Welcome to Comicosity’s newest monthly column, “Well THAT Just Happened.” This column will cover our favorite moments from the previous months. The entries will range from the surprises that made you gasp, to bad ass moments, weird happenings, big returns, and sometimes entries that are just beautiful. We try our best, but it’s near impossible for the staff to have read every comic each month, so if you feel we missed out on something great let us know over on twitter @comicosity.
It should be obvious, but this is a SPOILER WARNING just in case.
Like, A BIG SPOILER WARNING.
Darkseid’s Heir Apparent – ACTION COMICS #967
Why: Lex Luthor is destined to be the next Darkseid? The final page shocker gave readers quite a bit to think about between issues. The first thought being “What!?” Then, if this is true, how should Superman go about handling it? The reveal also played into recent history, as Geoff Johns’ Justice League run brought Lex and Apokolips together like never before. The most impressive part might have been that the page immediately gave the villains motivations that readers can understand on top of presenting the host of questions discussed above. While Jurgens and company would provide a few answers two weeks later, this page still served as one of the most effective cliffhangers of November.
Creative Team: Dan Jurgens, Tyler Kirkham, Arif Prianto
Rock And Roll Will Never Die – ALL-STAR BATMAN #4
Why: The man speaks the truth. This was just another great moment between Duke and Bruce, and payoff to the joke about Duke’s favorite band. The same band whose music saves the crimefighting duo immediately prior. This wasn’t some crazy twist or cliffhanger, but rather a relatively quiet moment that is further proof that All Star Batman is something different than Snyder’s almost five year run on the flagship title. It goes to show that great moments come in all shapes and sizes.
Creative Team: Scott Snyder, John Romita Jr., Declan Shalvey, Jordie Bellaire, Dean White
Kang Goes After Baby Avengers – AVENGERS #1
Why: You think Kang would have thought of this sooner, but the time traveling villain finally decided to go after the Avengers when they are at their most helpless. Motivated by Vision’s decision to go after little Nathaniel Richards, a paradoxical Kang does the same to Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, and the sight of seeing Kang carry out his plan is something else. It’s going to be interesting to see the repercussions these actions will have on the timeline, as Waid and Del Mundo get into the meat of what could be the biggest Kang story in years.
Creative Team: Mark Waid, Mike Del Mundo
Selina Kyle: Mass Murderer – BATMAN #10
Why: Selina Kyle has always been an anti-hero, but depending on who you ask she might have gone full blown villain with this controversial development courtesy of Tom King and Mikel Janin. While shocking, what makes this decision so interesting is how differently readers can interpret the severity of Catwoman’s killings. Her actions might be justified to some, while other fans can never justify a character killing that many people. Whatever side of the fence you fall on won’t stop you from agreeing that this was one of the most surprising, and controversial moments of the month.
Creative Team: Tom King, Mikel Janin, June Chung
First Kiss – CHAMPIONS #2
Why: I think the page speaks for itself!
Creative Team: Mark Waid, Humberto Ramos
The Underground Revealed – THE CLONE CONSPIRACY #2
Why: Whoa, they’re back, all of them. Every single villain that has died under the watch of Peter Parker as Spider-Man has been brought back to life by The Jackyl. Can you name them all?
Creative Team: Dan Slott, Jim Cheung, John Dell, Justin Ponsor
Peter Parker Destroys The World!? – THE CLONE CONSPIRACY #2
Why: In a jaw dropping moment, the end of Clone Conspiracy #2 reveals the stakes of the event, and they are giant. The fate of the world depends on stopping The Jackyl, and… Peter Parker. Yes, Peter Parker is responsible for the potential end of the world. As further explored in Amazing Spider-Man #21 earths througout the multiverse are being destroyed when Peter Parker teams up with The Jackyl’s company, New U. Parker Industies technology plus New U’s cloning always seems to lead to a virus wiping out huge populations. Now it’s up to Kaine, and Spider-Gwen to make sure this doesn’t happen to the Prime Marvel Universe. The stakes have been established, and it’s not everyday when Spider-Man himself is a threat to the entire world.
Creative Team: Dan Slott, Jim Cheung, John Dell, Justin Ponsor
D&D Nerds – DEADLY CLASS #23
Why: I’ve been waiting for Dungeons & Dragons to make an appearance in this comic. After all, D&D a perfect fit for a comic set in the 80s, and starring a group of outcast teens. Of course, Remender and Craig were going to put a Deadly Class spin on the game. It was hilarious. Freshmen, drugs, and a disinterested Saya made for one of the month’s best scenes. Not only was it funny, but it did a great job of letting readers get to know the new characters a bit more while simultaneously giving us more insight into Saya’s mindset following the devastating end to the previous arc.
Creative Team: Rick Remender, Wes Craig, Jordan Boyd
Ideas Never Die – DEATH OF X #4
Why: We finally see what happened to Cyclops, as his post Secret Wars absence was explained through his death. We all knew it was coming, but Lemire and Soule added a fascinating wrinkle that makes the idea of Cyclops as an idea as interesting as Xavier’s Dream. Not to mention how Scott and Emma’s realtionship was shown from a whole different perspective. Scott Summers died after the Terrigen Mist hit him early on in the series. What we saw throughout the final three issues was Emma psychically projecting an image of Cyclops to everyone. Once you realize the Scott we saw for the majority of Death Of X was how Emma viewed him it adds a whole new layer that requires a second read to fully appreciate. So we are given a glimpse into Emma’s true love and admiration of Scott, and her knowledge that he is an important symbol. It was a nice twist that put a bow on Emma and Scott’s near fifteen year relationship while making sure Scott is as important in death as he was in life. Just don’t ask what he did that was so horrible that everyone despises him post death. I don’t think anyone can answer that.
Creative Team: Charles Soule, Jeff Lemire, Aaron Kuder, Javier Garron, Jay Leisten, Morry Hollowell
Casey’s Story – DOOM PATROL #3
Why: For the first two issues of Way and Derrington’s Doom Patrol, we’ve slowly gotten to know ambulance drive Casey Brinkley as weird Doom Patrol related things started happening all around her. Instead of teasing out her story the creative team comes right out with it, and it’s a doozy. She is a character created by Danny The Street for a comic book read by Danny’s inhabitants that was brought to life. And the ambulance she drives? Yeah, that’s Danny. If that isn’t one of the most Doom Patrol-y things ever I don’t know what is. Not to mention the art from Derrington and colorist Tamra Bonvillain was stunning. A homage to old time comics through the years, including a great take on an iconic Crisis On Infinite Earths cover added so much intrigue to what was essentially a huge info dump.
Creative Team: Gerard Way, Nick Derington, Tamra Bonvillain
Tony Stark’s New Status Quo – INVINCIBLE IRON MAN #1
Why: With the delays in Civil War II, the fallout of the mega event has been flat out impossible to avoid with Marvel NOW! We saw hints of what happened to Tony in Infamous Iron Man #1, but the final page of Riri Williams’ debut issue as the star of Invincible Iron Man revealed that Tony Stark may solely exist as an A.I. program, and he’s going to help his successor live up to her potential. While delays are never good, this issue may have increased interest in the final issue of Civil War II. Is Tony Stark dead?If so how does it happen? If not, why is there an A.I. version of him? Readers may be inclined to find out for themselves. This page shows that Bendis means business with Riri Williams. This is the status quo for Iron Man for the immediate future, and haters are going to have to take a backseat. Also take into account how much fun the entire issue was, how great Riri is, and all indications are that Marvel has a winner on their hands.
Creative Team: Brian Michael Bendis, Stefano Caselli, Marte Gracia
F**K The Bat/Gotham Has A New Hero – MOTHER PANIC #1
Why: Gotham City has a new hero, and she’s f**king awesome. This panel shows that this book may be set in Batman’s city, but it’s not beholden to him in any form. Young Animal has been a rousing creative success so far, and the first issue of Mother Panic is right up there with the best the line has to offer.
Creative Team: Jody Houser, Tommy Lee Edwards
The Circle of Life… & Death – THE SHERIFF OF BABYLON #12
Why: The first “season” of Tom King and Mitch Gerads’ The Sheriff Of Babylon came to a conclusion in November, thus ending one of the year’s absolute best comics. In a move that should surprise nobody in hindsight, the story comes full circle to end where it began with a dead body. The metaphor of being stuck in seemingly neverending war with no way to feel like you can make a difference manages to sum up twelve issues in one powerful final page. This series should go down as one of the premiere stories about the Iraqi War, and should find itself on countless “Best Of” lists in the coming weeks.
Creative Team: Tom King, Mitch Gerads
Roger Go BOOM – SPIDER-WOMAN #13
Why: In one of those moments that hit like a punch to the gut, Roger Gocking aka Porcupine was blown up by the Hobgoblin on the final page of Spider-Woman #13. This was a genuinely shocking turn of events. Porcupine was a d-list villain turned beloved supporting character during Dennis Hopeless’ run on Jessica Drew’s series. He was a loving father, great friend, and awesome babysitter who was just finding his footing as a superhero. This page made me legitimately angry at Dennis Hopeless, and that is a sign that he did something right while developing Roger. While his death would serve the story well, it would also leave a hole where the heart should be. This is Comics, so there’s always a chance he somehow survives, but taken at face value this column was created for moments like this.
Creative Team: Dennis Hopeless, Veronica Fish, Rachelle Rosenberg
The Super Sons Meet – SUPERMAN #10
Why: Batman and Superman have one of the most iconic relationships in all of comics, and some of that magic extends to their sons. After months of anticipation, and a team up series announced almost ten months ago, Damian and Jon finally met. The clash of personalities was every bit as fun as expected. Their relationship has shown how differently they were raised, thus bringing about a different perspective to Bruce and Clark/Lois as characters and parents. I feel this may have been the start of a relationship that will endure for years.
Creative Team: Peter J. Tomasi, Patrick Gleason, Mick Gray, John Kalisz
Hulk Smash Japan – UNCANNY AVENGERS #16
Why: Wait a minute, isn’t the Hulk dead? Why is he fighting the Unity Squad in Japan? Ore importantly how is he doing so? I know resurrections happen all the time in comics but that was fast. Oh you mean The Hand kidnapped his body, resurrected him, and now have a Hulk under there control? That explains it. A group of the strongest characters in the Marvel Universe taking on a rampaging Hulk is always. Add in ninjas, and a nearby nuclear reactor, and it’s even better. This new twist on a classic situation was one of the more entertaining superhero reads of the month, as Uncanny Avengers continues to be one of the most important but under the radar comics in the Marvel Universe.
Creative Team: Gerry Duggan, Pepe Larraz, Dav Curiel
Beta Ray Bill’s Offer – THE UNWORTHY THOR #1
Why: Odinson and Beta Ray Bill go way back, and the last page of The Unworthy Thor #1 is a great moment between the two. Bill’s willingness to give Stormbreaker to Odinson works on several levels. First, it’s a great cliffhanger. It’s one of those whoa moments that comics are so good at. Second, it was an emotional moment that shows what kind of character Bill is. Whether you’re a long time Thor reader, or this is your first story you know what Bill is about.
Creative Team: Jason Aaron, Olivier Coipel, Matt Wilson
The Lie – WONDER WOMAN #11
Why: The first odd numbered arc of Wonder Woman came to a shocking conclusion that revealed at least one of “The Lies” that the story was named after. In a monumental turn of events, it is revealed that Diana had never returned home to Themyscira before. That would mean that every single time we’ve seen her back home after she left was a lie. This is a huge moment that changes the way we look at everything regarding Diana in the past, while setting up monumental stories for the future. Who was behind this? What does it all mean?
Creative Team: Greg Rucka, Liam Sharp, Laura Martin
The Cat Betrays The Bat – BATMAN #11
Why: It became quite clear this month that Tom King has big plans for Catwoman. Two weeks after revealing the scale of Selina’s crimes, King delivered another whopper of a moment when Catwoman betrays Batman by giving him up to Bane. With a two part Catwoman story coming next month from King and his The Sheriff Of Babylon collaborator Mitch Gerads, we can expect the character to be a focal point for the foreseeable future. Who knows what can possibly be in store for her, but if it’s anything like November’s issues we are in for one hell of a ride.
Creative Team: Tom King, Mikel Janin, June Chung
America Leads The Way – ULTIMATES 2 #1
Why: When we last left The Ultimates at the end of volume one the team was torn apart by the events of Civil War II, but Galactus sent his newest Herald, Anti-Man, to gather the team with all of reality in jeopardy. So when the team is gathered it was fair to expect Galactus to emerge as the one who was going to be on that last page. Instead it’s America Chavez leading the way, and that’s awesome. America has been the character that always stole the show in whatever book she was in, but she was never really a leader. Now she has stepped up on the largest stage she’s ever been on as a character to unlock the largest cosmic mysteries that the Marvel Universe has ever seen.
Creative Team: Al Ewing, Travel Foreman, Dan Brown
Check back next month for more Well….THAT Just Happened moments!