First Look for January 8, 2018
As I look at the two issues for my first look today, I see that both are looking at worlds shattered into pieces. In Letter 44 #9, we see ex-President Carroll searching desperately for a country to support his cause while the astronauts up on the Clarke witness the destruction of a moon. If the aliens can shatter a moon, what could they do to their tiny ship? And what might they be planning to do to Earth. Obviously the current President is concerned. On the other side of things, we see Vision, in Avengers #24.1, picking up the pieces of the life that was literally torn apart from him. It’s taken a while but he’s whole again physically, we just need to see if he can put back the pieces of his emotional life as well. Both issues are well drawn and easily convey the emotions of the characters going through these difficult events and they entice the reader to continue on with the stories they tell.
Letter 44 #9
Redshift Chapter 2 by Charles Soule and Alberto Jimenez Alburquerque. Published by Oni Press, 2014.
As we saw in the last issue, ex-President Carroll has disappeared again. We find out where he’s at right away though in issue 9…he’s making a play for support from foreign nations. Since he no longer has a man (Chief of Staff Michter) in the current administration to influence activities in the United States, he’s turned to Germany for resources. And he’s willing to give them all the secrets of Project Monolith in exchange for assistance.
This may all be moot though as we see the awesome power of the Chandelier. Like a mini Death Star, it shoots out a beam and…BOOM, a moon is destroyed. Everyone on the Clarke is shocked and when word gets back to Earth, President Blades is visibly shaken. Even his new-fangled tanks would be nothing compared to a weapon that can destroy a moon.
We then switch to a scene at the Kennedy Center where the First Lady is meeting with Congressman Higgins. He’s still looking to hold her husband accountable for hiding the new weapons from Congress but she has a proposition. Since he was the loser in the fight for her affections 15 years ago, she’s offers to sleep with him if he’ll back off on the President. And it looks like he might take her up on the offer.
Finally, we jump back to the Clarke where the crew is trying to take in the fact that the aliens could probably destroy them at any moment when sirens sound. They are under attack. Charlotte put Astra in the storm shelter for protection and heads for the bridge when we hear that there’s a hull breach in module C and that’s precisely where Kyoko and Manesh were before the attack started.
You can find first looks at other issues in this title linked in my January Reading List.
I rate this issue a B-.
A Vision of Things to Come! by Brian Michael Bendis and Brandon Peterson. Published by Marvel Comics, 2012.
Interestingly, this issue hearkens to a rebirth of Vision when I’ve just finished reading a 2016 arc by Tom King where Vision creates a family. But first, we’re presented with the panels where She-Hulk rips Vision in half – pretty brutal – but we see why he doesn’t have any recollection of what’s happened recently.
So as Vision has been reborn, he goes about reconciling things related to his death. Tony Stark kinda fills him in on what all happened and Vision takes off to visit She-Hulk. She’s pretty broken up about what she did and when Vision indicates he knows about what Scarlet Witch did and that he holds no grudge, she’s visibly relieved. She actually hugs him and pledges to aid him whenever he needs someone. This was pretty touching and while I haven’t read and She-Hulk before, I’m inclined to now since her character seems so well developed and “real”.
After speaking with She-Hulk, Vision heads to Utopia where he confronts Magneto. He’s looking for Wanda but her father doesn’t know where she is. That doesn’t stop a monumental battle of wills from occurring between Vision and Magneto. Each threatens the other and Vision even goes so far as to stick his phased hand around Magneto’s heart. Things get really tense and in the end, Vision is hurled away from Utopia towards San Francisco. It looks like there might be some hatred between these two that might spill over into the future Avengers vs. X-Men battle. In any case, I wouldn’t want to be there to witness a real fight between these two, things could get messy.
Finally, Vision heads to the Avengers Mansion where he meets up with Captain America. Apparently Cap’s just learning about a “thing” between Hawkeye and Spider-Woman but they take off as soon as they see the look on Steve’s face when Vision shows up. Both Avengers look pretty pissed off at first but then Vision’s anger turns into shame as Cap explains that he fully understands what Vision is going through. He too woke up a man out of time and had to deal with the new world he was in, just as Vision is having to do now. In the end, the realization of everything he’s lost and all the time he’ll never have sends Vision to his knees but Cap encourages him that he needs to look forward rather than at the past.
I found the emotion expressed by Vision to be very poignant in this issue. Similar to the feelings he has in the Tom King series, I’m finding that a lot of what makes the Vision such a compelling character (at least in the issues I’ve read) has been his emotion. He really struggles to be human and while he often has a stoic appearance, everyone who I seen drawn or write him has made sure we all know there’s a ton of emotion going on under the surface. I always have liked him but hadn’t read many issues with him in them. Now that’ve read a few, I like his character even more.
With Vision back, I’m definitely looking forward to seeing what’ll happen as Avengers vs. X-Men gets going in the next issue.
You can find first looks at other issues in my modern marvel list linked in my January Reading List.
I rate this issue a B.