Tag Archives: classic

Throwback Review – The Uncanny X-Men #146 – June 1981


THE UNCANNY X-MEN #146

Reviewed by Nathan Harrison


Written by: Chris Claremont
Art: Dave Cockrum and Jeff Rubinstein
Released: June 1981
Publisher: Marvel Comics



The thing about winning streaks is that inevitably, inexorably, undeniably they must, at some point come to an end.

The Uncanny X-Men #146 came just a few short months after not one but two of the most iconic, revered, and well-regarded X-Men stories of all time – The Dark Phoenix Saga (so good they filmed it twice – badly) and Days of Future Past.
Even those with the most passing knowledge of Marvel’s mutant heroes will likely have heard of these essential parts of comic book history and they, of course, form small parts of a record-breaking and essential 17 year run on X-Men by the incredible Chris Claremont. However, even the best in the business have their off days…

This issue comes slap bang in the middle of a 3 issue tale, which sees the X-Men rescuing their foe, Arcade, from the clutches of Fantastic Four big bad, Doctor Doom. An exciting premise on paper…until you remember that Arcade is involved. While his elaborate escape room antics could be seen as a precursor to horror legend Jigsaw, Arcade appears as something more akin to a Chucky doll stuffed into a white suit and polka-dot bow tie, a look which must have seemed dated even in 1981.

Even fairly recent appearances in The Amazing Spider-Man have failed to update him in a convincing way. He’s the sort of lame, ridiculous villain that the comics try to take seriously but who’s crying out for the kind of treatment DC have recently given to Polka Dot Man in the latest Suicide Squad movie – main adversary for Deadpool’s first MCU appearance anyone?

That said, while the majority of the traps that Arcade and Doom set for Banshee, Havok, Iceman and Polaris (as well as some of the more popularly known X-Men who feature briefly) are on the silly side, there are some mind-bending and borderline scary panels – one featuring a merry-go-round with living vampiric horses stands out, as well as the twisty checkerboard hell that Wolverine finds himself in. David Cockrum and Jeff Rubinstein do a solid job of conveying the terror – when the trap itself is actually in any way terrifying. Less impactful are Havok’s trip on what appears to be Space Mountain and the whole team sliding down the pipes from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

Special mention must be given to a panel from one of the final pages, which sees Havok…well…just take a look at that pose. Naughty boy!

Well hello

VERDICT

Claremont certainly can’t be blamed for going for a lighter story after the earth-shattering and emotional events of what came before, but this one sadly misses the mark. What should be a fun romp turns out to be a bit of a slog, with only a few moments of levity and the occasional nightmarish panel (you decide which category that Havok one falls under!) to break up the tedium. However, that’s not to take anything away from a legendary run which will undoubtedly feature on every comic fan’s must-read list until the heat death of the universe.


Review by Nathan Harrison 5/8/21


Pre-order Batman ’89 this week and get Superman ’78 for only £2!


That’s right folks, Batman ’89 and Superman ’78 are on the way, and what better way to celebrate the revisiting of these absolute classics than to offer you the chance to save a little and pick up Superman ’78 #1 for only £2 when buying the two!

You will also find the variants on the website, however this offer is for these standard covers, which are pretty cool looking I must admit.
Is it just me or does the idea of revisiting this era leave you with a little nostalgic grin? I mean, that looks to me like Gene Hackman and Margot right there, and… and that is very much a Keaton chin of course on the Batman cover.

It’s going to be a trip down memory lane by the looks of it! Get onboard and pre-order now, the offer only extends until the end of the week!

Find the deal right HERE on our website.

The Amazing Spider-man #70 Review


The Amazing Spider-man #70Review by Leo Brocklehurst

Written by: Nick Spencer

Art by: Federico Vicentini


Released 7/7/21 Published by Marvel Comics

“And answers? Well, we’re ALL looking for those, aren’t we? (…) But we may not like what we find when we GET them”.

Spider-man’s latest fixture is a great book that excites and hypes you up for the next big event of Spider-ness. A perfect prelude with raising stakes and a theme of questions running throughout.

The writing by Nick Spencer is able to set the stage for a storyline that feels like it might actually shake things up for once. Hopefully rectifying Spencer’s biggest flaw in his Spidey run: the lack of change. As you read it, it flows great and is fine for fun little Spidey stories that you can relax to but in the big picture, not much has changed. Sure there have been SOME for sure as it’s almost impossible to go 70 issues without changing anything but it has been an incredibly slow rise. Beginning with Sinister war however, things are looking up for Spidey readers and this issue is evidence.

As I said before, the theme of this issue is one of questions. MJ wants answers for Carlie (who is locked away in a cell with Harry Osborn (double bracket whaaat???) in a place we’re not even sure is on earth at this rate) , Carlie wants answers for Harry, Doc Ock wants answers about things taken from him and Spider-man wants answers on just what is going on??
The lizard and Curt Connors have been separated and the sinister six have vanished, escalating worries around the city and on top of ALL of this, it looks like Mysterio is back in town!!

The art in this issue, done by Federico Vicentini has almost a smooth, manga like style and flow whilst also looking messy and rough. I thought it accompanied the fast pace of the book extremely well; rushing to the big BANG to kick it all off and I can’t wait to see how beat up Spidey gets this time around.


Verdict:

Spencer’s final story is about to explode into the stratosphere and this issue is drenched in pure anticipation and fast paced, action packed artwork that is sure to entice readers into Spidey’s biggest threat yet.

8/10


Reviewed by Leo Brocklehurst on 9/7/21