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Comic Books, Drag Race, & Life in New Zealand
After a brief respite from churning out new reading orders for Patrons of CK, I’m back with a fourth guide to solo members of the Guardians of the Galaxy as their third film approaches! As with the other Guardians, this guide is for a character invented in the 70s, used briefly in the 80s, and then forgotten until the the 00s. He has the least pre-Guardians material of the core team (except for Groot), but the most solo series of them all since the release of their first movie in 2014! Of course, I’m talking about everyone favorite not-actually-a-raccoon, now completely covered in my Guide to Rocket Raccoon!
Creating a guide for Rocket was different than making guides for Star-Lord, Gamora, and Drax because I’ve literally read all but six comics he has ever appeared in. It was more like creating a guide to one of my beloved X-Men!
The six issues I had never read before were Rocket’s introduction from Bill Mantlo, first in black-and-white serialized space epic “The Sword In The Star!” and later in Incredible Hulk and Rocket’s own mini-series. [Read more…] about New for Patrons: Guide to Rocket Raccoon
by krisis 4 Comments
This morning I had the absolute pleasure of announcing the results of the Most Wanted Marvel Omnibus 11th Annual Secret Ballot with Near Mint Condition!
The Most Wanted Marvel Omnibus Secret Ballot is an annual poll conducted by a mysterious comic book forum user named Tigereyes. The rules are simple: anyone can email Tigereyes up to 10 picks for their most-wanted, never-before-printed omnibuses of material originally printed by Marvel, even if they may no longer own the licensing rights.
Each first vote gets 10 points, each second vote gets 9 points, all the way down to your tenth vote getting just 1 point. After the voting period, Tigereyes goes through the gargantuan effort of tallying up all the votes – which also involves figuring out what everyone meant by their sometimes inconsistently-named or cryptically-described votes.
For me, the reveal of the results of the Tigereyes Secret Ballot is an international comics-loving holiday. I used to be the primary person on the internet creating statistics from the results every year! However, when I attempted to cover the entire poll entry-by-entry in 2017 I stalled out at the halfway point as the results straddled our move to New Zealand.
That’s why it was worth waking up at 4am NZ time to be ready to share this year’s results with my good friends Omar and Jess on the Near Mint Condition channel, thanks to some last-minute planning with Omar over the weekend.
Our show was nearly three hours long as we dug into the potential contents of every book on the list and whether we’d read them or not. As always, I had just as much fun appearing on-camera as I did chatting with all of the wonderful Minties in the live chat!
Don’t have time for the full 3-hour tour? We actually run down the full 60-book list in just 15 minutes, starting just before the 12-minute mark. I’m sharing the full list below, but it’s more than just a list – every omnibus includes a full suggested omnibus mapping along with a link to the relevant collecting guide on Crushing Comics.
That’s right, y’all – this is a post with SIXTY omnibus mappings in it, mapping well over 2,000 issues of comics. (Actually, it’s even more than that – there’s one tie, and in several entries I get into mapping second volumes if they would complete a run). That makes that one of the longest blog posts in 23 years of CrushingKrisis history.
Are you ready to be rocked by the Most Wanted Marvel Omnibus vote? Strap in, true believers, and prepare to be mapped like you’ve never been mapped before.
[Read more…] about Tigereyes Most Wanted Marvel Omnibus 11th Annual Secret Ballot Results & Mappings
The definitive issue-by-issue comic book collecting guide and reading order for Marvel’s Drax the Destroyer in omnibus, hardcover, trade paperback, and digital. Part of Crushing Krisis’s Crushing Comics. Last updated March 2023 with titles scheduled for release through July 2023.
Drax the Destroyer was a character made for vengeance and built to be tinkered with by each successive generation of writers.
He was originally created alongside Thanos in Iron Man (1968) #55 in February 1973. Thanos was an unstoppable force of destruction, and Drax was his personal destroyer. His desire to destroy Thanos was driven by the forces of vengeance of Thanos’s entire race and, as it turns out, his own extremely personal vendetta against the mad titan.
The original version of Drax the Destroyer was completely unlike his familiar Marvel Cinematic Universe incarnation. He was a gallant, green, caped psychic born from the soil of Thanos’s abandoned homeworld, who could fly through space and emit powerful energy blasts. He seemed to be a deliberate copy of DC’s Martian Manhunter visually and in his powerset.
Drax made a strong early foil for Thanos, but Jim Starlin used him only for a cameo once his own late-70s saga of Thanos and Warlock got underway. That saga lead to the apparent death of Thanos, which meant Drax had no meaning – both within the story and as a Marvel character. After harassing Captain Mar-Vell for taking away his chance to slay Thanos (not realizing or believing it had been Warlock), he was hastily written out of comics via a peculiar two-part Avengers story by Jim Shooter in 1982.
When Jim Starlin returned to Marvel to revive Thanos, Warlock, and Gamora, he also brought Drax back to life – reasoning that if there is a Thanos there must also be a Drax. However, playing off of the peculiar circumstances surrounding Drax’s origin, Starlin used the reincarnation to tweak his character to be a cartoonish oaf with a low intellect. The MCU version of the character shares many qualities with this comedic relief version of Drax that starred in Starlin’s Infinity trilogy and Infinity Watch. However, the screen incarnation is never portrayed as being unintelligent the way he was in the comics. Onscreen, he is simply literal.
After briefly regaining his intelligence and losing it again, Drax was reinvented again in 2005 by Kieth Giffen. This version visually matches up with the screen version – a terrifyingly swift hunk of muscle capable of canny strategy. After anchoring his own mini-series, he was pulled into the first of Marvel’s mid-00s cosmic events, Annihilation and Annihilation Conquest – along with a few other familiar faces: Star-Lord, Gamora, Rocket Raccoon, and Groot – along with Nova, Warlock, Mantis, and Moondragon.
That group of character transformed into the original Guardians of the Galaxy, launched by Dan Abnett & Andy Lanning in 2008. Drax appeared throughout their initial run. Despite being written off at the end (along with Star-Lord and Nova), he was back in the line-up in 2012 when Brian Bendis was brought aboard to navigate the comic franchise towards the impending MCU film.
The version of Drax in the comics since 2013 may be the Guardian who feels the farthest apart from his movie incarnation. He’s simply never been the comedic relief of the comics team quite as much as he has been in the films. He has also seldom been at the center of the team’s plots the way Star-Lord, Gamora, and Rocket often are – though he did have a major moment in 2018’s Infinity Wars by Gerry Duggan. [Read more…] about Drax the Destroyer – Definitive Collecting Guide and Reading Order
Even with plenty of drag and indie comics to focus on this month, I still found the time to squeeze in another new Marvel guide for all Patrons of CK. This guide follows a character who started off both dangerous and incredibly complex when she was introduced by Jim Starlin in 1975, and that’s never changed – although she has changed considerably in her nearly 50 years of comics. It’s time for a Guide to Gamora!
If I was totally off-base about my ideas of about Star-Lord when I got to work on his guide, working on a Guide to Gamora confirmed my assumptions and just made me love the character even more.
In fact, I’d go so far as to say that out of all of the Guardians of the Galaxy, Gamora is both the one who is closest to her comic version in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. That’s despite the fact that she is missing a critical element of her first 30 years of comics in the MCU.