Introductory paragraph? I don't got one, other than it was amusing to see Civil War #2 make Jeff drop all Marvel titles from his pull. Well, it'd be amusing if I wasn't afraid Robin #151 is going to make me do the same with DC. Anyhoo, spoiler warnings, because I just can't help myself.
Warbird #4 - I'll admit, I was dreading this issue. I was sure we'd see Carol on a talk show, looking totally out of her depth, thus embarassing herself. Fortunately a fellow named Traveler showed up spoiling for a fight. That's good. His problem with Ms. Danvers seems to have something to do with House of M, and Carol defeating him by. . . throwing a cat at him?! Oh-Kay.
Part-way through the fight, Traveler's personality changes abruptly. He no longer tries to attack to Warbird. Being a bright person, she takes the opportunity to knock him senseless, and take him to Doctor Strange. Strange proceeeds to spout all sorts of garbage about how the reality-altering of House of M, has unhinged this fellow, and left him partially disconnected from reality and magicks. The doctor fixes Carol's arm, but not before intoning that there's 'something not of this earth' about the injury. No shit Doc; an alien being named Cru did it, thus it is not of this Earth.
Dr. Strange tells Carol he'll take care of Traveler, and tells her it's OK to go home (or to the hotel room her publicist got her), and starts talking with Traveler. He seems fairly confident that he's got the bad guy under control, but apparently they don't make the "crimson bands of Cytorrak" like they used to, because now Doc's out of it, and the baddy got himself a Watoomban wand to go with his nice eye. Good issue, a bit confusing, and a Marvel writer again fails to give Dr. Strange his due. Still, 4 out of 5.
Exiles #82 - And so the "World Tour" comes to a close, with a "Huh?" The Order/Chaos being of Counter-Earth tells Proteus he's to destroy the planet, which is something Kevin has no qualms about. But he's going to enjoy it. So first he'll make Atlantis (where the nukes he'll use are at), and trap the fish people to suffocate. Nice. Then he'll kick the Exiles butts. . . again. Then he'll launch the nukes. Then he'll put Dorma's crown back on his head. Whoops, mind control device from Squadron Supreme Earth. And thus, the threat of Proteus is brought to a close. . . for now.
I really don't know what else to say. I guess it's OK as far as endings go. I mean, I don't know how that team would have managed to kill Proteus, and besides, they're heroes, they aren't supposed to kill, right? Right? 3.7 out of 5.
Bloodrayne: Twin Blades - Yeah, you don't care, but oh well, it's my blog. This particular one-shot doesn't actually focus much on Rayne, focusing more on a fellow called Finney. Rayne inadverdently saves his sheep from a wolf - she was hungry - and Finney offers her a seat near his fireplace. Then he tells her he understands the hard life of a dhampir, because he was one too, until the Brimstone Society cured him.
We get a flashback through his time as apprentice to a blacksmith, the death of that blacksmith from purple demons, Finney using some sulfur left behind to stoke the fires and forge some kewl blades, which he used to great effect to kill the demons when they dropped by again. Why they came back, I don't know. He keeps this up for awhile, gets drafted by Brimstone, works with two other fellows (no word on whether they were human or not), and somewhere along the line becomes human.
But surely this issue can't be all talk, can it? No, it can't, and to help out, here's one of those big purple demons! Maybe I've watched too much Buffy and Angel, but it feels like there needs to be a reason why these demons showed up, some purpose beyond hunger or playing the role of cannon fodder. Maybe not. Anyway, fight ensues, blood is spilled, demon killed, Rayne gets blades, hoo-rah. This was quite good actually, because it seems to give a decent look at the kind of person Rayne is, not trusting of others, and maybe not all that concerned with protecting people in general, but if you're nice to her, she'll try to protect you. Reminds me a bit of Spike in that regard, so 4.4 out of 5.
Annihilation: Super-Skrull #3 - Today we get to see Super-Skrull's skills as a leader, as he trains the prisoners of the planet he stormed last issue to fight the Annihilation Wave, while R'Kin works on building a dimensional portal that can put them near the Harvester of Sorrows, to launch their viral missile. A viral missile, that stirs such evil images. Super-Skrull addresses a lack of manpower by beating on his squad's version of Jamie Madrox. Presto, it a crew of day laborers! He uses one of the scientists' own toys to make the guy build the virus. I'm with Super-Skrull; don't call something "The Spine of Complicity" and then be surprised when it gets used against you. I enjoyed that part.
R'Kin wants to pilot the missile, to "prove" himself as a warrior, and Super-Skrull has to fend off the advances of one of his squad. I could have done without that part. It was forced, like Grillo-Marxuach felt that had to be in there to show how focused on the mission the Skrull is, that he rejects this woman's advances. They make their play to stop the Annihilation Wave, and it ends with a thud. Whoops, gotta be careful who you trust SS. The forced romance thing hurts the book, so I'll give this a 4.0 out of 5.
Spider-Girl #99 - Well, it appears as though my predictions were off-base. Both Raptor and Phil Urich seem likely to survive the end of the book. May Parker on the other hand. . .
The injured parties from the previous issue have been taken to the hospital, and May rushes off to save Phil Urich. Too late, he's getting his butt kicked. Man, Hobgoblin continues to be quite impressive, just going around handing out ass-whippings like they were free cookies or something. Mmm, cookies. Sorry, dieting is starting to get to me a bit. Despite having been late multiple times thus far, May finally shows up on time. . . to save Kingsley's brother. . . the fashion designer. Way to be Mayday. I'll sleep better at night, knowing that since you and I have never met, you'll certainly show up in time to save me. Were we to be friends, I just know that I too, would receive a swift and brutal beating from one of your enemies. Of course, that also means I'd have super-powers. I'll risk it.
Hobgoblin then proceeds to show May why he was on of Spider-Man's greatest enemies, as he gives her one of those Free Cookie beatings. Granted May has no web-shooters (regardless of what the cover depicts), but I doubt they would have made a difference. He's smacking her around, chopping her up with razor bats, uses the finger lasers to blow up her backpack because the cellphone within annoys him (ha, I've been there!), until May finally gets one good shot in. Wait, just one punch and you're reeling, what the hell is wrong with you Hobgoblin? Say, you aren't Jason Macendale are you? Cue Kaine catching up, and large numbers of Scriers arriving on the scene. Oh, it was a trap. OK, forget that "Macendale" crack I made. And a certain someone is pulling their costume out of the trunk in the attic. I am fired up for the next issue. 5 out of 5.