Jay & Miles X-Plain the X-Men

Rachel & Miles Review the X-Men, Episode 39

Week of May 27, 2015 –

In which it’s all Secret Wars all the time; Dennis Hopeless is a consistent source of Feels; Old Man Logan fills the Wolverine-Western-shaped hole in our lives; Jubilee wins; and we are forced to radically rethink some assumptions about big summer crossover events.

*Inferno #1 (0:27)
Secret Wars Journal #1 (4:42)
X-Men ’92 Infinite Comic #1 (7:17)
Old Man Logan #1 (11:05)

*Pick of the Week (13:42)

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  1. Really liked the video, but I was actually a little bothered by inferno. The story starts off strong, but within a few pages it practically turns into a comedy. I read the original event to prepare for this book. The original event was really dark and since the demons won in this world I thought the book would be more in that tone. Instead five years after the demons victory no one seems all that bothered by it at all. Nightcrawler is still super cheery and boomer was ridiculously too upbeat. To top it all off, colossus doesn’t even have an actual plan for trying to save his sister!?! He’s failed four times in a row and the best thing he can come up with for a plan is do what he did before?
    Now, even though I didn’t really care for the tone I found the story over all intriguing and I will keep reading it. The high point for me though was Javier garron’s art which is amazing! I also highly agree with your opinions on havok’s costume.

  2. I had the exact same reaction to Secret Wars, I’m impressed by every single title, even the ones I thought I would be bored by. If they keep it up throughout the event, then they’re giving themselves a high bar for their big summer events in the future.
    Curiously, I didn’t enjoy Inferno as much as you did. I agree with most of your points and am definitely excited to read more, I just don’t think Hopeless got the characters’ voices quite right.
    Thanks as always for the reviews, I look forward to it every week!

  3. As someone who’s not read Inferno(and am really looking forward to THAT podcast, it seems to have been pretty big, storywise), I can confirm that Secret Wars’ Inferno #1 is a GREAT read. It may help that I’ve read a lot of Magik of late and her struggles with her demonic side, but I’m pretty sure that that bit comes off well to new readers, too. It’s the comic book ideal – good story for new readers while providing more for those who’ve read what’s come before.
    (I am a little disappointed we didn’t have Beast do a Q-style explanation of all his anti-demon gadgetry)
    Also, for more Sorrentino work.. it’s worth going over to DC JUST to look at what he does with storytelling in Green Arrow, Jeff Lemire’s run. The stuff he does is just… creative and a makes the visuals a stronger part of how the story’s being told, and his work on Old Man Logan seems to be taking it up a level.
    Additionally.. I kind of loved the Egyptia story, but then again, I’m fine with a story that’s.. less story and is more of an excuse to immerse you in an alternate universe idea for a bit, like a warm, idle soak of raggedy X-Men horror.
    (also lastly I apologize if this comment was too long)
    ((Secret Wars is pulling out a lot of stuff to say))

  4. I thought the original Old Man Logan had really cool art and a pretty neat concept, but the story itself felt pretty hollow. I do hope we get to see more Ashley Barton though.

  5. Great pic for panel of the week. My X-men fandom has almost zero crossover with Jubilee, and I was still 100% sold on that moment.

    …also, this video seems to have made me buy the Inferno and Old man Logan issues, which was not a thing I was expecting to do.

  6. Now I will have to give Inferno a try!

    In past events (pretty much since Civil War), I picked up very few of the comics. Secret Wars makes me want to read so many of the series being produced. I actually have to pick and choose because of a limited budget and that’s such a weird experience (I’ll wait for the trade for some stuff I guess).

    Also, yeah, X-Men 92 was a blast. If anyone is on the fence about getting it digitally or in print, I would strongly recommend the digital version on that one. As what said in the video review, it really takes advantage of the digital medium.

    Finally, thank you for the video reviews. They do make me want to check out more books and having too many comics to read is not a bad problem to have.

  7. I actually pretty much gave up on reading summer crossovers back in the 1980s, but thanks to encouragement here and elsewhere I’ve actually tried a few of these Secret Wars (2015) issues, and I’ve been really impressed. I think they’ve hit on a brilliant formula — let the writers write something interesting to them and fairly standalone, then sprinkle in little clues to the giant mystery of the crossover. I dunno if they can keep this up for the entire crossover, but right now all I want to know is where Dr. Zero and The Knight of St George are going to show up…

  8. Which Secret Wars title would you recommend more- Inferno or the main Secret Wars book? I can get only one, and I can’t decide. I’m currently reading A-Force. I’ve read mostly X-Men so I’m worried about not understanding the main title. I’m also worried that when the event is over I won’t be able to understand the new stories unless I’ve read the main Secret Wars book. Do you think that’s likely?

  9. Say, as the old dude (at least compared to Randall, who apparently wasn’t born yet when I was doing things like learning to read comics and first trying to kiss girls), how, exactly, do I go about buying an infinite comic? If I have to ask, should I therefore just buy the paper version?

    I love Old Man Logan a lot. I did, however, read the original story, which I also thought was really good. It’s worth picking up the trade. It does have a really weird, difficult to comprehend reading of Bruce Banner, but mostly is great.

    Love Inferno, but I am concerned about the apparent loss of one character in it, especially after A-Force #1. Are all of my favorite characters going to go down in issue number one to show what the stakes are? I suppose it’s possible.

    1. Infinite Comics are sold exclusively on Comixology (comixology.com, or you can download an app for android or iOS tablets and phones). They eventually show up on Marvel Unlimited, but I think those are based on the print versions and don’t have the nifty panel-overlay tricks.

    2. Rachel and I buy them on Marvel Digital, but you can sync Marvel Digital to Comixology so your comics show up in both places.

      1. My mistake. Since the individual publisher and line apps all route through the Comixology store, I forget about them. Thank you for correcting me.

  10. Looking forward to Pizza Hut/X-Men party! I’ll be drinking out of my set of 4 little plastic collector’s cups.

    (just kidding. I never DRINK out of them. They’re in the ’90a shrine. The Shrine-dees?)

  11. I totally agree with you guys overall. Loved Old Man Logan, really liked the art and character designs in the Egyptia story, and really liked Hopeless’ take on Inferno. The Cable & X-Force reunion feels a liiiiitle bit forced, but the characters and relationships are spot-on and a lot of fun to read.

    I did get hung-up on Garron’s art, though. I really liked the work Garron did on Cyclops. The story in Cyclops may have had issues, but the art in that book very effectively matched the tone Layman was going for. In theory that should be true for Inferno as well. Part of what was so distinctive about the original Inferno crossover was the mixture of horrifying murder and terror with the childlike animation of everyday objects into deadly demons. It was a really odd tonal match, and it seems like the kind of thing Garron would be well equipped to handle.

    Yet for some reason Garron’s demons just seem… bland? They kind of look like human-like figures with horns, or vaguely-dragon like. There’s no sense that they may have once corresponded to everyday city objects, which is part of what was so weird about the original event. Garron also neglected to add backgrounds to many of his panels inside the city. We’re talking about demon-infested New York City here! It’s got one of the most distinct architectural styles in the world. I was hoping for something more than “generic corrupted city.”

    Overall, the art makes the battle feel like a generic Limbo story, rather than a “corrupted New York City” story. That feels like a wasted opportunity to me.

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