X-Men : First Class was a big surprise for everybody last year, who all had bad tastes in their mouths from the atrocities that were X-Men 3 and X-Men Origins : Wolverine. Taking things back to the past to see how it all started made it fresh and with a smart script to boot. The inevitable sequel talks of course came afterwards, though what direction would take was unknown. Until now.
In an interview with IGN, Bryan Singer announced that the First Class sequel will be heading to “Days of Future Past” territory. They plan to hit upon some aspects of the story while expanding upon the direction they took the previous movie. Matthew Vaughan is still on to direct with an anticipated release around July 2014.
If you’re not aware of this story, this was a very short 2-issue run during the classic Chris Claremont/John Byrne days about a post-apocalyptic future where the Sentinels ran society and either imprisoned or killed most of the mutant population. It’s always been hinted at that this is where the X-Men’s future was heading in the books since the 1981 storyline, but nothing concrete came out of it. It’s still exciting to see them take this next step, though one has to wonder if we really are getting our dream of actual Sentinels this time rather than the lopped-off head of one courtesy of Wolverine back in X-Men 3.
DC’s New 52 gets criticized for not taking too many risks with its flagship characters. Barry Allen’s origin isn’t altered much, but his environment, powers, and villains certainly are. Factor in Francis Manapul’s continuing exquisite art and you got another consistently great run for the fastest man alive.
Wolverine and the X-Men #6 is just all about fun. Jason Aaron has really made this into such an enjoyable book amidst all of the dark and gritty material we get from our comics. And yet he continues to make it compelling for readers. I’ve also grown to like Nick Bradshaw’s art more and more with each issue.
And where would a Quick Picks be without a Scott Snyder sighting? Only this time, he lets Rafael Albuquerque shine in American Vampire #24. Whether you like your car chases, your gritty asylums, or your vampires, Albuqerque draws it all with style.
Earlier at NYCC this year, Mike and I attended the Marvel Cup O’ Joe panel and saw this image on the screen:
Clearly, the Phoenix Force is making its comeback, but in what capacity, we hadn’t known since it was first revealed. Then, USA Today released this article today and all was revealed – Avengers vs. X-Men:
As you can see, the Marvel “architects” are set to write the entire 12-issue bi-weekly run, which goes into the following synopsis:
“Kicking off in a special “zero issue” prologue in March written by Bendis and Aaron, Avengers vs. X-Men begins the next month with an extinction-level event barreling its way toward Earth, namely the cosmic entity of death and rebirth known as the Phoenix Force. It’s looking for a new host who will possess all of its power, which may or may not be the mutant teenager Hope Summers.
Cyclops, Wolverine, Magneto and the other X-Men want to protect her and prepare her if she’s to be the new Phoenix. Captain America, Iron Man, Spider-Man and their fellow Avengers want her handed over to them so they can figure out what to do with her and keep the world safe from a potentially fiery fate.
Suffice it to say, tensions — and fisticuffs — arise.”
You can’t help but think Civil War as you read this, although not on the political and human rights level that the Mark Millar series was diving into. But we’re obviously a ways off from knowing anything more. Stay tuned as the details reveal themselves.
The real question to ask – will Wolverine make a guest appearance?
Peter Milligan gets the ball moving with Justice League Dark #2, giving us a taste of a super-hero team-ups against the occult. There’s a lot to like with this new team, particularly with Zatanna’s more hard-edged personality and a surprising continuation of a key relationship from Brightest Day. Makes me wonder if the story arc ties into the aforementioned event.
Not so far behind it was The Sixth Gun #16. Cullen Bunn is continuing to build an epic in his western mythology, this time focusing on more second-tier characters to tie into that mythology. This one needs to get on more people’s radar more – truly something for the fans of Lord of the Rings, but with a magical twist.
And lastly, the X-Men universe continues to go strong post-Schism. Jason Aaron’s Wolverine and the X-Men #1 has a great mix of comedy, action, and heart that fits well with Logan’s new team. Chris Bachalo can be hit or miss at times, but he brings very crisp pencils to the new school and its inhabitants.
Don’t forget that the 100th Quick Picks is coming soon! Send us your thoughts, comments, and emails on topics for the show!
The time has come, folks. On August 31st, the new DCU is in full swing and Justice League #1 is the one kicking things off. This was definitely a labor of love put together by Geoff Johns and Jim Lee. They didn’t have to do this book at all, but they chose to. And while it’s a slow burn of an issue rather than epic battle sequences, it sets the stage for a great and new look into what should be the premier title of DC that it hasn’t been the last 10 years.
Marvel didn’t want me left hanging dry that week though. Rick Remender put out another stellar effort in Uncanny X-Force #14 in the continuing Dark Angel saga that sees Archangel assume the mantle of Apocalypse. Jerome Opena makes his way back to art duties, which improves the book tenfold (as if it needed that already). Absolutely the best X-book on the market and am hoping that trend continues for the foreseeable future.
Music provided by The Commuters – As I Make My Way
Tensions are building in Jason Aaron’s X-Men Schism #3. Sentinels are getting wonky, the latest Hellfire Club is taking out the X-Men’s heavy hitters, and slowly we’re seeing Cyclops and Wolverine ready to come to blows. It’s these elements that is making this one a great summer event leading into this fall’s fallout.
Right behind it was Daredevil #2. The back-to-basics approach is working and winning me over. Here, we get a scuffle with Cap, more drama with the Jobrani trial, and an unwelcome surprise for the Man Without Fear. Mark Waid is great at getting to the core of a character and the brighter vibe brought by Paolo Rivera’s pencils is welcome.
And lastly, we take a blast to the past in the DC Retroactive series with Flash The 90′s. Any fans of Wally West will appreciate a new tale from his incredible 90′s run.