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BO'S WEDNESDAY HEADS UP: 061406
"These reviews are based on the Sneak Peek titles sent out by Marvel, DC & Image. It's not everything that's shipping for the week, but it is a real good cross-section of this weeks releases. Check the bottom of the page (after you read my reviews) for a link to some SNEAKY PEEKIES of future titles"
BOOK OF THE WEEK: THUNDERBOLTS #103
Comic Review by:
Larry "Bocepheus" Evans
Writer: Fabian Nicieza,  Artist: Tom Grummett

The role of the Thunderbolts is defined here with their tie-in to Civil War which really does have Zemo and Iron Man shaking hands as they do on the cover. We begin in the middle of action as Peter Parker is on TV revealing his biggest secret (so if you pick up Civil War #2 you can read that there or in here) and half of the T-Bolts are fighting the villain Quicksand. We get a clue of how the villains of the Marvel Universe feel about the Registration Act (since they have records it isn’t that big of a deal to them) as they deal with a successful job before the arrival of the rest of the team at the Department of Homeland Security. From there we see the conference between Zemo and Stark (as well as Yellowjacket and Reed Richards) and see that what we would have expected to happen doesn’t because what Stark proposes has everything to do with the villains and nothing at all to do with the heroes of the Marvel Universe. We see the first mission under the new directive here and the celebration that follows before Nicieza leads us to an ending that we don’t see coming at all. That final two page spread by Grummett suggests that something major is going to happen within the ranks of the Thunderbolts as well as the Marvel community at large.

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MARVEL ROUND UP…
Annihilation: Super-Skrull #3 (of 4) moves us closer along to the massive battle that will begin when the Annihilation limited series begins. The Skrull has a small army with him on his part and here we got a lot of talking and even with that there is a fair amount of destruction…Spider-Girl #99 in the next to last issue of the series that just will not die (they should have tossed Matt Hardy in an issue as a joke) so here we get lots of small fights as all the players are set up for the extra-sized end game in a month. The book is loaded with action and shows that comics can be fun but it is still amazing that this book lasted as long as it did…Sensational Spider-Man #27 concludes the Feral arc and shows us more cool things that the Spider suit can do as we see why all these things were happening. Angel Medina returns as artist and it is a shock to see the great Clayton Crain cover then have to look at Angel's completely out of proportion art….Wolverine: Origins #3 shows us the origin of Nuke and how James made him the combination of metal and plastic that he is today. It’s a creepy story and we see a side of Wolverine that we generally don’t and that makes us feel sorry for Nuke. The issue ends with the appearance of another player wearing red, white and blue that promises a spectacular fight next issue…Marvel Adventures: Fantastic Four #13 is a cool issue drawn by Juan Santacruz and written by Justin Gray. It takes place on Ego, the Living Planet and even though this is a younger readers book I think everyone can enjoy this…Marvel Romance Redux is just another collection of silliness that makes the day go faster. Whoever came up with the idea of reprinting classic romance comics and redoing the dialog should be commended…Ms. Marvel #4 returns an old villain of hers that frankly I forgot but it leads to a guest appearance of Dr. Strange that is fun and makes perfect use of him…Two Gun Kid is 40% OFF this Wednesday and is the first book in the Mighty Marvel Western Event. The issue combines new stories (a sweet little tale from Dan Slott and Eduardo Baretto, a funny short one about the world’s smallest cowboy) with a classic one (a three part Rawhide Kid tale about the Terrible Totem).


DC ROUND UP…
Red Sonja/Claw #4 ends the limited series with the expected fight between the stars and a resolution that is just a set up for the regular Claw series that begins shortly and will probably end shortly as well…Elric: Making of a Sorcerer #3 finally ships and I would bet that most people have forgotten the book even existed. The over-sized book is entertaining but after all this time I do wonder what the point was of releasing it. This would have been better served being completed as a trade because I have doubts this issue will even sell 1,000 copies…American Virgin #4 finishes the initial arc and has our lead in Swaziland (along with his sister and a mercenary) trying to find the killer of his friend, Cassie. He does find what he is looking for but not all the answers he was seeking. Very well written, the art fits the book and I have no belief that this book will last more than 12 issues. The Vertigo books that have worked had characters or situations that fans could get into and here we are following a virgin who the moment he loses his virginity causes the conclusion of the book. Yes, Steve Seagle does kill the woman he was going to lose it to in the first arc but that does nothing to suggest a long series…Firestorm #26 shows us more of what is happening with Professor Stein as he is being held captive by the strange looking Pupil and sets up a scenario that will be played out in the next issue. The Firestorm Matrix is still screwed up and still have no idea who is interested in finding out everything there is to know about Firestorm. Stuart Moore does do a fine job here and what he sets up does raise a very interesting question of the whole concept of merging with someone…100 Bullets #73 is part four of ‘A Wake’ and is another example of Azzarello and Risso moving the pieces across the board a little at a time before the major move. We get our usual moments of quiet time before a final act of violence that always sets up a bloodbath or two before everything is said and done…Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight #207 begins a tale by Bruce Jones and Ariel Olivetti that has Bruce Wayne get his swerve on with a member of a family that (as in Raymond Chandler’s Big Sleep) has a wild sister and a mature sister. The atmosphere here is thick enough to cut with a knife and Olivetti has a chance to show us one impressive looking Batman.

IMAGE ROUND UP…
The Portent #3 (of 4), the limited series by Peter Bergting is just about over and this installment has an exhausted Milo and Lin trudging away thru winter before dropping right before Lin’s friend, Alkuin who returns from the dead to help. We have a flashback, then a battle before seeing more dead people (who have food just in case someone living drops in to warm up) and then finally castle that these stories always seem to have shows up…Fear Agent #5 marks the debut of new artist Jerome Opena and that promises us that future issues will appear more regularly. Here our hero is bleeding like a stuck pig but gets saved by the buggy looking creature on the cover as he drifts deep in the ocean. We see that his partner continues to work on the ship right before the Agent wakes up in a whole new body. Things naturally don’t go well on the surface or underwater so we are left in a chair edge sitting situation waiting for the next issue. There is also a tight short Agent adventure included that is cool…Battle Pope #8 finally arrives and its loaded with butt kicking Pope goodness…Unbra #1 (of 3) is a crime drama set in Iceland that surprisingly involves a cavewoman who seems to shop at the Benetton store before she was shot. The lead character and her supporting cast are interesting and the boss has "1st DAY SALE'D" this issue (cutting the price to $3.59) so it's more affordable. The book is written by someone named Murphy (no first name or is it the last?) and drawn by the Coffin’s Mike Hawthorne.
 
"See, I told you I'd be down here. We've got a bunch of SNEAKY PEEKIES of future MARVEL, DC and IMAGE titles right HERE"
 

All Books/Characters pictured herein are © Copyright 2006 by their respective owners. No rights given or implied by Alternate Reality, Incorporated.

Reviews © 2006 Alternate Reality, Inc.

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