Two Guys Talking About Comics: X-Men Schism #3, Generation Hope #10, Uncanny X-Men #542, Daredevil #2, And Batman #713

Pulse Glazer
It’s a three X-Book week and we’re hittin’ ’em all Grey! Let’s kick off Two Guys Talking About Comics with the X-Event, X-Men Schism #3!

Grey Scherl
I’m glad we’re starting here because I just need to make sure that I didn’t go crazy, but this book sucks, right?

Pulse Glazer
It fell apart utterly. Those kids can take out Magneto, Namor and all those others, but untrained Idie smokes them. Wolverine is MAD Idie saved 100 lives. And the X-Men know kids are with the Hellfire Club but they let those Hellfire Kids gleefully skip out in street clothes.

Grey Scherl
How about Emma being reduced to amateur hour and deciding that she could totally take them with her mind before they could abuse her non-diamond like state?

Pulse Glazer
It was terrible characterization with a forced plot.

Grey Scherl
Or Magneto just assuming that there’s no chance that these kids aren’t using metal, because it’s not like the most common way to defeat Magneto is to use non-metal projectiles or anything.

Pulse Glazer
The kids also easily predicted which X-Men would be at this event. Like there’s any logical reason in the world they send mass murderer Magneto.

Grey Scherl
Then there’s super nobel Wolverine who is hanging out in a bar instead of being with the rest of the group, who has no problem casting judgement, but had no good reason for why he wasn’t around.

Pulse Glazer
The guy who mostly wants genocide of humans is who I’d use for a photo opp. God, it’s terrible.

Grey Scherl
The only person who is truly in character in this book is Scott, and it’s because Jason Aaron is writing him as a stone cold get the job done kind of General, which just happens to be what Scott is these days.
Then on top of all of this we don’t even get the slick an awesome Pacheco art that made the first two issues worth reading, we get Daniel “I should only do covers” Acuna.

Pulse Glazer
I have less hope for Wolverine and the X-Men than ever before. It’s bad when the event is scaring me off what comes next. And the art was terrible. Who’s drawing Wolverine and the X-Men?

Grey Scherl
Bachalo, which is what is selling me the book. Chris Bachalo can do no wrong.
The best things about this issue are Idie slaughtering Hellfire Troops, the meta commentary the kid made about how Magneto never wins, and Scott verbally smacking Logan across the face and not getting any sort of worthwhile argument in return.

Pulse Glazer
The best thing about this issue is straight up our next book. But we’ll get there. Rating?

Grey Scherl
Oh, and I chuckled at the black kid selling people into slavery for all of the wrong reasons, that isn’t a good thing.
I’m giving it a 3 and feeling generous, if Pacheco drew it I could probably warrant something in the 5 range, but it’s a bad read that looks worse.

Pulse Glazer
I’m giving it a 2.5. It’s not one of the worst issues of the year, but Jason Aaron is capable of so much more and the art is ugly.
Grey Scherl
I think Daniel Acuna on Jason Aaron books is the kiss of death, that’s about when I dropped Wolverine.

 

Pulse Glazer
And now, Generation Hope #10!

Grey Scherl
Generation Hope is a gem.

Pulse Glazer
Generation Hope was all about Idie’s role in the Mutant Museum Massacre. It’s why she was there, what she thinks, and how she relates to her people.  It’s not only great character work, but it’s allegorically effective and genuinely poignant.

Grey Scherl
She, Zero, and Teon have really been the highlights as far as characterization go in this book, and so the spotlight falling on her didn’t disappoint.
Idie’s unique view of herself and the world completely sold the entire confrontation in a way that few other X characters could have been used.

Pulse Glazer
Even the other girl who’s name escapes me, is improving. It’s called Generation Hope, but it isn’t about Hope. She’s an idea for others to react to.

Grey Scherl
Exactly.

Pulse Glazer
Kieron Gillen… ready to call him one of the best in the business today or do we need to review Uncanny for that?

Grey Scherl
And it’s not even just a leadership thing, her activating these characters makes them dependent on her in an incredibly creative way. They lack the blind confidence without her, and despite Transonic being so inhuman, her running and blaming Hope for not being there is some of the strongest characterization I’ve seen out of her.
You know me, I’m not one to put that title on someone this quickly, even when they have impressed me. But Uncanny surely doesn’t hurt, and I think everyone will understand why when we get back to it near the end of this.
But Gillen is definitely a stud right now.

Pulse Glazer
The best part? All of this is coming out of a terrible event. Which is likewise why you should read his Journey into Mystery.
He’s a master at finding the best in ideas.

Grey Scherl
I told you I’d read it in trade.

Pulse Glazer
I know, but reminding. It’s his best book.

Grey Scherl
It’s really not his fault I don’t read that.
Combine Thor and Fear Itself and I honestly just turned off the entire franchise.

Pulse Glazer
I know. I hate FI and dropped Mighty Thor. JitM is still awesome, just like Uncanny and Hope.  But back to Hope. A rating?

Grey Scherl
Gillen is an amazing character writer who is going to be a giant upside for Marvel so long as they allow him to do his thing and not try and shoehorn him into event writing. I mean, let him write tie-ins, but don’t force him to write an event. That’s killing Fraction right now, and Aaron.
Generation Hope gets an 8.5 out of me.
We love our little niche titles, don’t we?

Pulse Glazer
I give it a 10.0. I was incredibly impressed.  This is the type of issue I’ll remember for years, and so few, sadly, read it.

Grey Scherl
That’s exactly how I felt after every issue of Batgirl.

Pulse Glazer
Batgirl, at least, sold to the bookstore audience.

Grey Scherl
I preordered my copy of volume three today!

Pulse Glazer
Onto a book that’s anything but niche, Uncanny X-Men #542. I loved it. You loved it. Gillen wrote it, so no surprise. But what made it so good?

Grey Scherl
It was the combination of strong characterization, Scott having more plans than Batman, Illyana being creepy awesome, Piotr reminding everyone that he has no problem taking ultimate sacrifices for the sake of the world, and a degree of urgency that has been lacking in just about every other FI tie in.
It was pretty much everything, because this is one of those rare cases when the writing is so good that Greg Land’s art actually looks great in it.
That’s right, I’m putting over Greg Land because Kieron Gillen carried him to a five star issue.

Pulse Glazer
I liked the characterization, enjoyed another book making good use of Fear Itself while Fraction proves to have no idea how to, and the best part? We didn’t ignore mutant tension. There’s the destroy San Fran or Utopia subplot that’s been great.
And the Adam X scene literally just made me laugh thinking of it.

Grey Scherl
Yup, Gillen is using FI to make Juggernaut a huge threat, but doesn’t break his own narrative and makes sure to get mileage out of the rest of his cast.
Adam X was pure win.
And how about the Emma stuff?

Pulse Glazer
I hope Gillen remains on this for a long, long time.
Emma stuff is, again, using the Fear part of Fear Itself better than anywhere else.

Grey Scherl
Seriously, I thought Frac was amazing with the X-Men, but Gillen is, well, Uncanny.

Pulse Glazer
Ha, okay, we aren’t topping that pun. Rating?

Grey Scherl
The Hope/Jean stuff was ripped right from the readers minds and didn’t even feel like it was a fourth wall moment.

Grey Scherl
I’m going with 9.5, incredible issue, incredible cliffhanger. The all but spoiled nature didn’t even hurt it.

Pulse Glazer
I’m going with a 9. I kind of dislike Land still, but besides that, it’s everything I want in an X-Men Comic and everything I’d want from a Fear Itself tie in.

Grey Scherl
I detest Land’s work, but this is the best I’ve seen out of him in ages.

Pulse Glazer
Let’s do another high issue number that’ll be relaunching and jump to DC with Batman #713

Grey Scherl
I’m glad Fabian wrote the last issue and not Tony Daniel, and that’s not even a knock on Daniel, but Fabian is the master of the self contained character story.
This issue was nothing groundbreaking, and it isn’t going to be something future stories are built out of, but what it is is a damn good Dick Grayson story.
Not a damn good Batman story, a damn good Dick Grayson story.

Pulse Glazer
I like Fabian and can’t stand Daniel. I liked the plot for a Dick Grayson story, but in no way buy Damian as being the one delivering the story.

Grey Scherl
That part felt a bit forced, but it does get across the idea that the time they’ve spent together has had a positive effect on Damian, which it has.
He’s by no means normal, but he is significantly less homicidal, and had he been teamed with Bruce I seriously doubt he’d have lasted this long.

Pulse Glazer
Right, and due to this, I see no real method for Dick to give up the cowl.

Grey Scherl
There was a crack about it in JLA this week, Robinson peppered the book with meta-text. One part was Dick saying how he figured he’d be asked to be Nightwing again soon.

Pulse Glazer
I really dislike this.

Grey Scherl
I understand why they’re doing it, given the nature of the relaunch, but Dick as Batman definitely had a lot more mileage.
It’s one of the greater casualties; like Batgirl and Secret Six.

Pulse Glazer
I agree and am disappointed.

Grey Scherl
Something that was really good but just wouldn’t synch up with everything else they were trying to do. I can’t fault them for the decision, and I’m still going to buy Nightwing, but I really just hope we’ll see him in the cowl again one day before we’re forty.

Pulse Glazer
I strongly doubt it. Rating?

Grey Scherl
I’m going to give it an 8.

Pulse Glazer
I’m fine with a 7. It was good.

Pulse Glazer
Now, a book similar in tone to Batman, Daredevil #2.

Grey Scherl
Great issue, but for much different reasons.

Pulse Glazer
It was pure fun.

Grey Scherl
Mark Waid has casually and effortlessly slipped Daredevil back into being a superhero title after years of dark and dirty noir.
Six months ago he had his own Parallax moment, now he’s back to…being the Matt Murdock I grew up with.

Pulse Glazer
The art was amazing.

Grey Scherl
It really was, and I love the scenes of his vision.
The fight scene with Cap was just incredible looking.

Pulse Glazer
In confetti. Fighting Captain America. Can you get more of a visual departure from where we were?

Grey Scherl
And Matt wasn’t even fighting him, that was the best part. Anytime over the last six or seven years we would have seen Matt incapacitate Steve and then tell Steve why he was wrong for trying to bring him in. Followed by some epic ominous words and a guilty exit, despite being the victim.
So for Matt to try and talk him down midfight? To not try and beat the tar out of him? That’s Matt Murdock, he doesn’t need to be Batman in red.

Pulse Glazer
Or Steve beat on Matt and a whole dramatic thing occur. It’s great to get such an organic, different tone. I compare it to the Bat books with Dick instead of Bruce.

Grey Scherl
It’s light hearted without losing any of the seriousness, and I mean, even Cap showing up to attack him worked for me. Waid managed to make it work without feeling like the personality was shoe horned in to make the plot work, like so many writers do.

Pulse Glazer
Right, tying in Bucky without making it the sole reason was excellent.

Grey Scherl
It was very nicely handled, Matt came across strong, and Steve wasn’t used as some sort of bad guy figure.

Pulse Glazer
Rating?

Grey Scherl
Gotta give it a 9 and then say it’s one of Marvel’s top five books right now, something I usually hate to say before an arc is done, but it’s Mark Waid and I know that faith in him always pays off.

Pulse Glazer
8 for me, and it might be one of the top 5. I have the three Gillen books above it and that might be it.
Oh, wait, Shield and FF. It’s #6.

Grey Scherl
FF dropped heavily for me after the last two issues.

Pulse Glazer
I hated the last two, but they’re done and now we’re back to normal. It’s the only time in like 3-years I haven’t loved it.

Grey Scherl
I won’t argue that, but the current book is still too new to have two crappy issues in a row.

Pulse Glazer
I consider it one run.

Grey Scherl
Did you read Cap this week?

Pulse Glazer
No.

Grey Scherl
You should have, it’s one of those cases where the second issue is far stronger than the first.

Grey Scherl
Bru even made sense out of using never before mentioned WWII characters.

Pulse Glazer
I’ll give it a look next week.

Grey Scherl
I’d also recommend Avengers this week, which was just a really good Steve Rogers one and done story with Maria Hill narrating.
It was a good week for Captain America.

DC, on the other hand, had a lot of fill in creative teams like Matthew Sturges wrapping up Power Girl, and I believe Scott Kollins writing the last issue of Green Lantern Corps. Adam Beechen finished off Zatanna, Fabian Nicieza stepped in for Batman…the last two weeks or so have had a lot of obvious wheel turning. It kinda sucks. I get it, I mean, but it sucks.

 

Pulse Glazer

Alright with that we’re off! See you all next week for my Birthday!

 

Grey Scherl

Wow, random rant there, later everyone!

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