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Jun 6

All-New X-Men vol 7 – “The Utopians”

Posted on Saturday, June 6, 2015 by Paul in x-axis

The final volume of Brian Bendis’ All-New X-Men is a bizarre affair.  If you were expecting Bendis’ final volume to build to anything in particular, you’re going to be disappointed.  This grab-bag of stories feels more like somebody who’s running down the clock.  If anything, these stories – and their counterparts over in Uncanny – seem to be mainly concerned with setting things up for whatever comes after Secret Wars.

What you actually get in this volume is five rather random issues – a single issue story from issue #37, the Utopians two-parter from issues #40-41 (if that can really be called a story), and sandwiched between them, parts 4 and 5 of the thirteen-part “Black Vortex” crossover.  It’s hard to imagine that people reading the series in the trades will be thrilled about this, nor should they be.


Jun 3

Charts – 31 May 2015

Posted on Wednesday, June 3, 2015 by Paul in Music

This is the post-Eurovision chart, which in recent years has resulted in some oddities making one-week appearances.  This year, not so much.  And since the release schedules were otherwise quiet, it’s a placid week.

30.  Charles Hamilton featuring Rita Ora – “New York Raining”


May 29

Charts – 24 May 2015

Posted on Friday, May 29, 2015 by Paul in Music

A slightly busier chart than we’ve seen in recent weeks, but six new entries is still fairly tame by the standards of recent years.  Perhaps due to the streaming data slowing things down?

39.  Jessie J – “Flashlight”


May 24

Storm vol 2 – “Bring the Thunder”

Posted on Sunday, May 24, 2015 by Paul in x-axis

Storm‘s second volume, covering issues #6-11, looks to be the end of the series – it could technically be a Secret Wars hiatus, but given the sales, I wouldn’t hold your breath.  This, of course, makes it only the latest in a long line of X-Men solo titles to go from launch to scrapheap within a year, an outcome which one can only assume Marvel regards as satisfactory, as otherwise they’d have stopped doing it.  The thinking, I suppose, must be that at least they know they’ll get a few months of acceptable sales out of a book like this.

Like many of the characters who wind up in these solo series, Storm was never designed to fill this role; she was conceived as a member of an ensemble cast.  More to the point, her roles in that cast have largely been “heart of the team”, “bonding mainstay”, and “emerging (later veteran) leader”.  None of this particularly suits her to be a solo lead, since all three roles define her largely in relation to her position in the team.


May 22

Charts – 17 May 2015

Posted on Friday, May 22, 2015 by Paul in Music

Schedule?  What schedule?  Luckily, it’s another insanely quiet week, with a grand total of three new entries.  Nothing much happening in the lower half of the chart (well, “Trap Queen” climbs nine, if that excites you), so we can skip directly to…

17.  David Guetta featuring Nicki Minaj & Afrojack – “Hey Mama”


May 17

Spider-Man & The X-Men

Posted on Sunday, May 17, 2015 by Paul in x-axis

Once Marvel decided to kill off Wolverine, there were obvious knock-on effects for the other titles that he appeared in.  Of course, in most of those books, he basically stood in the background padding out the roster, so his disappearance wasn’t such a big deal.  For Wolverine and the X-Men, not so much.   That book was really about the X-Men’s students, not Wolverine – its name seems to reflect a conviction on Marvels part that the problem with books like Young X-Men was positioning them too explicitly as not proper X-Men titles – but still, he’s there in the title.

Throw in the fact that they only had six issues to pad out before Secret Wars – meaning that any sort of wider relaunch was going to be held off for a while to come – and you have a recipe for glaring filler.  And indeed, when solicitations appeared billing Spider-Man & The X-Men #1, you could pretty much hear the collective groan across the internet.


May 14

Charts – 10 May 2015

Posted on Thursday, May 14, 2015 by Paul in Music

Pretty uneventful week.  Running late anyway.  Let’s get going.

38.  Fetty Wap – “Trap Queen”


May 13

X-Men vol 5 – “Burning Earth”

Posted on Wednesday, May 13, 2015 by Paul in x-axis

If you have four issues to fill before Secret Wars, plainly you could do a lot worse than call upon the services of G Willow Wilson, who’s been delivering on Ms. Marvel.  In fact, anyone looking for a Marvel Universe title to try could do a lot worse than Ms. Marvel.

As it turns out, though, G Willow Wilson can also do a lot worse than Ms. Marvel.  “Burning Earth” is not especially bad, but it’s safe to say that this is one to be filed in the Minor Works section of her bibliography.


May 9

House to Astonish Episode 132

Posted on Saturday, May 9, 2015 by Al in Podcast

It’s a relatively quiet week for comics news, but Paul and I have got a bit of chat for you regardless, as we look at the announcement of We(l)come Back at Boom!, the CBLDF’s new “Comics Connector” programme, the cancellations and renewals of a bunch of Marvel and DC TV shows and Bill Jemas’s new Ultimate imprint (now with added zombies!). We’ve also got reviews of Secret Wars and Swords of Sorrow, and the Official Handbook of the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe treads lightly, for it treads upon your dreams. All this plus Mike Deodato the Multiple Man, a garage with stairs and the Conspiracy Theory Channel.

The podcast is here, or here on Mixcloud, or available via the player below. Let us know what you think, in the comments, on Twitter, via email or on our Facebook fan page. And don’t forget our Redbubble store, where we can help you finally look as good as you feel.


May 5

Charts – 3 May 2015

Posted on Tuesday, May 5, 2015 by Paul in Music

This week, Swedish novelty records, American high schools, and CBeebies credit sequences.

39.  Skepta – “Shutdown”