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Tuesday, May 29, 2018

X-aminations in June 2018 (-ish)

With the end of June looming and with it, the end of my current six month schedule of reviews, I am working on the schedule for the second half of 2018. Obviously, I have fallen way off my schedule (what with it being the end of June, and me still working on May reviews...). So I want to take the start of a new review schedule as an opportunity to get back on track and ahead of reviews (so that when the inevitable real world problems arise, it takes longer for me to fall behind). There are two ways I can do that, and rather than pick one myself, I'm going to turn the decision over to you, the readers.

One option, as I've done before, is to schedule a run of one-review-a-week Retro X-aminations, going back to review older issues I missed (for one reason or another) the first time around.

The other option is simply to take the next "on sale" month's worth of issues (in this case, May 1994) and spread them out to one review a week.

I can make the case for both (Retros are a fun look back at some older stories, the one-review-a-week-for-a-month approach slows things down but doesn't entirely halt the forward progress of reviews), which is why I'm punting the decision to you. Sound off in the comments as to which approach you'd like to see me take to lead off the second half of 2018.

In the meantime, the next batch of previously-scheduled reviews to finish up the first half of 2018 sees more Joe Madureira, the end of the Psylocke/Revanche story along with a look at Gambit & Sabretooth's past together, and the debut of everyone's favorite walking-unresolved-plotline, Douglock!

On Sale March 1994
June 6: X-Men (vol. 2) #32
June 7: X-Force #34
June 8: Excalibur #77

June 13: X-Factor Annual #9
June 14: Cable #11

On Sale April 1994
June 20: Uncanny X-Men #313
June 21: X-Factor #103
June 22: Wolverine #82

June 27: X-Men (vol. 2) #33
June 28: X-Force #35
June 29: Excalibur #78


  1. I've decided I need to read the AVENGERS starting from #1, and I got immediately stuck at #2 because I needed to go read TALES TO ASTONISH, and now I have to decide what to do with HULK and THOR. I didn't really know there was a thing that is the Ant-Man catapult.

    There's no Cable catapult, or Bishop catapult. My vote is retro.

    1. Ha!

      Someday, in a magical future where I have more free time, I'd love to give the X-aminations approach to the Avengers and all their connected books. Though, like you, I wouldn't quite know what to do with Hulk - he's technically an Avenger, but his series never really weaves in and out of the main Avengers narrative the way Cap, Thor & Iron Man's does.

    2. Hulk resigns in #2 I believe at which point his book ceases to be an Avengers book. But either or, it's an undoable thing what you're fantasizing about.

      Also I notice I should have said JOURNEY INTO MYSTERY and... ASTONISHING TALES (?) or TALES OF SUSPENSE (?) instead.

    3. Journey into Mystery featured Thor. Tales of Suspense had Iron Man and, eventually, Captain America. Tales to Astonish originally had Hulk and Ant Man.

      Astonishing Tales wouldn't return to the Marvel line-up until the 1970s.

    4. I know Hulk has been an official Avengers since the first movie in 2012, and he's in the movie and is considered one of the "core" group with Cap, Iron Man, and Thor, but having living in a world where he really wasn't an Avenger for pretty much my entire life up to the point -- not to mention the fifteen or so years prior to my birth -- I still have a really, really hard time considering him a member of the team.

      Forget differences in technology or societal norms -- non-Avenger Hulk vs. Avenger Hulk will easily be the biggest generational hurdle for my son and me to overcome as he grows up.

      Anyway, my vote is probably retro. There's always older stuff to look back on, and it makes for a nice change of pace once in a while to check back in with the Silver or Bronze ages.


  2. My virtual 50¢:

    If the Retro Reviews are written, or mostly written, or fairly easily to be written, go that route. You have precedent for running special installments on a one-per-week basis, and you’ll preserve the general three-per-week schedule of the main chronological posts when they resume. The next couple of months are an opportune time to break from the normal continuity anyhow, since it’s summer for most of your readership and folks going on vacation or hosting visitors or what-have-you can drop out for a spell without really falling behind.

    If preparing each of the Retro Reviews takes the same time as preparing a regular post, however, or even more, then sticking with the regular posts but throttling them back to an intentional one-per-week release as you bank material with an eye towards returning to your normal schedule obviously has its appeal versus giving yourself more to do right when you’re playing catch-up and potentially just kicking the can down the road.

    Which is more advice than a vote, maybe… but at least informed by my preference?

  3. I'd love to see a few more retro reviews. You always post things that I didn't realize the X-Men were part of. I'd love to see a list of X-Men appearances outside of the regular X-Books for the Gold/Silver age up until they started appearing everywhere. Like when you covered the Hulk issues with Havok and Polaris or Captain Marvel having Brotherhood appearance and then the Marvel Super-Heroes that covered the unpublished Captain Marvel final issue.

  4. I vote retro, and not the least because I get the sense I am one of the older readers of this blog and was probably around to read a lot of it when it came out. I provide the same service over at Matt's blog for 70s stuff, after all!


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