Hench-Sized Comic Book Reviews – 8/15/20

We’re back! Back again! More comic reviews! Because why not? It’s a mild day in the middle of August and we’ve only got a couple of comics to review this week, mostly X-Men books.

Comic Book of the Week goes to The Green Lantern: Season Two # 6 because it’s a fun comic and I wanted to shake things up a bit this week.

Hal Jordan: Reporting for duty

Meanwhile, I’ve decided to read the entirety of Robert Kirkman’s Invincible. The compendiums are at a price I can afford on Amazon and my birthday is coming up. So I’ll let you know how it all goes in a year or so!

Speaking of letting you know how things are, I also read the second volume of Green Lantern: Earth One this week and it was pretty fun! On par with the first volume. It’s a quality GL re-imagining.

Comic Reviews: Empyre: X-Men #3, The Green Lantern: Season Two #6 and Marauders #11.

Empyre: X-Men #3

Empyre: X-Men #3
Writers: Vita Ayala, Zeb Wells and Ed Brisson
Artist: Andrea Broccardo
Colorist: Nolan Woodard
Letterer: VC’s Clayton Cowles

This is a weirdly written comic. We’ve had new writers and artists on every issue. And it’s weird that it’s a group of writers. Like…how are they divvying things up?

Ok, so, like, everything is everywhere and I’m going to try my best to sum it all up. Basically, everybody’s fighting. There are fights inside giant seed pod and there are fights outside the giant seed pod. Inside the pod, Multiple Man makes a deal with Explodey Boy to take out the bad guys in exchange for eating all the dying dupes. But the zombies start to overwhelm, and he flees deeper into the pod with two Hordeculture ladies and an unconscious Monet. They eventually find a giant brain at the center, which is being eaten by newly zombified Cotati warriors. This brain transforms into a giant monster that bursts out of the pod.

Meanwhile, Magik teleports one of the Hordeculture ladies to Krakoa, and she and Beast work up a serum to kill the plants. Nightcrawler then joins the fray to teleport the serum to Genosha to fight.

Double meanwhile, with all of the psychics joining the fight, Magik takes one of the Cuckoos to search for the origin of the zombies. They eventually find the magical staff that the Scarlet Witch built and Magik takes it for herself, transforming her into even more of a wild demon! Magik declares herself the Zombie Queen of Genosha and things just aren’t looking good!

Comic Rating: 8/10 – Very Good.

This issue wasn’t as chaotically wild as the previous two, so it wasn’t as charming or exciting. But it’s still a lot of fun. There’s madness everywhere, the fight keeps getting wilder, the characters on hand are put to good enough use. I’m a little disappointed that the core team from the first issue isn’t much of a team anymore. Monet spends the entire issue unconscious, while Angel, Multiple Man and Magik are split apart. Then Nightcrawler jumps into the fray. Beast has a scene. Those psychics from the previous issue don’t amount to much of anything other than further soldiers in the fight. Perhaps this is what happens when you have multiple different writers on every single issue of a short mini-series?

Oh man, don’t get me started on the romantic complexity between Jamie Madrox and Monet!

But it’s still a fun, enjoyable comic. I’m loving the madness, I’m loving the use of so many characters, even if it’s not done so clearly. The artwork is great and has been each issue. The craziness with Magik has been solidly built as we’ve gone along, and it’s fun seeing her go full crazy by the end. This mini-series has swung for the fences in terms of delivering just some wild comic book storytelling. And that has made it a real pleasure to read.

TL;DR: Maybe not as well-crafted and exciting as the previous two issues, but Empyre: X-Men #3 is still crazy, fun and full of wild comic book adventure.

The Green Lantern #6

The Green Lantern: Season Two #6
Writer: Grant Morrison
Artist: Liam Sharp
Colorist: Steve Oliff
Letterer: Steve Wands

It seems the period of artistically crazy one-shots is done! Back to the regular program.

Hal Jordan is rushed to the space hospital Sector General, which we were introduced to a bunch of issues ago. He’s attended by Nurse Leylo Olaqua, who knows her job well. The hospital is attacked by the Qward-Man, who has brought along a whole squad of Qward-doppelgangers. They kill some GLs who were coming to visit Hal and then wreak havoc in the hospital. Lanterns Ryk and Tru get stuck in battle. Tru is terrified and gets her arm cut off. Ryk gets blasted as well…but his salt body is not so easily defeated and he turns into a bunch of tiny versions of himself to fight off his attackers. It’s fun!

Meanwhile, Hal takes a ring from one of the dead GLs and leads the nurse and another patient (a lion alien that Hal knows as a smuggler, and comes off a lot like Snagglepuss) make their way to the lifeboats. Hal gets some help from the Starlings that watch over Evil Star, who is still in the coma he was put in a bunch of issues ago. The lion patient reveals he’s got a badass mode. And Hal faces off against the Qward-Man, getting himself shot in the process.

In the end, the hospital is falling out of orbit and Hal Jordan is dead, again.

Comic Rating: 8/10 – Very Good.

In the end, I don’t think Grant Morrison’s The Green Lantern comic turned out to be what it promised to be. This isn’t really a police procedural. There are elements of that idea, especially in stories like this one. But mostly this has been a comic for Grant Morrison to just go hog wild in outer space, with Hal Jordan as the strong foundation. Such is this issue. Hal Jordan remains himself, first and foremost, while the world around him goes crazy in that cosmic Grant Morrison way. This issue is partially written like a soap opera, and I assume if I had more familiarity with how soap operates work, I could say that even more definitively. That’s a neat idea. But beyond that, it’s a standard action issue for Morrison’s Green Lantern comic. There’s an alien attack, there’s alien-based chaos, and there’s Hal Jordan front and center, kicking butt.

Beware my salt!

All that chaos and action is why I liked this issue. It’s good stuff. I loved the scene where Hal commandeered one of the fallen GL’s rings so that he could get into the fight (his own ring is still being repaired). I loved Lantern Ryk showing just how much of a positive badass he is. Lantern Tru seemed uncharacteristically cowardly, but I may be forgetting something about her last run-in with the Qward-Man. Either way, solid action, solid forward momentum for the story and the stakes just keep getting more and more serious.

TL;DR: I prefer the issues where this comic is more straight forward in its storytelling, and this issue definitely qualifies.

Marauders #11

Marauders #11
Writer: Gerry Duggan
Artist: Stefano Caselli
Colorist: Edgar Delgado
Letterer: VC’s Cory Petit

I really like the reveal of what’s been wrong with Kate Pryde and Krakoa. It works for me.

The X-Men give Kate Pryde a viking funeral and then Emma and Kurt convince Xavier to try again to resurrect her. Emma is on hand this time to monitor her new body’s mind, and she realizes that the problem was that all the previous attempts drowned in their pods because they were trying to phase through the eggs instead of breaking through like everybody else. So Emma guides the new Kate in her phase and she is reborn! Also, Lockheed returned and Emma is able to read his mind to learn that Sebastian Shaw killed Kate. So that’s gonna be a thing for sure.

Meanwhile, Storm meets with the government woman who has been writing the “X-Desk” prose entries that go along with Marauders. She thanks the woman for tipping off the X-Men about the Hellfire Brats’ attempts to send out poison drugs.

Comic Rating: 7/10 – Good.

At least, I think this is the explanation for what’s wrong with Kate and Krakoa. Her specific powers just weren’t working with the egg system. Makes sense. I hope that explains the portals as well. It’s a neat mystery, but this works as a solve, so they don’t need to drag it out more. Kate’s resurrection is appropriately important-feeling. I’m especially enjoying the relationship between Kate and Emma. That has been a major highlight of this comic as a whole. I was a little surprised at how few characters were used at Kate’s funeral, but perhaps that was an artwork thing. The rest of the story definitely feels appropriate. Kate’s resurrection is treated as momentously as it should.

That explains it!

I didn’t care for the scene with Storm meeting the government woman. The prose additions to each Dawn of X comic were fun in the very beginning, but by this point, it’s obvious they’ve been stretched thin. And there’s no real bridge between the prose “X-Desk” entries and this character suddenly showing up in the actual comic, so it was jarring. It’s obviously safe to assume Duggan was building to this moment all along, but it just fell flat for me.

TL;DR: Solid issue with a very momentous scene at the end, but otherwise just a straight forward issue.

The comics I review in my Hench-Sized reviews are just the usual comics I grab from Comixology any given week, along with a few impulse buys I might try on a whim. So if there are any comics or series you’d like me to review each week, let me know in the comments!


About Sean Ian Mills

Hello, this is Sean, the Henchman-4-Hire! By day I am a mild-mannered newspaper reporter in Central New York, and by the rest of the day I'm a pretty big geek when it comes to video games, comic books, movies, cartoons and more.

Posted on August 15, 2020, in Comics, DC, Marvel, Multiple Man, Reviews, X-Men and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. I don’t think that’s an explanation for the portals, just why it took so long to revive Kate. Seems to me like the portals are still a mystery. One I suspect will be pivotal to X of Swords somehow. There’s definitely a bigger reason that plot was introduced, I’m just not not sure how it resolves

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