Bottom of the Pile - Nov. 12th, 2014

As promised.

Amazing Spider-Man
Forget Spider-Gwen, Spider-Ham is probably my favorite character from this entire crossover so far.  He's got the humor, the 'tude, and frankly he's been more realistic and persevered through more than all the rest of them.  I love that Dan Slott hasn't tried to make him overly cartoonish or basically make him "too dumb to live".

Avengers and X-Men: Axis
Even Spidey's noticed the villainous dialogue downgrade these guys have gotten.

Axis: Hobgoblin
If Tony's the only hero who remains inverted, I'd love it if Hobgoblin became (one of) the only villains.  The fact that he does "selfies" with the people he saves for photo ops is awesome enough, but I genuinely think his self-serving approach to heroism has some legs as a story idea. 

Okay, first off: Much as I adore the new costume Babs, I think you should visit the Batcave and get yourself some new gadgets.  Can't go around asking randos for upgrades.

Second: Batgirl just might be the best superhero comic on the stand this month.  It's pure pop art goodness that you could literally hand to anyone and they'd "get it".  It's not so wrapped up in it's own continuity that only the initiated can understand, and it's got a perfectly relateable yet inspiring superhero as it's lead along with a diverse cast of characters that manage to cover a lot of different types of people without beating you over the head with how diverse things actually are.   And most importantly?  

That. Fucking. Art.    This book can switch from a superheroic motorcycle chase scene to everyday, "mundane" secret identity stuff to tense flashbacks of old Saturday morning cartoons without missing a beat.   People look at home in superhero costumes as they do in modern fashion outfits--something that's sorely missing from most hero books, because no one ever gears down long enough to wear anything like that.   I haven't enjoyed a new artist's work this much since Jamie McKelvie.

The "new and improved" Joker.  Man, it might just be that I'm too used to Grant Morrison's Bats, but Scott Snyder's Batman just seems so...ineffectual.   He can't crack simple riddles, he's being paralyzed by random concoctions, and even being captured by one of his most popular, but least impressive villains.   I'm used to Batman dealing with crime on a ridiculous scale--where literally the entire planet is at stake--but it seems we're back to him just barely being able to save Gotham City.

Only in Gotham can you take a motorcycle tire to the freaking chest and the only ill effect is that you're forced to take a knee for a single panel.

Earth 2: World's End
So between Arrow and this, Ted Grant's not going to be in costume anytime soon, is he?  Because I see no reason for either incarnation to ever feel the need to dress up like a giant cat to beat people up.

Miles Morales: Ultimate Spider-Man
So this issue ends the "Return of Peter Parker" story, but more importantly, it also shows us the real reason why Kate Bishop broke up with Miles Morales: her parents are Hydra members.  Yep.  That would definitely make dinner at your girlfriend's parents place a little awkward.

If Batgirl is how superhero comics should be done in the "social media" era, then Nightcrawler is how classic superhero comics should be done.  With one of the greatest scribes of the old school era backed by classic art by Todd Nauck, Nightcrawler has it all--old, forgotten villains, beautiful bad-ass women who drag our hero into a situation where he's WAY out of his depths, high-flying heroics by everyone's favorite swashbuckling elf, and tons of exposition to move the story along.

Month-in and month-out though, this book remains one of my favorites to read when it hits the stands.   There really is room for all kinds of superheroes these days.

Y'know Steve, you could be less of a dick about this.

The first issue of Spider-Verse shows us several different versions of Spider-Man, but this one might be my favorite of all.  Courtesy of Katie Cook, the creator of Gronk and writer/artist for the IDW's MLP series comes Penelope Parker: The Amazing Spider-Girl.  

Everyone is fired if Morlun comes anywhere near her.

Superior Spider-Man
Yeah, 'cause every time the word "symbiote" has ever been used, it's somehow not been a complete and utter disaster for all involved.  Oh wait.

Okay, at first I wanted to see what Tony could do with the limiters off, but it's been one issue and already he's approaching unbearable levels even for me.  Can we go back to when Marvel wasn't trying to ape 2007 again?

Also we're apparently getting to the point where Tony's basically using magic for his armor.  You can't even pretend stuff like this is close to the realm of possibility.

New 52 - Futures End
It's weird enough running into yourself from another planet.  But running into a version of yourself who happens to be placed inside an android body that's missing some body parts?  Yikes.

Remember when I said I didn't know what to make of Lady Thor?  Yeah, jury's in now: she's awesome.   This whole issue was just devoted to her wrecking shop.  We still don't know who she is (which is bad because now it's a "mystery" and comic book identity mysteries always disappoint), but as it stands I'm impressed. 


Ugh.  Did you guys not pay attention to me when I said stop going to Earth?  Now I have to deal with Spike "I'm only here because of the original cartoon" Witwicky for an entire arc?   I'm half-asleep already.  Combiner Wars, come save me from all this Earth crap, please?

Author's Note: Bottom of the Pile is a weekly column (or at least, my attempt at said) in which I cover the comics that found their way to the bottom of my pile, thus being the best as I've always been a proponent of "saving the best for last".   Since bog standard reviews can be found literally anywhere, coverage can range from mini-reviews to funny comments to commentary on a creator's run or comics as a whole, depending on a wide range of factors including the comic itself, the amount of time I have, and my general mood.


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