My Journey Through Marvel’s Ultimate Universe, Part 2: S.H.I.E.L.D. is a Terrible Organization

May 30th, 2013 by

The Ultimates!  Ugh...

Originally my intent with this journey through the bowels of Marvel’s Ultimate universe was to read a few of the trades at a time, and then write an article about them. Well it turns out that I’ve been enjoying (well, ‘consuming’ is probably more accurate in most cases) the books so much that I simply never stopped to write. I’ve read roughly 60 of the trades at this point, which finds me within striking distance of the end of my journey through the pre-Ultimatum Ultimate universe.  That said, I’ve got a lot of thoughts to cover in the next few articles.

My Journey Through Marvel’s Ultimate Universe, Part 1: Along Came a Spider…Man

April 25th, 2013 by


I’ll be honest, even though I was in my comic book sabbatical phase when Marvel fired up it’s Ultimate line of books, I was still aware of their existence and not terribly fond of the idea.  The idea to reboot your setting by creating a new line of titles that exist in their own continuity, while at the same time maintaining the books in your existing continuity, just seemed like one of those bad ideas that are unique to the comic book medium.  Then again, having a dozen flavors of Batman and X-Men each month also strikes me as a bad thing, so it’s obvious I don’t think like a publisher.

A few weeks back, for reasons I can’t quite fathom, I made the spontaneous decision to start reading the Ultimate line of comics.  In it’s entirety.  

I’m Not a Fan of Morrison’s ‘New X-Men’ Run

February 28th, 2013 by



So, about a month or two back I finally got around to reading Grant Morrison‘s well regarded 42 issue run of X-Men that has been collected in a massive omnibus that could probably stop a bullet. These issues were originally published while I was on a self-imposed comic book walkabout, so they completely went under my radar.  It was only during the last few years and my re-entry into the comic book world that I started hearing of this great era of X-Men that I had missed out on.  Being a lifetime X-fan, I decided that it was definitely something I wanted to check out.  When I saw Marvel had put out this ginormous tome collecting the run I nearly wept with joy.  Okay, there was no weeping, but there was a brief, yet furious click of the ‘Order’ button.  The book was delivered to my door and I dove in with enthusiasm.

Musings on ‘Wolverine and the X-Men’

November 14th, 2012 by

“Stay the hell away from my school.”

Wolverine and the X-Men

I love Wolverine and the X-Men.  

Sure, sometimes it seems like there are at least 283 X-Men titles and about 342 other comics that feature Wolverine in some way, shape, or form each month, but I dig this one the most. Why? Well let’s start with the absolutely brilliant writing from Jason Aaron, who has managed to make the story of the Jean Grey School for Higher Learning a hell of a fun read that I’d rank up there with anything on the shelves these days. I’ve always been a fan of writers who are able to juggle action, comedy, and off-the-wall ideas in their storytelling, and Aaron manages this exceptionally well.

Musings on ‘The Sixth Gun Volume 1: Cold Dead Fingers’

September 21st, 2012 by

“I want my gun back.”

I’ve never been a huge fan of the Western genre, although there have been exceptions such as Deadwood and Tombstone, both of which I hold in high regard. There are a large number of people out there that see high fantasy settings as endless clones of each other, and I tend to react the same way when stories that take place in the Old West cross my table or TV screen. It takes exceptional writing, acting, or imagery to keep my attention when it comes to Westerns. With that said, though, I may have found myself another exception.

Musings on ‘Batman/Grendel: Devil’s Riddle and Devil’s Masque’

September 6th, 2012 by

“Wayne.  Bruce Wayne.  And you are…?”

“Hunter.  Hunter Rose.”

I would imagine that some of you who read my review of the first Grendel Omnibus may have noticed that I made mention of a Batman/Grendel crossover but never elaborated on it.  As a Batman fan, this may have infuriated you.  For that, I apologize and hope that your anger has died down in the time since you read that article.  To make it up to you I am going to discuss that very crossover in this article.  Aren’t you excited??  I know I am!  Now, on with the info!

Musings on Matt Wagner’s ‘Grendel Omnibus Volume 1’

August 31st, 2012 by

“No, let me tell you about true power. And, in using that term, I don’t mean simple capacity.”

Grendel Omnibus Volume 1

I’ll be honest, Matt Wagner‘s Grendel mythos has always been on the outskirts of my comic book radar. My first exposure to it came when one day in the mid-1990’s I randomly decided to grab the Grendel: War Child trade paperback, mostly because Grendel Prime looked absolutely badass on the cover and I’m a sucker for a good cover. The story was interesting enough to eventually lead me to pick up the Batman/Grendel crossover books, which is where I got my first dose of Hunter Rose.

Let’s clear one thing up right away concerning the first Grendel, Hunter Rose…he’s a villain. He’s a cold-blooded sociopath whose amazing physical and mental prowess are matched only by his drive to dominate and control. Grendel directs his criminal empire with the same surgical precision he wields his twin-bladed staff with, and he has no qualms about cutting through anyone who gets in the way of his desires.