Taskmaster is Best Boi

Ultimate Marvel Vs Capcom 3 Sticker

Let’s talk about this friggin’ guy:

Taskmaster

If there was a list of underused and incredibly powerful badasses in the Marvel universe, this guy would be at the top.

This is Taskmaster. Real name Tony Masters, because creativity is hard. This dude might look a bit goofy with his weird Medieval Nights get-up, but just you wait buck-o.

This dude

Got MEMORY powers.
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Breaking Coverage: Phil Noto

From time to time, it’s good to salute the fine, hardworking men and women that give life to the comics we know and love.

This week I wanted to point out Phil Noto. Currently, Noto is doing a run of Marvel 80th Anniversary variants that combine to make the absolutely lovely full image posted above.
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Breaking Coverage: Return of Wolverine #3

Scenario: Your friend of many years, someone who you have shared many laughs and hard times with, possibly even been intimate with, dies. A few years later, you find that someone has exhumed your friend’s body and later find that this person is actually alive after all, though you aren’t entirely sure how. How would you react when coming face to face with that person? Bursting with joy? Overcome by sadness? Generally overflowing with questions?

Well, if you’re a member of the X-Men, you’ve definitely had this experience…. Probably a few times. I mean, the X-Men have a tendency to just up and die only to be back later like “what’s for lunch, guys?” It’s understandable that after a few times losing teammates to hell or giant space bullets, you’d probably get a little desensitized at some point. Case point:

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Excelsior!

Image result for stan lee

The big news this week is that Stan Lee, Marvel mastermind and general imagination advocate, passed away on Monday at the age of 95. By now, we’ve all heard about it, and most people appear to be responding in the same way.

All this week, I’ve had people come up to me or message me asking what I think. I’ve had a lot of people telling me how the news ruined their day or generally bummed them out. People on Facebook, Twitter and Reddit have been sharing stories and pictures of Stan Lee. A myriad of artists have posted tribute pieces to Stan the Man. There has been a massive, collective vigil across the comics community and it’s impressive to see. Honestly, it’s a testimony to the effect he had on the world.

I think what’s important when a celebrity passes is to focus on their achievements. Focus on the fact that they were able to put something into the world and watch it grow. They were able to cultivate so much love and admiration simply out of their talents and determination. Look at them for inspiration and drive forward. If they truly touched your heart or inspired you in some way, then make them proud. Focus that grieving energy on living the life THEY would want you to lead.

In the case of Stan Lee, we have a man who was actively working and creating all the way up to his passing. While his last year may have seen him slowing a bit as he dealt with pneumonia and some conflict with people close to him, he still continued to interact with fans and do what he can to inspire people. Stan Lee passes having left behind a massive legacy that he got to watch rise, nearly fall, and come back even stronger. He got to see the birth of a whole new way of telling the stories he had helped cultivate. He got to expand and refine his abilities, dipping into everything from Manga to poetry to video games. This man was an absolute power house of imagination and passion. It’s really no surprise so many feel the way they do right now.

Hell, I want that. The truth of the world is that we all have to go sometime, and honestly that right there is the perfect way to go out: still passionate, still creating, still watching your legacy thrive. Going out on top. Being a superhero all the way to the end.

So let’s all try to live our lives the way Stan did. Let’s all find our passion and spend every waking hour with it. Let’s give back into the world and expect only happiness in return. Let’s challenge ourselves and break out of our comfort zones from time to time in the name of extending our reach. Let’s build legacies that touch as many people as we can. Not for us, but for them. Let’s use our talents to give people something to look toward or escape to or find comfort in.

We all, each and every one of us, has the power to bring joy to others.

We just have to find the responsibility.

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~C

Breaking Coverage: Shippin’ Out to West Coast

Occasionally, a cover comes along that just perfectly summarizes the direction the comic market is going oh so perfectly.

Case in point, Marvel and this week’s cover to West Coast Avengers #1.

West Coast

Let’s look at the characters on that scooter, real quick:

Hawkeye (Kate Bishop) = Solo Title – Cancelled – Last Issue 3/7/18

Gwenpool = Solo Title – Cancelled – Last Issue 2/28/18

America Chavez = Solo Title – Cancelled – Last Issue 2/28/18

Quentin Quire = Team Series (Generation X) – Cancelled – Last issue 2/21/18

Fuse = Brand new to the series, was also in Kate Bishop’s solo series (?)
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Breaking Coverage: Kitty Pryde’s Powers

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For those who aren’t aware, Kitty Pryde, previously Shadowcat at points, is a member of the X-Men family and is easily one of the most important remaining X-Men. She rose from sideline character who was often the source of teenage antics and damsel distresses to cold, badass mentor over her X-Tenure and has recently taken up the mantel of Headmaster at Xavier’s School for People Who Can Do Weird Shit. Her powers, aside from some random inserts for story purposes, consist predominantly of being able to “phase” through solid matter, walls, people, etc. Though that particular power seems simplistic, it has been fairly useful for Kitty and she has trained herself to be an incredibly effective combatant and make use of her phasing for more than just hiding/running. She also has the ability to phase through electrical components and effectively fry them, become entirely invisible, and use her phasing to resist telepathic intrusion. One of her shining moments in X-History involved her phasing into a giant bullet that hurdled toward Earth and changing it’s trajectory, becoming adhered to the bullet as it flew endlessly through the cosmos (don’t worry, she came back…. because comics). So, it’s pretty badass, in the end.
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Breaking Coverage: Amazing Spider-Man #800

No I am not here to talk about how this issue has a metric TON of different covers.

800 all covers

I’ve also decided I’m not gonna talk about how out of that myriad of covers, half seem to think this issue is some sort of milestone, “this changes Spider-Man comics forever” kinda issue and the other half seems to think “let’s just focus on this Red Goblin guy.” Seriously though, the amount of Gwen Stacy on these covers is just a big ol’ bait and switch. I guess it’s because Norman is the focal point? I don’t really get it, just seems like weird covers that are unrelated to the action of the book.

Anywho, I wanna talk just about the main cover:

Spidey 800
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Destiny Requires Careful Planning

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Avengers: Infinity War is an absolutely beautiful testament to the potential of the Superhero medium. As a film, it successfully avoided many of the dangerous pit falls that Superhero films tend to fall into, such as confused pacing between too many characters or an underwhelming villain (the latter of which this movie was definitely FAR from). However, I wanted to talk about probably my favorite thing about this movie, which is something that I think is getting overlooked, or at least I haven’t seen much discussion on it.

SPOILERS for Infinity War ahead.

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A Guide to Comics: Marvel Women Part 4

Super gals GO! (wow, lame…)

Marvel Men: 1  2  3  4
Marvel Women: 1  2  3


Quake
  • Character Summary: Daisy Johnson, daughter of Calvin Zabo, the villain Mister Hyde; A pretty cool character with very little exposure in the grand scheme of things; Created by Brian Michael Bendis in the “Secret War” storyline; Daisy stands out in that she both a) actually gets respected by Nick Fury and b) is completely unafraid to tell other super people to shove it; Her stance on the other super folks around them is more of one of annoyance, she tends to act as if she just doesn’t have time for their super garbage; “‘Ooh, I’m Wolverine, I’ve got claws and blah blah’ Eff off, shorty” (Not a real quote but kind of her approach to super folk; Quake’s appearances are almost entirely ones of espionage and secrecy, never really appearing in the limelight of the Marvel world; Quake is in the perfect place to pop in and out of the Marvel Universe, as she has no public persona in the Marvel world; Her image remains secret, unlike bigger names, and that is exactly how Daisy likes it; My personal hope is that the inclusion and popularity of Quake in the TV show Agents of SHIELD will correlate to a rise in her appearances and importance in the comic universe.
  • Common Themes: Super heroes are lame; Espionage; Control of powers; Control of emotions.
  • Good For: People who like Agents of SHIELD; People fond of espionage stories
  • Go To Series: S.H.I.E.L.D (vol 3); Secret Warriors; Secret Avengers (Vol 2)
  • Stand Out Stories: Secret War; New Avengers (vol 1) #20

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A Guide to Comics: Marvel Men Part 4

Back at it, here goes!

Marvel Men: 1  2  3
Marvel Women: 1  2  3


Hulk
  • Character Summary: Bruce Banner – Nerdy, Scientist type; Fairly reclusive and lacking in social grace; tends to have an air of nervousness about him, which may be do to the fact that if his emotions get out of control he turns into a GIANT GREEN RAGE MONSTER AND SMASHES STUFF.
  • Common Themes: Beast within; Who is in control; The innocent fugitive and the misunderstood beast; redemption and contrition; War and Anti-War philosophy (subtexts); Counterculture and rebelling against popular discourse (subtexts)
  • Good For: Hulk stories are typically surprisingly deep, and I honestly think people shy away from them due to the assumption that they’re just big beat-em-up tales. I recommend everyone pick up and read at least one Hulk story or series.
  • Go To Series: World War Hulk, Hulk: Destruction, Hulk: The End, The Incredible Hulk (2012), Hulk: Gray
  • Stand Out Stories: Planet Hulk, The Brute That Shouted Love at the Heart of the Atom, The Lone and Level Sands, The Intelligent Hulk Saga (Collected in Trades “Pardoned” and “Regression”)

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