- Posted by Johanna on April 12, 2009 at 11:52 am
- Category: Superhero Reviews
- PUBLISHER: Marvel
The Incredible Hercules #127
Sigh. I find a series I like, and it gets sucked into whatever the latest bottom-line-enhancing “event” is. I don’t know what “Dark Reign” means, nor do I think the Marvel Universe makes sense any more, so I’m not interested in anything that ties it more together.
Hera and Athena are battling over control of the Olympus Group corporation. So now Hera wants to kill Hercules (and Amadeus, just because he’s there). This is an amusing way to translate mythology into modern-day heroics, complicated by the twisted family relations of the gods, and Hera is written as chewing the scenery beautifully.
I was hoping that this would be a “red skies” crossover, where the characters mention something is happening but go on with their own story, but then Norman Osborn showed up. Now, admittedly, he and Hera are funny together, but again, I don’t care. That’s doubled when we get cannon-fodder hero deaths. So I guess I’m dropping the series until I hear there’s a new storyline that’s more interesting.
Captain Britain and MI13 #12
Spitfire, Lady Jacqueline, is under Dracula’s control and captive in his castle on the moon.
A couple of months ago, there were cancellation rumors about this book that were declared not true in favor of promoting this storyline. Which is a cool idea, but it’s proceeding much too slowly. I suppose that ties in with the British approach, but I don’t think it’s keeping up with its competition. Just because the book is surviving through this set of issues doesn’t mean it’s safe, and the way it’s going, I wouldn’t be too hopeful.
My problem with it remains: not enough team interaction. Instead, we get exposition. And big mystical plans that ultimately mean nothing, because the good guys will have some other big mystical stopper. Magical storylines are troublesome for that reason. Can I have more character work, please?
Five about-to-die heroes — Polaris, a feline Beast, Black Panther, Forge, Scarlet Witch — are plucked from alternate worlds and assembled under the leadership of Morph, a hilarious shape-shifter. Blink’s there, too, but doesn’t say much beyond explaining her powers.
I found the beginning, where everyone gets an individual couple of pages of action just before the moment of their death (as expected, no one dies quietly in bed), necessary but slow-going. I like team books for the interactions, and I had to be patient enough to get them all together.
The alternate world background is a great gimmick to use interesting characters without all their continuity baggage. The writer — Jeff Parker, the reason I tried this book in the first place — can also tweak problems with them if so desired or explore writing them in a different voice. This Black Panther, for example, doesn’t have that whole “I am the King, worship me” tone to his voice, instead sounding more like, well, a superhero.
Mostly, though, I like this book because of Morph. A creative creative team can do great, funny stuff with him, like when he turns into Doctor Who or the Timebroker from the previous series while explaining the premise (taken out of time) to the new team members. It’s a shame that he’s not a real team member, only their guide. I’d like to see more of him, but he does work best this way, I suppose. He doesn’t match well in some of the grim worlds the team will be sent to. This first one, they have to help Wolverine overthrow Magneto, only the regenerating superhero isn’t exactly available at the moment.