Umbrella Academy (Way/Ba/Dark Horse) continues to present me with an odd, peculiar world that I can’t wait to read about. Gabriel Ba is obvioulsy influenced by the great Mike Mignola, and when you merge that with your own energetic style it generates a nice flavor for this grim, humorous book. There are quite a few questions plaguing me about the futures of these disfunctional super siblings. Time Boy and the Kraken seem to be the only men of action for now.
Gigantic (Remender/Nguyen/Dark Horse) brings the destruction on a slightly smaller scale, but the conspiracy and tension heat up with the issue’s great cliffhanger. Nguyen continues to deliver the big action on the page, and Remender keeps the story fun and pulpy; makes me glad to be reading this in issues.
X-Men (Fraction/Dodson/Marvel) was decent enough, I can’t complain about the writing or the art really, (though Dodson’s teen X-Men could stand to look a bit younger). What I can complain about is it seems the events of the next Marvel event, Dark Reign, are reaching into this book, and suddenly pulling Emma away from the team. I don’t believe that she is a traitor, and making her as such this late in the game seems strange. Seeing Scott take charge and Colossus find himself is enjoyable enough. I’m just worried to see such a good creative team get bogged down in Marvel’s “master plans”
Runaways (Moore/Ramos/Marvel) The action in this book is heating up! As the Runaways get it together, and Chase seems to gain a knack for tinkering, the team lives up to its namesake as they flee the Majesdanian ship. Moore’s handle on the characters is still firm, and Ramos’ energy spills across the pages. Their newly-reunified-heroic-about-face is just around the corner. Next issue is the one I’ve been most anxious for since Moore took over, I can’t wait.
Madame Xanadu (Wagner/Hadley/Vertigo) brings in a sweet cameo from my favorite Endless, Death! Madame Xanadu faces age and death, and reaches out to Death to prolong her life. Death’s appearance easily makes any issue more enjoyable, and its a pleasure to see our heroine moving out of such a dark time. The Jack the Ripper story coming up next looks great!
House of Mystery (Sturges/Rossi/Vertigo) is a book I look forward to each month, as the short stories prove to make each issue something special by itself, and take great advantage of the serialized format. I’m really loving these past few that focus in on the origins of the characters, delving deeper into the riddle that is the House of Mystery. Again, another appearance from a Sandman character, the bumbling Abel is always entertaining. This issue seems to lean towards some more revelations as to Fig’s involvement and ties with the sentient house. Its nice to see the layers finally get peeled back just enough to get a peek of what exactly is happening here. Its reminding me of Lost in that respect, but its less frustrating by far.
What If? I decided not to pick up this book? I’d probably be feel like less of a sucker for falling prey to that damning collector mentality. Only one more to go to conclude the Runaways back up story… Might as well take the plunge…groan.