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New Superhero Comic Book & Graphic Novel Ratings & Reviews [ Marvel / DC Comics / Image / Indie ] 09-04-19 House Of X #4 & Doomsday Clock #11
House Of X #4
We don’t even get to start this comic without running into an information page. This is the only one for this comic so hurrah! This page goes into various human-on-mutant crimes with large amounts of mutants as casualties. “The Scarlet Witch” gets referred to as “the pretender” when the “no more mutants” thing she did is listed. Really? I know she and “Quicksilver” were retconned to not be mutants or “Magneto’s” children (which was a terrible a decision btw), but this seems extremely petty. Also the “Genosha” massacre (which was actually caused by a mutant “Cassandra Nova”, “Xavier’s” evil twin sister) it’s stated to have killed like ninety percent of the mutant population. I don’t know it this contradicts what was said before but this is ridiculous either way. There would be some mutants in every country in the world even if the vast majority lived in “Genosha”. Also the post “no more mutants” number of mutants gets listed as “198”. Wasn’t that reversed at the end of “Avengers VS X-men”? I could be wrong but I think having the mutant population be that low is stupid either way.
With that information page done, we begin our story with the “X-men” that are not on the “Mother Mold” mission at their base on the moon. “Xavier” has them all join minds because I guess even with “Cerebro” he can’t telepathically connect to the other “X-men” and this somehow helps. They do that and contact “Jean” and she informs them that the explosion at the end of the last issue killed “Archangel” and “Husk”. One of the original “X-men” is dead. No “last hurrah”, no “blaze of glory”, just a cheap off-panel death like he was “Admiral Akbar”.
Hell, did “Archangel” even speak in this whole series? Also “Husk” was there?! Why?! In fact, that reminds me. I forgot to say in the last issue’s review, but “why the hell isn’t “Magneto” there”?! He could probably take care of this by himself. “Wolverine” and “Nightcrawler” are also badly hurt. “Nightcrawler” can still teleport the “X-men” into the “Mother Mold” station though, but “Jean” and “Monet” stay behind to maintain a connection to “Xavier”. Shenanigans! These are two of their heaviest hitters! Just “Jean” staying behind barely makes sense, but I’d accept it, but both! What point is the connection anyway?! “Xavier” can’t do anything from there. If the “X-men” don’t come back you know they failed. The “X-men” then split up and they each individually take on a section of this space station… Doesn’t seem wise to me, but I’m no expert on military strategy or whatever though.
There’s then a bunch of stuff with “Karima” and the humans reacting to the explosion and the “X-men” infiltrating. Forces get sent to board the “X-men’s” ship and the next thing we know the “X-men” have disengaged two of the collars on “Mother Mold”. We then go to the “X-men’s” ship as it’s being boarded. “Monet” and “Jean” go to the escape pods but “Monet” tells “Jean” she will stay behind “because they have to find someone on the ship or they’ll start looking for her”. Huh? So you know they can’t see the escape pod? Or that they’ll see one person there and just stop looking? In the end the answers to both of these questions is “no”. “Jean” tries to convince “Monet” to come with her in the escape pod but she doesn’t and the escape pod with “Jean” gets launched. I don’t imagine “Monet” being this selfless but again I could be wrong. The soldiers that boarded the ship then run up on “Monet”. “Monet” then becomes “Penance” and kills a bunch of them. I guess we’re supposed to assume the soldiers eventually kill “Monet”.
Back on the base, we skip to “Cyclops” taking out the second to last collar. That only leaves “Mystique” with hers. “Mystique” gets caught by “Karima” and the female scientist who was the wife or fuck buddy of the guy who caused the explosion last issue. They send “Mystique” out into space killing her then they block off the last collar so it’s in open space where “a hard vacuum” will keep anyone away from it. The scientist lady then brings “Mother Mold” online even though “Karima” question if “Mother Mold” will be “sane”. Through the connection with “Xavier” the “X-men” know about this and “Nightcrawler” and “Wolverine” teleport out into space to stop “Mother Mold” as it comes online. There’s a nice character moment between them as “Wolverine” asks “Nightcrawler” about the afterlife and “Nightcrawler” says to look for him as he’ll be there waiting. This kinda doesn’t work because “Wolverine” just died not too long ago but let’s let it slide. “Nightcrawler” teleports them out and dies instantly then “Wolverine” destroys the last collar which sends both he and “Mother Mold” into the sun. “Wolverine” and “Nightcrawler” are dead (yeah right). This was almost cool but “Mother Mold” starts babbling about “Gods” and “children”. It supposed to be deep, but it’s stupid and terrible.
“Cyclops” then mentally tells “Jean” a half-baked plan to get them back to earth but “Karima” shoots him with nanites that block his powers and the scientist lady kills him. Then drones find “Jean” in her escape pod and kill her too. “Xavier” then responds to the death of this whole team with “no more”. Fuck this comic! This is all going to get retconned, and it will be stupid af when they do. Even the art, which has been mostly great, is showing its flaws. There’s one panel of “Storm“ where her face is particularly ugly-looking and there seems to be an effort to not show actual fighting. Kicking, punching, dodging and all other actions in a fight get avoided in this series. Only striking poses after the fact get shown. I’m becoming a broken record with this but C-.
Recommendation: One You Should Put In The Maybe Pile
Doomsday Clock #11
With all the delays this series has had it is criminal that there’s no recap page. Full disclosure, I’m biassed on this one. This and “Before Watchmen” are blasphemy to me. “Watchmen” is one of the seminal works of comic books as a medium, and I take comics seriously. This is the equivalent of making a “direct to DVD” sequel to “Citizen Kane”. With all that out of the way, let’s get to it…
After “Dr. Manhattan” beat a good portion of all of “DC’s” heroes a few issues back the world is in chaos. There’s riots and looting in all over the world. “Batman” and “Wonder Woman” are in “Kahndaq”. There Batman” fights a bunch of soldiers that are trying to launch a nuke (I think)and “Wonder Woman” fights a bunch of supervillains. “Wonder Woman” then struggles to fight “Black Adam”. There’s an attempt to make fun of how stupid Trump is, but it’s terrible and falls flat. In “Themyscira” the Amazons consider taking “Wonder Woman” away and saying “screw man’s” world. In Russia, Putin is demanding that America turn over “Superman” events in a previous issue where “Firestorm” turned a bunch of people into glass and shattered them. I don’t remember exactly how “Superman” was involved.
“Lex Luthor” then recaps the very basic parts of the story to “Lois Lane”. Which is: “Ozymandias'” plan was exposed leading to nuclear war in the “Watchmen” world so he came to the “DCU” (which absolutely ridiculous) to search for “Dr. Manhattan” in hopes that “Dr. Manhattan” would save the “Watchmen” world.
We then go a scene where “Ozymandias” is watching all the destruction and chaos going on in the “DCU” on a bunch of screens just like that part in “Watchmen”. He has some bald dude and “Saturn Girl” from “The Legion Of Superheroes”. “Saturn Girl” (a telepath) says something about not being able to read “Lex’s” mind. There is no indication this is “Saturn Girl” except if you know the character she looks kinda like her. I honestly had to “Google” her to make sure.
Back with “Lex” and “Lois”, “Lex” describes how he figured out that someone has altered the “DCU” reality. He found a picture of “Dr. Manhattan” (in his human form, Jon) with his wife. There’s then a bunch of stuff about “Lex” “tracking the energies” and “Dr. Manhattan” either purposely or accidentally leaving this same picture whenever he time traveled in the “DCU”.
Elsewhere soldiers then come to take “Superman” away by order of the president. “Superman” then flies off to talk to the president himself. We then go back to “Ozymandias” and “Saturn Girl”. “Ozymandias,” tells her that though she “came to warn “Superman” about something she doesn’ understand” she will “never see “Superman” again. She tells him he’ll never destroy “Superman” and “Ozymandias” responds that he is counting on him surviving.
Then there’s a full page of “Alfred” making pancakes with “Rorschach’s” mask nearby and the pancakes sort of look like the mask as he cooks them. This is either a stupid waste of a page or I’ll just cop to this being over my head. We then see a dream “Rorschach 2” has about “Rorschach 1” killing his dad. “Rorschach 2” then wakes up and “Alfred” comes (with the pancakes he made). “Alfred” read “Rorschach 1’s” journal and he along with “Batman” now believe “Rorschach 2”. “Alfred” wants him to help them find “Ozymandias” and prove “Superman’s” innocence” and says they need “Rorschach”. This and being pissed about being in jail makes “”Rorschach 2” freak out and run off.
“Ozymandias” then reveals to “Saturn Girl” that he’s been pulling the strings to everything. It’s so absurd and convoluted that I can’t and won’t go into it. Suffice to say, his plan would require power and resources he couldn’t possibly have on his world nonetheless in another universe along with people being unbelievably predictable. Somehow all this is supposed to save both his world and the “DCU” by bringing the “DCU” to its lowest point. He then makes “Saturn Girl” realize she isn’t part of this timeline and she disappears. Wtf?! Then we learn the bald guy was “Alan Scott” the original “Green Lantern”. While he’s saying all this, we learn that the Amazons did take “Wonder Woman” away somehow and “Black Adam” and a bunch of villains are at the White House to start some kind of revolution. “Superman” then comes to confront them.
This comic ends as “Superman” confronts “Dr. Manhattan”. Tf?! Did he beat “Black Adam” and all those other guys? Is this later? Wtf?! There’s then supplemental stuff from “Lex Corp” about where each of eleven different pictures of “Jon and his wife” were found. There’s then a twelfth picture that is reminiscent of a famous “Flash” cover where the original “Flash”, “Jay Garrick” and “Barry Allen” are both running to save a person. This picture leads “Lex” to believe that “Jon” has altered reality and that he has had past lives with “Superman” and that the two of them are trapped in an endless loop where neither of them can win. “Lex” now want to find “Jon” and close the loop.
This felt like a jumbled mess. I get the idea that this is supposed to “feel like the chaos” going on in the comic but this is too much. This whole series is a non-starter for me because the idea that “Ozymandias” can just take “NiteOwl’s” ship, add some stuff, and jump to other universes is implausible. The “Watchmen” world doesn’t have tech like that. It took everything “Ozymandias” had to simply block “Dr. Manhattan’s” vision of the future for a short time. “Gary Franks” art is good as always though. C. I don’t recommend it but you’re probably going to get in anyway so…
Recommendation: One You Should Put In The Maybe Pile