First up, we have Guardians of the Galaxy issue 13 by writer Al Ewing. Over the course of the current series, Ewing has done a lot of work developing Peter Quill and decided to make the main Guardians of the Galaxy team operate in a manner that has different groups handling a number of missions. I’m excited about GotG functioning in such a manner. It opens doors for Ewing to explore various storylines at once and even bring in more familiar faces.
The latest issue switched between two events. The primary plot had Quill’s team help Hulkling and Wiccan battle a Progenitor invasion while the secondary plot had Drax and his team discover a deadly fire-worshipping cult of Skrulls wanting to burn the entire universe for someone called He-Who-Waits.
Ewing did a good job of jumping between the two missions with Plot A being action-heavy and Plot B involving a more stealthy approach to spy on the cult. With magic involved, I’m looking forward to seeing if Wiccan will play a bigger role in the current arc.
Talking about Wiccan, while I enjoyed the action sequences, my only complaint would be not seeing Wiccan defeat a Progenitor (while certain other characters were able to). He’s supposed to be the future Demiurge. I would have liked to see him do something impressively action-centric in dangerous situations.
Also, can we please stop with Wiccan having to chant his spells? He should have levelled up by now. There’s this weird inconsistency when it comes to Wiccan and his powers because certain writers don’t have him chant anything while others do. Personally, I wouldn’t have Billy use reality-warping chants for creating shields, shooting magical energy blasts, etc. I would only have him chant a lot when something requires immense power and concentration.
Anyway, with a highly egotistical villain making an appearance at the end, here’s hoping Wiccan gets more to do against such a threat.
Along with the action stuff, Ewing made sure to add emotion. I liked the little interaction between Quill and Gamora. He spent a lot of time in another world while being in a polyamorous relationship. He even had a kid. Quill needs time to figure out his feelings.
The art by Juan Frigeri and colors by Federico Blee made for visuals I gravitate to in comic books. It could be a personal bias, but I enjoyed seeing every page.
Mighty Morphin Issue 6
It’s been 23 days and the Power Rangers are still unable to dissipate the shield around Angel Grove!!! Like, what the heck?
Writer Ryan Parrott raising the stakes really made me worry about the humans stuck inside Zedd’s energy dome. I’m looking forward to seeing Parrott explain what happened during the time jump. Similar to Kimberly, once the Rangers finally did manage to get inside Angel Grove through the energy shield, I too was expecting a very different environment. What Parrott and artist Marco Renna gave me was quite unexpected.
With the Rangers continuing to fight Zedd’s forces, I’m also enjoying Parrott exploring Zordon’s past and the interesting storyline being developed due to Zelya’s introduction. She’s definitely a fighter the Rangers can use in their current predicament. However, Zelya sharing how her home planet was like paradise made me side-eye her a bit. I might be wrong, but I have a feeling there’s something shady going on.
As for the emotional beats, the main teenagers trying to cope with possibly losing their families was written quite well. Tommy tried to act as the leader and keep their hopes up, but it’s clear he’s worried, too. I also enjoyed his passive-aggressiveness toward Kimberly. Of course, he doesn’t believe Kim had no idea Matt was the new Green Ranger even though she’s telling him the truth. Rocky opening up about his siblings was another great moment. I love this series!
Phantom on the Scan Issue 1
Having read a couple of books published by Aftershock Comics, I decided to check out the new horror story Phantom on the Scan by writer Cullen Bunn. The debut issue set the stage for a lot of paranormal weirdness. Apparently, psychics have been mysteriously dying, their heads literally exploding after they experience a flood of thoughts from other people (bad spirits?).
We’re introduced to our lead, Matthew, who wants to know what’s happening. After realizing his therapist’s been hiding information, we see Matthew reaching out to four other psychics (also patients of his therapist) to get to the bottom of what’s actually happening.
As far as I can tell, child experimentation might be involved. At this point, it would be incredibly impressive of Bunn to offer readers something that’s unique and unpredictable, considering the tons of similar stories available. Having said that, I’m intrigued about the child-like spirit Matthew talks to and the creepy art by Mark Torres hits all the rights marks to help each page come across as eerie. Torres doesn’t shy away from gore.
I especially loved the opening panels showing what happened 20 years ago. So, yeah, I’ll be sticking around for a bit.
Young Hellboy: The Hidden Land Issue 3
From Mike Mignola and Thomas Sniegoski, Young Hellboy: The Hidden Land issue 3 served as the penultimate chapter tasked with setting up a dangerous confrontation for our heroes in the finale. The Vampire Queen that Hellboy and the Professor need to defeat is no joke. Considering she was even able to drain the old magic from Scarlett, it won’t be easy to take her down.
The latest issue also gave us information about the mysterious island. Turns out, the inhabitants had to teleport the island away from civilization and have it exist in a bubble reality to prevent the Vampire Queen from escaping and taking over the world. After seeing what she’s capable of, I would be very surprised if the Professor and Hellboy find a way to kill her permanently. That’s why I’m excited to see how the finale plays out.