Bloodrayne: Plague of Dreams #1 - The plot to this story can be summed up thusly: A vampire, that's also a telepath, is gathering a vampiric army, while simultaneously trying to sow unrest in the human world, so that we'll be too busy squabbling with each other to notice the vampires wiping us out.
What vampires are going to use for food if that plan succeeds, I don't know. I assume they'll save some of us, for food/breeding stock. I'd like to volunteer for "breeding stock". Either way, he tried to blow up the Empire State Building (failed), and a subway train in South Korea (successfully blamed on North Korea). Rayne's tried to fight him twice so far, and ended up shot repeatedly once, and simply outmaneuvered the second time. The dangers of fighting someone who can see your moves before you start them, I suppose.
I'm intrigued enough to be ready for the next one (this is a two-parter), but I don't really buy her being shook over the identity of her enemy. She's wiped out lots of people with the same... affiliation, shall we say, so I'm not really seeing why she's so bothered by him. Maybe because he actually beat her? 3.7 out of 5.
Exiles #86 - I really like the cover for this, it reminds me of a cover from X-Men Classics, where the team is surrounded by the Shi'ar Imperial Guard. The Exiles are back on the case, which is good, because the most recent team of Wolverines isn't faring too well. Brother Mutant is apparently going to kill every human he sees (what is it with the bad guys killing all humans this week?), and the Exiles have to get to it, and stop him before he gets out of Phoenix.
And they do. There really isn't much to tell, other than the victory involves Elsie-Dee, the Head of Zombie Wolverine, and jokes about James and his "dress". The Exiles themselves really only serve to get stuff organized, then they sit back and let the hairy mutants take care of business. Either way, they're back in business, and next month they'll be Exiles... in... SPAAAACE!
There was weird stuff with Brother Mutant's dialogue. One minute he's discussing how he thought of calling himself "Mangerine", and how silly that would be. The next he's raving about how the Earth's magnetic fields course through his adamantium skeleton, and he wields power even God would be afraid to use, which would be over the top, even for Magneto. Perhaps it's Mesmero's influence?
My complaint would be, it felt like there were gaps in the story. Like we'd be following Elsie and Zombie Wolverine in one place, and then the Exiles would be over here, and then everybody's in the same placeat once. I know Blink's a teleporter and all, but it felt disjointed, like things were being rushed a bit. Or maybe I'm just unused to two-issue arcs. Still, not bad. 3.4 out of 5.
Ghost Rider #3 - After last month's confusing mess, this book was teetering, and I decided that it's fate would depend on how Daniel Way portrayed Dr. Strange. If I tell you that Dr. Strange fell for the old "You missed" trick from Batman Returns, would that be enough of a clue for you?
So yeah, Strange teleports Ghost Rider to a graveyard, because he thought consecrated ground would do... something. GR thinks he's Lucifer in another diguise, so he punches Strange in the face, which leads to Strange calling Johnny Blaze an imbecile. Blaze proves he's not an imbecile... by kicking Strange in the face. Strange does eventually hit the Rider with some very impressive looking mojo, actually blasting him wide open. Oops. Now we get Strange moaning about how he allowed his anger to overwhelm him. Because when a Hellborn Spirit of Vengeance breathes fire at you, trying to send him back to Hell is a totally unreasonable response.
Either way, that only honked the Spirit off, and Strange is in it pretty deep by the end of the issue. Oh and Blaze's bike is coming to him, and Lucifer is talking with somebody, and you know, I still don't have any expletive deleted idea how Rider or Lucifer made it out of Hell. Sigh. Adios. 2.0 out of 5.
X-Factor #11 - I'm kind of disappointed in Strong Guy. I had hoped we'd find out he did what he did because Singularity was paying him really well. Not because I hate Guido, or want him to be a villain, I just thought it would work for him, as a guy who's frequently been about wanting to live well. Either way, the team finds out what actually happened to Buchanan, and that leads to brawling, and considerable damage to their headquarters, before the fight ends.
Having lost their "in" to Singularity's dirty deals, they resolve to find their own proof. That leads to bomb scares, and breaking and entering, and old guys inviting them in for water? Okey-dokey then.
Also, there was some stuff about how Jamie may be a special kind of mutant, even among mutants. Alrighty, if you say so, Peter David. Kind of has a "set-up issue" feel, but not in a bad way. 3.9 out of 5.