Inside the Box – Ultimate Death of Spider-man, Kirby Genesis, Fear Itself, Alpha Flight & the many faces of Captain America

I am sorry this is late, I do though purchase these comics from my own pocket and at times other more pending needs take precedent. So what we have here is a breakdown of two weeks worth of books that have been sitting in my box at Chucks Comics. Here you find out what book stays and what book gets banished after the first read. As you can imagine as I’m a week late I have a lot of books to go through, so here they are in the order I read them in.

Ultimate Spider-man #160 – The Death of Spider-Man by Bendis, Bagley, Lanning, Ponsor – A stranger to my box as I am collecting the series in trades, but this was one of those most have issues. Bendis has made Ultimate Spider-man one of the best comics of the decade, this book has managed to consistently deliver great stories and great art; here we are at the end of it all with the very real death of Peter Parker. Yes I got the Polybag, yes I opened it, yes I didn’t choose to buy one to read and one to keep. Solid story, very emotional writing, very real motivations and reactions. Not the best end it could of been; the last three panels were not needed in this story of the death of the only real hero in the Ultimate universe. Sort of expected it though, because this line of books has managed to cheapen every hero it touched since Ultimates 3. This book wont be returning to my box, because well… Its done now. Ultimate Spider-man is dead and along with him the best part of this universe dies too.

Captain America #619 by Brubaker, Guice, Samnee & Breitweiser – Nothing in this book matters because of the events of Fear Itself #3 which is a shame because this story in this book was executed so well (unlike Fear Itself #3). From issue 620 it turns into the Cap & Bucky show which I don’t have high hopes for.  Brubaker takes the helm of Captain America #1 so at least good Cap keep a coming – Still in my box because its a Cap book, jury is out on the Cap & Bucky book.

Avengers #14 – Fear Itself by Bendis, Romita, Janson & White – One of the problems with the Avengers  book it has been a lot of talking and not much happening. This is the opposite everything happens in this book. We have some talking heads and then straight into an old fashioned slug-fest between Fear Itself Destroyer of something Hammer Thing and the Red Hulk, very solid book and a mainstay of my box.

Captain America CORPS 1 of 5 by Stern, Briones & Milla – Well ermm… What can I say about this pull the man out of time to save the time stream/multiverse book. The American Dream is a girl, WWII Steve is totally lost, Bucky doesn’t look anything like a leader he is set up to be in this book and the US Patriot is a huge jerk (and the best character of the book. although it would of been even better with Ultimate Cap). One more issue to impress and then its gone.

Alpha Flight 1 of 8 – Fear Itself by Van Lente, Pak, Eaglesham, Hennessy & Oback – This book is a keeper, and a very surprising one at that. You can read the full review here.

Avengers Academy #15 – Fear Itself by Gage, Raney, Janna, Hennessy & Cox – To be honest I had almost given in on this book, it was turning into Saved by the Bell for super-heroic youth and I felt it lost its way slightly. The kids are pitched directly into the events of Fear Itself with only Tigra there to hold them all together, things get messy fast and I expect a shake up in the next two issues. In the box still by the skin of its teeth.

Secret Avengers #14 – Fear Itself by Spencer, Eaton, Mendoza & D’Armata – I feel this book hasn’t got longer left now that Steve it going back to being Captain America. These book did the impossible for me and made the Valkyrie an interesting character. You don’t miss anything if you don’t pick up this book, but it was a solid read. Still in the box because I don’t think its got much longer left to this world, and I kind of hanging on to the end here.

Thunderbolts #159 – Fear Itself by lots of people who I don’t have the space to mention here – Do yourself a favor if there is one book you are picking up for the Fear Itself event get this one. Split into four different stories it is handling the events of Fear Itself and its own story in an almost perfect balance; plus you get to see Walker go all badass. Damn good book.

Criminal The Last of the Innocent by Brubaker & Phillips – I’m a week late on this one, but this is a nice noir story and I will be picking up the second issue. A little crime and a little grime in the innocent sleepy looking little town of Brookview. One for the Box.

Kirby Genesis #1 by Busiek & Ross – Discover the joy of Superheroes again through the innocent eyes of Kirby. Nice book, beautiful art and now has a direction beyond the visual. Remains in the box until it goes completely mad, which I suspect it will. Read my full review here.

Honorable mentions – Or as I like to put it the okay issues –  Fear Itself Homefront, only getting this for the Speedball story nothing else in this anthology is doing anything for me. Captain America The First Avenger, still a movie tie in book and much better than the last issue. I only have one left to get so I am hanging in for a hopeful explosive ending.

Banished from the BoxFear Itself Youth in Revolt, maybe I’m just one to many mini-series to far but this has nothing to do with the main story, nothing really wrong with the book the characters just aren’t engaging me and it contradicts the events of Thunderbolts.

So that was the run down of two weeks worth of stuff, doesn’t really look like a lot but I do share the box with my wife and almost three quarters of it was X books. Marvel is going Cap crazy which is to be expected and we went through many faces of Cap this week. Sadly Fear Itself ruined a much better story with its need to pull a shock rating (which was handled badly anyway). Ultimate Spider-man was fun, but it seems the only thing Marvel can think of is to kill a character a quarter and Peter could of been given a better ending. I guess they are saving the requiem for the fallout issue, which might yet sneak its way into my box because Bendis is at his best when he does real emotion stuff.

One last note, yes there are no DC books in my box with the reboot (of the reboot, of the reboot, of the reboot etc…) coming in September nothing in the current books matter a damn. With the big #1 launch coming you might see a couple appear until then DC isn’t on my radar. Well, lets see what next weeks box brings.

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About Nick

Just an Englishman lost in the USA who happens to write now and again... Anyone got a cup of tea?

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