Respect Thread – Thor

I’m finally recovering from a cold that drained me, saw Venom last night too and really enjoyed it. A lot funnier than I thought it would be. Now I’m back I’m going to be doing a respect thread for Thor Odinson, as you may have guessed from the title. Thor is a Marvel flagship and one of the most powerful. Here I shall be delving into Thor, his powers, and Mjolnir, all which attribute to his tremendous skill set. So let us begin the thread!

Thor is one of the strongest among Marvel’s roster, and while with most characters it depends on the writer to relay the exact strength, Thor’s strength has been quite consistently powerful. His MCU counter-part is much weaker. In terms of physical strength Thor is among the top ten of Marvel’s ranks without going into the characters of Celestial-level strength. He often uses Mjolnir to assist him in battle so many of his feats are with the aid of that however he has also achieved some absolutely mind-blowing feats solo. Firstly, talking about Mjolnir: Mjolnir was forged of the metal Uru, by Eitri the troll, for Odin and was given to Thor by him and is extremely durable and it said to be stronger then the virtually indestructible metal Adamantium. Mjolnir was granted mystical energies by Odin himself and has been shown to be able to survive being in extreme environments such as the heart of the sun itself and energy blasts that could have destroyed an entire galaxy.

Thor is physically the strongest of the Norse Gods, being the son of Odin and Gaea, and as such is the God of Strength. His strength is incalculable in the sense that the upper limit, if one exists, is unknown and there seems to be nearly anything he can’t do through applying his strength. Thor has physically overpowered and defeated the strongest of foes including the Abomination, Gladiator, the Thing, even stalemated Savage Hulk. Classic Thor has feats such as punching through Silver Surfer’s force fields, reversing the World Engine which which was moving Yggdrasil; the great tree that connects the nine worlds, and lifting the World Serpent; the snake that in Norse Mythology, consumes the world. Modern Age Thor also has very impressive feats, including holding a moon together with his bare hands, stopping it from being destroyed, while sealing the surface with the magic lightning. While using Mjolnir however, he has far more feats, which I cannot possible list all of. Classic Thor is shown to destroy an entire planet with a single blow! Modern Age Thor, while using Mjolnir, has crippled the devourer of worlds – Galactus himself, used it to fend off the Phoenix Force after his entire team were left unconscious or dead, and one of my personal favourite feats is Thor with Mjolnir taking down Bor; Odin’s father, the fight was an almighty affair. The likes of which are shown in order below:

 

 

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Along with ridiculous strength comes incredible durability/invulnerability. Thor’s physiology is a product of his half-Asgardian/ half-Elder God heritage grants him a level of invulnerability that is not common among those of his race. Thor has been shown to be immune to all human diseases as well as its poisons and toxins. He has also sat in the core of the Sun, and he is immune to temperature extremes. He does not require air, and has been able to withstand planet-shattering attacks, he also withstood the weight of a score of planets, and much more. Though Thor is one of the most invulnerable of Marvel’s heroes, he is not immune to all forms of harm and can be defeated by a being whose power matches or exceeds his own, or by high order magic manipulation. Some of his feats in this field include tanking lightning thrown from Zeus and continuing to fight, engaging in a fight with Silver Surfer, who throws an immense amount of energy at him but he stands up and returns the fight there too, taking blasts from a pissed off Galactus who concentrates the energy into the point of his hands, and if that was enough being blasted by Thanos with a beam strong enough to destroy a planet. Shown below:

 

 

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Now, moving onto a few other fields. Thor, although a planet-buster level, is also remarkably fast and agile. He has superhuman speed, senses, reflexes, and agility. The senses are one we’ll tackle first because, though rarely displayed Thor possess some god like senses. He’s able to see as far as the edge of the solar system and track objects traveling faster than the speed of light. He can also hear cries from the other side of the planet. surferblastdodge.jpgHis speed and the other field of achievements however, are of much greater quantity. Thor has sensed and dodged a mental-blast from Phoenix, outmaneuvered an attack from the super-sonic-fast Silver Surfer. It also is a common misconception that Thor and the other Gods of Asgard are truly immortal. Thor and the other members of his race do age but at a rate so slow that to other beings they give the appearance of immortality. Thor has been stated to be thousands of years old which makes his life span incomparable to that of the human beings which he protects. When the Asgardians consume the Golden Apples that are cultivated by the goddess Idunn, they are able to maintain themselves in their physical prime.

Now we get to weather control. Thor as the god of thunder and son of Gaea was bornLightning fists with the natural ability to control weather since birth. Thor normally relies on Mjolnir to control the weather with devastating degree and release blasts of lightning. Mjolnir allows him better more precise control over his powers and allows him to better regulate his power output, and can act as a shortcut to access his natural powers. WorldStormThor can also discharge lightning bolts from his hands that are lethal and raw in power, also engulfing his hands in lightning to amp his punches. This is compared to using his powers without Mjolnir which seemingly require more effort to summon and are more raw and unregulated in their nature. Being the son of Odin grants vast power but also being the son of Elder Goddess Gaea has granted the ability to control the Earth and has displayed this ability by creating very powerful earthquakes. Thor also displayed this ability when he created a chasm in Africa between two different areas to prevent the enemies of one side from entering the territory of the other. MikaboshiOne of my favourite weather related feats is the ability to summon and have vast control over huge storms is able to summon huge storms, rain and lightning from the sky and also creating weather to there where normally isn’t any. Thor has been shown to create a storm so vast that it almost covered the world and he even hurt Mikaboshi with a blast of god-lightning. Thor is also, surprisingly, a great combatant. A lot of people think he just uses his immense strength to batter enemies but Thor is one of the most trained and experienced warriors in all of the Marvel Universe. Even when Thor had been stripped of his powers and made into a mortal, he managed to save Captain America while using Cap’s own shield.

Thor at one point had access to an unlimited amount of power that was known as the Odin-Force. The Odin-Force was the power that Odin himself had wielded before his death that was then passed onto Thor. The Odin-Force was comprised of Odin’s power as King of Asgard combined with the powers of his brothers Vili and Ve. These powers added to the powers Thor already had made him virtually omnipotent. Obtaining the Odin-Force made Thor one of the most powerful beings in the entire Marvel Universe. When Thor possessed this power he was able to achieve a number of feats that have not been duplicated by any other being in the Marvel Universe. Thor was able to destroy Captain America’s shield with a look, teleported Asgard over New York City, recreated the moon after it has been nearly disintegrated, as well as defeat the Sorcerer Supreme Doctor Strange. It should also come as no surprise, due to the fact that Thor is a War God, he has had great experience with devising plans of war. While I wouldn’t put him up with the greatest tacticians like Thanos, Doctor Doom or Black Panther. I would put him in the ranks just below those. Thor also has a small degree of matter manipulation, force-field creation, and energy absorption and direction.

Thor is truly a force to be reckoned with. One of Marvel’s strongest, and best flag-ship characters. I’ve really enjoyed writing this post, I hope you enjoy reading it! My favourite Doctor Strange stories is coming soon, I’m having a bit of an unknown issue with publishing it and visibility! Have a great day!

 

 

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We Are Venom!

Yo! So Venom hit cinemas today and I’m very excited for it! Today I will be doing my five favourite Venom stories in honour of the release and also a competition, the details of which are at the bottom of the blog. So without further ado, let’s begin the count down of my favourite Venom stories.

5. Spider-Man: Birth of Venom

Spider-Man: Birth of Venom is written by Tom DeFalco and illustrated by David Michelinie.

Starting at fifth place, the story is what the title says – gives us a look at the origin and ‘birth’ of Venom, the story was published in 2007 which is a good few years after

Birth of Venom

Venom arrived to the pages of Marvel Comics so this is a re-imagining of said origin. Venom is definitely one of my favourite anti-heroes/villains, This collection showcases the history of the black “suit” extensively which is a precursor to the Venom story-line. A big majority of this story deals with that suit’s origin and only the last bit of Venom himself however his reveal comes as more of a twist to readers than it does an expected development. A cool tie in is the issues from Amazing Spider-Man showing Peter learning about the suit and what capabilities it has while fighting crime, which also follows into an amazing dream sequence wherein Peter is attempting to claw the suit from his body at the clock tower. The story features some cool Black Cat cameos too

Tom DeFalco and David Michelinie come together, combining great pacing and artwork that stands the test of time. While it’s not the best Venom story, it’s definitely one of the greats.

4. Spider-Man: Maximum Carnage

Maximum Carnage is written by Tom DeFalco and illustrated by Mark Bagley.

Oh, Maximum Carnage, a joyful, happy story of love and comfort. Not. Maximum Carnage is a terrifying story; a brutal horror story with violence and carnage. Now it may

Maximum Carnage

look as though this is a Spider-Man story, and technically it is but Venom plays a huge part in it. Carnage, in case you don’t know, is the ‘offspring’ of Venom and is much stronger than Venom. Maximum Carnage starts off after the Carnage symbiote has been destroyed and Cletus (Carnage’s host) is presumed powerless while locked up in the Ravencroft Prison, however the symbiote mutated his blood before its destruction, and this enables Cletus to generate a copy of the symbiote and break out; calling himself Carnage again, and frees Shriek who is another symbiote in the process. The pair of them then go on a killing spree and also recruit other super-villains along the way. In order to try and take them down Spider-Man has to team up with other characters including Captain America, Deathlock, Morbius the vampire, and you guessed it… Venom. Things do not go to plan, Venom is left to try and tackle Carnage alone and Shriek uses her psychic powers to turn the population of New York into a blood-thirsty, ravaging force. As the story progresses, a way to defeat Carnage and Shriek is revealed which is partially down to Venom’s strategy.

Maximum Carnage, although a Spider-Man story, explores Venom’s savagery while also his strategic prowess when tackling other symbiotes of which Carnage is one of the worst. Tom DeFalco writes a harrowing story which is accompanied by Mark Bagley’s terrifically brutal art which captures the goriness and haunting events that transpire.

3. Venom: Space Knight, Volume 1: Agent of the Cosmos

Venom: Space Knight, Volume 1: Agent of the Cosmos is written by Robbie Thomson and illustrated by Ariel Olivetti.

This story earns it’s place at third, not for it’s epic storytelling but for the sheer amount of fun that comes with it. I didn’t think I’d ever have as much fun reading a story about

Agent Venom

Venom as I did with this. Flash Thompson is Agent Venom. Soldier. Veteran. Double amputee. Guardian of the Galaxy. SPACE KNIGHT. Host to a powerful yet newly tamed alien symbiote. All fun and games, ah, such fun! Flash Thompson is serving as an ambassador of Earth and an agent of the cosmos, kicking ass, he travels across the galaxies helping the helpless and thrashing those that prey upon them, he changes from guardian to gladiator as he’s forced to fight in an alien arena. He has to use his advanced powers to adapt and think of a way to brave an emergency on a planet filled with enormous volcanoes when the Space Knight’s symbiote suit is weak to and afraid of fire. Venom has been built up in the Marvel Universe as a symbol of dark savagery is stripped away of it’s rage and then Flash Thompson is able to use the symbiote to do good for the galaxy. We also witness an enemy return to try and corrupt the symbiote, but will it bite? Read it and see.

This is a great adventure story set in space, colourfully written with action and humour. With Ariel Olivetti turning in some of his warmest and endearing artwork I’ve yet seen from him. This is one gorgeous book! Absolutely so much fun.

2. Venom: Lethal Protector

Venom: Lethal Protector is written by David Michelinie and illustrated by Mark Bagley. The Venom: Lethal Protector story is one of two Venom stories being used as source material for the adapted feature film.

The Lethal Protector is widely regarded as one of the best, and one of the most famous Venom story-lines and for good reason. It only ran for six issues but my lord they

Lethal Protector

managed to write a good story in a short amount of time, the series marked the first time that Eddie Brock starred in a series is the main character and showed Venom’s progression from villain status to anti-hero. The story takes place after Spider-Man and Venom have tangled in a web of violence but decide upon agreeing to leave each other alone on the condition that Venom commits no crime. Eddie moves to San Francisco and takes up with a group of Californian homeless people who live in abandoned subway tunnels but shortly after this, the father of one of Venom’s victims seeks out Eddie (and the symbiotic partner) with a task force of super-powered mercenaries to en act revenge. Spider-Man heads to San Francisco after seeing misleading television coverage of Venom to confront him but instead winds up fighting alongside Venom against the Symbiote offspring of Venom himself: consisting of Scream, Phage, Riot, Lasher, and Agony.

Venom: Lethal Protector is a Venom classic, there’s no other word for it. It’s Venom’s transformation into the vigilante role and sees the ditching of his obsession to kill Peter Parker/Spiderman and the artwork is beautifully crafted. David Michelinie and Mark Bagley bring the story and artwork together to forge a brilliant tale, easily taking second place.

1. Venom: The Complete Collection

Venom: The Complete Collection is written by Rick Remender and illustrated by Tony Moore.

Rick Remender is one of my absolute favourite Marvel writers, having written such stories as Uncanny X-Force: The Apocalypse Solution, Uncanny Avengers: The Red

Rick Remender Venom

Shadow, and Avengers and X-Men: Axis – which are all brilliant and you should read but back to his work on Venom. Rick Remender’s Venom, It doesn’t get much better than this for Venom. The host here is Flash Thompson, once Peter Parker’s bully at high school, he grew up fast and joined the army, meanwhile Venom has been separated from his host and lands into the hands of the government. After trying and failing to bond the symbiote with another host, resulting in the candidate’s death, the government decided to approach another candidate. Around this time Flash was approached by the Department of Homeland Security as a candidate to be bonded with the parasitic alien in order to create a new super soldier. Flash agreed and became Agent Venom, controlling the suit with a combination of sedatives and strength of will. The story, particularly in the first 12 issues, explores such an incredible emotional range of Flash; the likes of which have rarely been seen before, then you get him dealing with his father and his dying days. It was really well done here and Flash truly came out as a complicated and interesting character, and then over the course of the last arc, Venom and Flash have to go on the run and are forcibly made to join the ranks of Jack O’Lantern which leads up to an inevitable showdown. The complete collection also features the What If? Venom/Deadpool in which Deadpool bonds with Venom and THAT is a HUGE amount of fun, just, really, bravo Remender.

Remender deploys brilliant writing; I think his work on Venom is his best, the story is gripping at times as well as emotional and action-packed. The art is just superb, Tony moore out-does himself; simply staggering. The pair working together really just compliment each other on every level, creating the best Venom work ever.

So there you have it! My favourite Venom stories! Hope you enjoyed the read.

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So the competition – to be in with a chance of winning Web of Venom: Ve’nam #1 signed by Donny Cates (with a certificate of authenticity) all you have to do is click the link below and fill out an entry form with your email, if you’re successful then you’ll be contacted when it ends! Please share to any Venom lovers as any extra readers for the future will be greatly appreciated! Other competitions will come in the future too.

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/eb8f9ce51/?

Gotham Is… Gotham Is All Of Us

So the Green Lantern Stories thread went down well, thank you all for your shares and likes! It all goes a long way to a (for now) small-time blogger like myself! I’m returning today to post the top five Batman stories. Batman is one of the two most famous comic characters ever created, and a major DC flagship. My interest in Batman has come and gone, however the stories below, I completely adore! So on that note, let us delve into my favourite stories of the Caped Crusader of Gotham!

At the bottom of this post there are the first details of a competition to be held next week.

WARNING: This post’s fourth entry has mature content.

5. Batman: The Black Mirror

Batman: The Black Mirror is written by Scott Snyder and illustrated by Jock.

My first entry of the post is The Black Mirror in which we see a familiar face don the mantle of Batman, no it’s not Bruce Wayne, it’s Dick Grayson the former Robin-turned-Black MirrorNightwing. Bruce Wayne is alive and well however he’s traveling the world, establishing a ‘Batman Incorporated’ idea, a global team of Batman characters to be financed by Wayne Enterprised, that will assist local police forces around the world. Anyway, back to our Batman. Writing about Dick Grayson as Batman isn’t easy, it’s not like just doing it as if Bruce was still in the suit. Dick is different, he reacts different and he treats people differently; he has a completely changed idea of being Batman and what that means. As well as this, the art style changes to account for Dick’s Batman with a talent for gymnastics. Accompanying that is the flip-side, Dick come to the realisation of how truly ‘lost’ Gotham is; how dark and menacing it is, and how hard the fight must be fought. To make matters even worse for the now Caped Crusader, a darkness returns from the past. Dick Grayson is threatened on all levels; fighting the aftermath of his own past while also confronting this newly returned evil of Gotham’s history.

Batman: The Black Mirror is a fun tale but grizzly at times too. Scott Snyder certainly does a great job of exploring a new side to Dick Grayson, creating memorable moments in the history of Batman. Jock’s art is dark but refreshing, brilliant strokes and colour draws you in and doesn’t let go.

4. Batman: Hush

Batman: Hush is written by Jeph Loeb and illustrated by Jim Lee.

Batman: Hush is certainly one of the most mysterious and extensive Batman stories, I know, a lot of his stories feature around mystery; he is a detective after all. In Batman: HushHush, Bruce is plagued by a mysterious figure, who stalks him, calling himself Hush. The story includes a large number of Batman villains including Joker, Catwoman, Ra’s al Ghul, Scarecrow, and Killer Croc. It also incorporates one of Batman’s biggest allies, Superman. Hush is extremely dangerous, as time goes on, it is revealed they know Batman intimately and exploit every weakness and predictable response until the very end. This is a character driven story, and it explores the characters’ realities under and out of the mask; exploring their emotional and personal, real, fragile and caring humans under their masks. It is revealed that Hush is in fact, Tommy Elliot, a friend of Bruce Wayne from their childhood. Tommy despised both his abusive father and his frail, submissive mother, who came from poverty and willingly endured every abuse dealt to her and her son to keep her lavish lifestyle. Driven by his desire for independence and wealth, Tommy severed the brake line of his parents’ car, causing a crash that killed his father and injured his mother; his mother, however, was saved in an emergency operation by Dr. Thomas Wayne, which enraged young Elliot. When Tommy finally revealed himself to a worn-out Batman, the Dark Knight was saved only by the intervention of Harvey Dent, whose Two-Face persona had been unwittingly wiped out by Tommy when he repaired Dent’s disfigured face. Once again on the side of the law, Dent shot Hush twice, throwing him off a bridge.

Themes of love and loss run throughout, new love mirroring old love and magnifying loss. Loeb’s brilliant narrative shows that both Tommy Elliot and Bruce suffer loss, it binds them together. Yet Batman, apart from professional support, is essentially alone. His pain and thirst for revenge fuel his passion. But at some point the “monster of fear” can’t always be an absolute. Jim Lee’s penciling is unrivaled for this story. If I was rating the stories for their art then Hush would be right at the top. The art and writing combined make a truly mesmerizing tale, as beautiful as extensive.

3. Batman: The Court of Owls

New 52 Batman Vol 1: The Court of Owls is written by Scott Snyder and illustrated by Greg Capullo.

Among the many, many famous Batman writers, Scott Snyder has to take a place. The New 52 Batman series created and written by himself and Greg Capullo is a brilliant Court of Owlsseries, but none of the stories are greater than Volume 1: The Court of Owls. A series of brutal and horrific murders shock Gotham to the core and Batman begins to realise that the source of these murders lies much deeper than the usual filth of Gotham. He discovers a conspiracy hiding an organisation established in the 1800’s known as the Court of Owls; previously nothing more than an urban myth. Batman has to dig deep to find the Court and what they ultimately want. Crime rings and organisations have never been much trouble of Batman, even the League of Shadows, but the Court of Owls are something else. A new enemy, powerful, political, and skilled with a vast shadow and long arm. The concept of The Court of Owls is executed flawlessly. The idea of Batman fighting an urban legend was such an interesting and delicious parallel, considering many of Gotham’s residents consider Batman himself to be an urban legend!

Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo’s creation marks one of the best entries into Batman’s entire history. Snyder’s writing captivates the brilliance of the Court, and yet the fear that comes with them and Capullo’s art is simply stunning. I could pick up this book again and again just to admire the art-work. This book well and truly earns its third place ranking.

2. The Killing Joke

The Killing Joke is written by Alan Moore and illustrated by Brian Bolland.

The Killing Joke is a one-shot DC graphic novel, created by Alan Moore, and widely regarded as one of the best, it serves as an origin story for the Joker himself. Moore and Killing JokeBolland explore Joker’s source and psychology, the story became famous for its origin of the Joker as a tragic character; a family man and failed comedian who suffered “one bad day” that finally drove him insane. Joker’s real name remains unrevealed throughout this story, which starts showing us his career as a failing comedian after leaving his engineering job. However, being desperate to support his pregnant wife he falls into the clutches of crime; donning the infamous Red Hood costume, a mantle that has been adapted by many characters but only two of significance, during an altercation with Batman, the comedian jumps into a pipe to escape and is swept through the facility, once outside, he discovers to his horror that the chemicals have permanently bleached his skin chalk-white, stained his lips ruby-red and dyed his hair bright green. The engineer’s disfigurement, compounded with the loss of his family, drives him completely insane and marks the birth of the Joker. The story then jumps to present day where a series of events have been locked into place creating one of the most gripping conflicts between Batman and Joker, and sparking one of the most traumatic, horrific and gripping events of Batman’s career. The story features one of the most harrowing moments of DC’s history; the moment where Barbara Gordon, Commissioner Gordon’s daughter and side-kick to Batman known as Batgirl, is paralyzed and raped by Joker. An event that laid the groundwork for her to develop the identity of Oracle.

The Killing Joke is a dark and haunting tale, written to perfection. Alan Moore is no stranger to comics, he is the mastermind behind Watchmen. Brian Bolland’s dark style of art perfectly captures the themes set in place. This story is as much about Joker, if not more so, than Batman but it is a story that defines who Batman is.

1. Batman: Under the Red Hood

Batman: Under the Red Hood is written by Judd Winick and illustrated by Doug Mahnke. Under the Red Hood is considered an all time great, and iconic comic.

Batman: Under the Red Hood is one of my all-time top comic-book stories. It saw the birth, as you will, of Red Hood – one of my absolute favourite comic characters, along Under the Red Hoodwith one of Batman’s greatest challenges; facing his greatest failure. Batman is confronted with a hidden face from the past, the return of the vigilante Red Hood. This time however, Red Hood is far more dangerous with a completely new set of skills and appears on the scene of Gotham. After a run in with him, Batman learns that  Jason Todd, the former Robin killed by the Joker in ‘Batman: A Death in the Family’, is revealed to have been resurrected by Ra’s al Ghul in the Lazarus Pit. But the pit changes him and his emotions and he becomes the new Red Hood. Red Hood becomes a new crime-lord in an attempt to draw Batman out into the field, Black Mask teams up with members of the Society of Supervillains and launches an attack on Red Hood. When Batman arrives, the pair defeat Black Mask’s hired hit-villains, but the Red Hood’s deadly tactics leave Batman and Red Hood to end on bad terms. It is revealed that Jason Todd has kidnapped Joker and savagely beaten him, just as Joker did to him before his death. Then enters Batman. The following fight is brief but brilliant; a savage-like Jason Todd pushes Batman to his limits and afterwards the two enter into a brilliantly written debate over Joker, Joker’s life and the mind of Jason as he cannot fathom why Joker is still alive after taking him away from Batman.

The best part of this story-arc is in understanding the motives behind this antihero. The revelation that he is the once dead Robin, Jason Todd only makes things much more intriguing as it brings Batman to visit other superheroes in order to understand what it was like to come back from the dead. The interaction between those heroes and Batman highlights the uncomfortable nature of the subject and the complicated relationship he has with others. Cleverly integrated, this offers us more insight into Batman trying to make sense of everything before the big revelation and how he has dealt with the loss of Jason Todd. Batman: Under the Red Hood is unmistakably one of the greatest story arc to have graced the Gotham lore. Judd Wick masterfully introduces a character who shakes the very foundation of Batman, writing with grace and skill. Accompanied by Doug Mahnke’s superb artwork, these two create the haunting tale of Red Hood and give tremendous depth to it.

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So there we have it! My favourite Batman stories. If you have any suggestions  of characters you would like to see, like and comment on what those are and I’ll try my best to fit them in! Also, to celebrate the release of Venom in cinemas next week I will be doing a special top five Venom stories accompanied by a competition to win a copy of Web Of Venom: Ve’nam #1 signed by Donny Cates. Hope you enjoyed the reading!

 

 

In Brightest Day, In Blackest Night!

I’m back! My top five Spider-Man and X-Men stories hit records high views on my blog over the first 24 hours, thank you so much to everyone! On this thread I will be exploring my top five Green Lantern Stories and next after that will be Batman stories. Green Lantern is a title that many characters have taken, first was Alan Scott, others include Hal Jordan, John Stewart, Kyle Rayner, even Sinestro once. I will give a little information on each one as to why they’re my favourite, so, let’s begin!

5. Green Lantern: Rebirth

Green Lantern: Rebirth is written by Geoff Johns and illustrated by Ethan Vic Sciver. This title is not to be confused with the 2016 launched ‘Rebirth’ DC comic series. Green Lantern: Rebirth ran between 2004 and 2005.

Green Lantern: Rebirth follows the “rebirth” of Silver Age Hal Jordan as he overcomes fear itself in the form of the cosmic entity known as Parralax. The story actually features Rebirtha few of the Green Lanterns including Kyle Rayner, Guy Gardner, and John Stewart too but the focus is on Hal. It also revives some key parts of the Green Lantern mythos including a fan-favourite Kilowog and the world-famous villain Sinestro but it also introduced the concept of the emotional perspective and reducing the Green Lantern’s weakness to the colour of yellow, thus increasing their ability to fight fear and the Yellow Lantern Corps. The story also gives some light to the Justice Society of America and Teen Titans in the battle against Parallax and Hal Jordan even becomes connected to Spectre – the Spirit of Vengeance aka the Wrath of God himself. There’s some crazy stuff.

Geoff Johns has a particular talent for Green Lantern and this story kicks off my list at 5th place. Johns’ writing of the story is brilliantly paced, with captivating tension and bold new concepts, this added with Sciver’s art work creates a valuable DC story, revisiting the Silver Age Green Lantern in all his glory.

4. Green Lantern: Wrath of the First Lantern

Green Lantern: Wrath of the First Lantern is written by Geoff Johns and illustrated by Doug Mahnke.

Wrath of the First Lantern sees all the different Lantern Corps across the emotional spectrum team up to try and stop the ‘First Lantern’ who is known as Volthoom. Wrath of the First LanternVolthoom was born in the far future of Earth 15, and by the year 3079 his world was about to be destroyed. It is revealed that he was given power by the Guardians of the Universe. He was brought to Oa by Krona’s first attempt to uncover the origins of the universe. It was revealed that he had the ability to access the Emotional Electromagnetic Spectrum, using it to warp reality. The Guardians themselves tried to copy his power using technology and finally ended up creating the first lantern and ring. The Guardians wanted to share his power across the universe but Volthoom disagreed and began to wreak havoc across the universe, killing millions. The Guardians used his DNA to create a powerful army known as the ‘Third Army’ which then turned on almost all life, only to be finally brought down by the Green Lantern Corps. The Guardians then imprisoned the First Lantern as well as their own emotions and wrote him out of their history.

The story, written by Geoff Johns is action-packed right from the start, the levels of suspense and excitement are played off brilliantly and Doug Mahnke delivers some of the best Green Lantern art work that I have ever seen.

3. Green Lantern: Earth One

Green Lantern: Earth One is written by Corinna Bechko and illustrated by Gabriel Hardman. Green Lantern: Earth One is an original graphic novel and fifth in the line of the Earth One universe, this entry is also the only one not written by Geoff Johns.

Earth One is set in the not too distant future and creates new origins for the characters with stories set in it. At the start of Green Lantern: Earth One, Hal Jordan is an ex-pilot Earth Oneturned mining worker and astronaut working for an exploration and mining company called ‘Ferris Galactic’ and soon into the story, Hal discovers an alien spaceship buried within an asteroid; inside, he then discovers the body of a dead alien, a power battery the shape of a Lantern, and a ring. Hal becomes Green Lantern through a series of shocking catastrophes, and he learns of the Green Lantern Corps. But revelation comes with a quite the price: the Green Lantern Corps has fallen. They were destroyed and murdered by the ruthless killing machines known as Manhunters (these are not the same species as the famous character Martian Manhunter). Hal then also learns that the odds against reinstating the Corps are nearly impossible… but as luck would have it, doing the impossible is exactly what an astronaut like Hal Jordan was trained to do. The story grips you right from the start and then packs one hell of a punch later, as you delve into it.

Green Lantern: Earth One is definitely my favourite Hal-Centered story, it spins the character in a whole new light and with the Earth One universe gives us a new, fresh perspective of the events that take place. I’m a big fan for alternative universes and alternative versions of pre-existing characters. Writer Corinna Bechko and writer/artist Gabriel Hardman deliver shocking and fantastical events from their minds to the page, the art is dark and gritty, and the writing is captivating, tense, and action-packed. A truly must read for Hal Jordan fans.

2. Blackest Night

Blackest Night is is written by Geoff Johns and illustrated by Ivan Reis. This is an entry that I am sure a lot of people thought would be the top choice, whenever people talk about their favourite DC story, or in fact their favourite comic-story, Blackest Night normally finds its way onto the list and near the top.

Blackest Night is considered one of the greatest cross-over events in comics ever. It’s considered that for good reason. The Blackest Night event begins while a war rages on all Blackest Nightacross the DC universe, and then comes Nekron, an almighty force of death who reanimates deceased superheroes with the black lantern rings and seeks to eliminate all life and emotion from the universe. Nekron is one of the coolest villains ever, and certainly one of the most powerful too. The story features a prophecy called the ‘Blackest Night’ and when it descends, all hell breaks loose, and it falls upon Hal Jordan to lead DC’s remaining heroes in a last line of defence against Nekron and his annihilating army of un-dead superheroes. Hal leads an almighty attack upon the forces of the dead aka the Black Lantern Corps and we get to see one of the most spectacular, epic, universe-shaking battles that comics have ever witnessed.

Blackest Night is a superb culmination of Geoff Johns’ Green Lantern run. Geoff and Ivan, the dream-team, create a truly memorable story. Gripping, action-packed, emotional writing coupled with brilliant, bold illustrations bring this story to the top end of the scale.

1. Green Lantern: Sinestro Corps War

Green Lantern: Sinestro Corps War is written by Geoff Johns and illustrated by Ivan Reis. You’ll have seen Geoff’s name a couple of times here and the pairing of himself and Reis are considered a dream team, Blackest Night was absolutely fantastic and Sinestro Corps War is something else.

Geoff has appeared a lot on this list and there’s good reason for that. Geoff Johns re-invented Green Lantern, made it his own in a way. Geoff has written superbly for many Sinestro Corps Warcomics and many characters but none more so than Green Lantern and Sinestro Corps is as good-an-example as you will ever get. Green Lantern: Sinestro Corps War focuses on the Green Lanterns of Earth, primarily Hal Jordan, Kyle Rayner, Guy Gardner, and John Stewart. As well as the rest of the Green Lantern Corps as they engage in a war with Sinestro and his Yellow Lantern Corps. Sinestro uses his power to insight fear, he attracts many extremely powerful beings to his ranks including Cyborg Superman, Akrillo, the Anti-Monitor, and even Parallax the entity of fear. Kyle Rayner, possessed by Parallax, assists the Sinestro Corps in cutting a swath of evil across the universe. Hal Jordan must battle his way through and escape from the Sinestro Corps’ Citadel to join the fight against fear. The Sinestro Corps War is a massive undertaking. Sinestro Corps War is one of the most brutal wars in superhero comics, many Lantern Corp members fall on both sides and the galaxy is plunged into chaos. We see the Guardians have to take a proactive approach to things and the foundation is laid for future story lines, especially the Blackest Night. Many people actually count Sinestro Corps War as part of the Blackest Night story because it feeds into the event so well, flawlessly in fact. The story shines a brilliant light onto Sinestro, where we get to really explore the character in new depths.

Geoff Johns writing is utterly breathtaking, heart-rending, and surreal. Combined with Ivan Reis’s art work, who is no stranger to those who have read my other lists, he has made regular appearances and the illustrations for Sinestro Corps War were truly outstanding; capturing the chaotic, thrill-fest of the story.

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So there we have it! I hope you enjoyed the list, the next post will be my top 5 Batman stories! I will leave you with my favourite of the Lantern Corps Oaths – the Blue Lantern Corps:

“In fearful day, in raging night,

With strong hearts full, our souls ignite.

When all seems lost in the War of Light,

Look to the stars, for hope burns bright!”

The X-Men and Women

My Spider-Man stories post was a huge success, thank you to everyone who liked, read, even looked at it, it became my highest viewed paged in 24 hours. Hopefully we can keep up the momentum for this post. My five favourite X-Men stories! Everyone knows of the X-Men, alongside the Avengers they’re Marvel’s flagship team in the comics. Originally called the Merry Mutants, the X-Men were created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby. Lee and Kirby took inspirations from Martin Luther King, Jr. and Malcolm X to create the famous Professor X and Magneto, and the Civil Rights movement inspired the mutant-human relations. The X-Men are definitely one of the most interesting elements of Marvel. So, now, let us begin!

5. X-Men: Days of Future Past

Days of Future Past is written by Chris Claremont and illustrated by John Byrne. You will be seeing a lot of Chris Claremont’s name on this list. As a major X-Men fan, there is no way that this story couldn’t be on this list. It’s the comic-run that inspired the 2014 film of the same name, although featured many differences.

Days of Future Past is easily one of the best Chris Claremont stories. The story also marked the end of Claremont and Byrne’s collaboration together. This story is fantastic Days of Future Pastand such a brilliant concept, for those that haven’t seen the film I will elaborate. The story flashes between the year of 1980 and the year of 2013. In the future, the robots known as Sentinels, rule a dystopian-set United States. Initially the Sentinels were created to track, hunt, and maintain all mutants but since all but eradicating them, they turned their attention to other superhumans and then just normal people. In the comic, it is Kitty Pryde who is sent back in time to possess the version of her younger body in order to attempt to stop a pivotal event in the history of the world that was ultimately the reason for the events of the future. When she goes back she is joined by younger versions of other known X-Men characters. In this story we get to see Kitty Pryde in a new light, in the desperate setting of the past she is forced to act in a way she wouldn’t normally; knowing that not just mutant kind’s future is in her hands, but humanity’s too.

The writing behind her character-centered story is superb. Claremont came into his own, although this isn’t the first collaboration between himself and Byrne it’s certainly one of the best. Plus the story is mutants – the next stage of human evolution, fighting a creation of human meant to doom the world. What is not to love?

4. X-Men: God Loves, Man Kills

God Loves, Man Kills is written by Chris Claremont and illustrated by Brent Anderson. This story is particularly important to the history of the X-Men, featuring a theme that many can relate to. This book was served as the main inspiration for X2: X-Men.

Mutant-kind are a metaphor or sorts for anyone in the real world of a minority that experience oppression or prejudice, it’s a theme that ties in closely with many X-God Loves, Man KillsMen/mutant stories, in particular the origin of Magneto comes to mind, as well as Days of Future Past, other stories too like Second Coming and Decimation. In God Loves, Man Kills, the X-Men and Magneto himself have to join forces in order to overcome a man named William Stryker. The twist being that Stryker isn’t a soldier or military man, he is an enigmatic preacher who convinces his following to undertake radical extremes including lynching and murdering the mutant kind for just being mutants. In this story, the Purifiers make their debut too, originally called the Stryker Crusade the Purifiers are a group of Christian fundamentalists led by William Styker, they see themselves as servants of God in a holy war against mutant-kind and vow to exterminate them. Now, I’m not saying there is a holy-war of sorts in modern day life but there are certainly minorities who are targeted by some of religion – for being a certain way. God Loves, Man Kills cuts right to the core of what makes the X-Men so compelling, and speaks to all types of readers from all over. God Loves, Man Kills sees a fantastic line up of the X-Men including Colossus, Storm, Cyclops, Nightcrawler, Wolverine, and Magneto, each bringing something to the book that adds to the page-turning feel.

The book itself touches on some very hard, and very relevant subjects. It’s gritty, gut-wrenching, even uncomfortable at times when you realise the connection between real-life parodies of the events. X-Men: God Loves, Man Kills is one of the most accessible and powerful stories with brilliant writing and fantastic visuals.

3. The Dark Phoenix Saga

The Dark Phoenix Saga is written by Chris Claremont and illustrated by John Byrne. The Dark Phoenix Saga is probably the most famous of all X-Men stories, a fantastic comic that served as the mixed received X-Men film trilogy.

While the dream-team of Chris Claremont and John Byrne finished their collaboration with Days of Future Past, The Dark Phoenix Saga is where they reached their pinnacle. It The Dark Phoenix Sagais one of the most iconic X-Men stories of all time, and widely considered one of the best-written Marvel stories ever. The Dark Phoenix Saga documented and corruption of Jean Grey, her mind falling into the clutches of the Phoenix, while being corrupted and mislead by the Hellfire club. Along with these events, Kitty Pryde joined the fray with a spot-light role and Liandra also returned with her fellow Imperial Guard but as friends rather than enemies. The Dark Phoenix Saga is such a variety as such that is what sets it apart from other chronicles of team-ups and events. Claremont brings such a vast array of emotions to this story and expertly demonstrates his talent of wrapping up several loose ends at once while Byrne shows off his prowess, showcasing arguably the best art of his career. The story pits the Phoenix itself in the mind of Jean Grey, against the Imperial Guard and the X-Men, who, at the end are faced with an impossible sacrifce which would ultimately change the team’s structure and dynamic forever.

The Dark Phoenix Saga is as powerful today as it was when first written, standing the test of time incredibly well. It is one of the most emotional for X-Men fans, featuring some of the best dialogue from X-Men stories as well as impacting choices made by the characters.

2. Magneto: Testament

Magneto: Testament is written by Greg Pak and illustrated by Carmine Di Giandomenico. As my favourite villain, Magneto: Testament was always going to get onto this list. A mutant champion, branded as a terrorist, fighting to save other mutants from suffering as he did.

Magneto: Testament is certainly the most moving on this list. While Magneto’s origins are far from secret, this explores the tragic events of his childhood; a Jewish, mutant child in Magneto TestamentNazi Germany, leading him to develop his powers and his hatred for humanity that began the rivalry with Charles Xavier, human-kind, mutants, and the world. In this story, the readers learn Magneto’s true name – Max Eisenhardt. They see his family and they see the first hints of romance between Max and his to-be future wife, Magda. Above all, however, the reader witnesses the first hand account of terrible ordeals that shaped the innocent, kind, caring boy into the compelling, captivating, and terrible champion for mutant rights. I said right at the start that inspiration for Magneto and Charles Xavier came from Malcolm X and Martin Luther King, Jr. respectively and their differences in handling the Civil Rights movement, well the events of Max’s early life shape his whole ideology and motivated him, shaping him to become the mutant warrior, leader and champion of their rights. Max’s power itself barely factors into the story making it all the more heart-wrenching.

Carmine Di Giandomenico’s superb art paints a haunting and gripping picture of life in the ghettos, and of the harrowing Nazi concentration camp – Auschwitz. Combined with excellent writing of Greg Pak, the story of Magneto: Testament is brought to life in such a way that no reader can fail to understand the anger and fury that truly drives Marvel’s most compelling villain.

1. Astonishing X-Men

Astonishing X-Men is actually the name of four comic-book series, I am referring to the series written by Joss Whedon and illustrated by John Cassaday, then followed by the series written by Warren Ellis with illustrations by Simone Bianchi and Phil Jimenez.

When it comes to the storytelling of Mutant’s and their endeavors, Astonishing X-Men offers the best of all. It reflects the character-centered focus of Chris Claremont’s run, it Astonishing X-Menprovides interesting and insightful character study from writers such as Mike Carey, it brings a great bout of Whedon’s best humour. It combines all of these elements with new dynamics; new heroes, new villains, and some of the best if not the best X-Men visuals from stunning artists. The story follows on from Grant Morrison’s run, and Whedon took over in 2004. Joss Whedon more than lived up to the task at hand, Kitty Pryde aka Shadow Cat was brought back into the spot-light, writing her into a strong and courageous heroine. He fused the relationship between Cyclops and Emma Frost, and brought Colossus back from death in a terrifyingly electric scene. Whedon also did what I think all the best X-Men stories do, which is use the ‘less is more’ ideology when it comes to Wolverine who, in recent years, has been overused to death and back. The 2004 – 2013 Whedon run is also noted for its independence from cross-overs and larger scale events such as House of M, Avengers Vs X-Men, Civil War, that were all over the place in this time.

Astonishing X-Men is really the Mutant story that should be used as the bench-mark for X-Men writers. It was almost perfect, a near-flawless run. The story itself truly lives up to the name of being ‘Astonishing’.

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So there we have it! My five favourite X-Men stories! Next up will be Green Lantern stories, so stay tuned! Have a great day!

 

 

The Spectacular, The Ultimate, The Amazing Spider-Man

Welcome back! This post is going to be my favourite Spiderman stories. Spiderman is a Marvel flagship and one of my favourite characters, everyone knows his origin – smart, quirky kid, bitten by a radioactive spider that granted him wicked powers. Since this he donned the mantle of Spiderman and has been known as the Amazing Spider-Man, Superior Spider-Man, and Spectacular Spider-Man among others. In this post I will be listing my personal top five web-slinging, wall-crawling stories. I’ll be adding a little info with each one as to why they’re my favourites! Before we begin, I’m going to add that choosing five stories from all of the great Spider-Man ones is pretty hard. Let us begin!

5. Amazing Spider-Man Volume 11: Back in Black

Back in Black is written by J. Michael Straczynski and illustrated by Ron Garney. J. Michael Straczynski is generally considered as one of the all-time great Spider-Man writers and Back in Black is perfect proof of this.

Amazing Spider-Man Volume 11: Back in Black deals with the fallout from the events of ‘Civil War’ and Peter Parker’s choice within that story to reveal his identity to the public

Spiderman

as an effort to help restore public faith with Superheroes during the on-going conflict. However, as Peter always feared, with his private identity now revealed, Aunt May is dragged into the line-of-fire as she is shot by an assassin with a bullet that was meant for him. This causes Peter to turn to a darker, more aggressive vigilante, dropping his friendlyneighbourhood Spiderman attitude.

What I love about Back in Black especially, is that we get to see what Spiderman is capable of when he pushes his morals to the side, going as far as torturing and viciously assaulting criminals; to near-death in order to get information. The story is definitely one of the darkest from Peter’s history, although not the darkest and results in a compelling, engrossing read. The reader is constantly torn between wanting Spidey to succeed and not wanting him to go too far.

4. Miles Morales: Ultimate Spider-Man Volume 1: Revival

Ultimate Spider-Man Volume 1: Revival is written by Brian Michael Bendis and illustrated by Stuart Immonen. This chapter in the Ultimate Spider-Man story is rather excellent, big fan of Miles Morales right here.

It’s no secret among my friends that I haven’t liked a lot that Marvel have put out in the last few years but I am a huge Miles Morales fan and I closely followed this story and the

Revival

character, Morales is the best thing in the Ultimate Universe, I think so anyway. Miles Morales is Spider-Man of the Ultimate Universe who takes up the mantle of Spider-Man after the Peter Parker of his universe dies. Revival takes place starting at the anniversary of Parker’s death and one of Parker’s biggest villains returns. Miles must come face to face with the worst nightmare of the Spider-Man legacy: Norman Osborn, the Green Goblin… the man who killed Peter Parker… or so we are all led to believe. There are some shocking truths and a “Revival” of the Spiderman legacy, of sorts. This story was a great starting point for Miles Morales, as a reader you get to see the vast skills and powers he has – more so than Peter’s did, he has an amazing suit too. We also get to scrape the surface of Miles’ complexity, he, like Parker has a love interest and how that impacts his choices behind the mask are very interesting; Miles’ life as Spider-Man is in many ways, harder than Peter, he’s only sixteen and has his share of events that try to tear him away from the role of being a hero.

Brian Michael Bendis’ writing of the story is really interesting and unique at times for a Spider-Man arc. The art is really fun too, I enjoy the vibrant colours and themes. A brilliant, fun book for new and old readers alike.

3. The Night Gwen Stacy Died

The Night Gwen Stacy Died is written by Stan Lee and illustrated by Roy Thomas. The Night Gwen Stacy Died is generally accepted to be one of the most famous comic-book events ever, not just within Spider-Man’s stories, or all of Marvel. All comic events, full stop.

The Night Gwen Stacy Died is iconic and powerful. Spoilers – Spidey does not have a good time. Stan Lee really came into his own with this story. Serving as Spider-Man’s greatest

Gwen Stacy

failure, the death of his first true love traumatized Peter Parker for years to come, forcing him to evolve in and out of costume. The story also shocked comic book fans and creators of the time and to this day. The idea of such a crucial supporting character being killed off was dramatic, but especially in a book as child-friendly and optimistic as Spider-Man was unheard of. The Night Gwen Stacy Died ultimately brought in a new era and age of superhero writing, with writers and creative teams taking more risks, telling darker, more mature, and grittier stories. Many forget in this story that Green Goblin also met his demise, impaling himself on his own glider, – something that ranks up in my most favourite Easter eggs of the perfectly recreated moment from the 2002 Spiderman film. The story was a grisly and gripping end for two characters attached so closely to Spider-Man, although Green Goblin returned later down the line. The story entangles many characters and Spider-Man closely together, shaping the event and the aftermath.

The Night Gwen Stacy Died is a titular event for readers and Spider-Man alike. Ultimately shaping the Spider-Man we know today, and it was written so superbly. It was hard to not shed a tear when reading it for the first time, the accompanying art is heart-felt and dramatic, capturing each moment perfectly. A must-recommend for Spider-Man fans, even for those that don’t read much of Spider-Man or superhero comics, I would highly recommend.

2. Spider-Man: Kraven’s Last Hunt

My top two stories both fought incredibly bravely. It was so hard to decide which of the two I was to put second or first but I ended on Kraven’s Last Hunt being in second place. Kraven’s Last Hunt is written by J.M DeMatteis and illustrated by Mike Zeck, the story is widely regarded as the best Kraven story, and one of the best Spider-Man stories. It’s my favourite.

Kraven’s Last Hunt sees one of Spider-Man’s most exciting villains, Kraven the Hunter, and puts him into a light where he’s never been seen before. The story starts with

Kraven's Last Hunt

Kraven defeating Spider-Man, sedating him, and then burying him alive, and then takes Peter’s place as Spider-Man to prove himself the superior hero. Of course, this is not the end for Peter Parker. He is still alive as the sedative begins to wear off and fueled by a desire to be re-united with his wife (yes, he’s married in this story), digs his way free before returning to confront and stop Kraven. However this is where things get a little darker still… Kraven has beaten Spiderman physically, and Spider-Man keeps on coming, refusing to give in. It is this which prompts him to realise that Spider-Man’s ideology of being a hero is something else entirely and he leaves, returning to his home where he commits suicide, shooting himself in the head with a rifle; one he has used previously on hunts. This singular moment is perhaps the most haunting from Spider-Man’s career, maybe rivaled by Gwen’s death. Spidey, after all, tries everything he can to help his villains; even those hellbent on destroying him.

There are many reasons this story is my favourite; those that know me, know I’m a sucker for the darker turn of events. Kraven is certainly painted as one of Spider-Man’s most complex an disturbed villains and Kraven’s Last Hunt sends the reader on a journey that explores that complexity. We see Kraven transform over the story from an over-the-top, victory-obsessed, cartoon-like, maniac to tragically just a human being. The writing is absolutely incredibly heart-rending, and the accompanying art is both unearthly and gripping, rendering the story truly one of Spider-Man’s best.

1. Spider-Man: The Gauntlet

The Gauntlet is written by multiple authors, primarily Mark Waid, Joe Kelly, and Dan Slott. It was also illustrated by multiple artists, primarily by Adam Kubert and Barry Ktison. The story is one of the most spectacular and exciting Spider-Man stories ever written, it is in-fact also a sequel to Kraven’s Last Hunt.

Spider-Man: The Gauntlet was initially supposed to be just a story used as build up for the Kravenoff-centered ‘Grim Hunt’ story but The Gauntlet ended up being held in higher

The Gauntlet

regards than Grim Hunt. It was just as compelling, if not more so than Grim Hunt. The Gauntlet story-line sees old and famous Spider-Man villains returning with upgrades or new abilities to each take on Spider-Man, and on top of that – while this is going on, the supposed wife and daughter of the late Kraven the Hunter watch on the sidelines and slowly manipulate Spider-Man’s world. The Gauntlet gives each villain their own separate story to shine and features the villains of Electro, Sandman, Rhino, Mysterio, Mister Negative, Morbius, Vulture, Scopion, Juggernaught, Charmelon, and Lizard. Each story brings new challenges to Spider-Man with old enemies, Peter is left near-death after a few of them, and on the others – just endures insane amounts of punishment. It takes a toll upon the web-slinger. As it turns out, it was the Kravenoff family, particularly Kraven’s psychotic daughter, were eventually revealed as the masterminds behind the whole ordeal, hoping to wear Spider-Man down before sacrificing him in a blood ritual to resurrect Kraven.

The Gauntlet is exciting and tense right from the start. Spidey’s villains are back and stronger than ever, more determined, more ruthless; the writing gives new and interesting twists on old villains. The art is fresh, vibrant and gripping, and the writing is staggering, haunting in parts, and adrenaline-filled. While some may argue that The Gauntlet doesn’t deserve first place, ahead of the likes of Kraven’s Last Hunt or The Night Gwen Stacy Died, it is all personal opinion but I will say that there is very little in it at all between Kraven’s Last Hunt and The Gauntlet.

So there we have it, my top five Spider-Man stories. Next up will be my top five X-Men stories! Have a great day.

Respect Thread – Carol Danvers

Hey, I’m back! I had to stop for a while because I couldn’t manage the blog along with everything else at that time in my life, but I’ve started a new job which gives me much more time. I’ll be kicking things off again with a Respect Thread for Carol Danvers aka Captain Marvel. The Kree-Human hybrid Carol Danvers has taken many titles or mantles over her comic-life, but none are more famous than Captain Marvel. Carol Danvers made her first appearance as Captain Marvel in Amazing Spider-Man #9 of July 2012, her most famous title before that was in fact Ms. Marvel of which she first appeared as in Ms. Marvel #1 1977. In this thread I will be breaking down the powers of Carol Danvers. Carol Danvers is an Ex Airforce pilot who became a cosmic super heroine, because of a Kree device changing her genetics making her a hybrid, –  that’s the short version anyway.

Carol’s powers were originally derived from those of Captain Marvel, though they have since diverged and increased to become uniquely her own. This has made her one of the most powerful female heroes in the Marvel Universe. Carol also possesses the potential to wield vast cosmic power, which was fully ignited in the time that she had the title of ‘Binary’ and which she can still attain under the right circumstances. Carol’s main powers however as Captain Marvel are super strength, durability, speed, stamina, agility, super sonic flight, invulnerability, energy absorption and projection, and regeneration. She also has a limited ability of molecular manipulation, cosmic awareness and a ‘seventh sense’ which I will get to later. Also as with many MCU adaptations, I’m not sure how many of these we will see from Carol in the films although Kevin Feige has said that she is going to be the most physically powerful Avenger/Marvel hero for now so maybe we’ll see a lot.

When Carol first became Ms. Marvel she had super strength but nowhere near as vast as her current strength; she could lift around fifty tonnes. She was shown throwing cars and lifting tanks, tearing through five inch thick steel with her bare hands etc. However, ThrowingAsteroidshe was captured and experimented on by the Brood awakened an almost godlike level of power in Carol due to her unique Kree/human genetic configuration, causing her to become Binary. As Binary, Carol could tap into the energy of a white hole, meaning she could lift well over a hundred tonnes with ease. In fact, her strength level became so great that it was never accurately quantified. After losing those set of powers (although not completely as she can still tap into them in the right conditions) and becoming Captain Marvel she can still lift over one-hundred tonnes, in recent events she even caught and threw an asteroid that probably weight well over one-hundred tonnes and she has traded blows with the likes of Hulk, She-Hulk, Iron Man’s extremely powerful Model Prime armour, Wonder Man, and even briefly with Thor. Carol has knocked down an injured by still highly capable and dangerous Thanos too.ThanosPunch

Carol has also tanked energy blasts from Thanos, remained conscious after being blasted by Phoenix Force Magik, and fell three-hundred miles, crashing into earth and surviving. Carol has super speed, stamina and agility. She can move at supersonic speeds, reaching at least Mach-3. In her Binary state she could travel faster than light, but as Captain Marvel she is still vastly impressive. She can easily dodge bullets and reacts faster than Spiderman. She single-handedly battled a massive Skrull invasion force for an entire day without rest.

Carol has the ability to absorb a wide range of energies as well as project and manipulate those energies. With these abilities she has been shown to devastate Iron Patriot’s armour and tear into Iron Man’s Model Prime armour, she has been shown to construct an energy field.

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Carol even absorb energy straight from the incredibly powerful Skadi who was giving the Avengers a good fight. In the event that Carol suffers an attack that is actually powerful enough to overload both her invulnerability and her energy absorption abilities, she possesses a super-healing factor and is able to quickly regenerate from almost any injury. She has fully recovered from nuclear explosions and attacks of similar magnitude in a matter of hours.

Now we come to her lesser known powers; molecular manipulation, the ‘seventh sense’ and her cosmic awareness.  Carol possesses a limited degree of molecular control, which Costumeshe can use to transform regular clothing into her costume and vice versa. This power works almost instantaneously, and has the effect of changing her from Carol Danvers to Ms. Marvel/Captain Marvel in the blink of an eye. The ‘seventh sense’ also dubbed Danger Sense is what initially triggered her early transformations from Carol Danvers to Ms. Marvel. Her seventh sense also allowed her to subconsciously predict an opponent’s attacks before they made them, greatly enhancing her fighting and tactical prowess in battle. In a battle with the X-Men character Rogue, she lost this ability, but over time it slowly came back. They work in a similar manner to that of Spider-man’s but since losing them, they have become less effective and efficient. As Binary, Carol had the ability, much like Silver Surfer, to perceive all types of energy patterns and was instantly aware of any significant disruptions in space although when she lost her initial connection to the Binary force she also lost this, however it can come back in the right conditions again.

Apart from her powers, Carol possesses many other skills and abilities that she developed on her own. Her advanced military training along with her Kree warrior skills naturally makes her a very dangerous hand-to-hand fighter.  When used in combination with her many superhuman powers, she becomes a truly formidable adversary. Carol is a skilled pilot in the Marvel Universe, capably of flying many planes of human and alien design. Because Carol’s genetic structure was merged with Captain Mar-Vell’s by the Kree Psyche-Magnitron, she has intimate knowledge of all aspects of the Kree race, including their language, culture, customs, politics, and technology. Carol even is an accomplished author and has published several books, including a popular science-fiction novel based on her deep space adventures with the Starjammers, although I don’t think this fact helps her in combat situations.

So there we go! Hope you enjoyed the read, wherever you’re reading from! I look forward to updating the blog more regularly again, and when I’ve set up some new equipment, I’m going to launch a youtube channel to accompany this blog. Featuring appearances from my comic-savvy friends!

 

 

Respect Thread – Thanos

My list of five favourite Thanos stories went down really well so today is a respect thread for the Mad Titan himself. Thanos is pretty damn powerful, I’m not sure how much of his power outside of his use of the Infinity Stones we’ll see in the film but this respect thread is to show how ultimately powerful he is. With and without the stones he’s a complete monster.

For those that don’t know, Thanos is an Eternal who was born on Titan. He was born with a deviant gene that gave him the leather-like purple skin and also vast powers. He rapidly became the most powerful of the Eternals and later on, after seeking a courtship with Death herself, slaughtered his own race. Being an Eternal, Thanos has superhuman strength, endurance, reflexes and agility. He is nearly invulnerable, able to endure extreme heat, cold, energies, radiation, and poisons. Due to his genetic heritage, Thanos is immune to aging and disease. Thanos’ birth is estimated to be around 4000BC. I’ll be delving into these powers a little more now, so if you’ve had your fix already then be gone with you!

Strength and Durability

So we’ll kick this extensive review of feats off by saying that Thanos is in fact respected by some of the most powerful beings in the universe including Odin – the All Father, Galactus – the World Devourer, and Aegis & Tenebrous – the Promiel Gods.

 

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That’s some pretty mad levels of power right there and he’s threatened Mephisto too. Mephisto, for you that don’t know, is essentially the Devil. Mephisto is more powerful than Surtur – that demon fire guy who destroyed Ragnarok in the third Thor film, and Thanos flat out threatens him, and he has the feats to back it up, honestly. Thanos is one of the most impressive characters in Marvel with such a large array of feats, starting with some examples of his strength now.

Thanos has immense strength, he has made the In-Betweener bleed with a single blow – that alone is an incredible feat (pictured below). The In-Betweener is a being capable of In-BetweenerPunchbending reality and is the physical embodiment of balance between chaos and order. Thanos has carried the Galactus Engine out of Ego (Living Planet), has gone toe to toe with an enraged Hulk, and has knocked Black Dwarf out with a single blow (Black Dwarf has almost completely impenetrable skin).

Not only does Thanos have insane physical strength and power he also has ridiculously high levels of durability. Thanos has survived being sucked into a black hole (I know right), tanked three shouts from Black Bolt – the Inhuman king with a shout that can destroy cities when and more and then Thanos went on to smash Black Bolt into the ground. He has survived, pretty easily, Thor doing his utmost best to bring him down with physical strength, lightning, AND mjolnir – which does very little to which Thanos knocks Thor down with a single blow.

 

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Hell, even Odin and Galactus have tried to take down Thanos before and he defeat them both separately. Odin even charged his staff to the point of exploding and charged it at Thanos who tanked the blasts and on another occasion he absorbs energy blasts from Silver Surfer with no thought or care.

Reflexes and Senses

Let’s remember that Thanos is a large fellow, he’s as tall if not taller than the Hulk and other beings of that stature, and has traded blows with hugely powerful beings like Thor, Hulk, Hercules, . Yet he has surprisingly great reflexes and senses, capable of matching some of those considered to be great assassins, known for being agile, light, and nimble. JackOfHeartsAttack

Thanos has dodged immensely powerful beings such as an attack from a rampaging Ego and a classic Drax (the classic version of Drax is one of the most ferocious fighters in the galaxy with super strength and reflexes making him a hard fight for even Nova). Thanos has also blocked Silver Surfer’s energy blasts while the Surfer was moving at supersonic speeds, detected an attack from Moondragon while facing away, and even got the edge on Jack of Hearts who attempted to speed-blitz him.

Intelligence

Thanos isn’t only one of the strongest, he’s also one of the smartest. He has wildly impressive feats of intelligence. At a young age of around 20, hacks into the Shi’ar technology guarding their system firewalls. Hacking

He has displayed incredible understanding of even Galactus’ technology, equipment, power, and the Power Cosmic in total. He’s also outsmarted Silver Surfer when he was linked to the Power GalactusTechCosmic.

Thanos has even applied his intellect to best one of the Brothers Primordial – Grandmaster, by creating a robot disguised as himself, throwing Grandmaster off guard. Grandmaster is one of the master-tacticians of the Marvel universe, having encyclopedic knowledge of thousands of exotic games played throughout the universe. He can calculate diverse low information probabilities within a tenth of a second and remember countless rules and data. Thanos topped that. Pretty cool.

Telepathy and Energy Projection/Manipulation

Thanos, along with everything else so far, has the power of telepathy and can manipulate energy. His telepathy has rivaled Moondragon and Mantis, who are both known for the telepathic abilities. Even with the Mind Stone, Moondragon couldn’t breach his mind. Thanos has also mind-controlled Hulk and turned him against the Avengers, he’s not above trickery to get what he wants.

Thanos has a lot of amazing energy projection/manipulation/control feats, he has eye beams. Yes, eye beams. He’s used those to obliterate Phyla-Vell, he’s damaged Galactus armour and knocked him off his feet – although this didn’t turn out too good for him it was still an impressive moment. Other energy manipulation feats include creating a shield around Stormbreaker (Beta Ray Bill’s weapon), stopping Mjolnir and dropping it from the air when thrown by Thor Odinson, heals Adam Warlock, turns Skragg – a powerful skrull warrior into stone, and knocking Thor and Thing out with eye beams. ALSO, Thanos has expressed more than once that he has knowledge over the “black mystic arts” and is responsible for why Deadpool can never die. Thanos cast a spell on him making him immortal forever.

Infinity Gauntlet feats and other achievements.

Thanos is most well known for his use of the Infinity Gauntlet and Infinity Stones. With the Gauntlet he has achieved some mighty impressive feats, and here I will also list a few more of his particular great achievements, finishing with them pictured below. With the Infinity Gauntlet, during the Infinity Gauntlet story line, Thanos manages to get all of the Infinity Stones and wipes out half of the entire freaking universe with the snap of his fingers. (If you’ve seen the Avengers: Infinity War trailer you’ll have seen Gamora mimicking this in a description, this is an Easter egg towards this and maybe we’ll see it actually happen in the film). However, Thanos has also created life with the Infinity Gauntlet in a strange turn of events. Thanos has battled Eternity himself while in possession of the Infinity Gauntlet, he once bent reality and time to his will and stated that he was more powerful than Mistress Death, and has destroyed multiple planets while fending off the Celestials themselves.

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Fun Facts

Some interesting and fun facts about Thanos now, to end on. Thanos and his brother; Eros, exchange gifts ever year and call it a truce, for they are still brothers. Thanos celebrated Christmas when Gamora was a young girl, so, I guess he’s not all bad. Right?

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I hope you enjoyed the read, this respect thread was one of the most enjoyable to write. Thanos is well and truly a powerhouse to be reckoned with. Avengers: Infinity War is almost upon us! On Wednesday before the midnight release, probably mid-morning, I will be releasing my favourite Iron Man stories. As always. Peace ❤

 

 

A Quest for the Best

It’s getting closer! Infinity War is almost upon us, I can not contain the excitement. I still watch the trailers every day. Today I will be giving a countdown of my five favourite Thanos titles, the Mad Titan himself. Some of these will have already been listed in other posts on my blog but not in an order whereas this is my official 5th – 1st favourite Thanos stories.

Let us begin.

5. Thanos Rising

Thanos Rising is the best place to start on this list and was obviously going to make the cut. Thanos Rising is written by one of the best Marvel writers of recent years; Jason Aaron, and is illustrated by Simone Bianchi.

If you’ve read my To Infinity and War titles of comics to read before Infinity War, this will be of no surprise. Thanos Rising is a five issue series that focuses on the origins of ThanosRisingthe Mad Titan himself. The story starts with Thanos returning to his home world – Titan, to visit his mother’s grave. The story then goes back in time to his birth and recalls the tale of his life – his birth with the deviant gene, which is the source of his vast power, his early life, rise into adulthood, his banishment and then his return. Thanos is wildly intelligent, he showed extremely advanced levels of intelligence during school and was also a pacifist though he kept to himself and stayed isolated due to being ashamed of his own appearance. He really only played with his brother, Eros. Thanos also had recurring nightmares about being killed at birth. On one fateful day, in an all but forgotten subterranean temple, an enterprising young Thanos would find companionship in the form of Mistress Death. Thanos’ relationship with Mistress Death grew and eventually blossomed into a dark and forbidden romance. Under Death’s tutelage, he grew even stronger and more powerful – well versed in the Black Arts, which had long been forbidden on Titan. He was banished but returned years later with the intention of showing those all who banished him, how powerful he had become.

Thanos Rising is an excellent story, it’s rather essential in understanding Thanos himself and I love the plot. Jason Aaron has made quite the name for himself in recent Marvel years handling Thor superbly well and I think it was a natural calling for him to take on the origins of Thanos.

4. The Infinity War

The Infinity War. What a name. The Infinity Gauntlet is a direct sequel to the Infinity Gauntlet story-line and is written by Jim Starlin and illustrated by Ron Lim, and was followed up with Infinity Crusade.

The story of The Infinity War starts with Adam Warlock. He uses the Infinity Gauntlet to expunge the good and evil aspects of his personality to become a totally and completely Infinity Warlogical being, who can therefore use the Gauntlet wisely. However this action creates an evil persona called Magus, who desires universal conquest above all else, and revenge against both Adam Warlock and Thanos. Thanos meanwhile senses a massive spike of cosmic energy, which is revealed to be Magus himself.  Magus believes Thanos to be similar to himself, but after some time, Thanos has thought much and changed his priorities. He believes that neither of them are meant to possess such power. The persona of Magus casts him from his dimension, as one does.  Thanos and Adam Warlock form an unlikely alliance and they travel into Death’s own dimension to study the Infinity Well and learn how Magus came to be and learn what his plans are. A plot is introduced that leads Magus and Thanos with Adam Warlock into contact with Earth’s greatest heroes and Galactus himself who begrudgingly admits that Thanos and he are on the same side.

Many other amazing cosmic characters are a part of the story including Eternity and the Living Tribunal. Jim Starlin really utilities the characters in their powerful glory. It’s such a great story and I loved reading Adam Warlock and Thanos as allies in this unlikely crusade for power and protection of the universe, even if they each had their own desired outcome.

3. The Death of Captain Marvel

For as bad as Thanos can be and is, for calling him bad is the understatement of the century. The Death of Captain Marvel shows his some-what (and very few) good qualities. The Death of Captain Marvel is written and illustrated by Jim Starlin.

Captain Marvel was Thanos’ first major rival and in this classic Marvel comic, Captain Marvel is fighting a form of cosmic cancer. He received this cancer as a result from an Death-of-Captain-Marv-02earlier battle and has roughly three months to live. Throughout the story he says his farewells to many of Marvel’s greatest heroes, those who have fought along side him in the past, allies and friends. However, right at the end. It is Thanos who greets him. Thanos is gracious to Captain Marvel and introduces him to his lover, Death, and as Marvel dies it becomes apparent that he and Thanos are no longer enemies. The Death of Captain Marvel is a touching story that evokes great sadness, the ending is a moment that rises above the super-powered battles of comics, that destroyed worlds and civilizations to remind us that even the greatest enemies can share a final moment as they are greeted by Death.

Jim Starlin worked wonders in this comic. If you can find a copy, I really do implore you to read it.  It holds up so very well for a book that was written in the 1980’s, that can be said a lot for Jim Starlin’s work. The story’s ramifications are particularly powerful for Mar-Vell (Captain Marvel) is one of the few characters who has actually stayed dead for a prolonged time after this story, giving it an extra thoughtful ending.

2. Infinity Gauntlet

This one will really be no surprise, or it really shouldn’t be if you were surprised. Infinity Gauntlet is written by Jim Starlin and focuses heavily on Thanos. Infinity Gauntlet was the first of three major stories for Marvel, it was followed by two direct sequels. The Infinity War and Infinity Crusade. The story has other characters in the spotlight but Thanos is certainly the centre role.

The story follows Thanos as he attempts to court Death. Thanos takes control of the Infinity Gauntlet and promptly eradicates half the sentient life in the universe. A vast Infinity Gauntleramount of big heroes perish in the event and it’s left to a handful of survivors to bring Thanos down including Adam Warlock, Spider-Man, Doctor Strange, and Nebula. The Infinity Gauntlet also showcases the importance and power of the wearable weapon itself, as much as the power behind the stones/gems that fit into it. The Gauntlet harnesses the power of each stone and when the gauntlet is filled up, it gives the wearer complete control over each of them allowing he/she to really do whatever the hell they want to space/time/reality. The story is SO intense at parts, and there’s some unimaginable plot twists that you just won’t see coming. There’s not many stories that really make you understand quite how extremely powerful Thanos is, and the Infinity gems too.

As well as being an amazing Thanos story it’s also one of the best kept stories, having time-travel, drama, death, suspense, action, and twists. Definitely some of Jim Starlin’s best writing.

1. Infinity

Can I get an Amen? No? Maybe a praise to Death? That’s better. We hit first place upon this list with none other than Infinity itself. Infinity is one of my favourite Marvel cross overs, there’s literally something for everyone. Infinity is written by Jonathan Hickman and that man is literally a comic-writing legend. Hickman made a name for himself on my radar with the breakout series East of West from Image Comics. The man’s a genius at handling apocalyptic events and stories and Infinity is right up on that list. The story is illustrated by a rotating team of artists.

Infinity is a cross over event that brings together the Avengers, New Avengers, Guardians of the Galaxy, Illuminati, Inhumans, a race called the Builders, and Thanos with his Black InfinityOrder. The story is about Thanos building his army and attacking Earth while the Avengers are in space dealing with another threat known as the Builders, who are a threat to the whole galaxy. The Builders are one of the oldest races in the Marvel Universe and hold such incredible power. They travel through the galaxies building and creating entire worlds at will – something that only beings like the Celestials are capable of. The story event of Age of Ultron serves as a catalyst for the rest of the universe to target Earth with the various tie-ins telling Thanos’ attack through the perspective of a variety of characters such as Captain America, Guardians of the Galaxy, Captain Marvel, and Nova. The story is so well written, and every character and team is handled so well including the Outriders and Black Order, who had their first formal appearance bearing the title of Black Order in Infinity. The story also brings in a variety of other problems for the heroes, including dramatic political ramifications between Earth and other-world galactic communities. It is truly a story where all hope feels lost. A desperate battle for Earth and its heroes with Thanos right in the spotlight of it all.

Infinity has something for every single type of Marvel fan. The destruction of entire planets, advanced alien races hellbent on bringing annhilation, desperate space battles, sinister team-ups, wicked villains, political machinations, and some seriously kick-ass battle theaters! This book delivered in spades. Not even to mention the cast of characters rolled into all of this! I loved how eclectic the amalgamation of heroes and villains were, and we got such an incredibly detailed look into the power behind some of these previously barely seen characters.

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So there we have it! My five favourite Thanos stories. Avengers: Infinity War draws ever closer, I am not ready. I will never be ready, not even after I’ve seen it. Coming later this week is a respect thread for Thanos. Hope you enjoyed the read, and as ever. Peace. ❤

Ain’t no list like this, ‘cept this.

Yo! It’s a lovely misty morning here, mist is probably my favourite weather so I’m sitting outside and listening to Super Freak while I write this. It’s one of those mornings. Infinity War is drawing nearer and nearer, and today I’ll be doing a list of my five favourite Guardians of the Galaxy stories. The Guardians are going to have a major role in the film, and I’m so excited to see where the film takes them afterwards. The Guardians are probably my favourite team in Marvel comics. As per usual, this post will contain spoilers in one regard or another of the comic stories.

5. Rocket Raccoon: A Chasing Tale

Rocket Raccoon was a breakout star of the 2014 Guardians of the Galaxy film. Marvel responded by writing his own solo story. A Chasing Tale is both written and illustrated by Skottie Young.

The story follows what-do-you-know, Rocket Raccoon. The story follows Rocket as he has to figure out why he’s now a wanted rodent and not a guardian in status. He’s framed for A Chasing Talemurder – and the authorities aren’t the only one on his tail. Ah, puns. The real killer is an imposter who is seemingly ahead of Rocket at every turn. The story dives into the complex being behind the mask of not-giving-a-damn attitude and Groot makes an appearance too, happy to help his other odd-ball friend, and fellow Guardians. Skottie Young’s approach to the character is excellent, it further proves that Rocket doesn’t necessarily need the Guardians to have a story. In the story we get to see a side of Rocket, cute and menacing all at once, that you’d never see expressed better. The first four issues follow Rocket’s adventure while issues #5 and #6 take another approach. Issue #5 is from the perspective of Groot, while #6 is Rocket again but this time he’s accompanied by Cosmo – the dog.

Skottie’s scripts are on point and follow intensive structures. A Chasing Tale is also jam-packed with tons of references and clues to the bigger picture. The artwork is gorgeous too, literally filled to the brim with explosive colours; ranging from lullaby pastels and brilliant inks. One of the most-fun comics I’ve ever read from Marvel. From the snout of Rocket himself – “There ain’t no thing like me, ‘cept me.”

4. Guardians Of The Galaxy: New Guard Vol. 2 – Wanted

In this story the Guardians are split into two teams as they attack a prison-planet. Brian Michael Bendis writes this tale and Valerio Schiti provides gorgeous illustrations!

There was no way this story wasn’t making the list. It’s so much fun and so beautifully drawn. Peter Quill returns to the fold after an absence and time as Emperor of the Shi’ar. Wantedand is reunited with Kitty Pryde who has been serving as Star-Lord in his time away, and it’s nice to see that Peter and Kitty get a nice heart to heart in the first issue. The two teams of this story make for quite the roster, including Flash Thompson/Venom, the Thing, Angela, Drax, Rocket and more. Rocket was a particular highlight for me in this story. They all are given ample time on the page, not to mention that the story was fun and fast paced, the art was all kinds of awesome, the action was brilliantly illustrated, the humour wasn’t forced in at every angle. The Guardians are such a charming group of misfits and this story was nice to see them actually sticking to something that even vaguely resembles the original plan, not everything goes as they had hoped but it’s a nice take on them.

Guardians of the Galaxy, vol 2: Wanted is some good old fashioned wacky nonsense, with brilliant colours and exceptionally fun writing. A lovely chemistry between Peter Quill and Kitty Pryde at the centre of it all.

3. War of Kings

What a name War of Kings is. You know, just from that title that it’s going to be an epic story. War of Kings was written by Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning who make another appearance later on this list too. They’re quite the power-couple.

War of Kings is a crossover story and mainly spot-lights the Inhumans led by Black Bolt, the Shi’ar Empire led by Vulcan, the Guardians of the Galaxy, and Nova, with other War of Kingscharacters too. The plot is about a war between the Shi’ar and Kree. If you don’t know, the Inhumans were created by the Kree to bring down the Shi’ar empire, the Inhumans are wicked powerful in their own ways, none more so than their king and leader – Black Bolt. Straight in the aftermath of the Secret Invasion story, Black Bolt and the Inhumans return to the kree for their right to rule separate. However they come into direct conflict with the Emperor Vulcan (Gabriel Summers, yeah, Cyclops and Havok’s older brother), and his conquest with the Shi’ar. The story sets up the conflict between the two with an attack at the wedding between Ronan the Accuser and Crystal – an Inhuman. Which had been arranged to unite the two races. There’s so many factors to this story but the main focus is on Vulcan and Black Bolt who’s battle eventually causes some destruction beyond which the likes of the Marvel Universe has never really seen. The Guardians of the Galaxy get brought into the conflict along with another group called the Starjammers, they attack Gladiator who is one of the most prestigious warriors of the Shi’ar, and his fleet.

War of Kings is such an epic crossover yet handled so tastefully. It gives the Guardians of the Galaxy ample page time while not subtracting from the overall story and spotlight of the Inhuman king and Emperor Vulcan. Each of the Guardians are written very well and it’s definitely a must-read for any Guardians fan, old or new.

2. Guardians Of The Galaxy, Vol.  1: Legacy 

Legacy is the first volume in the 2009 run of Guardians of the Galaxy. The story takes place right out of Annihilation: Conquest and is written by Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning. Again. They’re winners. They’re even collectively known as DnA.

Guardians of the Galaxy: Legacy was one of the biggest inspirations for the 2014 Guardians of the Galaxy film. You can see many similarities to it, and it’s just as Legacyenjoyable. Legacy’s initial run reunites the Annihilation: Conquest team of Star-Lord, Rocket Raccoon, Quasar, Adam Warlock, Gamora, Drax the Destroyer, and Groot. The story follows the team as they combat dark gods and monstrous beings that are pouring from ‘cracks’ in the universe, for they’re the Guardians of the Galaxy. B***h. The story combines a lot of elements seen previously in the likes of Annihilation, Annihilation: Conquest, and War of Kings. Star-Lord’s team of rag-tags and odd-balls get proactive. The story brings a real element of pathos too, the story twists and winds around characters from across the team, giving us a great look at them individually as well as part of the group. Adam Warlock and Rocket Raccoon especially stood out for me, after Star-Lord of course. Dem guns.

DnA deliver again and again with their Guardians of the Galaxy stories and the art work is so catchy, I re-read this volume twice after I first picked it up, one was just to admire the art in every panel. If you want a story with a terrific look into the team’s diversity and their twisted misfit personalities, with action packed moments and brilliantly written humour…. What do I mean, ‘if’, of course you want this.

1. The Thanos Imperative

The Thanos Imperative is such a wow-fest. it was written by the power team of Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning. Yes, that’s right. The top 3 of mine are all written by those two.

The Thanos Imperative is a cross over storyline. The plot is the culmination of events which started with “Annhilation” focuses on the cosmic, or space based heroes of Marvel. Thanos ImperativeThey band together to deal with a rift in space-time that formed at the end of the “War of Kings” story, which is listed above. The story stars the Guardians of the Galaxy in a major spot light and starts with them watching over a newly resurrected and imprisoned Thanos while Nova pursues Quasar while Magus and the Universal Church of Truth tear open the ‘Fault’ which is a massive rip in the universe leading to a seemingly infinite amount of realities through space and time. Through it comes monstrous creatures led by an alternative Captain Marvel ‘Lord Mar-Vell’ who is the existing leader of the Cancerverse (which is a reality in which Death itself has been banished from so Life runs rampant and seeks to spread his/its plague to all over verses). The Guardians of the Galaxy must team up with Thanos of all people for he is the Avatar of Death and journey into the Fault. Meanwhile Nova also leads Quasar, Beta Ray Bill, Gladiator, Silver Surfer, and Ronan. This leads to more events that I shan’t spoil, it’s a fantastic story

The artwork is gorgeous and the writing is superb. Everything falls into place so well, there’s action and plenty of it, suspense and tension, and some shockers too. If you had to read just one Guardians story it should be this one.

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So there we have it! my five favourite Guardians of the Galaxy stories. Next week’s top five titles will be Thanos and in the week following I will be doing another respect thread for Thanos too! After the release of Avengers: Infinity War I will be holding a sweepstakes draw with the prize of a mystery character pop vinyl figure and a signed comic featuring a character from the film. I will also be running a random draw from subscribers/followers to this blog, so if you’ve not got a wordpress account, getting one is the way to enter that.

Stay tuned! Peace out.