Bullet Reviews #10: Haunt, C.V.O., Godzilla and More!
Another week and another batch of Bullet Reviews. This week we have Robb Orr talking a bit about Haunt and Skott Of Fables gives some thoughts on Godzilla!
AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #659 (Marvel)
Nick C will have a full review of this in coming days, and I look forward to his opinions on what happens in the main story(!), so what I’m going to focus on, again, is the Ghost Rider back-up. I’m giving this a chance because there is a new Ghost Rider series starting in June as part of Fear Itself. I just really want to be able to read and enjoy this character again. It’s been over a decade, I think it’s time. Something in this story really confused me. His bike is sentient? It’s a living thing? Since when? It makes no sense. But, beyond that this story has the action the I like with this character although the characterization of Ghost Rider confuses me. Of course, almost everything confuses me about this version of Ghost Rider up to, and including, why Blaze is Ghost Rider again. Is it Zarathos? Who knows. So, this story focuses on the bike. A demon called the Servicer comes and wants to take the bike but ends up with Ghost Rider stuck in his chest and Spider-Man taking the bike, stopping a mugging and trying to escape by driving right at the demon…Yeah, it really doesn’t make much sense to me but, as always, there is another part soon and I hold on to the hope that this will, eventually, make some sort of sense. Also in this issue we get the very beginning of Infested which leads into this summer’s Spider-Island event! Who is Miles Warren? Right now he seems like a mad scientist who is using New York as his lab. He has a thing for bugs and the effect of their bits on humans! –Skott Jimenez
GODZILLA: KINGDOM OF MONSTERS #2 (IDW)
Yeah, I didn’t do a review for the first issue. I wanted to but I wanted to have more meat to review. See, this comic is just like a Godzilla movie, it doesn’t start running right away, rather it builds slowly. In issue one the world was introduced to Godzilla. Yeah, it threw me a bit because this story, like many of the movies, takes place separately from the rather loose continuity of the movies. The biggest indicator of this was the military bombing the Big G with a nuke which gave him the ability to breathe his trademark fire! So, Godzilla shows up in the first issue and does his thing shocking the world in the process. This issue has him continuing his destructive journey to…who knows where while, for the first time ever in comics, two other Toho greats are introduced: Rodan and Anguirus! Rodan shows up in an egg in Moscow, hatches, grows very fast and develops a taste for Russian children while Anguirus demonstrates how little he cares for border security as he decides to enter the U.S. from Mexico! The slow build to something with the monsters is great but we also get a taste of the human impact. Godzilla, when he first appeared, killed two young children playing on the beach. Their father wants some measure of revenge and straps all manner of explosives to his body, jumps off a building at Godzilla and the explosion does little more than annoy the King Of The Monsters. Bottom line here is Godzilla: Kingdom Of Monsters is a MUST HAVE for any G-Fan! -Skott Jimenez
HAUNT #15 (Image)
This week I HAD to get Haunt #15 by Kirkman, Capullo and McFarlane. The last issue ended in a cliff-hanger, with Haunt ready to start round 2 with The Apparition. The cover art on the new issue was probably the weakest I have ever seen on this title. The proverb “never judge a book buy it’s cover” proved to be very true. This issue starts off with a beautifully illustrated escape by Daniel, Kurt and Alegria. The amazing full-page pictures interspersed by panels, while we are given key information about the nature of The Apparition, made the opening move fast. Kurt’s spirit begins to ponder if he should just let himself be taken by The Apparition to protect Daniel and the people he loves. Daniel won’t hear of it. When Kurt begs Daniel to take him to visit his widowed wife Amanda one last time, the situation explodes. Another epic battle begins. This time The Apparition is determined to restore the natural order of things. I won’t spoil it, but the end of this issue is SHOCKING and huge. This is the Haunt I have been waiting for! This is why I read comics. Haunt #15 is the best single issue I have read in a long time. My pulse was pounding at the end, and I wanted the next installment right then and there. I don’t mean to gush, but it has been a while since and issue made me feel this way. Even readers who haven’t kept up with this title could jump in here and be in the loop! Bravo! -Robb Orr
INFESTATION: C.V.O. 100-PAGE SPECTATULAR (IDW)
IDW must have psychics on their staff. When they launched their Infestation event earlier this year it began with a group of vampires? Yeah, they are a group called the Covert Vampiric Operations, or simply: C.V.O. One of their members, Britt, was the main focus of the Undermind during Infestation and used he to enter into the realities of the Transformers, G.I. Joe, the Ghostbusters and Star Trek. This was interesting and all but I was left to wonder who exactly these people were. I had never heard of C.V.O. Well, IDW comes out with this 100-page volume that showcases some of the more exciting adventures of these people. Along with some great action we are treated so some interesting back stories. Britts origin is among the stories as well as the shocking lie told to another member to keep him in line with the jobs they are going to be doing. It’s a perfect packages, the best way to introduce someone, like me, to a whole group of characters I never heard of before and it does so in a way that now has me on the hunt for trades! I put this under the Infestation banner because it’s features prominently on the cover but above that is “100-Page Spectacular.” I mention this because, if anyone at IDW is reading this, that would make for a nice line of primers to introduce new readers to your properties. The four that were involved with Infestation for example. Oh, and before I go, the best parts? NO ads and the price, for 100 pages: $7.99. This IS recommended! -Skott Jimenez
MIGHTY THOR #1 (Marvel)
Debuting this week with the regular cover and two uninspired variant covers (Thor movie and white variants, really guys?) Matt Fraction starts this title 0ut with a synopsis that could have easily been expressed in a couple of panels. We have (a not very interestingly drawn) Silver Surfer discussing his familiar burden, and sensing an energy source that could feed (a fairly well drawn) Galactus “for ages.” Jump to Asgard, where the world-tree Yggdrasil has been split and Thor and Sif are braving space-time to secure the Worldheart. Complications occur, and a resurrected boy-Loki intervenes, but not before Thor receives a curious injury that hints at later ramifications. The Surfer appears at the end, surveying the Earth from space. I gave this title a chance because I would enjoy seeing Thor, The Silver Surfer, and Galactus mix it up. This issue keeps cutting to a church sermon that hints at an ambitious, high-minded allegory that, in this issue at least, had failed to materialize. The art in this issue is serviceable, but is by no means breaking new ground. The Galactus and the backgrounds did look quite pleasant, however. On a slow release week and in a generous mood, I may give this title another shot. There are other excellent Thor titles available, and I have reservations that this one could just be a vehicle to capitalize on Thor’s current Hollywood exposure. -Robb Orr