Thursday, 31 December 2009

Hex's Best of 2009 - Part 1



Looking back over a whole year and picking your favorites is harder than you first think. I'm sure there are classic comics that came out this year that I’m missing, and most of my choices seem to be from the latter part of the year, presumably because my memory is so terrible I cant remember that far back. So here I my choices as of right now, from the top of my head, some of my stand out comics of the past 12 months and the reasons why:


(One of my) Favorite Single Issues.


Jonah Hex #50 – Funnily enough this is not where I take my name from, but seeing as we share the name we are practically family so shame on me for not visiting this awesome Clint Eastwood styled cowboy more often. I did read the first few issues of Jonah Hex and while I thought the writing was pretty good, Luke Ross’s art is too slick and still for my liking and I never continued with the series. Then I heard about this issue and everyone was gushing about it. Darwyn Cooke had stepped in on the art duties for this special anniversary issue. The basic story is a heartbroken Hex is given the task of killing 50 wanted men while we see his love interest set up a home for herself in a nice little town. Of course its not that simple and trouble soon follows but I really don’t want to spoil the story on this one , it just needs to be read. It was heartbreaking and beautiful comic. One of the issues of the year for me and I hope for more of the same when I come back to pick up issue 51.


Favorite Ongoing Series'


Green Lantern has been consistently one of the best ongoing series since it began and this year just took it to another level with Blackest Night and the introduction of Doug Mahnke on pencils.



Batwoman: Detective Comics has married interesting storytelling and characters with amazing visuals. One of the books of the year for me and long may this book continue when Batwoman gets her own series.



The Sword has been my favorite work from the very talented Luna Brothers so far. Brilliant ideas, epic storytelling and brutal action, it’s just a shame it will be wrapping up in 2010.


Best New Series'


Azrael has seen a surprisingly good start in my opinion. One of my fav X-Men writers Fabian Niciesca has told a separate story each issue challenging the morals of the new Azrael. I hated art on Red Robin, but here its urban and gritty which is a great fit for this book. Bat fans should check this series out.



Ultimate Comics Avengers has been like an all out action movie,. This is writer Mark Millar's big summer blockbuster, with an awesome cast of characters, fun dialogue with knock out art. I've never ever cared about the Ultimate Universe before ,but now... well I still don't really, but this book rocks.

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year everyone. I‘m back from my break and looking forward to the New Year ahead. 2009 was a bit of a drag for me so I hope 2010 will be a better one. New Years resolutions for me include learning to drive, getting a new job, getting fit and to start writing music again. Comics wise I would like to cut down on the amount I buy as I am really running out of storage space, but I know that will be a hard one to stick to so I won’t make it a resolution as Ill probably break it straight away. I also plan to put more structure to this blog and my posts, with a certain post designated to each day of the week. I will aim to do at least one post a day with 2 – 3 of them being featured over at acomicbookblog.com every week.


I got a post coming soon with some of my favorite comic book stuff of 2009 and another with some of my favorite movies of the past 12 months plus a look into what I look forward to seeing in 2010, so check back for that.


Anyway have a great New Year’s Eve everyone whatever you are doing, I’m partying with friends and will probably get more drunk than I should do but that’s what this night is all about. See you in 2010. Long live the Legion!

Wednesday, 23 December 2009

This week I have mostly been listening to ... Jet

This is a track from Jet's latest and third album, Shaka Rock. It's been out a couple of months but I have yet to pick it up. I've been listening to the first 2 albums this week and they are just nice rock n roll records. Remind me of the Stones. Anyway this is a good track with a cool wolf boy video. I'll no doubt try to pick up the new album in the January sales.



And you can't mention the word 'Jet' without thinking of this great track from Macca's post Beatle's band; Wings. "Jet! OooohWooooOoooh!" Enjoy!

Hex's Pull List -12/23/09


Here's my x-mas presents to myself.

DC
Blackest Night JSA #1
Detective Comics #860
Green Lantern #49
Teen Titans #78

MARVEL
Avengers The Initiative #31
Captain America Reborn Who Will Wield The Shield
Incredible Hercules #139
New Avengers #60
New Mutants #8
X-Men Legacy #231

I'll also be picking up X-Necrosha: The Gathering #1 that I missed the other week. And I'm giving New Mutants another go. I downloaded issue 6 and it was pretty good so I'll be picking up the Necrosha tie-ins, issues 6,7 and 8 this week too. The ti-ins have been better than the X-Force issues so far.

What's your x-mas pull list look like?

Tuesday, 22 December 2009

Blackest Night: Flash #1 - Review


As Blackest Night roles on and I find myself enjoying it more and more, I have decided to go back and pick up various tie-ins that I missed, including this title Blackest Night: Flash by one of my favorite writers Geoff Johns and artist Scott Kolins.

The book opens with Barry traveling the world at super speed sending his message to all the heroes of the DCU warning them of the threat of the Black Lanterns. I have seen this in various other tie-ins so I liked the way this is tied-in bringing Barry very much to the centre of Blackest Night, almost as much as Hal Jordan, which seems to have been Geoff Johns idea from the start. Next we get a brief Flash history round up which is very handy for new Flash readers like me but I do feel kind of sorry for people who have been reading Flash Rebirth as It basically sums up the Flash in a couple of pages, without having to pay out for a six issue mini series that is not even finished yet. I bought the first couple of Flash Rebirth issues but as a non regular Flash reader, I found the character’s history and explanation of the speed force extremely confusing, but here it is dealt with simply and effectively. Job done.

Barry’s next mission is to speak with his friend, the leader of Gorilla City who Barry believes is one of the most intelligent beings on the planet, and a person who can help the heroes in the war against the Black lanterns. One slight problems though, Barry’s friend died in his absence which Barry is unaware of and the former leader of the great Gorilla City has now been resurrected as a Black Lantern. There are some great scenes drawn by artist Scott Kolins as the two friends battle and Johns writes Barry well as he tries not to give into his emotions, as he knows this feeds the Lanterns power.

In this issue we also meet the new Black Flash, who is the resurrected Zoom/Reverse Flash, and though he is dealt with pretty swiftly by Barry, we know this won’t be the last we see of him.

A second story within this book is that of the current Flash Rogues (led by Captain Cold) who prepare to face the former, newly resurrected Black Lantern Rogues next issue. Johns writes these characters so well and I’m sure that the inevitable showdown between the Rogues next issue with be great entertainment.

All in all this is a well rounded issue with a lot of action packed in that accompanies the main Blackest Night Series nicely. Check it out.

4 out of 5

Green Lantern Corps #43 - Mini Review


Saying that Patrick Gleason drew his ass off on this issue would be an understatement. This issue he did phenomenal work. The scenes with the out of control; Red Lantern Gardner were fantastic, the way he tore through the Black Lantern Corps and his battle with Kryb... well, it needs to be seen to be believed. Awesome, awesome stuff. Spoiler! Tomasi revives Kyle Rayner already but in a way that ties in other characters development from previous issues and it’s handled masterfully. This is another fantastic issue of GL Corps. So far Blackest Night can do know wrong.


4 out of 5

Free Marvel Comics - 12/21/09


Here's your usual five free digital comics to help get you through your week and there's some really good ones. Just click the title of your choice.

WHAT IF? #32 (1977)
X-FACTOR #46 (2005)
X-MEN/SPIDER-MAN #1
DEADPOOL #7 (2008)
PUNISHER #6 (2008)

Next week's five free digital comics will be:

SECRET WARRIORS #2
THUNDERBOLTS #133
X-INFERNUS #2
AGENTS OF ATLAS #1 (2009)
DARK AVENGERS #9

Thursday, 17 December 2009

IRON MAN 2 - TRAILER!


I got some really exciting news. CLICK HERE to be taken to the first trailer for 2010's 'Iron Man 2' and then check back and let me know your thoughts on the clip. I'm buzzing, I think it's gonna be awesome and Mickey Rourke is gonna steal the show! Plus check out War Machine, it's spot on! Enjoy guys.

Iron Man 2 - Trailer LINK.

Hex's Pull List - Today!


Well it's a bit late, but here's what I've ordered today.

DC
Azrael #3
Batman 80 Page Giant #1
Batman Streets of Gotham #7
Green Lantern Corps #43

MARVEL
Cable #21
Captain America Reborn #5
Daredevil #503
Dark Wolverine #81
X-Factor #200
X-Force #22
X-Men Legacy #230

I'm looking forward to Azrael #3, as the first 2 issues have been surprisingly good. GL Corps should rock as usual and Guy Gardner = Red Lantern should be awesome, plus what are the consequences of Kyle's death last issue- will he rise as a Black Lantern?

On the Marvel side Daredevil should be good and I'm hoping 'Necrosha' gets a bit more interesting in X-Force #22. What will you guys be getting?

Wednesday, 16 December 2009

Matt Fraction on Thor!


Matt Fraction has been announced as the new writer for the Thor ongoing series next year.
Here's what he had to say about it:

MF: I’m most excited about getting off of Earth. There are nine worlds in the Norse cosmology, sort of, and lately the book has been spending a lot of time here in Midgard sweet Midgard. I want to take these amazing people, these characters that are so known and loved (at least amongst the pages of THOR), and take ‘em up and down the world tree. And beyond! Hell, why stop at just our world tree? I’ve said too much.

This is great new in my opinion. This is exactly the sort of direction this book should be taking, exploring Thor's world just like Fraction did with the Immortal Iron Fist book and his brilliant Thor mini series Ages of Thunder. If you haven't read Ages of Thunder I suggest finding them as they are not only fantastic reads but will be a great indication for Thor fans of where Fraction intends to take this book. Another book added to my list...DAMN YOU MARVEL!

Monday, 14 December 2009

A quick news recap!



Wow, I was of last week working on some music stuff and job hunting (still!) going out getting pissed and various other things. I flip open my laptop this weekend and the comics industry had gone mad with loads of breaking and exciting news, especially from DC. I'm sure you all know the big news stories by now, I'm just gonna post some of my thoughts.

First up the one I'm most excited about: Batman: The Return of Bruce Wayne

I am SO excited for this. IMO "Batman R.I.P" is one of the greatest Batman stories ever. Morrison's whole run has been incredible. I just bought the companion to 'Batman RIP' (The Black Casebook), and the way Morrison references old story lines is masterful. His story shows why Bruce Wayne is and will always be THE greatest super hero ever. In 'Batman R.I.P' Bruce managed to fight off the greatest evil of all time, Satan himself in the guise of Dr. Hurt, and now in the next chapter of Morrisons masterpiece we have Batman battling through different ages in time to get back to the present Gotham City. Yeah i know this sounds a bit like a certain star spangled heroes journey from an opposing comics company, but I don't care, this mini series will piss all over that Cap mini, we're gonna have a pirate Batman for fucks sake! Did I mention Andy Kubert, the greatest artist of all time was involved too...! My head just exploded.

Marc Guggenheim to write 'Action Comics' in 2010

All I can see is "Thank fuck for that!". Rucka writes 'Detec' so he's the man and all, but the 'Action Comics' book has been shit since he's been writing it. I don't think its Rucka fault at all, he has to work with a bunch of different artists (mostly rubbish) and has been given some crap 'Superman New Krypton' bullshit storyline to follow along side James Robinson, and lame characters to work with. I like Guggenheim. I liked his 'Blade' series, I was one of the few who actually liked 'Young X-Men' and I dig his work on 'Resurrection' for Oni Press. Will he get 'Action Comics' to the height's that Geoff Johns did? Prob not, but I'll def give this a shot. 'War of the Supermen' seems to be the big DC event of next year, but I'm not too excited yet.

Free Comic Book Day 2010 - Marvel and DC titles announced.

DC:
WAR OF THE SUPERMEN #0
A war is coming, and all that stands between Earth and 100,000 vengeful supermen is one Superman! Special #0 issue featuring all-new material previews the conflicts to come!

Well it' free so that's a good start, but still... don't really care.

As for Marvel:
IRON MAN/THOR FCBD 2010 EDITION
Two of Marvel’s heaviest hitters like you’ve never seen them before! A major new direction for the Marvel Universe kicks off HERE – on Free Comic Book Day!

Again. Not. Really. Bothered. But it's free, so cool. I think Ill be checking out the other publishers more though this time around.

DC's Earth One

John's and Frank's on 'Batman: Earth One'. Sort of a dream come true for me. Since this teams amazing work on the Superman books I always wanted to see them try their hand at Batman. So I'm happy but... Earth One, the DCU's answer to Marvel's Ultimate line maybe, not too cool. I would have preferred them on a mainstream Batman title but I'll take this. I like the idea of this just being released as graphic novels too. Cool.

As for 'Superman: Earth One'... well we are just about half way though 'Superman: Secret Origins' and already they announce 'Superman: Earth One' which will no doubt again go over a new version of Superman's origin. I'm bored already. Plus it's written by J. Michael Straczynski who managed to bore me to death on 'Thor', 'The Twelve' and his 'Red Circle' titles. Pass.

Well that's it for now. Any of this news get you guys stoked?

FREE Marvel Comics! - 12/14/09


Want some free comics? I know I always do! Click away folks!

DARK REIGN: MISTER NEGATIVE #1

GENEXT: UNITED #1
MS. MARVEL #39
(2006)
AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #602
ULTIMATE X-MEN #88

Find out what next week's five free digital comics will be below!

WHAT IF? #33 (1977)
X-FACTOR #46 (2005)
X-MEN/SPIDER-MAN #1
DEADPOOL #7 (2008)
PUNISHER #6 (2008)

Tuesday, 8 December 2009

Hex's Pull List = 12/09/09


DC
Adventure Comics #5
Booster Gold #27

MARVEL
Dark X-Men #2
Deadpool #18
Ghost Riders Heavens on Fire #5
Invincible Iron Man #21
Nation X #1
New Avengers Annual #3
Realm of Kings Imperial Guard #2
What If? World War Hulk
Wolverine Under Boardwalk
X-Men Forever #13

I'm looking forward to some good Nate Grey action in Dark X-Men #2. I'm picking up Iron Man #21 as I enjoyed the last issue quite a bit which was the start of the new 'Disassembled' arc. Nation X... I'll give it a go. ROK Imperial Guard I'm looking forward to as the 1st issue was great and I love those characters. Another shitty What If, which Ill pick up, I don't know why but I kind of like them stories, even though most of them are really bad. Guess I have to know 'what if' on some of these big Marvel story lines, just can't help myself.

What will you be getting?

Free Marvel Comics - 12/08/09



Some free comics for you from Marvel. Just click whatever you fancy:

THE INVINCIBLE IRON MAN SAGA #1
DEADPOOL #9
(1997)
IMMORTAL IRON FIST #22

WALLY THE WIZARD #1
BLACK PANTHER #2 (2008)
WOLVERINE: ORIGINS #37


Find out what next week's five free digital comics will be below!

DARK REIGN: MISTER NEGATIVE #1
GENEXT: UNITED #1
MS. MARVEL #39 (2006)
AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #602
ULTIMATE X-MEN #100

Saturday, 5 December 2009

This week I have mostly been listening to... The Drums, The Big Pink & The Blueskins

This tune by The Drums sort of reminds me of the Pixies and it's really catchy. I like it.



Speaking of catchy tunes, this next song 'Domino's' but The Big Pink is on some TV advert or other in the UK and it's just so damn catchy I find myself humming this all the time.



And speaking of advert tunes reminded me of this little beauty of a song by The Blueskins that featured on a Lynx deodorant advert some time ago and also in the appalling 'Dukes of Hazard' remake film a few years ago. Do not see that film, that annoying singer Jessica Simpsons shorts are seriously the best part about it, oh and this song... so enjoy!

Millar & McNiven on 'Nemesis'

Superstar comic creators Mark Millar and Steve McNiven (Civil War & Old Man Logan) have spoken to CBR about their next project 'Nemesis' due out next year. Here's some bits of the interview from Millar of what it's about:

Millar: But, yeah. "Nemesis" is a reversal of the Bruce Wayne or Tony Stark archetype. What if this genius billionaire was just this total shit, and the only thing that stood between him and a city was the cops? It's Batman versus Commissioner Gordon, in a weird way. Or maybe a super-villain version of "Se7en." A billionaire anarchist up against ordinary people. The Joker's the best thing in the Batman movies, so this guy is a bit of an amalgamation of all the stuff we like.

Millar: Nemesis is the world's smartest man, and the bad news for us is that he's the world's only super-villain. That means he's got freeze guns and jump-jets and all these James Bond gadgets and he's using them against us. To entertain himself, he picks a different cop every year and makes his life a misery. The book opens with him fucking over Japan's top cop, and then our story, the mini-series, takes place as he shifts his attention to Washington and his first American attacks. The visuals we've released here are just single panels from the Japanese segment. It's the best stuff I've ever seen Steve do.

I'm definitely real excited about this, I love nearly all of Millar's work, and think he is one of the best writers in the business right now, and McNiven is definitely one of the best artist so I'm sure they'll score a hat-trick with this new mini series.

See the full interview here.

Friday, 4 December 2009

Secret Warriors #10 - Review


After 9 issues of Secret Warriors, I was thinking about giving up on this series. Hickman and young gun artist Stefan Casselli did a good job on the first arc, but with the second arc God of War, God of Fear came a new, less impactful artist and storyline. The story just plodded along for me and with my pull list seemingly getting bigger each week I felt now was the time to cut this book, but then I saw the preview for issue 10.


This issue was a completely stand alone issue in the middle of the arc focusing on the God of War; Ares and his son the God of Fear; Phobos. Where Secret Warriors has failed in the past for me is the cast of Nick Fury’s Secret Warriors team. After 9 issues I would struggle to name any of them, the characteristics and personalities are very forgettable, all except for Phobos, the God of Fear stuck in the body of a 10 year old, and Hickman does wisely focusing on the boy in this issue. The story narrates Phobos’s troubled history with his father and his meeting with the elder Gods to decide, as he was born of a mortal woman, whether or not he is worthy the title of God of Fear.


Secret Warriors #10 is for fans of old mythology stories like those found in Incredible Hercules or the stand alone mythological tales of the recent Immortal Weapons mini series. There are some beautifully drawn fight sequences between the gods with a really fantastic pale colour palate to give it that ‘tale of old’ style. For me the writer and art team have done their job very well and left the story with a nice cliff hanger ending to keep Secret Warriors on my pull list, for the next issue at least.


4 out of 5