Author: Jacob

Two cups nonsense, one tablespoon of sarcasm and just a pinch of cynicism will get you Jacob. Must be walked three times a day and fed at least twice. Prefers grilled cheese sandwiches.

Partial doesn’t count

Here’s something that really pisses me off.

partialIn this week’s X-Men: Blue #15, writer Cullen Bunn decides to have Kitty Pryde debut a brand new power working in “partial intangibility”.  At least it’s the first time I’ve ever seen her do it.

Okay, so Kitty Pryde’s power is intangibility, or “phasing” as she likes to call it.  Basically when she uses her ability, she becomes untouchable – like trying to grab a shadow.  There’s not really a scientific explanation for it, since it’s FICTION, so creators do their best to cover the bases that may be asked.  For instance, when Kitty phases, why doesn’t she simply fall straight down?  There are little rules set for each character that gives future creators a how-to on using these powers.

But sometimes, creators decide that characters should just do something because.  Like using Cyclops’s concussive force optic blast as a heat ray, for example.  Or Wolverine healing from a charred skeleton.  They think that something would be cool, so they throw it in, and there it goes.  Unfortunately, for nerds like me, when you start to accumulate all that a character can do with their abilities, it gets a bit much.  Instead of coming up with new things for the characters to do with their powers, they come up with new powers for their characters to do.  In that case, they might as well make a new character.

So let’s look at this “partial intangibility”.  I’m going to say that there’s not really a mid-point for it.  You’re either tangible or you’re intangible.  It’s being used as a means to cause discomfort for the person as Kitty phases through them.  Kind of like the effect her power has on electronics.  You want the villain to actually feel that something is moving through them, like swimming through water.  But that doesn’t really work.  You’re not actually going through the molecules of water when you swim.

Kitty’s powers have long been explained as needing crucial focus and concentration, because if she stops phasing whilst a part of her is within a solid object, that part of her would fuse with the object.  Painfully.  And probably messily.  So I would imagine that even if she could refine her phasing to a point where you can kind of, but not really feel her, the process of moving through you would leave your bodily organs in a damaged and non-working state.  And X-Men don’t kill.  Um…I think?

So when you think you need a moment where Kitty makes a move on a villain in battle, don’t try to reinvent the wheel, man.  Just have her phase through the guy, solidify her arm and bop him in the mush.  You’d make nerds like me a lot happier.

EDIT!!!: Commenter SGCEO pointed out that if Kitty was in a partially-tangible phase and rammed into a solid being, she would be the water in my analogy.  That makes sense – she would basically just splat around the guy.  It’s a having your cake and eating it too kind of thing.  You can’t have it both ways.

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Announcement

I would like to make it known that on New Comic Day 11/08/2017, Marvel managed to put out TWO separate stories that both featured Krakoa, the island that walks like a man.

Let that one sink in.

Really quick

I think my problem with the current Generation X book is that the roster is a handful of passive powers.  That pretty much means that every issue is going to be the characters standing around and talking things through.

I don’t understand how this has been missed for so long, but wouldn’t it be awesome if you just took a handful of cool mutants and let them have adventures as teenagers with super powers?  You don’t even have to make up new characters for it, so you’re not breaking the Disney/Fox “We can’t have good X-Men” edict.

But seriously.  Your cast includes a girl that has “nature powers”, a kid with eyeballs all over him, an empathic shapeshifter, and a guy that can read something’s past.  What do you do with that besides “see problem and talk it out”?

Oh, and my other problem is that the book is TERRIBLE.

Iceman is blechhh

I know that Iceman is supposed to be the spotlight gay character for the X-Men universe and we’re supposed to be yay hooray for that, right?

I’m sorry, but Gay Iceman is a horrible character.  Absolutely abysmal.  Awful, terrible, gross and bad.  I shout BOOOOOOOOO!!!!!

But it’s not the fault of the character…or characters, as it were.  The revelation that Iceman was a homosexual was supposed to be a big moment for Marvel.  They promoted it as a big moment.  The mess of the teenage original X-Men brought from the past to show the present ones the errors of their ways was an interesting idea, but it flew off the rails by having crazy things happen to each of the kids.  Cyclops left the team and hung out with his dad in space.  Angel got power cosmic fire wings.  Beast abandoned science and started dabbling in magic.  Jean Grey’s got the Phoenix coming after her.  And Iceman, oh, lovable Iceman, comes out as gay to his fellow mutants.

It was an unexpected retcon-ish moment in which they took Bobby Drake’s disinterest in girls in the first issue of X-Men way back in 1963, a throwaway line (spoken from his foot) that was to establish him as younger and more immature than his fellow classmates:

bigdeal

and decided that it meant that he was instead interested in the other players on the field.

And you know what?  There’s nothing wrong with that.  The character that was there had that way about him, nature or nurture need not apply here, and that was great.  And it would have worked fine had they stayed with the focus on the teenage Iceman hanging out with the original X-Men.  But, funny enough, that character has gotten remarkably little spotlight time in forefront as this marquee homosexual character, because instead of doing something with him, they instead used it to start making changes to the established Iceman.

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Heroes in a Half Shell: Turtle Tracks

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The Good Guys: Leonardo, Donatello, Raphael, Michelangelo, Splinter, April O’Neil (All first appearance).

The Bad Guys: Bebop (Human), Rocksteady (Human), Bebop & Rocksteady’s Gang (Four Unnamed), Shredder, Foot Soldiers (All First Appearance)

And the Rest: Vernon Wells, Burne Thompson (First Appearance)

In a Half-Shell: April O’Neal reports on a wave of thefts to scientific operations.  She is abandoned by her crew as an armed mob confronts her.  She flees to the sewers where she is saved by four humanoid turtles.  The turtles introduce April to their master, Splinter, and agree to help her investigation, leading them to a Ninja-themed shopping district.  April investigates a security services building and is captured, then rescued by the turtles who flee the building as it is flooded to destruction.  Splinter recognizes that the soldiers the turtles fought were garbed in the wear of the Foot Clan.

Full Synopsis:

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