To say that my updates of all of my blogs have become erratic of late is an understatement. That's grad school for you. I'm making an effort, now that it's summer.
Age of Ultron #7 - I think it was somewhere on Facebook I was decrying Bendis's later Avengers stories. I thought he was running out of ideas. And I think there was something to that, and it's probably a good thing he left. But "Age of Ultron" is a nice return to form. It's very dark, which I think is something that the Avengers have lacked over their history. And perhaps that was the problem with his run, that it was always quite dark. I'm enjoying "Age." It's epic, it's disturbing, it's surprising. I know, as an experienced comic reader, that this crossover will have no real lasting effects, but it has a lasting effect on the reader. It's part of my thinking that superhero stories are much closer to mythology than to fiction. Think about Odysseus, going off to fight the war at Troy, the most epic war ever fought, and then in his next adventure, we have the Odyssey. A completely separate adventure, one that makes reference to previous adventures, but stands by itself just fine. Anyway, topic for another time perhaps.
Avengers #11 - (And all the ones before, really) I know I've said it before, and will again, but Jonathan Hickman is writing some of the best superhero comics right now. With his Avengers series (the main one and "New Avengers"), he's giving the team the sort of treatment that really pushes them into JLA territory. This links a bit with what I was just saying about mythology. The Justice League are mythic. They always have been. The Avengers have always had that Marvel U realism attached, which keeps them from achieving mythic status, even characters like Thor or Hercules. But Hickman's putting the team into adventures that truly force the characters past humanity and into achetyp-ity (?). It's a bold move, and a good move, though I worry as to how the team will be handled after this. How do you go from (spoiler alert!) interacting with entities designed to save universes, or collapses of multiverses, back to dealing with the Masters of Evil? Hopefully Hickman will be around for a while so we won't have to answer these questions quite yet.
Dial H #12 - remember how much you loved Morrison's "Doom Patrol?" Remember how fucked up and weird it was, how if made you feel as if there was something you weren't grasping just around the corner, and that when you did finally grasp it, it would make you wish you hadn't found out at all? Maybe just me, then. But Mieville's "Dial H" is very much like that. Yes, it's a New 52 DCU title, but it's in a creepy and weird little corner of the DCU (which is in Toronto, apparently) that would make Superman shudder a bit. Once more, spoiler, but we've got power-thieves and telephonic hell-dimensions, and a very unlikely couple, and now a team. A team? Of dialers? I am burning with curiosity as to where this story is going, but it's very definitely going somewhere. I urge you to get on board.