Wednesday, August 13, 2008

This week's comic book expectations

They call it "Secret Invasion." But with the amount of issues out this week, the invasion is no secret.

OK, I'm sorry for writing that, it was too cheeseball, I know. Honestly, I'm so tired from staying up watching Olympic basketball that that lede actually sounded good for just long enough to type it. Let's just get to it, shall we?

Here's the list of "Secret Invasion" books out this week: Secret Invasion #5, Secret Invasion Inhumans #1, Secret Invasion Thor #1, Secret Invasion X-Men #1, Secret Invasion Young Avengers Runaways #1.

Obviously, if you're buying any of these you're definitely also buying the main book, so I shouldn't have to remind you of how Nick Fury just made his first appearance, Tony Stark is still somewhat confused of his identity, and the classic avengers of Captain America and Thor are making a move. Not to mention Maria Hill's sort-of surrender or Agent Brand's eavesdropping.

The rest of the tie-ins will fall in line, and whether or not you buy most of these depends on how much you like the characters. The only one of these tie-ins that I am really interested in is the "Inhumans" book, and only because we have no clue of where Blackbolt is or how the Inhuman population is reaction to his absence. On top of all that, how does this skrull stuff sync with the "Silent War" book of last year? Expect the rest of the tie-ins to be fairly generic "villain comes to _____'s neck of the woods" stories.

The biggest book of the month for Marvel, though, may be Punisher #60. While this story is far from child friendly, Garth Enis has put together a character-defining epic during his time on this book, and his time concludes with this finale to "Valley Forge, Valley Forge," which is solicited as possibly the bloodiest book yet.

And don't forget Astonishing X-Men #26, either. Though the jury is still out on this book since Joss Whedon and John Cassady left two issues ago, Warren Ellis and Simon Bianchi have firmly established their own tone for the book -- for better or worse. And the one positive you can definitely give Ellis is that his first storyline, featuring this spaceship trash heap of a country, is an interesting idea.

DC has an equally big week from some of its heaviest hitters:

Action Comics #868 continues the current brilliant "Brainiac" story, and Kal-El is going right at the alien in this one.

Batman #679 continues the current brilliant "Batman R.I.P." story, and hopefully we get two things out of it: 1) some answers, or at least a clue of what's going on, 2) more of purple and yellow Batman!

Green Lantern Corps. #27 begins an all-new story arc featuring not only the opening of guy Gardner's new bar but also a new GL who can hear the dead.... "Blackest Night," anyone?

Booster Gold #11 is the first part of Chuck Dixon's Batman-centric two-part story, and after the Barbara Gordon moments in issue #4, I am curious to see where Dixon goes here.

Finally, the lone "Final Crisis" tie-in of the week is Final Crisis: Revelations #1. Greg Rucka is, of course, known for his ability to write street-level characters, so it will be interesting to see what he does with the Spectre here, a cosmic being who feels more comfortable street-level... see similarities there? This story will also star The Question and Batwoman, two characters that really shined in "52," as well as more on the Crime Bible. If you're thinking of buying only one of the two main "Final Crisis" tie-in series (the other being 'Legion of Three Worlds") it seems this book will be more pertinent to "Final Crisis" itself, while Geoff Johns' Legion story will be more pertinent to the DCU in the long run, so take your pick.

I apologize for the HORRIBLE grammar and structure through this whole thing, I'm tired, leave me alone. But, on a side note, as I said, the reason why I am tired is from watching Spain play China last night... and it was worth it, if only to get my first good look at Spain point guard Ricky Rubio! I am a believer in the 17-year-old mop top, and you will too after Spain plays the USA on Saturday morning.

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