Review Roundup for January 31st, 2018
This week is light on titles, and also, the reviews will be quick as well. A lot is going on behind the scenes at the Twisted Cape, so we want to get right back to improving everything for you. There are links to full reviews of the two big books this week. Please let us know what you’d like us to review by leaving a comment on our Facebook page, send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or messaging any of us directly. Keep in mind that the format we’ll follow will be as follows:
Book Title and Number(Story Arc Name)*
*Denotes Book of the Week
Here we go!
The Amazing Spider-Man: Renew Your Vows #15 (8 Years Later)
The Parker family helps the Lizard, despite Annie thinking that it may be a trap. They go into a tunnel and Peter explains to Annie that Power and Responsibility is that you take risks to help people regardless of the risk to yourself. They meet a man in a top hat with a gun called Dr. Krikos who has captured Inhumans, aliens, science gone wrong, and others. It’s revealed later in the issue, that he’s working for Mr. Sinister. In the battle, Lizard saves Annie helping her realize that not everything is not always black and white, but shades of gray.
Story – Fun way to watch Peter and MJ help their daughter grow, while solving a mystery. 6/10
Art – a different vibe than typical books, but it looks good and helps you enjoy the story. 7/10
Continuity/Character Consistency – Peter is so incredibly Peter in this book and it’s nice to see MJ in a maternal role, bringing up a new spider hero. 7/10
Twist Factor – Sinister with Annie’s blood. 8/10
Final Score – 7/10
Avengers #678 (No Surrender)
The violent game rages on. An Avenger’s life hangs in the balance as the Lethal Legion and the Black Order play out their game in search of the Pyramoid to score a point. While one team engages in battle, another waits to enter the fray until the time is right. While magic is being undone, a sacrifice is made on the battlefield. An Avenger goes from one site to another to prevent a similar sacrifice, but he may be too late. Click here for our full review.
Story – This story gets bigger as time goes on and feels more epic with each passing issue. 8/10
Art – This book continues to look good and the action set pieces continue to impress. 7/10
Continuity/Character Consistency – Torch really impresses in this book and is very true to how he’s written in Marvel 2-in-1. 8/10
Twist Factor – Avengers Observe! 8/10
Final Score – 8/10
Batman: Detective Comics Annual #1 (The Curse of Clayface)
This story is another take on the origin of Clayface. It takes Basil Karlo from childhood through his time as a movie star to the accident that made him Clayface. It starts with his father teaching him about monsters and their perceptions and introduces young Basil to Renu which is integral to the story. 20 years later, he’s in Hollywood with his agent looking to get onto a project that hits close to home for him. We also see his relationship with a girl named Glory develop. He gets the part on the project, just as he learns that his father passes which causes him to have an accident, disfiguring him. This drives Basil to use Renu which isn’t plentiful, so he needs to steal it from Gotham, which is where Batman gets involved. Batman catches him and he loses his spot in the project. Batman encourages him to talk to Harvey Dent to take down Dagget who is making Renu which is unsafe. Security guards, on the take from Dagget, attempt to stop him from talking to Dent at the courthouse where Dent is by shooting the Renu, which creates Clayface. In another battle with Batman as Clayface, Basil douses Glory with Renu creating Lady Clayface. It ends with Basil promising his dad not to ever let anyone see the monster inside.
Story – Centers on Clayface and the theme of monsters. Not great, but nothing new either. 6/10
Art – This book is well illustrated, specifically the facial work. It really shows off the depth of emotions Basil is going through, particularly when he’s disfigured. 8/10
Continuity/Character Consistency – Gives a new setup of Clayface’s origin to work in Lady Clayface who has been part of the Detective Comics story arcs recently. 6/10
Twist Factor – Disfigured Basil looks awesome and scary. 8/10
Final Score – 7/10
Captain Marvel #128 (Dark Origins)
Stuck in a dark universe where many things are the exact opposite of our universe. She’s been locked up by this universe’s version of the Guardians, the Ravagers. Peter Quill aka Starkill, has the plan to turn Carol and her Zeta team over to the peace loving Thanos. Both crews throw a mutiny and plan to turn “Commander” (Captain) Marvel and Starkill over to Thanos. Upon arrival, Gamora and Nebula get into a fight that gets broken up by Thanos. The Ravagers look to get paid by Thanos for their bounty and attempt to throw in the Reality Stone. A fight breaks out and Thanos goes to use the Reality Stone until he’s attacked by Gamora. The whole crew escapes and Thanos opts not to give chase. A figure shows up to take the Reality Stone from Starkill and it turns out to be Bean, the person Carol has been looking for in this alternate dimension. One can only wonder if this stone comes into play in the upcoming Infinity event...
Story – Odd, offbeat, and not what you’d expect from a Captain Marvel story and that makes it pretty fun. 7/10
Art – This book looks really good, but compared to other books this week, not exactly spectacular. 7/10
Continuity/Character Consistency – With the exception of Carol, what you expect from these characters can be thrown right out the window, which is a fun twist. 8/10
Twist Factor – Peace loving Thanos?!?! 8/10
Final Score – 7.5/10
Dark Nights: Metal #5
This penultimate chapter covers a lot of ground and focuses heavily on one of the alternate Batmen, which is an excellent idea. Batman and Superman deal with the predicament they are in from the last issue. Some key characters return, some key villians reveal themselves, and we get a healthy dose of Wonder Woman (which is not a bad thing), despite the fact that this is a Batman themed event. Click here for our full review.
Story – Crazy and crazier. Big story, big action, and the heroes don’t always win. Excellence. 9/10
Art – Easily one of the BEST looking books you will ever find. 10/10
Continuity/Character Consistency – Pretty good with the exception of Superman, my one gripe. Superman who did all he could to help Bruce find hope seems too quick to give it up this issue, but it’s minor. 8/10
Twist Factor – So many choices, but it’s the return of Martian Manhunter for me, one of my personal favorite characters. 10/10
Final Score – 9/10
The Flash Annual #1 (Flash War Prelude)
Setting up the big Flash event of the year, this story is bookended in the 25th century, capped off with a spectacular reveal at the end. The meat of this story is centered on the 3 Flashes running around the DCU, specifically original Wally West. He’s felt lost and many people don’t remember him. There is clearly some tension between the 2 Flashes and Kid Flash that needs to be worked out, which is something to look out for during Flash War. Wally seeks out Frances Kane, a childhood friend who got powers and turned into Magenta. Wally awakens her memory and her powers, which spurs a fight. Wally opens up good memories for her at their childhood home, which allows her to calm down. Wally decides to stay in Keystone City and asks Dick Grayson to set him up with a place to stay.
Story – Causes genuine excitement for a book that has become a little bit stagnant lately. Love the focus on Wally. 8/10
Art – Art is strong on this issue. Good action pieces and good character design. 8/10
Continuity/Character Consistency – Finally capitalizes on the fact that 3 speedster heroes have been in the DCU. 8/10
Twist Factor – The Renegades and the identity of their leader. 9/10
Final Score – 8/10
Moon Knight #191 (Crazy Runs In The Family)
Fresh off of last issue, Marc Spector finds out that he technically has a daughter, despite one of his alternate identities being the father. He fights off Bushman and Amon Ra (in his underwear no less), as Marlene gets captured. Khonshu motivates Marc to take out the Sun King which follows the cycle that Khonshu and Ra have been following. Meanwhile, in a prison Raoul has been freed and sent to Ra to join forces with him and Bushman. Using Marlene as bait, this group looks to draw out and take down Moon Knight. In preparation for battle, Marc calls Frenchie to watch over his daughter, Diatrice. When Jean-Paul shows up, he’s essentially a zombie.
Story – Fun, action packed, and develops the character. 8/10
Art – This book has looked excellent all throughout this arc. Great artwork all around. 9/10
Continuity/Character Consistency – Finding a way to incorporate all of this characters nutty history is difficult, but well done here. 8/10
Twist Factor – Moon Knight fighting Ra in his boxers. 8/10
Final Score – 8/10
Phoenix Resurrection #5 (The Return of Jean Grey)
This story had a lot to cover. Old Man Logan exposed Annie as the manifestation of the Phoenix, who tried to get Jean to bond with her again. Jean struggles with the Phoenix as it tells her she can resurrect all of the people she’s lost. She rejects it and then it resurrects none other than her husband Cyclops – Scott Summers. They share a touching moment, where Jean lets Scott go again and he dies in her arms. Jean tells the Phoenix Force that they can’t be together anymore and it shows sadness saying that she’ll die to which she replies that she needs to be able to live. They bid each other a sad farewell and Jean is left with the X-Men.
Story – Heartfelt story, centered on Jean and her full return to the Marvel U. Interesting making the Phoenix a character with actual feelings. 7/10
Art – Multiple artists on the book makes the flow differently. It looks good at points, but the shift is abrupt and the style change is jarring. 6/10
Continuity/Character Consistency – The rich history of the X-Men isn’t ignored here and sets up some character moments in a future book. 8/10
Twist Factor – Sad Phoenix Force. 7/10
Final Score – 7/10