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About the new Captain America reveal in the comics

I’m seeing the Internet explode all over the damn place today, thanks to the new reveal about Captain America in the Marvel comics.

I’m not even reading Cap’s title right now; my exposure to him in the comics so far has been his periodic appearances in the titles I have been following. Notably, Black Widow and Captain Marvel, at least prior to the recent universe reset. The vast majority of my experience with the character has been via the movies.

But Cap’s also one of my favorites. I like him for many of the same reasons I like Superman: to wit, I actually appreciate the morally upright “boy scout” type heroes, when they’re done well. And Chris Evan’s portrayal, particularly in the recently released Civil War movie, has always been about his rock-steady moral center.

This new reveal? It’s bullshit. It flies in the face of everything the character has always been about. Not to mention that taking a character created by a couple of Jewish guys and doing this to him is just full of NO.

The reveal in question, I’m putting behind the fold just in case you haven’t managed to see it yet and care about spoilers.

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Caught up on Elfquest and OMG O.O

Elfquest: The Final Quest #12

Elfquest: The Final Quest #12

[Editing to add: Shade and sweet water, visitors!]

So last night Dara said to me, “How caught up are you on Elfquest?”

Not very, I admitted, at which point Dara promptly urged me to get caught up. So I re-read issue #8 of The Final Quest on my iPad, just to refresh my memory of where I’d left off. Then I read issues #9 and #10, which were the next two I had queued up waiting in my Dark Horse app.

Then I went OMG, burned through reading #11, and went and grabbed #12 and #13 off of Dark Horse’s site just so I could read through the rest of what was available as fast as possible.

Because holy crap. This is the most engaged I’ve been with Elfquest in years. And all I can think now is how, if these plot points had happened during the heyday of Two Moons MUSH, the population of the game would have flipped its collective shit over what’s going down now on the world of Abode.

Who else is reading? Tell me about it in the comments! But beware: spoilers and I mean MAJOR SPOILERS behind the fold!

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Thor #8: And our new Goddess of Thunder is…

Thor #8

Thor #8

… someone I was pretty much suspecting anyway, given her earlier interactions with original!Thor/Odinson in a previous issue.

I got inadvertently spoiled on this after looking at Dear Author this morning, so just in case you’re interested and you don’t already know and want to keep it that way until you read the new issue, let’s just put this behind a fold, shall we?

(ETA: Whoops, the Dear Author link was wrong. Fixed.)

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Comic review: Thor #1, by Marvel

This is the year I’ve been steadily increasing my digital comics reading–and now I’ve got yet another subscription to add to my growing list of female-led titles I’m following from Marvel. Namely, the first of the new Thor series, introducing a female Thor.

Goddess of Thunder

Goddess of Thunder

I don’t have much familiarity yet with the Asgardian mythos as depicted by Marvel, at least in the comics–I haven’t been following the current Avengers line, or the Thor titles that’ve led up to this. My experience so far was with a couple of complimentary digital issues that came with the Blu-ray of the second Thor movie. So I was coming into this issue pretty much cold.

To my amusement, my immediate reaction as soon as I started reading was to observe how much Thor, at least as drawn by this artist, looked suspiciously like Chris Hemsworth. For the record, I am on board with that. Because yum. And in general, I liked the art, though the font the letterer uses for the Asgardians’ speech is a trifle hard to read. I get why they’re doing it–it’s a visual cue to signify how their speech is more formal and archaic than that of us modern folk of Midgard, I expect. But it’s still a bit of a hitch to me as I try to read the dialogue.

As a more or less new reader to Marvel’s Asgardian mythos, with enough familiarity from the movies to recognize the characters, I felt like I didn’t need any prior backstory to know what was going on. The story sets it up for us pretty clearly: the Avengers were in a great battle upon the moon, and Nick Fury whispered something to Thor that threw him into a morass of despair. Ever since, Thor’s been on the moon, desperately trying to lift Mjollnir again, and unable to do so. We are not told what this whisper was, and there’s great consternation on the part of Odin and Freyja as they try to rouse the despondent Thor.

We’re also told that Odin has returned from being away, and that Freyja has been ruling Asgard in his absence as the All-Mother. Odin accuses Freyja of coddling Thor, only to discover that he can’t lift the hammer either, and in his anger he snarks at Freyja about remembering her place now that he’s back to rule again. Odin, Odin, Odin. How long have you been married to your queen? Haven’t you figured out yet that pissing her off is unwise?

Meanwhile, OH HEY LOOK FROST GIANTS FROM UNDER THE SEA. And Dark Elf Malekith makes an appearance, and I have to say, I rather liked him. (But then, I’m rather partial to snarky Dark Elves, as anyone who’s read Faerie Blood could figure out.) It’s this that finally rouses Thor from his despair, and even if he doesn’t have the hammer, he puts up a valiant battle against Malekith. Which does not go well.

I’m a little bummed that we don’t see the new female Thor until the end of the story–but it was rather nifty nonetheless to see the mysterious figure picking up the hammer, and to see the inscription on it shifting pronouns from ‘he’ to ‘she’. I’m given to understand that there will be several suspects for who the new Thor actually is. And so far, I’m definitely on board for finding out.

Bring it on, new Goddess of Thunder! Let there be lightning!


Comic review: Storm #1, by Marvel

I’ve mentioned before I was eager to pick up the debut issue of Marvel’s new storyline for Storm. That issue has just dropped, and I gotta say, I was quite delighted by it. I’ve already been happy to be reading the lines for Black Widow, Captain Marvel, and Ms. Marvel, but this? This made me happy in ways the others haven’t yet, just because I know Storm.

Storm Preview

Storm Preview

She’s the first superheroine who ever caught my eye and made me interested in comics, way back in my middle school days when I hung out with young nerd boys who were reading X-Men releases. I remember liking Storm in no small part because she was a girl on a team that was predominantly male. But I also thought she was beautiful, and graceful, and oh my goddess, her hair. I remember reading her origin story, and can still recall the panels of a young Ororo, skyborn over her African village, her face radiant with joy as she called down the rains onto the drought-stricken land.

I fell out of reading the X-Men not long after the Dark Phoenix saga, so I haven’t been paying attention to them outside a movie context in ages. But reading Storm #1? It felt like coming home.

The story: very basic and straightforward, with an A-plot pertaining to Storm lending aid to an African village, and having the maturity now to better know how to handle saving them without threatening other locations beyond them. The village is delighted to accept her help, and there’s a shot of her getting her picture taken with a young girl, and both of them have joyous expressions that were just beautiful to behold. Naturally there are complications–because the village in question is located in a country with an anti-mutant regime, and the local soldiers are very direct in telling her she’s not wanted or welcome.

The B-plot, also straightforward. Storm’s now headmistress of the Jean Gray School for Higher Learning–what I used to know as the Charles Xavier School for Gifted Youngsters. And there’s a student with plant powers (“ooh, a plantshaper!” says the Elfquest fan in my brain), codename Flourish, only she’s been saddled with the nickname Creep by her classmates. She’s getting bullied. And she lashes out at Storm in ways that make Ororo have to confront her own choices.

Art-wise, gosh, this was lovely. Especially all the panels with Ororo in the air, and the last page in particular is glorious. You should look at this issue on the strength of the art alone.

Here are some other reviews you can sample, including several with lovely preview glimpses of the art. And I very much like Adventures in Poor Taste’s caption of “Umm… sir? Let’s not be a douche to the woman who stopped a hundred foot tall wave, alright?” Because yeah.


I for one welcome our new Goddess of Thunder

Marvel apparently is continuing its campaign to get more of my money, with the news that not only are they shifting the right to wield Mjöllnir–and to use the name of Thor–over to a woman, they’re also actively courting the female demographic.

THANK YOU, MARVEL. Why yes, I WILL have some.

See, this is exactly the kind of thing that will in fact get me to buy comics. I’m already reading the Black Widow, Captain Marvel, and Ms. Marvel titles, and I’ve just recently added the standalone Storm title to my subscriptions. I’ll be looking at this new Thor when it shows up, too.

Mind you, I refuse to give up appreciating the beauty that is Chris Hemsworth as Thor in the MCU, because yum. The Mary Sue was also responsible for pretty much crystallizing my reaction to his portrayal, which was: “I want to live in his hair!”

If I Weren't Agnostic, This Would Totally Convert Me

If I Weren’t Agnostic, This Would Totally Convert Me

That said, my universe is large and can contain multitudes. Specifically, it can happily accommodate different-gendered versions of the same character. Which it has, in fact, done before. Case in point, my and Dara’s TV Girlfriend!

Well said, Mr. Whedon. WELL SAID.

ETA: Dorkly chimes in on the matter over here! Thanks, Dorkly. Now I’m totally going to be imagining Chris Hemsworth roaring “THIS IS SHIT OF THE HORSE!” for the rest of the day.

ETA #2: And in the alternate universe where the MCU has in fact cast Thor as a woman, I submit for consideration that Samantha Wright is the clear and logical choice.