Christos Gage/Mike McKone
I am liking this title already. It has a little bit of Runaways mixed with a dash of Thunderbolts vibe to it. For those who haven't read the title it centers on new recruits who in the first issue find out that they have been recruited not because the Avengers think they have great potential as heroes but rather they are worried that they will become villains without the proper intervention.
This issue moves things along as we get to see how the students react to the revelation of the first issue but also gives us a bit of insight in the mindsets of the trainers. This title could be a sleeper hit for Marvel out of the whole Avengers relaunch so grab your copies today. 4 stars out of 5.
J. Michael Straczynski/Eddy Barrows
JMS begins his run on the Man Steel with a departure from the type of story we have gotten used to in the Super titles during the last few years. The basic premise is that Superman feels he has become disconnected from the very people he wantsto protect and serve so he lands in Philadelphia and begins a walk through the city helping out the average citizens.
I thought the issue was a nice change of pace and is obviously a way for JMS to strip things back down to basics and examine who Superman is in today's world. I am looking forward to future issues but worry how long the "Grounded" storyline can the interest of the people who have gotten used to the more epic scale stories they have seen in the Super titles the last
4 years. 4 stars out of 5.
Doctor Solar, Man of the Atom #1
Jim Shooter/Dennis Calero
This is the latest revival of the Gold Key property that saw its greatest success at Valiant comics which coincidentally was run by this incarnations current writer, Jim Shooter. Unfortunately,
it does not appear that lightning will strike twice with the latest version at Dark Horse. The story opens with Doctor Solar taking on a villain that appears to have been created by a writer that seems to have been created by a writer merely by thought. The rest of the issue is taken up with an a rather clumsily done recap of Doctor Solar's origin.
I found the dialogue to be rather wooden and the art to be competent but nothing that wowed me. I don't think that this revival will last overly long unless changes are made. My suggestion would be to get a more current writer handle the title with Jim Shooter overseeing the work as an editor. 2 stars out of 5.
X-Force Sex and Violence
Chris Yost-Craig Kyle/Gabrielle Dell'otto
It is with a sad heart that we come to this storyline which will be Chris Yost and Craig Kyle's last with X-Force. However, they are going to go out as they came in- with lots of violence (and probably some sexy stuff too if the title is to be believed).
This storycentres around exploring Wolverine and Dominio's complicated relationship against the backdrop of Dominio being hunted by the Assassin's Guild. Shaping up to be a fun mini and a fitting swan song for the dynamic duo. 4 stars out of 5.
X-Men Second Coming #2
Matt Fraction-Chris Yost-Mike Carey-Zeb Wells/Terry Dodson-Greg Land-Esad Ribic-Ibraim Roberson
The best X-crossover in years ends here. Regular readers of my reviews will remember that I have really enjoyed this crossover (although I thought the Hellbound mini could have been eliminated).
The issue ties up the aftermath of the X-Men's battle with Nimrod and what impact Hope's x-gene activation will have on the world of our merry mutants. Fallen heroes are lost and the consequences of actions taken are finally laid bare.
If you haven't been reading this crossover you have missed out and should definitely pick it up in trade. Adi Granov's covers for the series have been fantastic and the art has been very solid for the whole storyline. 4.5 stars out of 5.