A Look Back at Backlash #2 (1994)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Welcome back superhero enthusiasts, 1990s arts and culture enthusiasts, Image Comics fans and comic book collectors! Today we go back to the wild 1990s and explore a part of the WildStorm universe through a tale of Backlash!  

Backlash #1 was indeed a fun and engaging read with the creative direction spearheaded by Brett Booth who was a co-writer and the illustrator. It built-up Backlash as a major WildStorm figure while also emphasized the concepts from his previous appearances in the Kindred limited series which paired him with Grifter. As seen in issue #1, he freed Taboo and it was clear that she was designed to be a key part of the Backlash series.

With those details laid down, here is a look back at Backlash #2, published in 1994 by Image Comics with a story written by Sean Ruffner, Jeff Mariotte and Booth. Booth was the artist.

The cover.

Early story

The story begins with a meeting inside the high-tech headquarters of the W.O.R. (Wildlife Organized Research), a front covering the outpost for the criminal organization called the Cabal. During the meeting, the fall of Helspont was discussed and talk about running the Cabal intensified. Just as it was made clear that a new beginning and new leadership were needed to manage the Cabal, a warlord called S’ryn arrives with the deadly Pike behind him. After briefly overwhelming opposition from a Coda warrior and H’tarh, S’ryn performs a ritual and gets the pledge of loyalty from those who recognized him as the new leader of the Cabal. The stage is set for further escalation between the Daemonites and the Kherubim.

In the city of Chicago, Backlash and Taboo spend time together in an apartment that looks worn down and not so clean. It turns out, both of them are fugitives and they are waiting for Cyberjack to complete his surveillance of the security of a hotel where a celebrity ball is set to happen…

Quality

In the middle of a special event, Backlash and Taboo spring into action as WildCATS’ Jacob Marlowe gets into trouble.

Compared to what happened in issue #1, this story moved at a moderate pace in relation to the new mission which involved espionage and suspense. It’s not the action showcase the previous issue was but rather more moderated as the creators took a new approach to not only tell a new story but also do its own build-up of the Kherubim-Daemonite war and other WildStorm universe concepts. The story is well-written and while there is a lot of expository dialogue and creative explanations implemented, it never felt forced. Along the way, the creative team started implementing crossover elements by having Jacob Marlowe of WildC.A.T.S.: Covert Action Teams as well as established Image Comics figure Savage Dragon (from Erik Larsen) included in the story and even getting involved with the operations that took place.

As for Backlash himself, you will see a little less of him in this tale (compared to issue #1) which is not surprising as the creative team focused more on the plot and had to handle the crossover elements. Backlash did not become a supporting character here and you will see some superhero spectacle from him, particularly in his rematch with a certain villain.

Conclusion

S’ryn gets challenged before he becomes the new leader of the forces of evil.

Backlash #2 (1994) is a fun ride that cleverly combined crossover elements with its own approach on building up the WildStorm concepts, notably the war between the Kherubim and Daemonites. It also shows the consequences of what happened in the 4th issue of the WildC.A.T.S. mini-series particularly within the side of the opposition. As such, this comic book is pretty much a sequel to the said mini-series. At this stage, there was clearly something prepared to entertain readers while maintaining focus on establishing Backlash (note: Marc Slayton was one of the Team 7 members) as a major WildStorm character.

Overall, Backlash #2 (1994) is recommended.

+++++

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below, share this article to others and also please consider making a donation to support my publishing. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco

Christian Music Appreciation: Lord Your Goodness

Welcome back, my readers and fellow Christians! In this newest edition of my Christian Music Appreciation (CMA) series, we will focus on Lord Your Goodness, an original worship song of Hillsong Worship with lyrics written by Reuben Morgan.

If you want to discover and learn more about Hillsong Worship, I encourage you to click here (Facebook page), here (Instagram) and here (YouTube). 

Before getting into the analysis of the Biblical relevance of Lord Your Goodness, posted below for your reference are the lyrics composed by Reuben Morgan.

I will come to You with an open heart

And bring a sacrifice of praise

I have seen Your power in the holy place

And I have known Your mighty ways

I will remember Your mercy

And Lord Your faithfulness

Lord Your goodness and Your love will follow me

All the days of my life

I’m surrounded with the favour of the Lord

Always and forever

To begin with, let’s take a close look at the first section of the lyrics above: I will come to You with an open heart, And bring a sacrifice of praise, I have seen Your power in the holy place.

The above lines emphasize that we the faithful children must always come to Him with open hearts and that means being completely transparent and honest with Him as there is simply no hiding of darkness nor sin deep within. To be born again in Christ means having His Spirit – the Holy Spirit – in the heart and always prioritizing the Lord with complete honor and obedience towards Him. Remember when you were still living your old sinful life? You not only had a closed heart hardened by sin, you also had a heart that did not have the Holy Spirit which clearly means it was not a heart of worship. For the lost and unsaved souls thinking about coming to God, always open your heart first before coming to His Jesus for repentance and getting born again. If you are an unsaved or lost soul who still has unholy elements in your heart (note: homosexuality, political correctness, wokeness, idolatry, religion, Marxism, socialism, Communism, atheism, agnosticism, transgender obsession, terrorism, fascism and others), you must get rid of them all and you must reject Satan before you come to the Lord for salvation. Be ready to repent to Him. Once you have a fully opened, worship-oriented heart, praise is inevitable for everyone to do to realize the Lord’s power and holiness. Learn from the scriptures below…

But the moment one turns to the Lord with an open heart, the veil is lifted and they see. Now, the “Lord” I’m referring to is the Holy Spirit, and wherever he is Lord, there is freedom. We can all draw close to him with the veil removed from our faces. And with no veil we all become like mirrors who brightly reflect the glory of the Lord Jesus. We are being transfigured into his very image as we move from one brighter level of glory to another. And this glorious transfiguration comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.

2 Corinthians 3:16-18 (TPT)

And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my rules.

Ezekiel 36:26-27 (ESV)

Trust God from the bottom of your heart; don’t try to figure out everything on your own. Listen for God’s voice in everything you do, everywhere you go; he’s the one who will keep you on track.

Proverbs 3:5-6 (MSG)

What joy overwhelms everyone who keeps the ways of God, those who seek him as their heart’s passion!

Psalms 119:2 (TPT)

Through Him, therefore, let us constantly and at all times offer up to God a sacrifice of praise, which is the fruit of lips that thankfully acknowledge and confess and glorify His name.

Hebrews 13:15 (AMPC)

Yours, O Lord, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the victory and the majesty, for all that is in the heavens and the earth is Yours; Yours is the kingdom, O Lord, and Yours it is to be exalted as Head over all.

Both riches and honor come from You, and You reign over all. In Your hands are power and might; in Your hands it is to make great and to give strength to all.

Now therefore, our God, we thank You and praise Your glorious name and those attributes which that name denotes.

1 Chronicles 29:11-13 (AMPC)

Next, take a close look at the following lines of lyrics: I will remember Your mercy, And Lord Your faithfulness.

The mercy and faithfulness of the Lord are undeniably true and real. While there are still lots of religious people who believe the falsehood that the Lord is always very strict and rarely grants mercy, His mercy is actually great and He is compassionate as well. The Lord is faithful (lasting loyalty and trustworthiness in relationships) and His love for His faithful children is connected with faithfulness, mercy and compassion. Lord Jesus proved it all to be true and real. Learn from the holy scriptures below…

And the Lord passed before him and proclaimed, “The Lord, the Lord God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abounding in goodness and truth, keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, by no means clearing the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children and the children’s children to the third and the fourth generation.”

Exodus 34:6-7 (NKJV)

It is because of the Lord’s mercy and loving-kindness that we are not consumed, because His [tender] compassions fail not.

They are new every morning; great and abundant is Your stability and faithfulness.

Lamentations 3:22-23 (AMPC)

The Rock, his work is perfect,

    for all his ways are justice.

A God of faithfulness and without iniquity,

    just and upright is he.

Deuteronomy 32:4 (ESV)

For God so greatly loved and dearly prized the world that He [even] gave up His only begotten (unique) Son, so that whoever believes in (trusts in, clings to, relies on) Him shall not perish (come to destruction, be lost) but have eternal (everlasting) life.

John 3:16 (AMPC)

By the time Jesus came ashore, a massive crowd was waiting. At the sight of them, his heart was filled with compassion, because they seemed like wandering sheep who had no shepherd. So he taught them many wonderful things.

Mark 6:34 (TPT)

There failed no part of any good thing which the Lord had promised to the house of Israel; all came to pass.

Joshua 21:45 (AMPC)

This is why he had to be a man and take hold of our humanity in every way. He made us his brothers and sisters and became our merciful and faithful King-Priest before God; as the One who removed our sins to make us one with him. He suffered and endured every test and temptation, so that he can help us every time we pass through the ordeals of life.

Hebrews 2:17-18 (TPT)

For God’s Word is something to sing about! He is true to his promises, his word can be trusted, and everything he does is reliable and right.

Psalms 33:4 (TPT)

The Lord is gracious and full of compassion, slow to anger and abounding in mercy and loving-kindness.

The Lord is good to all, and His tender mercies are over all His works [the entirety of things created].

Psalm 145:8-9 (AMPC)

Celebrate with praises the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has shown us his extravagant mercy. For his fountain of mercy has given us a new life—we are reborn to experience a living, energetic hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.

1 Peter 1:3 (TPT)

Next, take a close look at the following lines of lyrics:Lord Your goodness and Your love will follow me, All the days of my life, I’m surrounded with the favour of the Lord, Always and forever.

As the faithful children of God, we have His favor, His love, His goodness and much more. To be faithful to Him and living by His Word (and spreading it) are our responsibilities as Christians. Our faith in Him must always be unbreakable and unwavering. We reject idols and reject unholiness because we are meant to be with the Lord and follow His ways in accordance to His Word. Never forget our union with Lord Jesus, the Heavenly Father and the Holy Spirit. Learn from the holy scriptures below…

Oh, how great is Your goodness, which You have laid up for those who fear, revere, and worship You, goodness which You have wrought for those who trust and take refuge in You before the sons of men!

In the secret place of Your presence You hide them from the plots of men; You keep them secretly in Your pavilion from the strife of tongues.

Psalm 31:19-20 (AMPC)

For we are God’s [own] handiwork (His workmanship), recreated in Christ Jesus, [born anew] that we may do those good works which God predestined (planned beforehand) for us [taking paths which He prepared ahead of time], that we should walk in them [living the good life which He prearranged and made ready for us to live].

Ephesians 2:10 (AMPC)

Oh, thank God—he’s so good!

    His love never runs out.

All of you set free by God, tell the world!

    Tell how he freed you from oppression,

Then rounded you up from all over the place,

    from the four winds, from the seven seas.

Psalm 107:1-3 (MSG)

Give thanks to God—he is good

    and his love never quits.

Say, “Save us, Savior God,

    round us up and get us out of these godless places,

So we can give thanks to your holy Name,

    and bask in your life of praise.”

Blessed be God, the God of Israel,

    from everlasting to everlasting.

Then everybody said, “Yes! Amen!” and “Praise God!”

1 Chronicles 16:34-36 (MSG)

And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.

Romans 12:2 (NKJV)

God, everyone sees your goodness, for your tender love is blended into everything you do.

Psalms 145:9 (TPT)

Jesus explained, “I am the Way, I am the Truth, and I am the Life. No one comes next to the Father except through union with me. To know me is to know my Father too.”

John 14:6 (TPT)

No one is holy like the Lord,

For there is none besides You,

Nor is there any rock like our God.

1 Samuel 2:2 (NKJV)

Jesus commented, “Even more blessed are those who hear God’s Word and guard it with their lives!”

Luke 11:28 (MSG)

It is confirmed and obvious that Lord Your Goodness is a very holy worship song as the Lord anointed Reuben Morgan on writing the lyrics. The same can be said about others at Hillsong Worship who worked behind the scenes on making Lord Your Goodness. The evidence of holiness is spread all over the lyrics and brought to life even more musically.

As it is holy and captures the biblical messages about the goodness of our Lord, I strongly recommend the use of Lord Your Goodness for your local church’s Sunday worship service as well as in praise-and-worship events that involve the church’s music team. Lord Your Goodness is a lively reminder of not only of His goodness, but also of the love, blessings, care, attention and compassion towards each and every faithful child of His with established personal relationships with Him.

In conclusion, posted below is the official Hillsong Worship YouTube video of Lord Your Goodness for your faith and viewing pleasure. While watching it and listening to the music, remember to be faithful and thankful to the Lord. Always remember to realize the good life from the Lord, love on knowing you are loved by Him, practice Christian habits (click here and here for reference), have private time with God and pray in tongues to Him, get yourself planted in a local church (allow the Holy Spirit to guide you) and remember the truth that He rewards the faithful abundantly and He established plans for you before you were even created! Continue to live with God’s Word, seek God through His son Jesus, follow the light of Jesus, and keep on being the fearless and aggressive church of Lord Jesus!

+++++

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. Sharing this Christian piece means spreading the good news of the Lord to others. It can help you save the unsaved and the lost souls out there. Also please consider making a donation to support my publishing of faith articles and CMAs.

If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/and on Instagram athttps://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco/

A Look Back at What If #40 (1992)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Welcome back superhero enthusiasts, 1990s arts and culture enthusiasts, Marvel Comics fans and comic book collectors! Today we go back to the year 1992 and explore a part of Marvel Comics’ universe through the reimagined tales emphasized in the What If monthly series.

For this particular retro comic book review, we look at a What If tale that is related with the X-Men, specifically through one of their major characters – Storm. For the newcomers reading, Storm is the black X-Men member whose mutation allows her to manipulate the weather. As seen in X-Men comic books decades ago, Storm was portrayed to be tough and brave, and she became a highly valuable learner under Professor X (Charles Xavier). In the 1990s, Storm rose in prominence among the X-Men, she became leader of their Gold Team. Storm was portrayed in the live-action movies by Halle Berry and Alexandra Shipp. It’s just too bad Storm’s role in X-Men: Days of Future Past (note: for me, it is the best X-Men live-action movie ever) was minimal.

With those details laid down, here is a look back at What If #40, published in 1992 by Marvel Comics with a story written by Ann Nocenti and drawn by Steve Carr and Deryl Skeleton.

The cover.

Early story

The story begins with the Watcher recalling scenes from the life of Ororo who was born to a mother (a tribal princess in Kenya) and a photojournalist father. After moving from America to Egypt, Ororo loses her mother and became an orphan. Along the way, she experienced severe claustrophobia as a result of being buried under tons of rock. Having survived, she became a thief in Cairo and eventually traveled into Africa by chance. There she discovered her true nature as a walking idol. She eventually meets Charles Xavier.

The Watcher then explores another thread of scenarios of Ororo’s life in which she never stepped on the eventual boat, never sailed for Africa and never met the tribe that worshipped her.

In Cairo, Ororo is a very young thief who made herself look like a male. She uses deceptive tactics on a foreigner who walked by. A short time later, Ororo goes to New York City identified as Jack serving an old man who teaches her to work hard, to gain respect from his friends and immerse herself in a world of grifters and hobos. Ororo lives and works as a thief in the city targeting people who have more than enough…

Quality

A look at Storm as the super-powered thief. It’s also a portrayal of her as a super villain on the rise.

Among the many What If tales related to the X-Men that I have read so far, this is one of the most well-written and most intriguing alternate universe stories I have read thanks to Ann Nocenti. This was also released at a time when Storm was already established as a brave X-Men team leader and a potential successor to Professor X. In this comic book, there is this strong twist to the established legacy of Storm as a youth and the exploration of what would happen had she remained a thief (a super-powered thief no less) and never followed Charles Xavier turned out to be very compelling in my experience. For one thing, Storm definitely would have given police officers – who clearly are inferior to the powered heroes and villains – a hard time and even help the crime wave overwhelm society’s defenders. It is also quite striking to see Storm to follow and serve a principled yet theft-oriented superior. In fact, this story shows the popular X-Men team leader as a super villain on the rise.

More on storm, Ann Nocenti’s script literally dissected notable traits of Storm’s personality that are connected to the established comic book legacy which creatively created something new that fits in well in this alternate universe story. Through Storm, the story also sheds light on how thieves view life believing that theft is a necessity and their so-called principles justify it. No matter what the thieves and criminals in general think, nothing justifies theft and crime at all and those who commit such acts must be punished accordingly Without spoiling the details, I can say that there are some grey areas within Storm that were nicely emphasized.

Conclusion

Storm as a male-looking teenager behind bars with the ladies who got apprehended. Scenes like this should remind you NOT to vote for political candidates who are soft and sympathetic towards crime.

What If #40 (1990) is indeed a great alternate universe portrayal of one of the X-Men’s most prominent characters of the time. The story is very well structured and the characterization of Storm was clearly organized by Ann Nocenti to be powerful and intriguing to read. This comic book also has a twist that you must see for yourselves as well as an ending that will either surprise or satisfy you depending on what you anticipated. Ultimately, this comic book should remind you all to avoid committing crime and the truth is that poverty is a curse and it NEVER justifies theft. Always remember that the Lord is watching you. For enlightenment, read Exodus 22:1-4, Exodus 22:10-15, Leviticus 6:2-7 and 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 in the Holy Bible.

Overall, What If #40 (1990) is highly recommended!

+++++

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below, share this article to others and also please consider making a donation to support my publishing. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco

A Look Back at Venom: Lethal Protector #4 (1993)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Welcome back superhero enthusiasts, 1990s arts and culture enthusiasts, Marvel Comics fans and comic book collectors! Today we go back to the year 1993 and explore a part of Marvel Comics’ universe through the first-ever limited comic book series featuring one of Marvel’s most iconic supervillains – Venom.

In my previous retro review, the core concept of the Lethal Protector limited series started to really take shape as issue #3’s plot got more intriguing and interesting to read while emphasizing other powerful forces Venom himself simply could not easily overwhelm. It is also the issue in which Venom’s past act of a certain murder comes to haunt him. The problem I had with that comic book was the creative team’s dramatization of Eddie Brock’s personal history which essentially ruined whatever mystery Venom had. Eventually, the comic book ended with Venom getting into trouble again.

With those details laid down, here is a look back at Venom: Lethal Protector #4 published in 1993 by Marvel Comics with a story written by David Michelinie and drawn by Ron Lim.  

The cover.

Early story

The story begins inside a high-tech facility in the Mojave Desert. Inside, Venom is in captivity floating off the floor with high-tech machines keeping him prisoner. He is a captive of the Life Foundation and they have successfully extracted another spawn from Venom’s symbiote which causes tremendous pain on the part of Eddie Brock. It turns out, a total of five “seeds” have been extracted and the organization has big plans with them.

Over at Sta. Cruz in California, Spider-Man spends some of his precious time to stop some local criminals from causing anymore danger to the people. During his telephone talk with Mary Jane, he admits that has not been able to track Venom down but he has a new lead about weird creatures that have been spotted locally. A short time later, Spider-Man arrives at a shopping mall where tremendous damage of property have happened. As soon as he catches a lady and prevents her from hitting the pavement, he is shocked to see a long-haired woman wearing a living alien costume with features that are so similar to that of Venom. The symbiote-wearing woman (Scream) tells Spider-Man directly that breaking him in half will make the “little exercise” a complete success…

Quality

Spider-Man takes on the “female Venom”

To start with what is very obvious and clear, this story has Spider-Man overshadowing Venom in terms of literary presence as the plot has the titular character limited to captivity under the tight grasp of the Life Foundation. Given Spider-Man’s previous appearances in this limited series serving as a convenient tool for exposition, you will easily feel the Amazing Spider-Man monthly series’ vibes taking over this comic book’s narrative as Marvel’s icon became the protagonist of the story complete with spectacle and problem solving that drive the plot forward. This is not surprising as David Michelinie was already the lead writer of the Amazing Spider-Man monthly series and it only makes sense to shift the focus on the famous webslinger since his deadliest enemy (who has this very distorted belief about protecting the innocent and keep on murdering people he finds antagonistic) could not contribute much to the story while in captivity.

As reflected in the nice cover of this comic book, it is also Spider-Man who faces off with the “female Venom” herself Scream which leads to yet another Spidey-versus-symbiote villain battle but with a catch – Scream is simply inexperienced in battle and does not have any real strategy to deal with New York’s webslinger. That battle noticeably does not last very long and the short amount of superhero spectacle here paved the way for the creative team to make Spider-Man sneak into enemy territory and closer to Venom.

In terms of visual quality, I can say that things went way down as Ron Lim replaced Mark Bagley here. Lim’s art style of drawing people has this generic aesthetic on the characters’ faces – Mary Jane and Eddie Brock are barely recognizable. While Lim’s artistic take on Venom is clearly a big letdown compared to Bagley’s Venom (note: always looking menacing and unique), he ironically did a decent job visualizing Scream. Lim’s most dynamic shots of superhero action lacked impact. Regardless, Lim’s art is not so appealing compared to Bagley’s.

Conclusion

The most notable concept in this comic book.

Considering all the details I mentioned above, Venom: Lethal Protector #4 (1993) is technically an Amazing Spider-Man comic book that just so happens to have Venom much less significant in this particular part of his own limited series. There really was not much room for the creative team use as far as Venom is concerned. Of course, this is all part of a build-up heading into the final two parts of this limited series and it is obvious that Venom would become prominent again. This comic book’s most notable feature was its concept about the Life Foundation extracting seeds from Venom’s living costume but considering what happened, there was not much room to really build-up on the idea that more symbiote-wearing people will emerge. Scream was essentially a warm-up. Ultimately, Spider-Man fans will have a lot to enjoy here while Venom fans will not have much to enjoy.

Overall, Venom: Lethal Protector #4 (1993) is serviceable.

+++++

Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below, share this article to others and also please consider making a donation to support my publishing. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco

A Look Back at What If #61 (1994)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Welcome back superhero enthusiasts, 1990s arts and culture enthusiasts, Marvel Comics fans and comic book collectors! Today we go back to the wild 1990s and examine an alternate universe portrayal of one of Spider-Man’s many events told through the What If monthly series!

If you are looking for a portrayal of Spider-Man going over the edge and into the extremes emotionally, you are about to experience something in this retro review of mine. Some time ago, I reviewed a What If comic book about Spider-Man becoming a murderer which was compelling but ended on a whimper.

With those details laid down, here is a look back at What If #61 published in 1994 by Marvel Comics with a story written by Kurt Busiek and drawn by Kirk Jarvinen, Andrew Wildman, Derek Yaniger and Jim Amash.

The cover.

Early story

The story begins with Richard and Mary Parker (Peter Parker’s parents) arriving in the presence of Aunt May who happens to be visited by their son Peter (Spider-Man). Having learned something from a while back, Aunt May tells Richard and Mary that they are not genuine persons. Suddenly, Peter Parker’s spider sense intensifies and in an attempt to defuse the situation, he leads his aunt to walk out of the house with him. Richard and Mary watch them walk away.

It turns out, Richard and Mary are impostors and they have been working all the time for a secretive boss. Richard calls his employer under an emergency and reports that they have completed phase one of their assignment, that Aunt May knows the truth about them and is about to inform Spider-Man. Richard is then told that under no circumstances is the plan to be jeopardized and anyone who suspects must die. He is also told to flush Mary’s programming and reset her as she showed signs of acting odd to the situation.

A short time later, Richard and Mary – now in morphed forms with vastly different bodies and half their heads resembling their human selves – suddenly break into an apartment surprising Peter, his wife Mary Jane and Aunt May. Violent action by one of them accidentally ripped open Peter’s shirt, revealing his Spider-Man suit to Aunt May. Just as Peter’s aunt figures out the secret, he tells Mary Jane to grab her and get out.

However, the sight of the morphed Mary Parker shocked Aunt May and Mary Jane so much, they failed to move. Mary Parker then morphs her two hands into large, makeshift hammers, and swiftly killed Aunt May and Mary Jane. Peter is instantly shocked by their sudden deaths but deep inside, rage begins to burn…

Quality

Spider-Man already over the edge and reacting violently to the abusive Daily Bugle.

I can start by confirming that Kurt Busiek’s writing is very strong and his alternate take on the events of Amazing Spider-Man #388 (1994) is indeed very solidly composed. In one way, I find the emotional stakes for Spider-Man has been raised a lot higher than what was portrayed in the 400th issue of Amazing Spider-Man (the canon story). The concept of losing his beloved family members to enemies who were impostors that looked like his long lost parents is indeed disturbing as well as highly emotionally charged. In relation to this, Busiek and the illustrators brought to life a Spider-Man who really went over the edge by taking matters into his own hands as the loss of beloved ones led to the blurring of the boundary between good and evil. Even the boundary between innocence and guilt gets blurred which adds more depth to the emotions of the story. As I read the story, there were moments when I felt that Spider-Man became as bad as the evil ones even though he is clearly the victim and his family was targeted.

Apart from showing Spider-Man getting outraged and pushed to the limits, Busiek inserted elements about how people perceive incidents without knowing all the facts and how easily they get manipulated by a news outlet – the Daily Bugle where Peter Parker worked as a freelance photographer – that does not care about ethical journalism nor the pursuit of the truth. In this age of widespread fake news and liberal news media outlets in America doing propaganda for American Communists (read: Democrats, abortionists, LGBTQ, Black Lives Matter, Antifa, the terrorists, the climate change extremists and the socialist hordes), this particular aspect of the story makes this comic book strongly relevant to read today.

The story also sheds light on Spider-Man’s connections with other Marvel superheroes who happen to be in New York City. You will see Captain America and Johnny Storm express their concern about Spider-Man’s state of mind as they themselves still tried to figure out what really happened. In short, the superheroes here showed restraint even as Spider-Man goes to the extreme being a victim as well as a fugitive.

If there are any weak points in this comic book, it would be the art which has this cartoon-like aesthetic. Considering the serious subject matter, the visuals are quite contradicting as they make this look like it was made for much younger readers.

Conclusion

Spider-Man takes on the impostors who looked like his parents.

As far as storytelling and characterization goes, What If #61 (1994) succeeded a lot on portraying the iconic Spider-Man as the superhero who went over the limits of his emotions and his reasoning which is the result of the tragic deaths of two beloved family members caused by individuals who pretended to be his parents. This is a very solid story which also has a powerful ending. Where What If #72 failed, this comic book succeeded and even exceeded it with Spider-Man truly becoming unheroic. I should state that this comic book should convince readers to go to the Amazing Spider-Man series and follow the Lifetheft storyline in issues #386 to #388 (which were released months before this comic book). Kurt Busiek’s script is indeed great and it is easily the driving force of the comic book, more than enough to overcome the cartoon-like visuals.

Overall, What If #61 (1994) is highly recommended.

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below, share this article to others and also please consider making a donation to support my publishing. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco

A Look Back at Spider-Man 2099 #11 (1993)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Welcome back superhero enthusiasts, 1990s arts and culture enthusiasts, Marvel Comics fans and comic book collectors! Today we go back to the will 1990s and explore the far future of 2099 within the Marvel Comics shared universe through one of the tales of Spider-Man 2099.

Shortly after his return from the old lower city of New York, Miguel O’Hara’s personal life got more complicated and intense. Aside from that, his rift with his mother remains unresolved. Miguel then begins to assess his personal life as well as his secret life as the swinging hero Spider-Man.

With those details laid down, here is a look back at Spider-Man 2099 #11, published in 1993 by Marvel Comics with a story written by Peter David and drawn by Rick Leonardi.

The cover.

Early story

The story begins when armed security personnel apprehend a man for defacing Alchemax property with spray paint. As the suspect gets threatened with physical violence, Spider-Man suddenly appears and surprises the one holding the suspect down. It turns out, Spider-Man secretly knocked out one of the security personnel quietly.

The active security officer lets the suspect go and he activates his armor which turns out to be the Situation Emergency Gear (SIEGE for short) which is the result of a project between Alchemax and Stark-Fujikawa. The armored man then begins to strike at Spider-Man in response for the sudden intervention. Very notably, the security officer wearing SIEGE tells Spider-Man he apologizes for taking action and will do everything he could to harm him as little as possible…

Quality

The futuristic Spider-Man has serious opposition here.

Considering what happened in issue #10, this comic book ramped up the spectacle showing more of Spider-Man 2099 in action-packed conflict with one of the local authorities who happened to be armed with a powered suit of armor. The figure of opposition here is almost like a super villain but one who is not evil but rather doing what he was hired to do. Apart from being an action-filled conflict with strong sci-fi elements, this conflict symbolizes Miguel O’Hara’s willingness to put himself at risk by taking on the authorities as a deliberate violator of local law even though he himself works with Alchemax. This also shows Miguel’s recklessness as he struggled with the lack of a clear direction with his second life as Spider-Man. At this stage, Miguel’s inner rebellion against his corporation is very clear and this alone will put readers on the edge as they figure out what the deeply troubled hero plans to do next.

This comic book is not an all-out action fest. There was still enough room for Peter David to craft more of Miguel’s affairs at Alchemax, only this time he gets to meet someone who happened to be connected with one particular member of X-Men 2099 (note: this is related to the eventual 2099 crossover storyline). This only adds more intrigue into Miguel’s troubled personal life which is something you must read and find out here.

Conclusion

This comic book will make you wonder if Spider-Man 2099 himself is slowly becoming evil by getting into direct conflict with the law.

Spider-Man 2099 #11 (1993) is a fine example of plot really thickening while also making life not only harder but more intense on the part of Miguel O’Hara. At the same time, this comic book built up something new for Spider-Man to eventually face off with. Peter David’s writing and direction of the character are very engaging to follow from start to finish.

Overall, Spider-Man 2099 #11 (1993) is recommended.

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below, share this article to others and also please consider making a donation to support my publishing. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco

Xbox-Bethesda Developer_Direct Livestream set for January 25, 2023, Starfield to have standalone showcase soon

For all the gamers and the loyal fans of Xbox and Bethesda reading this, you better get ready for lots of new stuff and announcements regarding upcoming games as the Developer_Direct livestream will take place on January 25, 2023 (at 12pm PT/3pm ET), Team Xbox announced recently. For those who are anticipating Starfield’s release this year, be aware that a standalone showcase of that Xbox-exclusive science fiction role-playing game (sci-fi RPG) from Bethesda will be held soon. Posted below is the precise Xbox YouTube spot for the Developer_Direct livestream.

To put things in perspective, posted below is an excerpt from the Xbox.com announcement. Some parts in boldface…

Xbox and Bethesda will present a Developer_Direct on Wednesday, January 25, providing fans with an inside look at some of the games coming to Xbox, PC and Game Pass over the next few months.  

Presented by the game creators themselves from studios including Arkane Austin, Mojang Studios, Turn 10 Studios, and ZeniMax Online Studios, the Developer_Direct will focus on big features, extended gameplay showcases, and the latest info for Xbox games launching in the next few months, including The Elder Scrolls OnlineForza MotorsportMinecraft Legendsand Redfall 

To dedicate the proper amount of time for a deep dive into Bethesda Game Studios’ Starfield, a standalone show is in the works

Fans should tune in on Xbox channels (TwitchYouTube) and Bethesda channels (TwitchYouTube) at 12pm PT/3pm ET, January 25 to see all the latest on:  

The Elder Scrolls Online: Studio Director Matt Firor will unveil 2023’s major Chapter update, including the latest regions of Tamriel to become playable in ESO, as well as a major new feature coming in the game’s biggest update this year. The Developer_Direct will be immediately followed by the full, standalone ESO Chapter Reveal Event, hosted by Zenimax Online Studios, which will provide all the in-depth details ESO players will be keen to know. 

Forza Motorsport: The team at Turn 10 Studios have been hard at work, bringing fans the next generation of Forza Motorsport, built from the ground up to take advantage of Xbox Series X|S. Forza Motorsport is back, and we can’t wait to share more gameplay and exciting new details. 

Minecraft Legends: Mojang Studios will showcase an insider’s look into the PvP multiplayer experience in Minecraft Legends – the upcoming action-strategy game from the makers of Minecraft. Developed in partnership with Blackbird Interactive and launching this spring, don’t miss exclusive gameplay footage at the Developer_Direct. 

Redfall: The minds behind Dishonored and Prey, Arkane Austin, will showcase several minutes of gameplay from their upcoming FPS. The Developer_Direct will reveal single and multiplayer gameplay, showing more of how you and your friends will take down bloodthirsty Vampires on the picturesque island of Redfall, Massachusetts. Fans can expect to learn more about combat, customization, bosses, the open world, and more. 

If there is anything for me to say about the upcoming Developer_Direct, it is not only Team Xbox’s way of responding to the gamers’ constant inquiries or demands for new updates about new games this year, it is also their way of bouncing back to the criticism about their absence from The Games Awards 2022.

More notably, it seems to me that the Developer_Direct online event is Team Xbox’s new way of updating the loyal fans and the fun-seeking gamers about what to expect on the Xbox platform, when will the new games this year will come out, what features to look forward to, what can Xbox Game Pass (XGP) subscribers look forward to and the like. It is also their way of letting executives or representatives from Xbox game studios reach out to the gamers and establish a clear narrative so that confusion and uncontrolled expectations can be minimized just as Team Xbox’s marketing teams will ramp up the pre-release hype of the new games.

To be clear, it is simply too limiting for both Team Xbox and gamers to wait for the annual E3-related conference to happen just so that updates will be made. As such, I am anticipating that there will be more editions of this Developer_Direct online event to follow.

More on the Developer_Direct event of January 25, 2023, I am hoping that the respective release dates for Forza Motorsport (2023) and Redfall will be announced. 2022 saw the lack of big-time Xbox-exclusive games and the delays of Starfield and Redfall were strongly felt. For 2023, this is a big make-or-break year for Team Xbox. This is also the year for them to become more competitive than PlayStation and Nintendo in terms of publicity and setting the narrative. Apart from release dates, I am eager to find out what gameplay features of the announced games for the January 25 event will be revealed.

For those who are paying too much attention to Starfield not being part of the January 25 showcase, please keep in mind that such a high-profile game like that needs to have its very own event (perhaps Developer_Direct session #2) as it has tons of visuals, concepts, features and details that need to be emphasized by Bethesda. As it is an Xbox-exclusive game, there are lots of PlayStation fanboys who hate Xbox out there and they still cannot accept the fact that Starfield will never be released on the PlayStation platform and Microsoft-owned Bethesda is not obligated to release it on competing platforms. As such, anti-Xbox buzz connected with Starfield is being generated by those troublesome people right now and they are spreading lies and falsehoods about the Developer_Direct event. The successful integration of Bethesda into Team Xbox remains very painful for those people because they know that future sequels of The Elder Scrolls, Fallout and other Bethesda game franchises will not be released on their favorite platforms. They can get louder and more troublesome but you should not let them fool you.

Watch out for the Developer_Direct event on January 25, 2023.

In concluding this article, posted below for your enjoyment are Xbox-related videos.

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below, share this article to others and also please consider making a donation to support my publishing. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram athttps://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco

A Look Back at Venom: Lethal Protector #3 (1993)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Welcome back superhero enthusiasts, 1990s arts and culture enthusiasts, Marvel Comics fans and comic book collectors! Today we go back to the year 1993 and explore a part of Marvel Comics’ universe through the first-ever limited comic book series featuring one of Marvel’s most iconic villains – Venom.

In my previous retro review, Venom discovers a long lost section of San Francisco that fell deep underground. Even though it is cut off from the resources and fresh air of modern San Francisco, the lost city section is filled with homeless people and social outcasts. Even though he helped the city dwellers by defeating the two armed mechs (employed by a powerful organization who oppose the city dwellers and are in pursuit of something related to San Francisco’s park), Venom still gets rejected by the so-called council. This only led him to returning to the surface not knowing that he is being targeted by a certain group.

With those details laid down, here is a look back at Venom: Lethal Protector #3, published in 1993 by Marvel Comics with a story written by David Michelinie and drawn by Mark Bagley.

The cover.

Early story

The story begins with Venom suffering from a sonic blast while being restrained by one of the armed members of the group called The Jury. Their leader (who wears a suit and necktie) introduces himself as Orwell Taylor and he addressed Venom as Mr. Brock. It turns out Taylor spent lots of time and resources researching everything about Brock and the alien costume. More shockingly, The Jury’s leader reveals that he lost his son Hugh years ago due to Venom’s arranged killing of him as he escaped from his prison cell in the federal prison called The Vault. Hugh Taylor is the first man Venom killed when he escaped.

Venom responds by say that he and his symbiote did not want to hurt anyone. This provokes Orwell Taylor into anger and he orders The Jury to kill Venom. Due to the lengthy explanations of Orwell Taylor, Venom managed to recover and regain strength which he uses to free himself and throw one Jury member to another causing quick chaos.

After punching another Jury member, Venom then moves out of the alley and away from Taylor and his team…

Quality

Very clearly, The Jury is a very formidable force of opposition. Their battle with Venom here comes with a lot of spectacle.

In terms of storytelling, this one is another improvement over issue #2 (which itself is an improvement over issue #1) as the plot got more interesting and even intriguing. For one thing, I like the fact that David Michelinie recalled Venom’s murderous escape from prison told way back in Amazing Spider-Man #315 (1989) and came up with the establishment of a very angry powerful father who formed the dangerous cybernetic team called The Jury. In a rather symbolic way, this comic book shows how Venom’s past comes back to haunt him and creatively, the battles between Venom and The Jury here are packed with a lot of action and visual dynamism delivered by Mark Bagley. The irony is that The Jury itself is not the main antagonist of this limited series as they are clearly presented to be a recurring force of opposition within Spider-Man’s realm in Marvel Comics’ shared universe of the time.

Still on the plot, the sinister organization hounding the dwellers of the lost city was revealed to be the Treece group whose leader is pursuing something very valuable to feed his greed. Still, even though this is already the third issue, the Treece organization’s presence is very subtle and as the force of opposition towards Venom, they are outclassed by The Jury.

As in the previous issue, Spider-Man got a good share of the spotlight but this one is even more limiting which should delight Venom fanatics who complained about Marvel’s icon overshadowing their guy with the symbiote. Spider-Man serves mainly as a tool for exposition as the creative team showed images from the past of Eddie Brock with his father (whom Spider-Man approached for answers).

The problem here is that showing flashbacks from the past and explaining how Eddie Brock became bitter and sinister as a result of receiving almost no affection from his father ruins the mystery of Venom as a character. During the time of Todd McFarlane drawing Amazing Spider-Man comics and the early Venom tales, the mystery of Eddie Brock’s past added to the intrigue of Venom and his quick rise as the deadliest villain Spider-Man ever faced. I understand that this limited comic book series had Venom as the protagonist who was in high demand among readers of the time but for me the creative team went way too far emphasizing Eddie Brock’s past.

Nothing changes the fact that Eddie Brock aided by the alien costume is a murderer who happens to have previously been a prolific print media journalist whose career got ruined by Spider-Man which in turn led him to a downward spiral and eventually to bonding with the symbiote that once bonded with Peter Parker. The flashbacks were pointless and if there really was an attempt to humanize Eddie Brock and make him sympathetic to readers, the creative team clearly failed.

Conclusion

Spider-Man with Eddie Brock’s father in California.

Venom: Lethal Protector #3 (1993) is a mixed bag. Its plot is clearly more intriguing and more interesting to read while there was enough creative space to show The Jury as a powerful force of opposition which is the result of Venom’s murder of Hugh Taylor (read: Amazing Spider-Man #315) while making a prison escape. The spectacle of the battle between Venom and The Jury must be seen! However, the creative team’s move to dramatize Eddie Brock’s past using flashbacks back-fired in my opinion and ultimately they destroyed whatever mystery was left behind Venom. As a protagonist, Venom has no appeal whatsoever and his portrayal here only reminds me that he works best as an antagonist opposite Spider-Man. Venom as a hero for those he perceived to be innocent and helpless remains forced and unconvincing.

Overall, Venom: Lethal Protector #3 (1993) is satisfactory.

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below, share this article to others and also please consider making a donation to support my publishing. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco

Xbox Series X and Forza Horizon 5 Premium Edition Bundle coming out for your enjoyment!

If you still have not yet acquired an Xbox Series X console but you already have the means to buy it, then you should seriously consider buying the Xbox Series X and Forza Horizon 5 Premium Edition Bundle once it becomes available for $559, Team Xbox announced recently. Having played Forza Horizon 5 a lot on my Xbox Series X since late 2021, I can say that the bundle is great value for you gamers as well as others struggling with inflation.

To put things in perspective, posted below is an excerpt from the Xbox.com announcement. Some parts in boldface…

Introducing the Xbox Series X – Forza Horizon 5 Bundle, including an Xbox Series X and wireless controller, and Forza Horizon 5 Premium Edition with Hot Wheels Expansion, VIP Pass, Car Pass, Welcome Pack and a second expansion when available.  This Xbox Series X bundle will be available worldwide and will start shipping to retailers in the US, Canada and select markets in Asia this week. Bundles will start shipping to Europe, Latin America, and more regions around the world later this month.

The Xbox Series X bundled with Forza Horizon 5 and additional content offered for $559.

Xbox Series X: 12 teraflops of raw graphic processing power, DirectX ray tracing, a custom 1TB SSD, and 4K gaming – Xbox Series X is the fastest, most powerful Xbox ever. There are thousands of playable titles from four generations of consoles, and all games look and play best on the Xbox Series X. Load times are virtually eliminated and framerates are increased with a custom-built NVMe SSD, which enables larger, more robust games to operate at their full capacity.

Forza Horizon 5 runs at 4K and 60 frames per second on Xbox Series X in performance mode and provides the most technologically advanced Forza Horizon experience yet. You’ll get to explore the vibrant and ever-evolving open world landscapes of Mexico in the world’s greatest cars with 12 teraflops of raw graphic processing power, DirectX ray tracing, a custom SSD, and 4K gaming.  The power of the Xbox Series X console delivers incredible realism and immersion with a world rendered in higher detail and with extreme draw distances.

Forza Horizon 5 Premium Edition includes Forza Horizon 5 plus the Premium Edition add-ons -Forza Horizon 5: The latest entry in the open world racing series showcases powerful, all-new graphical features. Experience sweeping vistas and scan the distance to see the adventure that lies ahead. Encounter the smallest of details throughout the world, which is rendered with striking realism, down to the smallest details like the light that glows through each needle on a Cholla cactus. Our Mexican HDR sky captures illuminate the world to the point that you will feel as if you are right there. And thanks to Xbox Series X|S, ray tracing is utilized in ForzaVista to make the cars look even more true to real life.

Hot Wheels Expansion: Race 10 amazing new cars on the fastest, most extreme tracks ever devised. You can even design, build, and share your own Hot Wheels adventure! What’s not to love about that? You can blast off to the visually stunning, exhilarating Horizon Hot Wheels Park in the clouds above Mexico today.

VIP Pass: The VIP Pass features 3 exclusive Forza Edition cars, Crown Flair, Vanity Items, Emote and Car Horn, Player House, Double Credit race rewards, weekly bonus Super Wheelspins, and more to give your game a boost and make you stand out at the Horizon Festival. 

Car Pass: Expand your garage with 42 new cars, including 8 Formula Drift Cars to get you started in style. Plus, you’ll receive a one-time grant of each car to your in-game garage.

Welcome Pack: 5 special pre-tuned cars, a Player House, a one-time grant to own any car from the game’s Autoshow, and 3 one-time grants for any Common or Rare clothing item.

Second Expansion: The next Forza Horizon 5 expansion will be included when it launches.

Wow! That’s a ton of gaming value for those who will buy the Xbox Series X bundled with the blockbuster game! Indeed, Team Xbox is offering big value for $559 to those who want the premium, fun console gaming experience. I myself am still having fun replaying Forza Horizon 5.

Personally, I see this premium bundle announcement as a form of warm-up on the part of Team Xbox to deliver not just more game-related features and Xbox Game Pass (XGP) content but also the big-budget Xbox-exclusive games that are expected to be released this year such as Starfield (note: first half of 2023), Forza Motorsport (2023), Redfall (note: potentially May 2023) and others. 2022 is over and ended without big budget exclusive games and this is the year that Team Xbox should deliver the great stuff that cannot be found on PlayStation and Nintendo consoles. If you want tremendous gaming value and content at a small price per month, I encourage you to subscribe to Xbox Game Pass (XGP).

Watch out for the Xbox Series X – Forza Horizon 5 premium bundle online and at the local retailers.

In concluding this article, posted below for your enjoyment are Xbox-related videos.

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below, share this article to others and also please consider making a donation to support my publishing. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram athttps://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco

A Look Back at Spider-Man 2099 #9 (1993)

Disclaimer: This is my original work with details sourced from reading the comic book and doing personal research. Anyone who wants to use this article, in part or in whole, needs to secure first my permission and agree to cite me as the source and author. Let it be known that any unauthorized use of this article will constrain the author to pursue the remedies under R.A. No. 8293, the Revised Penal Code, and/or all applicable legal actions under the laws of the Philippines.

Welcome back, superhero enthusiasts, 1990s culture enthusiasts, Marvel 2099 fans and comic book collectors! Today we revisit the Marvel 2099 franchise within Marvel Comics’ shared universe during the 1990s. Specifically speaking, we take a look back at one of the early tales of Spider-Man 2099.

In this retro comic book review, the futuristic Spider-Man finally made his way back uptown after spending time in the old city of New York down below where he saw people living in poverty, violent gangs and Vulture 2099.

With those details laid down, here is a look back at Spider-Man 2099 #9, published by Marvel Comics in 1993 with a story written by Peter David and drawn by Kelley Jones.

The cover.

Early story

The story begins at the Wellvale where Conchata O’Hara (mother of Miguel and Gabriel) suddenly suffers an attack from inside her body. The medics were called for emergency.

Elsewhere, Spider-Man jumps with excitement and relief after finally making it back from deep down the modern city. He almost gets hit by a hover car and decides to stop for a while at an isolated spot to calm down and reflect about what happened recently. He just defeated Vulture in battle below prior to climbing back up.

Suddenly, an armed Public Eye flyboy tries to apprehend him. After making getting near the flyboy and making himself look like he was about to submit himself, the flyboy communicates with his team. During that short moment, Spider-Man fires his organic web at the flyboy’s mouth which causes him to fire his weapon and miss. Spider-Man then knocks the flyboy out cold, leaving the communication line hanging…

Quality

The idolaters of Spider-Man 2099 spotted.

Considering everything that happened to Spider-Man in the previous few issues set deep underneath the modern city, this tale was crafted to develop the webslinger’s personality some more while showing for the first time ever the group of Spider-Man 2099 idolaters who are so obsessed, they go around wearing their idol’s costume and even take risks imitating his physical abilities (example: crawling on the wall). There is no good-versus-evil conflict here but more exploration of the modern society Miguel O’Hara has long been part of.

For one thing, at this point of the monthly series, Spider-Man 2099’s misadventures and acts in uptown New York not only caused disturbance with the modern society watched over by Alchemax, he also sparked a new group of people who perceive him to be their holy savior. This kinda reminds me of DC Comics’ very own Sons of Batman which is a youth group inspired by Batman, and to see the Marvel 2099 have its own version of the concept is a pretty neat move by the creators.

Speaking of characterization, the complexities of the relationships between Miguel O’Hara with his brother Gabriel, his mother Conchata, his romantic interest Dana and the relationships the others have with each other begin to really grow in this issue. The good news is that Peter David not only provided solid dialogue for each character but also clearly defined their respective personality traits and thoughts about others. To see Gabriel personally reacting to Kasey’s reaction towards Spider-Man’s body was amusing and even a bit hilarious.

On the artistic side, Kelley Jones work here as guest illustrator was nice to see and certain visual elements of his work on Batman comic books also made it here. The result is a nice change of style and a new approach of showing visual details. I should state that even though his art style is radically different from that of Rick Leonardi, Jones managed to make the established characters look recognizable to me.

Conclusion

Kelley Jones’ visuals on Spider-Man 2099 is nice to see.

Spider-Man 2099 #9 (1993) is clearly a more characterization-oriented story which is a nice change of pace and approach considering the chaotic story developments of the previous few issues. This comic book also shows that Spider-Man 2099 continues to encounter challenges in both local society and personally. The revelation of idolatry and idolaters connected to Spider-Man added a new layer of foolishness and evil to the local society (for insight, click here and here). At this stage of the monthly series, something new was clearly brewing for the futuristic webslinger and this showed that Peter David laid out his plans for the direction of the series’ narrative. Lastly, Kelley Jones’ work here really stands out.

Overall, Spider-Man 2099 #9 (1993) is recommended!

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Thank you for reading. If you find this article engaging, please click the like button below and also please consider sharing this article to others. If you are looking for a copywriter to create content for your special project or business, check out my services and my portfolio. If you want to support my website, please consider making a donation. Feel free to contact me with a private message. Also please feel free to visit my Facebook page Author Carlo Carrasco and follow me on Twitter at  @HavenorFantasy as well as on Tumblr at https://carlocarrasco.tumblr.com/ and on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/authorcarlocarrasco/.