Sunday, July 21, 2013


This week, I put up two reviews on read/RANT: X-Factor #259 and Ultimate Comics Spider-Man #25. I didn't mention this before, but because I'm writing reviews of new issues for read/RANT, I'm probably not going to do so on Comics Matter anymore. At least for the foreseeable future. If I was trying to do them on both sites, it would mean spending too much time and energy on weekly reviews, and there might not be enough left over for the columns I want to continue to write here and elsewhere.

Speaking of, my first Iconographies was published on PopMatters this past Friday. It's about Mark Waid's current run on Daredevil, and his ability to tell short-term stories while simultaneously building larger, longer ones.

Something I Failed to Mention
One extremely short story from Daredevil that I didn't find room to discuss in the PopMatters piece is issue #26's back-up feature, titled "Punching Cancer." It is GREAT. Foggy goes to the children's cancer ward of the hospital where he is battling his own illness, because the kids are big superhero fans and they know that Foggy has some history in that world. Iron Man is scheduled to pay a visit later in the day, but Foggy is sent in ahead of time as a sort of warm-up act. He's nervous and humble about it, afraid he won't have any stories the kids will like or that he won't be able to help them at all. But over the course of the story, the kids instead help Foggy. They write and draw a comicbook that features the Avengers defeating a monster made out of cancer, and at first Foggy gets worried that they actually believe Iron Man will be able to cure them when he arrives. When Foggy tries to explain to the children that curing cancer is beyond even the Avengers' abilities, they look at him like he's a fool for believing in their amateur comicbook story. They know full well that they're writing fiction, and the point is that it gives them hope. It gets them excited and makes them all the more eager to battle their own diseases if they can, even for a few brief moments, revel in the idea that their favorite heroes could do the same. This point of view inspires Foggy and humbles him even further. It's awesome work from Waid, who really captures kids' voices and viewpoints. And Chris Samnee's style shift when drawing the comicbook that the children create is perfect as well, as is his design for the cancer monster. It's a superb standalone tale, a reminder of why superheroes are such important and long-lasting characters.

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