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The Pull List: Return of Jessica Jones and the Champions Emerge

Geeklings, I need to start today’s column with an apology. I was in charge of doing the Luke Cage reviews for the site and my “real life” jobs kind of interfered and I had to bow out. I was totally bummed. On top of that I’m only five episodes in, and I have been loving it, but I’ve been pooling my head thoughts together so I can write a column on the show and the importance of Luke Cage once I wrap it up. There’s a lot going on here Geeklings and I want to address it. But I’m sorry about the episode reviews. Real life sucks sometimes.

But who needs real life when today is New Comic Book Day?! Hands down my favorite day of the week. I have off today too (take that real jobs!) and the first thing I did was grab my Fancy Comic Book Reader (ipad), downloaded my books, went across the street to D&D to grab myself an iced coffee, grabbed the ole bathrobe, and plopped myself down in my favorite chair to start reading. It was the most glorious of moments. There’s something about the arrival of new comics that just makes the day seem worthwhile. Especially when those books are as good as today’s haul.

How good you ask? Well, why don’t I show you. Plus since I was off on New Comic Book Day is it gave me time to read the books so I can include mini reviews in my write ups. It’s the gift that keeps on giving really. Are you guys excited? Of course you are! I’m excited. Let’s talk comics!

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1. Champions #1– Out of all the books coming out this week this was the one I was the most excited about. Hell, I’ve been excited about this book for months, ever since they announced that it was happening. At this stage of the game I think it’s safe to say that Civil War II has been a bit of a bust. That’s just the blunt truth. The delays have kind of screwed up the plans for Marvel Now 2.0 which sees a book like Champions dealing heavily with the fallout from Civil War II before the event is over. I hate that. Feels like it kind of undermines the event completly. Well, I’ll be the first to say that Champions does very little to spoil the outcome of Civil War II (although the lack of a certain person raises some eyebrows) while also purging any of the distaste the event has been leaving in your mouth. Champions is refreshing, exciting, and soon to be Marvel’s cornerstone book. Seriously. This group of heroes jells so quickly and show so much promise that I can’t help but feel optimistic about the direction that Marvel Now 2.0 is going. Centering on Ms. Marvel, who is taking the leader position and killing it, Miles Morales, Nova, Totally Awesome Hulk, and Viv not only gives the Marvel U some fresh young blood but a group of heroes who are more concerned about doing good then squabbling with each other. While the art is a bit up and down, Waid kills it with his writing and I’m already jonesing for book two. This is the Avengers book you have been waiting for, and it’s not even an Avengers book! Read it.

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2. Jessica Jones #1– With the success of her Netflix series we knew it was a matter of time before Jessica Jones got her own book again, and thank the gods that she did because this book is outstanding. Right off the bat the tone and art make it feel different then anything else in the Marvel U. There’s an edge here (besides the swearing) that makes the Marvel U seem like outcasts while also winking and nodding at the future (*ahem* The Champions *ahem*). Jessica’s voice easily matches up with the Netflix series and it looks like Bendis could be tying some loose strands together from way back when he was writing Avengers comics (think Secret Invasion maybe).There’s a mystery afoot here and Jessica is clearly trying to find her place in this new post Civil War II world. Look for some cameos from other heroes, excellent writing with excellent character development, and the need to read the next issue as soon as it comes out.

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3. Walking Dead #158– During it’s epic run, The Walking Dead has sure done some huge stories. There was everything at the prison that concerned the Governor, cannibals, the battle with Negan, and now the Whispers. It is clear that this story line is leading to a new status quo for our band of survivors but the questions being raised is who will be left? The original cast has been shrinking for years and for every war that Rick and his merry band of outcasts commit too that list gets smaller and smaller. The Whisper War hits the half way point with this issue and expect it to start steam rolling to the end. Hopefully there will be people left standing when it’s all said and done, but it’s The Walking Dead so I automatically assume the worst (p.s. I’m doing the reviews for the show. For real this time. Be excited because I am).

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4. Superman Rebirth #8– As much as Supes annoys me even I can’t deny that his new series has been pretty good so far. Issue 8 brings with it a new story line as both father and son travel to Dinosaur Island, which sounds like a great place to visit. If four Jurassic Park movies (two books) have taught me anything it’s that an island filled with dinosaurs is always a good idea. Always. I’ll be really pumped that if somewhere in this story line Supes says “clever girl” or “hold on to your butts”. Right?! You know you want that too.

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5. Death of X #1– It has not been the greatest of times to be a fan of the X-Men. There are a number of books to choose from but not many of them are good, and with Civil War II focusing on the Inhumans one could almost start to believe that Marvel doesn’t care about the X-Men anymore. Is it solely because they don’t have the rights to their movies? Maybe. As petty as it seems just look at what Marvel did to the Fantastic Four. One of their biggest groups has been split and doesn’t even have their own title anymore. I mean, where has the Richards family been since Secret Wars? Does anyone care? Look for the Death of X to bring the conflict with the Inhumans to a head which is something that is long overdue. The X-Men deserve to be great again and not cast off to the side. I haven’t gotten on board with the way the Inhumans have been forced on our plate and would like to see our mutants take back the spotlight. Granted, before things can get better things will get worse, so I fully expect for more X-Men to fall. Hell, what’s an X-Men crossover if important mutants don’t die? Hopefully this series can restore some of their greatness. The Marvel U and we deserve it.

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Honorable Mentions: Spider-Man #19 & Batman Rebirth #8

There you have it Geeklings! These are the books you should be paying the most attention to this week. I know it’s very Marvel heavy but Marvel had a lot of things going on. If you have any comic book questions feel free to throw them at me in the comments. Happy reading everyone!

Images from Marvel, DC, and Image

If you want to talk comics, or anything geeky really, with me you can find me on Twitter and Instagram @iamgeek32. I don’t tweet as much as I should but we can change that. You can also follow more of my adventures here.

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Kevin Carey

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Kevin Carey is an unapologetic geek who strongly believes his mind works much like an episode of Community. Has a strong love for pop culture that focuses on TV, comics, movies, and books. Kevin also enjoys writing fiction and has self published a short story to Amazon. While awaiting his Hogwarts acceptance letter, Kevin lives on Long Island with his cat and extensive Pop Vinyl collection. You can find him here on Fan Fest, at his blog I Am Geek, or the I Am Geek Podcast spreading geekiness to all.