they survive about 5 minutes…

In an event that is rife with ideas and revisited storylines from the 70’s on up, there is still room for it to be unique.  One of those new ideas is that of The Shield.  A planet wide border wall that keeps the likes of Marvel Zombies, Ultron and the Annihilation Wave from overruning the more “civil” domains on the rest of Battleworld.

The Shield and the domains it protects the rest of the planet from, are also where anyone that defies God Doom and his rules are cast.   Sentenced to either serve for the rest of their days as a defender of The Shield or to fight to stay alive against the horrors on the other side.

This concept has been the backbone of some great series (Siege, Marvel Zombies, Infinity Gauntlet) but also of some that started with great set ups and promise and fell flat (Age of Ultron vs Marvel Zombies, Red Skull).

After the break I’ll look at this weeks biggest movers including Red Skull as well as get Tom and Ryan’s thoughts on the most over and underrated series.

Continue reading Secret Wars Rankings: Red Skull Edition

Tom Recommends: Planet Hulk

Gabbing Geek Tom Recommends v2It’s hard to make a corporately-owned superhero intellectual property something distinct.  The temptation is to generally keep the character in the form fans recognize him or her in the most and try to give him or her some exciting adventures to please the fans.  In fact, the more high profile the character, the less editorial is going to allow a certain level of meddling.  Second and third stringers can be used for that sort of thing.

That’s sort of what makes the Hulk a unique character.  Though often depicted as just a big, stupid brute who doesn’t understand how to use personal pronouns, the Hulk has often been used as a more experimental character, someone whose intelligence and setting can fluctuate depending on the story’s needs.  The Hulk is high profile enough for Marvel to always have a Hulk book of some kind in publication, but not enough for them to really care as much about what he’s doing as they are, say, Spider-Man.  That’s led to some interesting Hulk runs and experiments in the character.  Writer Peter David played with the idea Bruce Banner had Multiple Personality Disorder and had different Hulks appearing at different times until Doc Samson figured out how to merge them into a composite being that was always the Hulk.  Paul Jenkins developed this concept further, and had a run complicated by Bruce contracting Lou Gehrig’s disease and needing to find some sort of cure before he had to become the Hulk permanently.  Even Bruce Jones, a writer whose comics I don’t much care for, initially had an interesting run where Banner was on the run from some conspiracy that seemed supervast and complex until Jones wrapped the whole thing up in two issues by saying it was just the Leader the whole time, which ended something cool in a lame manner.

And then there’s the Planet Hulk storyline, which may have been one of the most ambitious Hulk storylines ever done.

Continue reading Tom Recommends: Planet Hulk

The Secret Wars Power Rankings – September 14, 2015

powerThe best part of Marvel’s Secret Wars is that virtually every facet of the massive event starts with an issue #1.  This presents 49 different jumping on points.  Some stories may be based on characters you know, some series may be from another event or world you’ve read about, but all of them are different enough that you can pick up the series and start reading.  With that in mind, we’ve harnessed the powers of Jimmy Impossible (who’s actually reading the entire event) to power rank every single Secret Wars series.  Each week the rankings will change as new issues come out, so come take a look at the latest power rankings after the break!

Continue reading The Secret Wars Power Rankings – September 14, 2015

Secret Wars Rankings: Hail Hydra Edition

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So apparently “Hail Hydra” is quite the meme.  Just do a quick image search on it.  Endless images of various people and characters saying it and one very pissed off Sam Jackson telling people to knock it off.

I missed this becoming a thing, but there it is.

It is also the biggest mover this week along with House of M.  That doesn’t mean they are great…just not as bad as they were last week.

After the break we’ll examine those series and also get Ryan and Tom’s thoughts on this weeks most overrated and underrated in the rankings.

Continue reading Secret Wars Rankings: Hail Hydra Edition

Public Intel–Everything You Need To Engage In Secret Wars

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In the landmark 50th episode of the Gabbing Geek podcast, the Geeks had a lengthy discussion about the current Secret Wars event.  Part of the exchange went something like this:

Ryan: Armor Wars is awesome!!!!!  You guys should read it!!!!
Watson: You’ve lost me already.  I need to know the details from a nearly three decades old Iron Man story to read this?  I don’t think so.
Ryan: You don’t need to know anything about the old Armor Wars story.
Watson: Uh huh.
Ryan: Na uh.
Watson: Uh huh.
Ryan: Na uh.
Watson Uh huh.
Ryan: Uh huh.
Watson: Na uh…dammit!  Ok, I’ll read it.

The conversation did get me thinking though…what prior knowledge do you need to read some of these books?  Many share the names of events I may not have read.  What if, for example,  I haven’t read the original Infinity Gauntlet (and why haven’t you…but that is another column) can I read the new series?

You can find the answer to that question about every Secret Wars series after the cut.

Continue reading Public Intel–Everything You Need To Engage In Secret Wars

The Secret Wars Power Rankings – August 31, 2015

powerThe best part of Marvel’s Secret Wars is that virtually every facet of the massive event starts with an issue #1.  This presents 49 different jumping on points.  Some stories may be based on characters you know, some series may be from another event or world you’ve read about, but all of them are different enough that you can pick up the series and start reading.  With that in mind, we’ve harnessed the powers of Jimmy Impossible (who’s actually reading the entire event) to power rank every single Secret Wars series.  Each week the rankings will change as new issues come out, so come take a look at the latest power rankings after the break!

Continue reading The Secret Wars Power Rankings – August 31, 2015

Jimmy Attempts To Read All Of Secret Wars XXII

Secret-Wars-5-cover-Alex-Ross

Much like the publishing of Secret Wars itself, my read through has fallen behind schedule.  Nothing of the epic Convergence proportions (yet)…but I still have a lot of catching up to do over the next few weeks.

After the cut I share my thoughts on Secret Wars #5, Loki: Agent of Asgard #15, A-Force #2, A-Force #3, Secret Wars 2099 #3 and Secret Wars 2099 #4.

Related links:
Secret Wars Power Rankings
Tom’s Road To Secret Wars: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6,7.
Other parts of this series: 1, 2, 34, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 1415, 1617, 18, 19, 20, 21

Continue reading Jimmy Attempts To Read All Of Secret Wars XXII