If you’ve been paying attention at all, you know that my all time favorite comic book character is Spider-Man. But after that, my second favorite is Wolverine. Now, some of you are probably saying “Wolverine? Everybody likes Wolverine. Why don’t you pick something more original?” to which I would reply “Shut your stupid face.” I don’t buy many physical comics these days; but Wolverine, amidst all of its various launches & relaunches is one of the two series that I’ll look for on the rare occasions I get the urge to search through the back issue bins, the other being The Amazing Spider-Man.
As I explained with the launch of my weekly Spider-Man column, I’m more than three years behind current Marvel continuity. However, just like Spidey, I’ve decided to just jump back into Wolverine books and ride it out from there. This will come out every Wednesday and cover the Wolverine related books that came out the previous week.
When I last left Wolverine, he was still alive. Well, he’s alive again, but we’ll get to that eventually. Let’s get started!
In this week’s three Spider books, we’ll be visiting three different realities. There’s the original recipe reality, Earth-616, which is the one you’re probably familiar with. Then there’s Earth-18199, which is where Amazing Spider-Man: Renew Your Vows takes place, and lastly Earth-65, where Miles Morales’ totally real girlfriend Gwen Stacy lives. Seeing as the last two of these realities were created well after I became lax in my Spider-reading, I know even less about them than the current Earth-616 continuity. So, let’s dive in and try to figure it out together!
Happy Resurrection Day! It’s finally time for the umpteenth Phoenix return to bring back Jean Grey for the umpteenth time and we’re here to talk about…everything else that came out since I’m going to be looking at Phoenix Resurrection in long form! So that means we’ll be hitting up:
X-Men Blue #20 in which the teenage X-Men find out their place in the past…again?
X-Men Blue Annual #1 in which the teenage X-Men don’t wait up to begin their next adventure! In space! With Venom!
And that’s it – a weirdly shipped week. How do you manage to put out both an issue and an annual on the same day, especially when the annual starts the next story? Aren’t you basically just putting out two issues of the same book? Does anyone care?
Dark Nights is the story of how Batman’s fears given life in the Dark Multiverse have been recruited by Barbatos, and brought to Earth-0 to destroy the Multiverse. Batman’s fears manifest themselves in the 7 dark Batmen that have appeared. The “Bats Out of Hell” cross-over tells the tale of what some JLA members are doing between Metal #3 and #4 and continues in Hal Jordan and the Green Lantern Corps #32, written by Robert Venditti, with art by Ethan Van Sciver and Jason Wright. Previously, each of the Justice League members were trapped in their personalized nightmare scenarios. The opening shots had been fired, but everyone still had fight left in them.
The issue opens some time ago with Kyle, John, and Guy rebuilding Coast City, and generally having a grand time of things. Hal is not helping out with the rebuilding, because he’s flying some kids around. And everything is just swell. Yes, swell. But then we come back to now, and everything is most certainly not swell now. Not swell at all.
It’s a light week this time around, with only one Spider-flavored book coming out. Well, X-Men: Blue Annual #1 features a Venom story, but Jacob will be handling that in this week’s Examinations. It’s a five-parter that’ll go through a couple issues of Venom, so I’ll get to it eventually. As a special teaser, here’s a totally out of context panel from that book:
This week’s Spider story features an adventure one year in the making, so let’s get down to it!
I was going to put my thoughts on Blue Beetle #17 which finished up new writer Christopher Sebela’s debut 4-parter “Road to Nowhere” in this week’s eXaminations, but then I found out that the title only has one more issue before being cancelled, so I figured I should give it some time on its own.
The DC Universe Rebirth line gave Blue Beetle it’s fourth shot at a solo title. The first was when Ted Kord was brought into the DCU with the other Charlton Comics characters during Crisis on Infinite Earths and went 24 issues. The second was after Kord was killed and an all-new, all-different, all-hip, all-powerful Blue Beetle was created during Infinite Crisis and went 36. The New 52 relaunch brought Jaime Reyes a new title, but it only went 17 issues. This time around, it will make it just one more issue before suffering the same fate.
You might say that perhaps Jaime Reyes just can’t hold an audience’s interest for a long time, or at least not enough interest to want to put money down for it. I would love to say that, but then again, I don’t think putting Ted Kord in the title role would do much better. Jaime’s first run lasted 3 years. That’s not bad for a brand new character that has nothing in common with his predecessor past his name, especially when that name is not exactly revered amongst comic fans, and not remotely known by casual observers. And obviously there is enough interest in the character to warrant another go when DC throws an event and launches a bunch of new books.
Welcome to another week of Spidery goodness, true believers! This week I’m tackling Peter Parker: The Spectacular Spider-Man #299, Venom, Inc.: Omega, and Champions #16. And let me just say, if you love symbiotes and the Tinkerer then you’re in for a treat!