Andrew’s Pull List – Week 6

So this is a big week, I have 7 books up Including new issues of Walking Dead, Nightcrawler and Constantine. Welp lets hop right on in.

1) Nightcrawler. “The Zeugma” by Chris Claremont with art by Todd Nauck.

This issue was ok. But only ok. It was interesting to see Nightcrawler and this new mutant Rico on an adventure but overall it was a generic, boring, comic. I worry I am rather outgrowing this book.

This issue is a 2/5. And it honestly only gets this score because it was Nightcrawler… no one else would get this score. The story was dull, the new characters are under spoken and uninteresting and the art was generic and not spectacular. This book is on it’s last legs with me.

2) Death of Wolverine # 2 of 4, “Poison” by Charles Soule, art by Steve McNiven.

This was another surprisingly solid issue of this book. I really like how Charles Soule is tying the history of Wolverine together, if really is starting to feel like an end for this character. Just please oh please make it permanent… or at least treat him like you treated Xavier in Amazing X – Men…. just don’t bring him back in a month and be like… “Psych! We killed his clone!” or something equally stupid.

4/5… everything was fairly solid in this book. It honestly would be 5/5 if I knew for sure they were not going to revive him right away.

3) Constantine: Futures End # 1, “Weighing the Heart” by Ray Fawkes, art by Juan Ferreyra.

This book made me sad because it was actually finally good. This was so close to feeling like Hellblazer that I hope it stays this way but I know it won’t. I love John Constantine, seriously for some reason he is my all time favorite comic book character and I don’t understand why but I just fell for him. This new one is not John Constantine… I am disappointed, but this single issue made it so much better.

4/5 shockingly… ever the art feels like old Constantine. It was great… keep it up…  DC please… keep it up.

4) Hawkeye # 20, by Matt Fraction, art by Annie Wu.

This book is awesome and I hate that it is ending :(.

5/5. See above for why.

5) Avengers # 34.1, “The World in His Hands” by Al Ewing, art by Dale Keown.

This book was dumb. It was unnecessary and Hyperion or wtf  ever his name is didn’t need his own issue. It was boring.

1/5. The art was as boring as the story… thank goodness the next issue is supposed to be epic.

6) Inhuman # 5, “Empty Throne” by Charles Soule, art by Ryan Stegman.

This book is also on it’s last legs with me. It started as an awesome idea where I get to see new Inhumans, but now it’s just getting old and complicated. I am quickly falling out of love with Charles Soule when I read this.

3/5 on this one. It was safely in the middle.

7) The Walking Dead # 131, “Poison” by Robert Kirkman, art by Charlie Adlard.

AWESOME!

5/5. IT’S AWESOME.

Wow that was long. Anyways so in case you guys didn’t hear I will also be doing a weekly review on http://www.blackshipbooks.com, title of article tbd.

See ya next time. Well not see… but you know what I mean.

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Tv Review #1: Running Wild with Bear Grylls – Season 1

I love Bear Grylls… like seriously, I dig his shit. I have watched all of his with zeal and vigor and this one was no different.

It was a great show with a basic plot structure.

Step 1: Bear picks up celebrity in helicopter and they get off the helicopter in some cool way.

Step 2: The climb up/down some cliff and do some replling. While talking about where they are from.

Step 3: Tea time and deep discussions about what drives them in their career.

Step 4: Climb up/down to their campsite while eating weird things.

Step 5: Sleep

Step 6: Comedic late night/ early morning wake up videos.

Step 7: Live altering dangerous situation.

Step 8: Reflection.

It was a pretty good series and the celebrities all were neat to see out in the wild trying to overcome crazy situations. There are like 5 things you really need to know though.

1: Zac Efron and Channing Tatum are freaking adorable with Bear. They make me hate myself for liking both of them so much more for it.

2: Ben Stiller seems a bit like a drunk at the beginning of the show and suprisingly doesn’t get funnier.

3: Tom Arnold is a surprising bad ass.

4: Bear, with his bare hands, catches a trout that has to be hidden from a bear. Just think about the 3 different bears… it’s funny… I swear it is.

5: Deon Saunders is kind of a wuss and seems a little crazy.

This show was great, I want another season. 5/5.

Oh and in other news You can also see reviews written be me, once a week at http://www.blackshipbooks.com. I just posted a review of Through The Woods, an excellent graphic novel by Emily Carroll, go read it…. like NOW! We are done here…

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Andrew’s Pull List – Week 5

Hey everyone who reads these things. I skipped last week simply due to the fact that I was in the midst of a moved that ended up going rather terribly. I just decided to skip last week instead of doing a quick half – assed review of my books. On the plus side, if you like my reviews you soon may be able to read them elsewhere! Details to come at a later date.

This week there are only 2 books. Swamp Thing, the only book I actually have on my pull list that I bought this week, and the Death of Wolverine, which I saw and ought since I only had one book.

1) Swamp Thing: Futures End #1. “The Zeugma” by Charles Soule with art by Jesus Saiz.

This issue was ok but rather confusing. I don’t follow the main DCU so I have no idea what the “Future’s End”  subtitle is supposed to mean, all I know is that it’s 5 years in the future, all the avatars are locked away in their own realms, including 2 I have never seen, Bacteria and Metal. It seems they made a deal with the Spectre or something I honestly was lost and hope that the books don’t work their way to this point in 5 years… Anyways Alec Holland visits the realms and eventually deals with Arcane who somehow got out of his Green Prison. This whole issue seemed like the ending of a story that won’t start for 4 more years and I honestly didn’t like it. 

This issue is a 2/5. I loved the art as always, seeing the different realms and the the different avatars was neat as always but the story just seemed strange and out of place. I didn’t like that it was set so far in the future it was completely disconnected from anything going on in the current books. So far into the future that we are years away from anything in the books connecting to this story. It felt more like an Elseworld’s book then anything else. The holographic cover was also unnecessary.

2) Death of Wolverine # 1 of 4 by Charles Soule, art by Steve McNiven.

Apparently all I wanted to read this week was Charles Soule. I picked this book up because honestly I only had 1 book and wanted to read another and it was a number 1 so why not. Honestly it was an interesting volume and it was good. I am going to pick up the rest since it’s only 4 issues. Apparently this is supposed to b it for dear old Wolvie… he is not supposed to survive and not supposed to come back. I really hope that Marvel has the balls to actually keep a major character dead. I will believe it when I see since Captain America, Jean Grey, Charles Xavier and Nightcrawler have all died before, among countless others, and they have all come back. I am tired of Wolverine anyways, he is everywhere all the time, I think it would be unique if they left him permanently dead but we will see.
 
Surprisingly 4/5. It was so close to a 5/5 but the 4.99 price point and like 15+ pages of “bonus content” at the back dropped it down one. The story was good, I can;t wait to see where it goes and the art was surprisingly awesome as well. The beach of dead assassins from numerous recognizable societies is pretty sweet as well.
 
That’s all for now, I will be posting another review soon hopefully with a link to where you can find further writings by me… if you like these kind of things.
 
Thanks for reading.

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Andrew’s Pull List – Week 3

It’s a 5 titles week again spread across Marvel, Dc, Image and Vertigo… enjoy.

1) The Unwritten: Apocalypse #8. “Sang Part 3 of 3” by Mike Carey with art by Peter Gross.

I am on this book because it’s almost over. I once really enjoyed this book but for the life of me I can;t figure out why. I can follow the story and would suggest this book to anyone but I can;t really understand why I like it so much. The art is OK, the story is OK… sometimes a little to full of itself but still OK. Rarely does this book stand out… oh well only a few issues left.

It’s always a 2.5/5 with this one.

2) Fables # 143, “A Ring of Glass and Shadow or The Last Weyland Smith Story; Chapter 3 of Happily Ever After” by Bill Willingham art by Mark Buckingham.

This comic is almost over and I hate it. I am going to immensely miss this book when it ends and I am really enjoying where the story is going. It seems like everything I love is ending! All my favorite shows and books are wrapping up! The issue was awesome, it progressed the story along well and Bill Willingham always knows how to hit me in the feels. I am looking forward to the climax of Bigby’s story as well as the climax between Rose and Snow White. This story is building to a head and I can’t wait to see it happen.

it’s 4/5 this time. This was an issue that mainly progressed the story without any big reveals. All in al a good next chapter. Except Weyland’s story was sad.

3) Manifest Destiny #9, “” written by Chris Dingess with art by Matthew Roberts.

This book is amazing, you all need to be on this book. For those of you who don’t know about this books, its about Lewis and Clark exploring the American wilds and discovering all sorts of mythical and deadly beasts. There is a mystery of arches and half buffalo half men and a plant based zombieish life form and giant bugs and more and more awesomeness each issue and they venture further into uncharted territory with a group of people wholly unprepared for the new world they are finding. This book touches a lot on the emotions that the characters are having and I feel their reactions are very much how people would react at the time to what they are seeing. It’s a well written book and expertly drawn.

it’s 5/5. Always is 5/5!

4) New Avengers #23, “All  The Angels have Fallen” written by Jonathan Hickman with art by Kev Walker.

Dealing with the fall out of Namor destroying an Earth is the main focus of this issue. It was interesting to see the heroes slowly coming to terms with who and what they have become, each in their own way. Bruce Banner having a drink, finally figuring out a way to free himself of the Hulk, Beast kind of being told off be Beast 2( from another timeline… i guess… I dunno), Dr. Strange being told off by Wong. Tony Stark finally beating his addiction to alcohol, Black Panther, apparently after fucking Storm, talking about his love for her, Reed seeing his family, Black Bolt screaming out his rage on the moon, alone, and Namor just causing general mayhem. The reveal of Namor and his Cabal is crazy. This book is a surprising regular hit.

This book is a 5/5, it consistently surprises me with how human they make this major players and how they consistently deal with the fall out of their decisions.

5) Batman and Robin #34, “Robin Rises: Ties that Bind” written by Peter J. Tomasi with art by Joe Patrick Gleason.

This is the only DC book that is really worth a damn. This is seriously the best version of Batman currently being written by anyone. I love this version of Batman, he is so human and kick ass that I would gladly and proudly call it my favorite book. This book is great, he consistently writes Batman in a human and genre defining way. That being said this issue starts out fantastically with Batman asking for and receiving forgiveness from the remaining bat kids.  However there is a really needless scene with Lex Luthor and Dick Grayson.

 
This book is also a 5/5. This is the best Batman out there. There are two things I am bummed about, 1) no bat team adventures in Apokolips. 2) The stacks are really high for the characters but they are not really because you are not going to kill off Batman this way, no one would, it makes no sense, so there is no need for everyone to think he may not come back. It;s Batman, DC’s cash cow… now way is he not surviving. 

 

See ya next week. I am looking forward to it! There are some awesome books coming out.

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Andrew’s Pull List – Week 2

It’s a bigger week this week, 5 titles in all, and it’s Marvel heavy.

1) Constantine #17. “Bits and Pieces” by Ray Fawkes with art by Edgar Salazar.

This book I buy regardless whether I  like it or not, i feel i need to support a Constantine book. The best Constantine was Hellblazer and they sadly ended it and rejoined Constantine in the new 52. So far I haven;t really cared or followed the story of Constantine since few issues actually come close to the awesomeness that was Hellblazer. That being said the art is always solid and this issue wasn’t have bad. It’s just not as good as Hellblazer.

It’s always a 2.5/5 with this one.

2) Amazing X – Men # 10, “World War Wendigo part 3” by Craig Kyle and Chris Yost, art by Carlo Barberi and Iban Coello.

I always look forward to this book. Craig Kyle and Chris Yost are excellent at writing Mutant characters and have written some of my  favorite titles and keep delivering with this one. A team made up of some of my favorite characters (including Colossus and Nightcrawler, my two all time favorite characters) and including one of my favorite teams of all time, Alpha Flight, they are really delivering an interesting story of the Wendigo. I love that it’s a throwback to the first time that Alpha Flight and the x – Men crossed paths. Either way it’s awesome.

it’s 4/5 this time. There is one thing that stopped it being awesome, that one thing is the fact that the Wendigo curse only affects people on Canadian soil, the minute they leave Canada they turn back into humans. I mean every one knows that an ancienct Native American curse would recognize a border created by white men thousands of years later. Duh.

3) Walking Dead #130, “There Were Whispers and I was Afraid” written by Robert Kirkman with art by Charlie Adlard.

This book is amazing, if you are buying comics and this is not on your list you are a fool. Every month it’s amazing and thats all I wanna say because I don;t want to risk spoilers.

it’s 5/5. Duh.

4) Nightcrawler #5, “” written by Chris Claremont with art by Todd Nauck.

This was a filler issue with Nightcrawler finding his place at the school as a Danger Room instructor. It was a little touchy feely but Nightcrawler has always been an emotional character. It was well done and set up what could be a fun story with him and a student. I also was really happy to see him and Phoenix in the old training black/blue and yellow uniforms. These have been a staple of all X-generations, students adopting a personalized uniform after “graduating”.

It’s a 3/5. The issue is mainly a bridge issue and it feels like one. Still it’s setting up fun things.

5) Inhuman #3, “Part 3: They Fall” written by Charles Soule with art by Joe Madureira.

This book is interesting if you are into the Inhumans. Personally they are the only thing from the Fantastic Fout universe that I actually care for. This issue brought together the two groups of Inhumans, forming them into a united front against some unnamed threat on it’s way. It’s kind of a dull story and I am really into the book to see more about Inhuman culture less about the actually story. But it’s well drawn and interesting.

3.5/5. I can;t give it any higher because I don;t really care about the story that much, like I said I am more interested in the glimpses of Inhuman culture we see.

 

See ya next week.

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Movie Review # 1: Guardians of the Galaxy

So this is my first movie review since my return to reviewing and I must say this is going to be an easy one.

This movie was fantastic. I loved it.

Ok well… seems like we’re done here.

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Oh ya… Spoilers…. duh

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But no seriously this movie was excellent. I don’t know what Marvel and Disney are paying their casting directors but it’s not enough. Chris Pratt was excellently cast and played the role of Peter Quill/Star Lord phenomenally well. They played to his comedic strengths and allowed him to go outside of the box a bit with some action sequences and some truly dramatic moments. I am honestly a huge fan of Chris Pratt so I was going to love him in the movie either way but they really managed to make the comedy, drama and action flow organically. It was goofy but in a natural way, the best example I can think of is the dance off with Ronan to him diving for the Infinity Gem (whoops I mean Stone) knowing it will probably kill him.

His supporting cast also worked so brilliantly with his character. They all had their distinct back stories and personalities but played off of the sarcastic humor of Peter Quill quite nicely. Batista as Drax was surprising since I know him from wrestling and, with the exception of the Rock, wrestlers transiting into films rarely do well. He played the character exceptionally and with him not understanding metaphors, a cultural quirk, he had some truly funny lines. Always remember… Drax is not a princess! Gamora was your standard issued female assassin, also sadly the first of few problems with the film. Her big betrayal of Thanos happened off screen and very early on in the movie… everyone is just supposed to trust her which I found hard to believe. Rocket was amazing and played excellently by Bradley Cooper. I honestly hated the casting decision at first but loved it as soon as he appeared. I am Groot. I Am Groot. i am groot. Even Michael Rooker as Yondu (an addition from the original comics) was awesome, the changes they made to one of my all time favorite Marvel Cosmic characters felt natural in this.

Everything about this movie was pretty solid, the soundtrack, the effects, the cgi… everything rocked.

I had a couple of issues with a few very small things. I didn’t like Gamora’s unexplained betrayal and acceptance by the team. It felt rushed and hollow. I also didn’t like Thanos first speaking appearance in this film. It fit the movie and was a great and exciting scene but it felt a little out of place and was a little underwhelming for the first time we see and hear the Mad Titan. I expected a more prominent role if this was going to be the big reveal and was a little let down. I also didn’t get Ronan’s ship and honestly, it wasn’t until I was talking to a co worker (you know who you are, if you read this), that I realized why. If the Kree and the Xanadarians, who seemed a little underpowered considering they were supposed to be the Nova Corps but I kind of liked that fact, were fighting and the Black Aether was an example of a Kree ship… how did the Xandarians not get curb stomped into oblivion. They had a really hard time defending their planet from one ship and lost a huge chunk of their fleet. I realize that it was obviously a Sakarran ship since it was crewed by them but they never mention that fact and the probably should have. These are all very easy issues to overlook and there are more then I listed here but honestly I didn’t care enough about the problems to really be distracted by any more then these headscratchers, except for one. 

I was really looking forward to seeing Nathan Fillion on screen since his cameo was hyped up a lot in the media, at least the media I follow. I also love this man, seriously he is my favorite actor still acting and I watch far more of his work then I probably should. I would have loved to see him as a Ravager (in a brown coat!) or even as a Nova (instead of British guy from Shaun of the Dead) but instead he was “Monstrous Inmate” and his voice was so edited I didn’t even pick up it was him until I read his name in the credits.

Anyways that’s all I can really say about this film. It’s awesomeness, go see it, go buy it. 5 out of 5. Though, and I may catch some shit for it, I didn’t like it as much as the Avengers.

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Andrew’s Pull List – Week 1

This is the first in a weekly series of reviews of my pull list… also my return to reviews in general. I finally have the spare time to review stuff again so very much want to.

Also as always… SPOILERS!!! ahead.

SO this series will focus on the comic books I buy each week. This one is a short one featuring only 3 titles, Swamp Thing #34, New Avengers #22 and finally Kick-Ass 3 #8.

1) SWAMP THING #34. “The Wolf and the Lady part 2” by Charles Soule with art by Javier Pina.

So this issue wraps up the story line with characters The Wold and The Lady of the Weeds, former avatars pulled into the real world after the destruction of the Parliament of the Trees. This has been brewing through several issues and has finally come to a head with the wounding of Brother Jonah.

Brother Jonah, knowing that he is dying, says goodbye to his lover Capucine as Alec Holland returns him to the Green to act as regent and caretaker wile Holland is buying tracking down Wolf and Lady as they go on a killing spree. Wolf, now a hideous clawed monster, turns on the Lady,kills himself and ends this arc. Capucine, seeking revenge, corners Lady of the Weeds in an ambulance and, instead of killing her, cripples her instead.

This issue is a solid ending to a decent arc. I was a little bummed that Jonah and Wolf are gone and that Lady of the Weeds is crippled but I am pretty excited that hse is not dead and gone. I look forward to her coming back with powers or somehow mobile again. Overall though the reveal of new villain Calculus has me worried that it’s going to get Cosmic and weird.

The art is as good as always, I love how Pina draws Swamp Thing. He is very floral, but also very obviously dangerous. The way a rose has thorns. I honestly really hope that the art and story keep going strong but really worry that it probably won’t.

3.5 out of 5. I really enjoy the art and the story was a good wrap up for a solid story. It could have been better  honestly but I enjoyed it.

2) New Avengers # 22, “We Are Not Brothers” by Jonathan Hickman, art by Kev Walker

This issue continues the ongoing series arc of the death of the Multiverse. It picks up directly where the last issue left off. This issue deald with he fall out from Namor destroying the alternative Earth. In this issue the Namor/Black Panther feud came to a head.

I seriously love this comic and this issue did not let me down. I seriously cannot tell people to buy this book enough! I love that it is a fairly dark story about the fall of some of the World’s Greatest  Heroes. For a Marvel book the stakes are crazily high and the effects are permanent  and damning.

The art is once again amazing! The art for New Avengers is a key component to what makes this issue, and most New Avenger’s issues, a 5 out of 5. Go. Buy. This. Book.

3) Kick Ass 3 #8, written by Mark Millar with art by John Romita Jr.

Honestly I wish I could fill you in no the back story but all I remember is that Hit girl was awesome in jail, ran the place, and got broken out by Red Mist to reign death and destuction on his Uncle. Kick Ass has a girlfriend, there was a gang, and Kick Ass got his ass kicked (I know how that sound… sorry). This issue was the “Grand Finale”, Hit Girl kills a bunch of dudes, Kick Ass kills some people after getting and beaten down and the story ends with a montoge of happy endings for most characters left alive.

I didn’t really care for this ending. It was good, it made sense, but it was lacking the punch that other issues and the other two stories had. I really wish this had gone another way, plus the final three pages, which I won;t talk to much about, was kind of a slap in the face based on what I heard this story was going to be.

The art was John Romita Jr through and through, it works for Kick Ass and Hitgirl but not so much for Captain America Superman. I enjoy the art for how it works with the story they are telling, I couldn’t picture Hit Girl and Kick Ass any other way.

This issue gets a 3.5 out of 5. It was still a solid issue and a decent ending for the story. It could have been better but many books could have been, its a mediocre ending to a once great book.

 

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