I really should check the shipping lists rather than just working through my pile of comics.
I had totally forgotten that S.W.O.R.D. #1 was coming out last week, and so it was a pleasant surprise when I found it. When I first saw the advert for it, I thought ‘Hmm, that sounds ok’, not really expecting a lot. The art seemed alright, nothing special, but Kieron Gillen’s ‘words’ as attributed in the credits touched parts of my inner geek that other comics haven’t reached. (Words? WORDS? What happened to plot? Script? Writer? I know Marvel can be patronising, but still…….!)
The issue starts with our beloved Henry Peter Gyrich being his usual paranoid, xenophobic manipulative self, trying to usurp Agent Brand simply because she is half alien. I’m sure that the fact she is sleeping with a mutant doesn’t help either. You know, I do remember the odd Avengers story where Gyrich had a good side, his own moral code of right or wrong, however twisted he may be. I can’t see him viewing Norman Osbourne as anything other than another freak, just like the Avengers or the X-Men.
However, Gyrich’s usual antics are not what arose my geek, but the appearance of a character who has been away for far too long. Preeeeeeeeeee-senting…
Now Death’s Head I has a rather convoluted history. I missed his first appearances in Strip, but rather first encountered him in the Transformers UK comic (which is a different timeline to Marvels US published Transformers, long story but has a little to do with Spider-Man among other folk). Then, as here, he appears in gigantic form, pursuing Galvatron, the future (erm, that would be past now, surely? 2006?) form of Megatron.
Subsequent to this, he was shrunk to human size by the Doctor. Yes, that Doctor, in the pages of Doctor Who Magazine. But in this issue, I don’t think that has happened yet, if at all. However in the pages of the Official Handbooks, Marvel do now seem to recognise published history for characters they no longer have the license for, such as Rom, Micronauts and more importantly here, Transformers and Doctor Who, both now living at IDW.
On that note, how is Bug still in Marvel and a member of the Guardians of The Galaxy? Can anyone tell me? What on Earth went on with the licensing there?
Death’s Head irreverent nature make him an extremely annoying character in his own strip, but when juxtaposed with other characters I think he is a lot of fun, and a welcome return to the Marvel Universe. IMHO, he performs the role so much better than Deadpool does. I wonder if he came through The Fault? The return of Monarch Starstalker shows that The Fault can now help throw strict continuity to the wind, and return to fun continuity. Lords knows, as good as Dark Reign is, it was well named, and Marvel needs a bit of fun. And may Stan Lee wash my mouth out, I no longer mean X-Babies.
Speaking of The Fault, this week we see Realm Of Kings #1, and Realm Of Kings:Inhumans #1. Let’s see what other rabbits can be pulled out of the hat.