March 19, 2013

Marvel NOW!: The Top Books of Marvel's Relaunch

Marvel pulled a quasi-New 52 move in July last year when it announced the Marvel NOW! initiative. Unlike the New 52 however, continuity would be preserved, thankfully! Several of Marvel's popular series were "ended" as creative teams were dissolved and reassigned to new books. These same series premiered back at #1 and new creative teams were formed. The NOW! initiative continues through April 2013, but which books have come out on top so far?

1. All New X-Men/Uncanny X-Men
(Brian Bendis and Stuart Immonen/ Brian Bendis and Chris Bachalo)
I'm putting these books together because in my honest opinion they should be read side by side. I haven't regularly read an X-book since the days of Gold and Blue Strike Teams (Google it, noobs) so I can't exactly compare this book to what came before. But Bendis is doing a superb job with Marvel's mutants, and both books are perfect starting points for new and old readers. All New X-Men particularly shines, as seeing the young X-Men interacting with today's batch is just plain fun. Cyclops fans will especially not want to miss out.

2. Indestructible Hulk
(Mark Waid and Leinil Yu)
Mark Waid has been simply flawless over on Daredevil, and his work on Indestructible Hulk is no different. His approach with Bruce Banner is a pretty simple one, and oddly enough its never really been done until now. Although he accepted the Hulk being apart of his life (knowing that a cure is not an option), who says Dr. Bruce Banner doesn't have anything left to contribute to the world? It's strange because after reading Indestructible Hulk I'd much rather see more of Bruce Banner than the other big green guy.

3. Deadpool 
(Brian Posehn, Gerry Duggan, and Tony Moore)
There isn't a whole lot to be said about Deadpool except that it's exactly what I expected. It's crude, absurd, hilarious Deadpool humor at its best. The art is particularly enjoyable as well - kudos to Tony Moore for the strangely gorgeous and violent, gorey images. Fans of the Merc with a mouth won't want to miss this new series.

4. Savage Wolverine 
(Frank Cho)
Set in the Savage Land, Savage Wolverine is a violent, pulpy, Wolverine book that we've been longing for since the first issue of Wolverine and the X-Men landed. I'm not sure how Wolverine manages his time between the Jean Grey School, the Avengers, AND the X-Men but this book is definitely enjoyable.

5. Uncanny Avengers 
(Rick Remender and John Cassaday)
I was a little skeptical of this book. Do we really need another Avengers book? But I have to say it's definitely not what I was expecting, and the book is appropriately titled - its a genuine mesh of an X-Men style book starring the Avengers. I particularly enjoyed Mr. Remender's use of the Red Skull. Other than being Captain America's arch nemesis, he hasn't really been a major threat or of any real significance in the Marvel Universe. Similiar to All New X-Men and Uncanny X-Men, this book takes place after the events of AvX.

Recommended Reading:


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