Or – “And We Still Have Almost NO Idea What’s Going On…”
The art of the big crossover event has changed over the years.Â The first one, (in my memory, anyway)Â Secret Wars, was done almost entirely outside of the regular titles’ continuity, with the individual heroes stories jumping forward a few weeks in time, while the miniseries played out separately for the rest of the year.Â Crisis on Infinite Earths took place everywhere at once, causing for weird moments where characters we expected to see in one place turned up in another.Â Civil War annoyed me with it’s tendency to put the home titles in low gear or idle while we waited to see what played out in the main title.Â Secret Invasion has done a little bit ofÂ all of these, in thatÂ the Avengers titles have been indefinitely suspended in favor of Skrully Flashback Theatre, whereas Spider-Man’s home books completely ignore that anything called Skrullapalooza even happened, except for that “Mary Jane vs. Sinister Six Super Skrull” miniseries, and both Fantastic Four and X-Men have done their crossover bits as separate from their regular minis.Â Last issue, our heroes rallied, banding together for the big fight…Â What happens this issue?
Or – “The Avengers Title That Actually FeaturesAn Avenger.”
I guess one of the biggest surprises about Secret Invasion is how well Marvel has held to their crossover guns, making sure that the story in the main title is (essentially) self-contained, and the crossover issues are designed to heighten that story, and add depth and background.Â This is all well and good, but it has had the effect of turning New and Mighty Avengers into “Skrullapalooza Flashback Theatre.”Â Since the first few issues of the mini (released overÂ a period of severalÂ months) have taken placeÂ in theÂ space of half a day, we’re stalling for time across the M.U. as the characters catch up toÂ themselves and where they were at the beginning of Secret Invasion #1 at last summer…Â But, lo and behold, here comes Avengers: The Initiative with not only aÂ story set in the more or less current time, but a storyÂ with forward momentum and some nice character bits, and one that actually shows us what’s going on at homeÂ while Spider-Man and company cavort about the Savage Land…
This issue: Mighty Câ€™Thuâ€™lu rests at Râ€™yleth! Britt Reid and Kato emerge from the Black Beauty! Cliffjumper gets ready to layeth the smacketh downeth on a Hobbit (Hereâ€™s a hint: Bet on the giant robot.) Where to start collecting comics! How to stop watching anime! Why to keep up with Secret Invasion! What is up with new Hitchhikerâ€™s Guide? The Schleicher has turned on the â€˜No Smokingâ€™ sign, so strap your tray tables up, secure all personal belongings, and please return the stewardess to her original upright positionâ€¦
It canâ€™t have been that long ago that I praised X-Factor as being one of my favorite comic books. It must have been even less time than that that I announced, even though the artwork by Larry Stroman was giving me heart palpitations, I would continue to buy the book for Peter Davidâ€™s writing.
Another month, and another rundown of the Top 300 Comics from Diamond Comic Distributors.Â Once again Marvel took the top spot with 48% of the unit share, with DC Comics bringing in 32%.Â Eight of the top ten comics belonged to Marvel, with Secret Invasion #5 taking the top spot.Â Final Crisis #3, from DC, held the runner-up position, and Batman #679, a R.I.P. tie-in came in at the fourth position. Buffy the Vampire Slayer continues to be the top seller for Dark Horse as the only non Marvel/DC title in the Top 20.
Take the jump for the listing, and remember, this is a sortable table, which means you can find your favorite title on the list much easier.
Looks as if everyone is happy to get their hands on Captain Trips.Â The second issue of the first installment of Stephen King’s The Stand arrives in October, and Major Spoilers has a sneak peek, just for you.
If you didn’t get a laugh, or at least appreciate what Marvel is doing with its Embrace Change commercial that ran this week on ESPN2, I’d encourage you to check out the video, or take a look at the still images from the spot.Â If you think Marvel is missing out by promoting the Secret Invasion story now, I have a feeling, the Skrulls aren’t going to be off Earth by the end of issue #8.
As a long-time comics fan, I have found that certain bigs of comic lore tend to keep recurring every few years…Â Phoenix is reborn!Â Spider-Man’s life will never be the same again!Â A foe strong enough to defeat Superman!Â A new headquarters for the Justice League!Â And, most germane to this situation, the founding Avengers return to action!Â I remember a conversation with my co-worker Dusty around the time that Kurt Busiek relaunched the Avengers post-Heroes-Reborn, wherein he opined that Captain America, Iron Man and Thor ARE the Avengers, and everybody else isn’t what he reads the title for.Â Apparently, Marvel editorial agrees, and this is the issue that proves it…
Marvel Comics has sent Major Spoilers the cover images and solicitation information for titles arriving December 2008.
SECRET INVASION: DARK REIGN
Written by BRIAN MICHAEL BENDIS
Pencils & Cover by ALEX MALEEV
Variant Cover by CLASSIFIED
These solicits are classified until the release of Secret Invasion #8.
Pick up the free Marvel Previews: Dark Reign Edition in-stores the same day as Secret Invasion #8.
32 PGS./One-Shot/Rated T+ â€¦$2.99