Our Underwear #10 – The ONLY Fear Itself post you will ever need to read!

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by John Velousis

Part 1 – Everything that was right about Fear Itself #7 and the event in general (Kinda spoiler free, maybe?)

1. It totally made sense and was pretty cool when Captain America picked up [that one thing.] Right?
2. I dug how Hawkeye looked kinda pissed because he WANTED missing a shot to be a possibility.

FI Stinkeye
Sucks if he's trying to do that thing where you shoot a chandelier so it falls on somebody. Oh, all FI#7 art is Stuart Immonen, and/or Wade Von Grawbadger (who drew with vines?), and/or Laura Martin "with Ponsor & Milla" - Jesus, even the CREDITS are stupid and fucked up.

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3. [amazon_link id=”B005CWOQ1K” target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]Fear Itself: Deadpool[/amazon_link] ruled the roost. BIG UPS to Christopher Hastings (W), Bong [!] Dazo (Pcls), Joe Pimentel (Inks), Matt Milla (Clrs), and Simon Bowland (Ltrs).

Walrus
It happens, you know.

4. [amazon_link id=”078514840X” target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]Journey Into Mystery[/amazon_link] was the big winner among the non-limited series (in theory) tying into FI. I’ll be talking about last week’s issue at length NEXT week, since the next issue drops Wednesday, but Kieron Gillen womped like a MUTHA in Loki’s adventures. My quick take: This series killed the ass off  Superman Beyond 3D, Grant Morrison’s shorter but similarly-themed adjunct to [amazon_link id=”140122282X” target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]Final Crisis[/amazon_link]. Really.
5. [amazon_link id=”0785163891″ target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]Fear Itself: The Home Front[/amazon_link] had a lot of good stuff. I’m a fan of Mike Mayhew’s particular brand of painted photo-realism, so I’m glad to have seen a bunch of that. BUT, his stuff really pops for me when he has garish colors to work with, so it was a li’l bit sucky that Christos Gage had him (and colorista Rain Beredo) draw so many normal schmucks and baddies whose costumes were just black. Anyhow, the series still had plenty of good stuff, with the standout pieces being most of Howard Chaykin’s pages, the awesome American Eagle piece in #5 by Si Spurrier & Jason Latour, and the always-welcome Great Lakes Avengers/Defenders/X-Men/JLI, by Elliott Kalan, Ty Templeton, and David Curiel.
6. [amazon_link id=”0785157018″ target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]Fear Itself: Youth In Revolt[/amazon_link] (W,A,C,L: McKeever, Norton, Gandini, and Cowles) was a worthwhile read, and it has this:

Metamucil!
You say Meta, I say LaMotta.

7. [amazon_link id=”B005PHT6G2″ target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]Fear Itself: The Monkey King[/amazon_link] (a Fialkov-Doe-Quintana-Lanphear joint) was more fun than watching Joyce Carol Oates foolin’ around with a monkey. Which I have imagined many times.

That’s the good stuff. Any parts of the Marvel [Publishing] Universe that tied into Fear Itself and were good – the best F.I. moments from Invincible Iron Man or Thunderbolts or New Avengers or whatever – do NOT get especial credit, because they would have been just fine WITHOUT the big event. Well, maybe the MODOK thing from Hulk needed a suitably big world threat to help Ole’ Big-Head learn to love. Hard to say.

Part 2 – The BAD things about Fear Itself #7 and the event in general

1. Odin’s plan was absolutely moronic, unrealistic, cowardly, contemptible, poor strategy, and generally asinine. Nobody anywhere doesn’t think this.
2. Captain America using shotguns to easily blow Nazi red-shirts robots out of the sky. Look at all the piled-up wiped-out robot-VolksWagen things:

Cap guns
That grumpy old dude sure wants them to come on!

Golly, if only they had this amazing “shotgun” technology available in Washington, D.C., which those things supposedly totally destroyed. Instead, all they had available in Washington were tanks, fighter jets, bazookas, grenades, and EVERY PIECE OF WEAPON TECHNOLOGY THAT COULD BE BOUGHT WITH 50% OF EVERY FUCKING AMERICAN TAX DOLLAR FOR THE LAST 40 YEARS.
3. Humanity all simultaneously Not Being Afraid was predictable from roughly one second after we found out that the big bad, The Sears Pants, is powered by human fear.
4. The “death” of Thor while he has a current ongoing series has about as much dramatic heft as the death of Kenny in episode #29 of [amazon_link id=”B00023P49M” target=”_blank” container=”” container_class=”” ]South Park[/amazon_link]. Also, what did he die of, exactly? Anvilitis? The only question on anybody’s mind is how long Marvel will pay lip service to the idea of Thor being dead. But Thor is immortal – not because he’s a “god,” but because he is a corporate property. A corporate property will not and cannot be made to stay in the grave as long as it can be monetized.
5. Just, in general: Fuck prophecy. Don’t like it. Crap story device, except when Loki wields it.
6. BTW also, Heimdal can suck it. What a tool. He just basically does nothing ever except watch Odin act like the king of all assholes, followed by blindly obeying whatever whack shit Odin demands of him.
7. The dialogue in the main series was bad. All of it.
8. If I gave a shit about continuity, I would point out sloppy errors like Captain America’s un-scarred shield in his new series (or the OBVIOUS problems with aerodynamics this would create), or Cap’s WAY continuity-sloppy appearance in Daredevil. Suffice to say, there’s no clear idea what happened when ANYWHERE. (Can you order Fear Itself, Spider Island, Schism, FF’s War of Four Cities, etc? I sure as shit can’t.)
9. I regard Fear Itself (Main Series), Book of the Skull, Hulk vs Dracula, The Deep, FF, and The Fearless (Issue #1 only, not buying the rest) as a fucking waste of sixty bucks. I spent money on all of this, I don’t get review copies (and probably never will with an attitude like this!)
10. So, here is Sin at the end of the big Fear Itself battle.

DARN YOU!
WAKE UP, SIN, I HAVE TO BE SURE YOU HEAR ME READ YOU YOUR RIGHTS!

Let’s ignore the fact that her face is a red skull because of horrible burn scars that are suddenly smooth. Instead, I want to know if she was jailed in any of the prisons that held Saddam Hussein, Osama Bin Laden, or Mohamar Ghaddaffi. Oh, wait a sec, it slipped my mind, those guys – who ADDED TOGETHER killed about 5% of Sin’s headcount as the cause of Fear Itself – got killed the fuck dead as soon as ANYBODY laid eyes on them. Seriously, did Captain America fistfight the entire population of Asgard to keep them from chopping off her head? In what silly-assed world is she alive, other than as an act of a god who has a product to move?
11. This:

FI buy it! BS
FI buy it! Defenders

As dental models.

FI buy it! It's coming
"On my face."

FI buy it! FOLLOW
I hate this fucking word.

Are event comics ALWAYS money-grabs by desperate companies who hope the jump in sales makes up for the rotten aftertaste that never, ever goes away? Hey Marvel, keep searching for the new Jim Shooter, okay?

Part 3 – And now, a word from the medium of comics

And from me. Me and comics, both at once somehow.

Splitlip gets analytical
"So... wanna go to my place?" "... All right." Art: Larroca Color: D'Armata Plot: Fraction

The above is my favorite scene from Invincible Iron Man #509, which I have profaned by replacing Matt Fraction’s  words with MY OWN treatise on What Is Good, which differs shamefully from that of Conan the Barbarian. End of column, thanks!

 

  1. Anybody know what’s up with this pingback shit? Well, I’m just grateful for the attention from comics fans as dedicated as the Supercuts corporation. Thanks for reading! Snip snip! (That’s haircutting humor, in case you’re a comics fan who DOESN’T get haircuts.) Oh, wow, I just realized – it’s SUPERcuts – not just mundane cuts, but ones with superpowers! WHOAH.

  2. Yeah, getting misunderstood happens to me a lot too, although when I do it it’s not sarcasm, it’s irony, because I have transcended sarcasm.

    I DO think you might be excessively unkind in the feelings and motivations you attribute to Mr. Fraction. Generally speaking, I try to reserve my harshest vitriol for the Michael Bays and Roland Emmeriches of the world, those that are unjustly hugely wealthy despite never having made ANYTHING of even remote artistic value. I also bring some of this perspective from having written many, many bad songs among my not-as-many good ones, and knowing that Comic book writers haven’t the luxury of enough time to discard their failures.

    I dunno, maybe I’m too forgiving, from having heard too much Christianity or something. Hell of a philosophy, if anybody followed it.

    For all that, thank you very much for enjoying my best efforts, and keeping quiet about you putting the NO in Casanova is literally the least I could do. Cheers!

    PS If anybody NOT named John has an opinion, you can just fuck off. I’ll mark you as spam so fast it’ll make your head spin!

    PPS That’s the kind of thing people often don’t realize I’m joking about. Come on, who would be THAT crazy?

  3. FOUR!
    My apologies. I was being sarcastic when I used the word “humble”. It’s my fault for not communicating properly. I know they say sarcasm is the lowest form of wit but I say wit is the highest form of intelligence so I sort of break even. I’m still quite ugly though.

    I am reading CASANOVA but I find it is despite the writing. It’s all a bit too whiny and self-obsessed for me; too full of ickle references to make sure we all know how cool we are and thus by extension how much cooler the author is. Say, would you like to hear me tell you how Life often isn’t all I hoped it could be? How about if I charged you 5 bucks? No. But if Moon and Ba illustrated it and I chucked in MODOK in a wig and Not-Jerry Cornelius? Yes. It also seems to be about how hard it is to write good comics despite the self perceived savage magnificence of the author’s talents. MIGHTY THOR has already demonstrated that to my satisfaction, thanks.

    I guess I just have a low tolerance for people (not just MF, for they are Legion today)who seem to mistake themselves for Percy Bysshe Shelley when what they are are people who have written a few decent comics (which is fine enough for me but not for them it seems).That’s me though; a real asshole.

    I think your column is lovely and you seem to be an enthusiastic and witty sentient being so please don’t tell anyone I said nasty things about CASANOVA. That’s verboten, sugar pipes!

  4. I did not read FEAR ITSELF but I read your column. In a very real sense I won. Is that dialogue on your last page image from an interview from Fraction? Because it’s really very humble stuff indeed. Thanks to you.

    • John, you sure DID win. Beyond the obvious awesome first name, you’ve also won my thanks for pointing out my dumb-assed mistake in neglecting to say what I had done. I have now clarified that. As far as it goes, though, I daresay that Mr. Fraction is every bit as humble as you have assumed (again, due to MY error.) If you’re not currently reading his Casanova, you REALLY should be. As it happens, in the newest issue (#2 of the series’ third arc, entitled “Avaritia” – it has big pandas on cover), Mr. Fraction self-deprecates brutally. Actually, his most recent work has a LOT of self-loathing working its way in – the above page in unedited form has a bunch, the comic I just mentioned REALLY does, and his upcoming Defenders has The Hulk say this line: “[…] I was trapped with the one person I hate more than anyone else alive– –ME.” Self-loathing is not the same as humility, of course, but it’s close enough for rock and roll. But, hell, I don’t know the guy, I could be way off, misreading, deluded, etc.

      Oh, anyhow, thanks for writing!

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