Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Making Mine Marvel

So if DC is losing me, what about Marvel? Well,lately, I'm buying as many Marvels as I ever have, so I guess I'm still in the Merry Marvel Marching Society.

Which isn’t to say that Marvel is doing anything different than DC. Both companies have essentially the same publishing goals and strategies, both milk their top selling characters for all they’re worth, and both crank out event after event. I suppose I’m just more predisposed toward the Marvel Universe characters. For example, Fear Itself only seems more appealing to me than Flashpoint because I’ve been reading Captain America on and off for  years, whereas I’ve largely ignored the Flash, aside from most of the Wally West years. Fear Itself also appeals because rather than mucking with the timestream and changing the Marvel Universe FOREVER, by making baffling changes to its history, it simply promises slack-jawed brutes pounding the crap out of everyone in sight with giant magic hammers; a much more appealing proposition.

As far as the regular titles go, Amazing Spider-Man has become a solid favorite in the last few years. Say what you will about One More Day, (and I have weighed in), the book hasn’t been this good in years. I love the direction Big Time has taken Spidey in, and I enjoy seeing him evolve into a different kind of hero who has to struggle with a new kind of responsibility.
Spider-Man also recently became the newest member of Marvel’s FF; not the Fantastic Four, but either the First Family or the Future Foundation, depending on which grouping of the greatly expanded team we're talking about. Spider-Man, Nathanial Richards, and an eccentric Uncle join the First Family, while Spidey will also be doing time with the Future Foundation and Reed's young prodigies. I've been enjoying Jonathan Hickman's run, but FF casts a whole new light on the same old family.

And then there are the Avengers. Brian Bendis’ take on the Avengers has been a huge success for Marvel, but its wearing a bit thin for me. The main Avengers title is pretty good, and has a strong lineup, but I still can’t wrap my head around Wolverine as an Avenger, let alone an Avenger twice over. New Avengers should have been better, but started out weak with a story designed to complete Bendis’ ongoing quest to destroy Doctor Strange. So far, Avengers Academy is my favorite of the current Avengers lot, featuring actual Avengers –in costume- doing Avengery things.

I continue to be completely indifferent to the X-Men.

I’m also getting and enjoying Thunderbolts, Mighty Thor, Hulk, Captain America, and probably a few others that I’m forgetting. I will definitely be getting Mark Waid’s Daredevil, a title that has been way too dour for me for years now. Suffice to say that while Marvel is far from perfect, they seem to be hitting more than missing with yours truly at the moment.



The Seditionist said...

DC's screwing with continuity on a near-regular basis lost me ages ago. This is combined with a very subjective disinterest in the tone of many books as well as publicity: All this sound and fury about books that will only be delayed a couple of months. And just that they're by and by dumb entertainment. Marvel right now has a bunch of, to me, terrific writers. DC has one, maybe one and a half. Feh.

Shamus said...

I got back in to comics in 2006 when I started working near a comic store, after a 20 year absence. It was the nostalgia for DC that pulled me in at first that's all I read. Then started to explore Marvel and Dark Horse. Now I only read 3 DC books Secret Six, Jonah hex and Batman Inc. I dropped all of the Superman books a few years back and most of the Batman stuff as well as JLA and JSA. Now I've dropped all the Lantern books. What happened? I just don't find the stories worth the money. However I am really enjoying Marvel's books in Trade. FF, Captain America, Thor, Iron Man and Thunderbolts all continue to interest me time and time again. Not the way I planned it but that's the way it came out.