Reading Pile: 7/18/13

Reading Pile: 7/18/13

Number Cruncher, FF, All New X-Men, & A+X

Number Cruncher #1- I’m always down with Si Spurrier these days and so far he’s managed to always be entertaining. This was an interesting first issue with a nice premise. Basically a thug named Bastard Zane made a deal at his death for one more year of life. When it came time to collect he gets assigned as an operative of The Divine Calculator, the only real ‘God’ of the universe who’s basically an accountant. The story gets more interesting from there and Spurrier puts together a compelling script. P.J. Holden’s artwork is the perfect fit for the tone of the story and I really enjoy his style. Think Kevin O’Neil meets Dave Johnson. It’s a fairly dense read for twenty-two pages, and while I would have preferred it to be less than $3.99 it’s a much better read than what you usually get for $3.99 from Marvel or DC. A

FF #9- I really really really wish that Joe Quinones would become the regular artist for the title, especially if he had Laura Allred always inking him. Considering not much actually happens in this issue besides character development and plot set-up, Fraction and team manage to make this infinitely more engaging and amusing than your usual run of the mill Marvel title.  Every member of the team, every facial feature, and every little bit of characterization just makes this a perfect book. A

All-New X-Men #14- And then you have a book like this that’s supposed to be an all action issue. However, because Bendis couldn’t script a fight scene to save his life it just came out as a big ol’ pile of meh. If it weren’t for Stuart Immonen this would be horrendous. As it is, Bendis’ dialogue reverts to type where every character talks the same way and the action gets so cluttered that it depends on the cutesy humor to salvage it. Now in all fairness, the cutesy humor actually almost does salvage it completely, and that’s probably the only reason I’m still marginally hopeful for the entire Bendis run on the title.  B-

A+X #10- I generally enjoy Adam Warren so the Scarlet Witch/Domino story was fun if maybe playing a little too much to his usual tropes. It felt like a stand in for the Dirty Pair or Empowered, which isn't a bad thing if you are in the mood for it. The Black Widow/Fantomex story was decent but more interesting for Kris Anka’s artwork than anything else. This is a difficult series to really commit to though as it is starting to scrounge for characters to cross over a little early in the run and that it’s never going to be really consistent. B