Marvel Comics 2017
Written by Brian Michael Bendis
Illustrated by David Marquez
Coloured by Justin Ponsor
Lettered by VC’s Cory Petit
Last issue ended with the Punisher making a shocking appearance on the final pages. Already all of them are trying to come to terms with the fact that Diamondback is back and now they’ve got to contend with one of their own in the mix in ways they don’t understand yet. While Frank Castle’s appearance isn’t so surprising his actions are and it’s this reason that makes Brian the kind of writer he is.
Each month the feel of this book continues to impress me. Forget for a moment that it’s the Marvel Universe because the way that Brian is still setting up the premise for this series is unique. It has touches of what we’ve seen on Netflix and yet still encompasses the whole of the comic book universe. This amalgamation of the two realities that we know is stunning in not only its scope but in how easy it is to relate to it. I’m not a street level crime fighter or would dare put spandex or armour on my body but the emotions these character bring to this are what touch us.
So throw in Felicia Hardy, the Black Cat, into the mix and voila you’ve got something even more interesting and unexpected. Her defiance in Diamondback’s face is delightful and gives her the kind of depth of personality that showcases her willingness to straddle the fence on hero, criminal and opportunist.
Again that we’re getting characters who show up that aren’t cosmic or really highly powered lends that whole credence of street level attitude to the series. I mean if you think about it each of these heroes is kind of insanely powered up but because of their personalities they don’t have that glory seeker factor as I see it. It has grit and teeth to the writing and characters that sets it apart from contemporary Marvel books.
David’s work on the interiors matches the intensity and diversity of the writing. It’s amazing to see what real talent can do with these characters. There’s an authenticity to how they come across on the page that we don’t see enough of. None of that stylised stuff where it’s cute and artsy this is the real deal and it makes a huge impact on me as a reader. Now unfortunately this book was cut all wrong and it was not a normal comic but still what we see is utterly amazing.
This is the Marvel Universe I want to read about. It’s got a sense of purpose, depth and intrigue to it that not only makes it stand out but it also defies what people call the “mainstream”. This isn’t common and that means it doesn’t get the kind of attention or pushes that it deserves and that’s a shame because this is the epitome of excellent storytelling.