I had bought the collected black and white volume of Bone last year. I had started it, getting about four issues in, and then stopped. Partially because of other things getting in the way, but also because it just didn't grab me. However I was determined to try again this year, and this time made it all the way to the end.
Bone is essentially an interesting mash up between Carl Barks' Disney comics and the Lord of the Rings. It wears its influences on its sleeve, and while it's an interesting combination that works well, I always felt a little more like I was reading a tribute to the other stories rather than something completely fresh and new.
I wasn't ever so much wrapped up into the story as I was just going along for the ride. However it did really surprise me that I was disappointed once I reached the end. I wanted to know where they were going next and how they made out. So apparently I was more attached to the characters than I originally thought. I think this could be a decent intro to comics for someone who wasn't into superheroes, certainly for someone who loves fantasy and appreciates a good sense of humor.
The first thing I learned about this show was that they had taken the character of Agent Coulson from the Avengers films and made him the principal of the school, and that Clark Gregg was voicing him. That was enough to make me want to watch it, and within two episodes, I was hooked. This show finds ways to excite me again and again and again. I love that this Peter Parker is sort of like a put upon Ferris Bueller narrating the episodes, breaking the fourth wall, and occasionally freezing the action to show us things. I love his angel and devil spideys that he turns to when he's uncertain of what to do. I love the modern woman that Aunt May is, and that Mary Jane wants to be a reporter and is already working hard at becoming one. And I love the whole group of heroes that become Spider-man's partners and work with him. Not to mention the cameos of all the other superheroes that pop up in various episodes.
But what I find most interesting about the show is that it is really re-inventing the Spider-man mythos. It completely changes around the origins and even identities of some of Spider-man's most famous villains, but you can't be bothered by how different it is because this version still works, is still a compelling story, and over all just really fun to watch. There's a point around the middle of the first season where it seems to become more of a show about SHIELD, because we're always dealing with Nick Fury and his crew and Aunt May, Mary Jane, and Harry Osborn are no where to be found. But by the end of the season it brings it back specifically to Spider-man's mythology and it does so in a fantastic way. I probably won't see the second season until it's been added to Netflix but I'm definitely looking forward to it.
I read the first four issues of this series thanks to a deal from Comixology. On the surface, this concept is nuts. Present day Beast is dying and upset about how Cyclops has betrayed everything the X-men stand for, and after Iceman makes an offhand comment about how young Scott would give current Scott quite a talking to, decides to modify a time machine he had laying around (just go with it) and go back and get the original team of X-men. Beast is shocked to see himself blue, Jean is shocked to find out that she's dead and that she can read minds, and Scott is shocked to find out he killed Professor X and is now essentially a mutant terrorist.
The strength of the story is really all in the details. Both versions of the various characters feel accurate and real to themselves, and the story has a nice blend of humor and seriousness to it. They're also introducing a lot of young mutants who have recently popped up thanks to what happened at the end of Avengers vs X-men, and I have to say I like most of those characters as well.
I definitely want to keep reading this series, but 3.99 an issue when the issues are so short in length is really deterring me from continuing just yet. I know it costs money to make comics even beyond the physical copies, but when I'm buying them digitally I think I should be receiving them at a discount since you don't have to pay to print and ship them out. It doesn't help that comics were half that price back when I used to collect them, and so paying double seems really overblown to me. I know they tend to discount their issues eventually (though not as soon as DC does theirs) so I'll be waiting for that.