Thursday, June 30, 2016

Priest Era Black Panther Funko Pop

I have seen the movie version ones, but this is the first comic version I have seen. Cape and all!

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Black Panther #3- Spoilers and Thoughts

Spoilers incoming...

- We get some vague, Coat-ish style monologue, basically just going back to the past and talking about the various times Wakanda has been attacked. Also get an indication that Tetu is some sort of sorcerer. His dance ends up summoning rain at the end of the book.

- Now to the preview, where Ramonda and T'challa talk about his failures basically.

- Then the Midnight Angel's side of things. They decide they need an army to protect the woman of Wakanda.

- Now Shuri stuff. This is really too... abstract to give a summary of. It is almost like she is learning about the true history of Wakanda here, before the Vibranium.

- Finally, some action. T'challa ambushes Zenzi and Tetu and ends up OHKO'ing Zenzi with a force push and then calls out the Dogs of War to attack.

- Tetu does some dance thing, summons some roots to grab everyone, including T'challa. Yes, roots. Gives his villain monologue about how T'challa basically sucks and takes Zenzi and leaves.

- The Midnight Angels approach the White Gorilla Tribe, with what looks like all the Dora's.


- This is just getting brutal. I just don't get it man. I just don't like it. T'challa just got taken down by magic roots. Because, once again, he ran into a fight without being prepared. Totally in character.

- I have had my issues with #1 and #2. One thing I never criticized is the writing and art. Well, I am about to...

The art is GREAT in static shots.The Tetu stuff was beautiful. Shuri stuff was beautiful. But, in the action shots , it seems so... lifeless. Like there is no motion going on. I had a minor issue with it last issue but it is more pronounced this issue. No one else is complaining about this so, it is likely just me.

Now the writing, it could be that I am just overly bitter about everything but, it sucks. Maybe I am used to dumbed down comics but... it is overly vague. Always. Overly "deep." The whole Tetu bullshit in the beginning and the end adds virtually NOTHING to the comic. All it does is take away panel space for more important shit.

He has four plots all running at the same time: Tetu/Zenzi, Shuri, Midnight Angels, and some joker named T'challa every once in awhile. It isn't good writing to have four plots going in 20 pages of comics. You can't do all of them justice. Someone is going to get stiffed.

And he is stiffing the GOD DAMN TITLE CHARACTER! His name is on the book and he is in seven pages. And in those 7 pages, he doesn't even act like the T'challa I call my favorite hero. Physcially, he is a non-threat. He doesn't feel super-human at all. He struggles with goons. He overuses the force push thing. Where are his daggers? Where is anything? Why does it feel like "no super powers Black Panther" all over again?

I guess mean muggin' is T'challa's only power these days

- The book would be better titled, "The Midnight Angels." They are the real heroes of this book. They are the ones being proactive, prepping, acting smart. "Wakanda" would be an apt title as well. Because "Black Panther" no longer fits.

- So, there are rape camps. T'challa's head of the Dora's was about to be executed. Another Dora steals his advanced tech and breaks her out of prison. They go to one rape camp and destroy it. They then go to the outlawed White Gorilla tribe. Yet... no reaction from T'challa? No on panel discussion about it? If this was Priest's run, I would say that this is all a part of his plan and he is thinking 5 steps ahead. Under TNC though, it just seems like he is being chumped and made to look like a good damn fool in his own book.

- Who the hell is Lord Mandla? Why not just use M'baku? Did TNC not get wind that he was alive again? I thought TNC hated "Man Ape?" And seeing tech on the Lord of the White Gorilla tribe... UGH. That feels so wrong.

M'Baku is rolling in his... American bed. 

- I am going to be very, very, very curious to see how this book sales by issue #4. I just do not see how it holds its current mark unless it really is non-comic fans that are buying it because TNC name is attached. Dr. Strange is in a similar boat as Black Panther and hell, his world is going to shit as well in his own book. But, throughout his world falling apart and magic dying everywhere... he still comes off as the hero in the book. He is still fighting with every last fiber he has to try and fix it. The other sorcerer's have doubt but Strange doesn't. He is uplifting, he will sacrifice himself to stop the threat.

I don't get that same feeling when reading Black Panther. There hasn't been enough panel time devoted to him to get that feeling. He just feels as if he exists to prop up the supposed villains or Midnight Angels. Hell, the villains barely feel like villains.

- This book just sucks. It is incredibly decompressed, pulled in too many directions, and T'challa feels like an afterthought. If this was any other character, I would drop this book like a rock. Three issues is generally enough to get a feel for a book. And right now, I am feel stuck. T'challa's my favorite hero. I want to support him so he gets more books, shows up in more team books, gets put in events, ect. But god, I don't want to support TNC. This shit is hot garbage right now.

This is me after reading #3

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Brian Stelfreeze Drawing Black Panther on "How Stuff Works"

About a seven minute video that concludes with a cool black and white drawing of T'challa.

Also gives a basic summary of TNC and his current Black Panther story.

Monday, June 27, 2016

Black Panther Sightings: June 22, 2017

Let us see where T'challa or members of his mythos showed up this week...

- I already discussed in detail The Ultimates #8. You can find that HERE.

- We got a flashback appearance in Totally Awesome Hulk #7. It was a flashback to one of the first issues with Tony and T'challa trying, and failing, to solve the Hulk explosion problem.

- As shown in the previews, T'challa showed up to War Machines funeral in Captain America: Sam Wilson #10. Surprising to me, he only in the panels shown in the preview and had no interaction with Storm whatsoever. He was in the background in numerous panels however.

And I believe that wraps up this week. If I missed anything, let me know in the comments!

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Black Panther #3 Solicit and Preview

Published: June 29, 2016
Writer: Ta-Nehisi Coates 
Penciller: Brian Stelfreeze 

- The most anticipated Marvel series since Whedon & Cassaday’s Astonishing X-Men! 

- The Midnight Angels continue the liberation of Wakanda with extreme prejudice, and T’Challa’s indecisions could cost him more than just the throne. 

- Coates and Stelfreeze weave a quintessential Black Panther tale that will change the tapestry of the Marvel Universe forever

- Damn that first cover is sexy. The first variant is good too (bleh Storm) but that last variant is all sorts of funky. Looks like his spine is dislocated or something. 

- I... kind of like the first two pages. I like Ramonda's role there, counseling her son and offering guidance. I LOVE the acknowledgment of what T'challa is going through and what he has been through. The "giving yourself for the world" is a very telling and true statement. Is it finally getting acknowledged, on panel, all that T'challa did during Secret Wars and other world destroying events?

- And finally, finally, another mention that T'challa is the greatest Black Panther ever. 

- The last page of the preview with the Midnight Angels is very interesting. Are we starting to see the flaws in their plans? It is easy to cheer for them and easy to say that T'challa should be out there busting heads as well. But, it looks like we are seeing the reprocussions of those actions. 

After recently re-reading much of Priest's run, you realize how tenuous the relationship between the various Wakandan tribes is. I think we are getting a little taste of that. the Midnight Angels thought they could simply liberate and move on and it looks as if they are finding out the hard way that it isn't that easy to stop mass corruption. 

- Of course, judging by solicits and the last two issues of TNC's run, this will probably all come back on T'challa in the end. 

Friday, June 24, 2016

Black Panther and Prowler Featured in Marvel NOW Teaser

- Marvel has been teasing their next relaunch-- Marvel NOW-- lately and no one really has any idea what it means.

The teasers have featured some of the companies most popular characters along with some very, very Z-list, barely known or new characters.

- In this case, we get Black Panther teamed up with Prowler, who I had to wiki because I have no idea who this Prowler guy is. The only Prowler I knew from comics was Miles Morales' uncle in the Ultimate Universe but, he is dead.

This Prowler, according to Marvel wiki, looks to be part of the Spider-Man mythos. His real name is Hobie Brown and has no known super powers. He simply crime fights in a suit of some sort and is currently working for Parker industries.

I got nothin' else.

- The biggest takeaway from T'challa's appearance in these teasers is the fact that he is being put up with other marque heroes. The previous teasers depicted Captain America with new Inhuman Mosaic, Captain Marvel with some joke character named Slapstick, and Ms. Marvel with the new War Machine girl.

- My biggest issue with the teaser is... when is Marvel going to adapt the superior MCU suit for heaven sake?

Thursday, June 23, 2016

The Ultimates #8- Spoilers and Thoughts

Spoilers incoming... 

- Issue #8 begins with the preview of Carol in Wakanda talking to T'challa about forming a new team, to stop universe ending threats before they begin. Essentially, we are getting the, "how the Ultimates formed" story... in issue #8. Carol talks to T'challa, T'challa recommends Blue Marvel, Blue Marvel recommends Spectrum, Spectrum recommends Ms. American Chavez.

- We cut to a some new players on the field: The US Security Council. They are discussing the Ultimates and there potential problems. A shady dude by the name of Philip Nelson Vogt says he has people working on it and there is nothing to worry about.

Shadeball alert!

- The issue moves on to our Civil War tie in... Ulysses. He has the vision of Thanos coming to Project PEGASUS and killing them all. Everyone is on the clock (Thanos is coming in 3 hours) and Carol mobilizes everyone she has access to. This includes The Ultimates, A-Force, Rhodey, and some Inhumans. Monica presents a battle strategy that involves Carol going Binary while the others take turns to keep Thanos guess. As long as no one messes up... it will be fine.

- Someone messes up. She-Hulk takes a missile to the chest while Rhodey gets a whole punched through his chest. Various members of the team blame themselves. Shady Vogt character says they are monitoring the situation with his evil sounding "trouble shooters."

- Thanos is seen, locked up, to which he simply mutters, "My turn."

Shouldn't T'challa told them what happens
when you hide Thanos in a basement?


- As a Black Panther fanboy, Ultimates continues to disappoint me greatly. Many of my issues with this book, in regards to T'challa, is that the threats are beyond his power scale. His teammates include Superman and Wonder Woman types, a heroine made of light, and someone that can punch holes in dimensions.

So, when you get a chance to move beyond "punching people," T'challa should have his moment in the sun. He is the most dangerous man alive not because he can fly at super speed or punch planets... but because of his brain. He is one of the smartest people in the MU, he is calculated, a master planner, with the resources of Wakanda behind him. When he is with the Ultimates, he needs to become "Batgod."

 But, every time a moment in the book comes where HE should have the spotlight... Ewing decides to let other members take his shine instead. Whether its sharing Galactus-curing credit with Blue Marvel or this issue... letting Monica plan battle strategy.

T'challa is a damn king who is fought and led his people in WARS. He has proven to be one of the best strategic minds in the Marvel Universe. Why isn't he providing battle strategy here? Why isn't he giving his thoughts ont he subject?

The answer is simple... Ewing likes Monica and Blue Marvel. They are the "real" main characters of this book. T'challa is in this book to try and increase sales... nothing more, nothing less.

So, overall we get this again...

... T'challa standing around, in the background. We didn't even get a "T'challa reaction panel" to the botched mission (we got Monica's, Adam's, Carols, and even MAC's). This is just getting beyond frustrating and I want him on an Avengers proper book next relaunch please.

- Overall, T'challa aside, this was one of the better Ultimate issues. It actually focused on the title characters and not abstract science fiction mumbo jumbo. The art continues to be on point (and on time!).

But really, this issue is good because Ewing is a god damn mastermind of continuity and events. Dude ties his stories into events better than any writer out there. Hell, in one speech bubble, he brings in aspects of Hickman's run as well (Medusa's mention of what Thanos did to the Inhumans). I mean, damn dude. Every time I get mad about T'challa's place in the story, Ewing reminds me why I like him so much.

It also helps that there was a least a page or two of superheroes punching people. That is always nice in a superhero book.

Couldn't T'challa throw some energy daggers or something?

- I am curious to see how this Vogt dude ties into this series. And what his "troubleshooters" actually are in reality. Being able to get past Wakandan security is no joke. And if they are being presented as foil to the Ultimates, they must be pretty badass. We will see where Ewing is going with this as Vogt is definitely an Earth bound threat.

- Why are they bothering trying to capture Thanos? Really? Good luck with that.