We’re still singing the same song and dance with The House of Ideas.
Marvel was supposed to finish their massive Secret Wars event before they launched a brand new publishing initiative branded as the All-New, All-Different Marvel Universe. However, Secret Wars slipped through the cracks and saw numerous delays. Despite that, Marvel decided to go ahead and launch the new books anyway.
Are all of these books worth your hard earned dollars? Are they as interesting as they should be? Are they worth the page to dollar ratio? We’re going to tell you as we dig through another week of the All-New, All-Different Marvel Universe.
The Astonishing Ant-Man #1
Writer: Nick Spencer Artist: Ramon Rosanas Colors: Jordan Boyd
Letters: VC’s Travis Lanham Designer: Idette Winecoor
While some have been enjoying this title since before the big Secret Wars relaunch, I never thought it had the same magic of one of Spencer’s previous Marvel titles; The Superior Foes of Spider-Man. I still have a massive problem with how the book is trying to make Scott Lang some sort of bumbling idiot. There’s a huge difference in Spencer’s characterization of Lang in this book and his characterization in Fraction & Allred’s Fantastic Four. De-aging Cassie Lang is painful for me — I’m not sure in what Universe it’s believable for Lang to go from the Young Avengers back to this title. Sloppy characterization and jokes that aren’t as sharp as previous works make me wonder why I’m not re-reading The Superior Foes of Spider-Man instead of reading this.
Verdict: Stopping here
Writer: Warren Ellis Artist: Gerardo Zaffino Color Artist: Dan Brown
Letters: Clayton Cowles
Let’s get the elephant out of the room out nice and early: this first issue has more than a few similarities to Moon Knight #1. Also: I have no idea how Karnak changed this much from coming back from the dead.
Despite both of these observations, I’m willing to accept this and continue to read what Warren Ellis has in-store for the character. Karnak could really have gone through an impressive religious-style awakening in his own character, becoming somebody that S.H.I.E.L.D. could tap on reserve — but man is it off-putting to see the character go from Inhuman outcast to S.H.I.E.L.D. reserve player (and go onto be super connected in the greater Marvel Universe). Author Warren Ellis tells an incredibly interesting yarn with a new version of Karnak that has garnished a set of religious followers, and can function as an interesting action hero. If Ellis was going to continue writing in his silent action-style narrative, he needed someone as powerful as Declan Shalvey to depict the visuals. Thankfully, Gerardo Zaffino is a heavy hitter here, functioning as a resident badass delivering something in the same vein of Shalvey but still all his own. While he isn’t Jordie Bellaire, Dan Brown gives this comic a vivid splash of green in the way he colors this title.
Verdict: Going in the pull box
Uncanny Inhumans #1
Writer: Charles Soule Pencils: Jay Leisten Colors: Sunny Gho Inker: Steve McNiven
Letters: VC’s Clayton Cowles
A Taste of a Major Future Inhuman Story
Writer: Charles Soule Artist: Brandon Peterson Colors: Nolan Woodard
Letters: VC’s Clayton Cowles
I commend The Uncanny Inhumans for changing up the Inhumans property so much post-Secret Wars. However, this title is going to be painful for both new readers and many longtime fans. While Uncanny Inhumans #0 was paired down with Black Bolt, Kang, Medusa and a few other characters, this story is filled with a ton of new heroes. In his previous work with the Inhumans, Charles Soule created a lot of characters that new fans aren’t going to be familiar with right out of the gate, so there is going to be a lot of catch up in this story for anyone who has not yet read those books. Things get a little weirder still when all these X-Men characters start popping up here with little explanation/There’s obligatory Cyclops reference as well. This story is interesting, but I have a feeling that the comic is going to take time getting readers settled into the new status quo before the fun really begins. Leisten’s pencils are satisfying and look like McNiven’s while still retaining their own identity.
Soule’s second story in this issue is incredibly vague — I understand that the author needs to set the stage for a second Inhumans title, but this wasn’t satisfying for me to enjoy as a reader not sure where the rest of this story going.
Verdict: We keep going
Before we wrap up, I would like to mention that the second issue of The Invincible Iron Man sheds some light on the series. Bendis is taking the comic in a really interesting direction, and I hope he really can hone in on paying off some of the plot threads that he has setup in this first series of issues.
That’s the All-New, All-Different Marvel books for this week — what did you think?
Fruit snack aficionado. @AlexandComics