The X-Journey: The Surprise of Rogue’s First Appearance in Avengers Annual #10

Welcome back to the X-Journey that dovetails into The Avengers with Rogue’s first appearance in Avengers Annual #10. The funny part of reading the origin for the first time is that it did surprise me. Oh, I knew that Rogue got her powers from Carol Danvers/Ms. Marvel/Captain Marvel but I forgot what period of time this was for Carol. See there’s a different setup for Rogue’s first appearance than you’d expect. I have much more to say on this than I did Gambit’s first appearance. Mostly because Rogue’s first appearance is stranger than you’d think. You’ll see what I mean as I go further into this. All I can say is, I had reactions to this that I didn’t expect to have. Read on my friends as we continue The X-Journey. This is seriously one of those where I truly say, I really do hope you survive the experience.

Note: Chris Claremont wrote this and it is well written and a great first appearance for Rogue. This happens to take place though in a severe low point for Carol Danvers. Wow was it ever a low point.

Avengers Annual #10 Cover Rogue

You know this is a first time because I had no idea Spider-Woman was part of the first Rogue story. It does make sense though considering he was writing Spider-Woman at this point in 1981. That was the first surprise out of all this, Spider-Woman played a fairly big role in this adventure. She’s the one that finds a woman being dumped over the Golden Gate Bridge, which turns out to be Carol Danvers after Spider-Woman/Jessica Drew takes her to the hospital. The fun fact with this is Chris Claremont also wrote Ms.Marvel at one point too before all this so both characters were a part of Claremont’s writing life by 1981. It’s wild to see how these all tie together by the end of this issue.

Maddy Pryor X-Men Rogue

(Chris Claremont you little scamp. You had to sneak in Maddy Pryor. I cracked up. Beautiful little hint for later on in the X-Men Universe.)

What I love about this too is how you can tell right off the bat Chris Claremont is a genuine fan of Carol Danvers. After a certain story that we’ll talk about later within the Avengers, Carol Danvers needed someone who wanted to work with her and by golly Claremont was up to the task. You know how great a character Carol is. The weird factor of the story is Rogue has already zapped Carol of her powers. She’s right now a shell of her former self. Yet Spider-Woman knows who to call to help Carol out, being Professor X and this gives us our X-Men cameo in the Avengers Annual. Oh and yes we will get to Rogue soon I promise but I had to give some extra backstory as it is necessary.

Carol Danvers Ms. Marvel Captain Marvel Rogue

(Seriously, Claremont tells the reader how great Carol is. It’s sort of his way of rehabbing Carol for events later on in the issue and giving added emphasis to what Rogue did to her.)

Now we are at the point where we get to Rogue. Thank you for patience here. We do get a sequence with the X-Men talking about stuff that went down with Kitty Pryde in the mansion and the X-Men rebuilding parts of it. I won’t dive into that much as the important part is this getting Professor X in the picture. He reveals that Rogue is the scourge that did this to Carol Danvers. Take note of the art here and see the level of detail to show how terrifying Rogue is at this point. This is our first introduction to her and that’s impressive. We know she’s powerful but we don’t know how she got to this point. That’s some strong build up right there. I like it.

Rogue X-Men First Appearance

(Give some love to Michael Golden’s art with Armando Gil’s inks, my goodness it’s gorgeous stuff. Even better? Golden colored all of this! Beautiful work all around.)

When we get our actual introduction to Rogue in action she is straight up beating the crap out of Captain America. Now that my friends is something no reader is going to forget anytime soon. Imagine reading this back in 1981 and seeing this for yourself, it would stick with you. Take note, at this stage Rogue has fully absorbed the powers of Ms. Marvel so she is a force like no other. She’s stil learning but she’s absorbing as much power as she can along the way. Her absorbing the powers of Ms. Marvel the way she did was more out of her inexperience with her abilities than anything else.

As this goes on, Mystique disables Iron Man and Rogue absorbs the energy from Captain America and Thor for reasons to be revealed later here. Now when Spider-Woman tells the Avengers all that goes on, you learn what happened to Ms. Marvel before she ended up in the hospital. That’s when you relive one of the creepiest Avengers stories ever. There’s a CBR article I’ll link here that explains it better but it involves a mysterious pregnancy of Ms. Marvel, mind manipulation, and so many more terrible things. A big part of this issue outside of Rogue’s first appearance is rebuilding Carol Danvers. This annual takes many upon many turns.

Avengers Rogue Ms. Marvel Annual

(This is the streamlined version of the story and it still made me cringe and say many “Ew’s”)

Ms. Marvel Avengers Marvel

(This is seriously the streamlined version. The CBR article I linked details it better but this gives you all of the awful no good very bad story you need to know.)

I really did mean this to be a Rogue focused piece but when I read it, the tale expanded quite a bit.

Anyway, after that detour we are back to the Rogue show. Which really means back to the Rogue and Mystique show. Now we get to see what the ultimate plan is with disabling Iron Man and getting the energies of Captain America and Thor. The plan is to get the rest of the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants out of prison. Now here is the thing, from here on it’s a big ole splashy mega fight. There’s a clever bit of Mystique using her shapeshifting ability to impersonate Nick Fury and other cool uses of the Brotherhood’s abilities. Claremont had a lot of fun with Avalanche, Blob, Pyro, and Destiny in this fight with the Avengers and Spider-Woman and it showed.

Now I get to streamline this as the rest of the issue is straight up action and Mystique gets Rogue out of that battle. It’s a beautiful fight and a joy to behold so I highly recommend checking out this issue for that fight alone. After this though we go back to a mostly recovered Carol Danvers at the X-Mansion and it gets pretty wild from here. The last bit of this issue is Chris Claremont’s pipebomb on that awful Avengers storyline. Carol Danvers is his spokesperson to deal with his own feelings on that tale. I won’t link the entire pipebomb as the CBR article has it in full. Let’s just say though, it’s worth reading. I’ll link part of it here but the rest, check out the CBR article.

Carol Danvers Pipebomb Avengers Annual

I tell you all this much, The Avengers don’t look good at all by the end of this pipebomb. Rogue’s first appearance was only half the story here. I did not expect this comic to take me on the ride I went on but I went on it by golly.

Avengers Annual #10 was a shocking and surprising read. Rogue’s first apperance was only part of this whole adventure. This also set up Carol Danvers for a brand new adventure which may lead us into one Binary journey down the line. The Michael Golden and Armando Gil art makes this issue one amazing read in itself. Anyway, thank you all for reading this. I know I only looked into Rogue so much but Rogue only made so many appearances here and I’ll get to dive more into her in the X-series proper. Thanks for reading and as always I really am glad you survived this experience with me. Take care everyone and bye for now.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The X-Journey: My First Read of Gambit’s First Appearance: Uncanny X-Men #266

In honor of the release of Mr. and Mrs. X, I decided to dive into the first appearance of Gambit. See I realized that there is a lot of X-Men lore that I never experienced. Hence I am going to dive into the X-Universe in a big way now. I have Marvel Unlimited so let’s do this thing. Since Gambit was one of my favorites as a kid I figure why not start with the first appearance of him. See I have no context for the story that’s happening with Gambit’s first appearance but that’s okay. We’ll fill in those blanks later. Right now I’m ready to start my X-Journey. Take note, this is my frist time reading Gambit’s first appearance so this is a blind read too. Welcome to the X-Journey, hope you survive the experience.

Oh my goodness, this X-Journey is going to be fun. Mr. and Mrs. X prompted this one so thank you Mr. and Mrs. X. Let’s get acquainted with Gambit.

Uncanny X-Men #266 Gambit

As we start up the issue one thing I will note, Gambit doesn’t appear until about the half way point. The major part of the issue is Storm stuck as a teenager somehow and dealing with The Shadow King and his hounds. When I say I got thrown in the thick of it, I mean it. I got thrown into the thick of a storyline but it’s all good and worked my way through by golly. Of course in reading this first appearance it made me want to check out more of the story so down the line we’ll revisit this. There’s also a little bit of Nanny and Orphan-Maker that are tied into this tale too, which again intrigues me. No I’m not doing extra research on this right now, but we’ll stick a pin in this for later.

The interesting part is when in the midst of a chase with Shadow King and his hounds, that’s how we’re introduced to Gambit. He’s there at the place to steal some paintings that Storm brought back, but the plan isn’t quite working out the way he thought. He ends up showing that he’s a good guy at his core by saving Storm from the Shadow King and his nefarious hounds. I mean Chris Claremont showed that the guy is a hero at his core despite his shady nature. It is a fun chase too to see Gambit and Storm going through this crazy mansion getting away from the villains. I mean all in all it’s a great introduction to him. Especially for being introduced at the half way point of the comic.

Uncanny X-Men #266 First Appearance Gambit Storm

In before anyone says anything, yes I am skipping over plot points out the wazoo. If anyone wanted a thorough review of this or something, this will not be the place to look for now. This is Gambit Central right now.

Yes I probably should be diving more into plot points but truthfully, I really don’t know the background outside of what the issue gives me. I know Storm and Shadow King have history but that’s about it. It was also a clever idea to have Gambit be introduced with Storm as they both share a history of thievery. Heck I can see why people gravitated towards Gambit as he does have a cool design overall. You got the leather jacket, the cool staff, and a neat energy power, and you’re rocking and rolling baby. Sadly we didn’t get Jim Lee art in this issue but Mike Collins did a great job penciling this issue and Josef Rubinstein did a killer job inking Collins. A good start for Gambit in the Marvel Universe for sure.

Yeah I enjoyed this and I’ll have to revisit his second appearance after I do a piece on Rogue. I am interested in seeing where this story goes from here. This also made me realize just how much of Chris Claremont’s X-Men I haven’t read. Oh yeah, we’re revisiting this story for sure after the Rogue first appearance. Thank you Mr. and Mrs. X for inspiring this for sure. Bonus points for getting me a focus in my back issue reading. For now, this concludes the first part of my X-Journey. Thanks for reading and catch you all later as I read the first appearance of Rogue for the next one. Till then, I am glad you survived the experience.

 

 

 

The Surprise Robert Kirkman-tastic Comic Launch of Die!Die!Die!

You wake up one lazy day, it’s a quiet one indeed, and Robert Kirkman, Scott M. Gimple, and Chris Burnham unleashed a surprise onto comic shelves called Die!Die!Die! to shock us all. Now with Robert Kirkman co-creating the Walking Dead and Gimple being a showrunner and writer on the series, well that’s a powerhouse team right there. Then you have the powerhouse artist that is Chris Burnham on art duties, well that’s a big deal. Chris Burnham worked on freaking Batman Incorporated with Grant Morrison for goodness sake and multitudes of other projects along the way. How did this become the shock surprise comic on the shelves? It’s Robert Kirkman being cool and giving us a neat surprise. I think that’s cool, especially a new monthly comic. That’s astonishing. So I want to talk on this a bit and have a chat about how amazing this really is.

Now if you’re expecting a formal review here of Die!Die!Die! well you might be disappointed. I have thoughts on this Robert Kirkman-tastic jam though and you’ll get them along the way. I just want to talk on this unusual release a bit.

die!die!die! #1 cover Robert Kirkman

What Robert Kirkman and the gang pulled off here with this crazy stealth surprise is incredible. I know from one shop I talked to they got the books free and added on to the order. The store even had a one per customer set in stone for people buying it. I get the feeling once people learn about this I spy a second printing in the future for this comic. Heck for sheer curiosity, Die!Die!Die! is a comic that you can’t help but be wanting to at least read. Heck Nathan Fairbairn colors this book, which means it is going to be that much more wonderful to behold. Then you have Rus Wooton lettering it and Wooton is an awesome letterer. I mean this level of high quality unleashed on us as a surprise is unheard of and really cool. It’s just exciting to me.

In this day and age that you can have a comic book appear at your local comic store and on Comixology as a surprise is amazing! Though if people do it with music and so on, then why not comics yeah? Heck if anyone could pull this sort of craziness off, I guess it’s Robert Kirkman and his all powerful Sweet Zombie Money. Now many people also wondered as this was a total surprise comic launch, how good will it be? The simple version of all this is that it is really fun. The concept of assassins sent by the government to take care of who are truly evil is a wild one. It’s violent though so if you’re not into the ultra violence this may not be for you. Yet it’s a fun comic and sometimes that’s all you need.

Oh and yes as the people involved in the Sweet Zombie Money are making mega bucks off of TV, yes I can see Die!Die!Die! as a TV show too.

Kirkman and Gimple craft a crazy story though and it’s pure unfiltered comics mayhem. I mean the art team is perfection and it looks amazing with Chris Burnham, Nathan Fairbairn, and Rus Wooton rocking out everywhere on it. Like I said this really wasn’t as much a review but more I love seeing a crazy comic book surprise on the shelves. That it is this much fun is a bonus in itself. With a team like this involved I could say you’re either hyped or not that into it. For me this is something that piqued my interest so I had to give it a shot. Luckily Robert Kirkman and his crew delivered and delivered in spades. It’s pure comic energy and I love the heck out of that.

Yeah it’s worth reading, it’s worth giving a shot and the next issue is due out on August 22nd so I say get on the ground floor and enjoy. It isn’t for everyone but if Die!Die!Die! is for you, you are in for a treat. If you’re not into the ultra violence, then skip Die!Die!Die! simple as that. So yeah that’s my bit on Die!Die!Die! let me know what you thought about it and I’ll catch you later. Bye for now!

 

The Sequential Chronicles: Wesley vs. The Get Along Gang

Welcome to the second adventure into The Sequential Chronicles and yes you read the title right. This edition focuses on the Get Along Gang. I found an issue of it recently at a local convention and figured it would be perfect for this. Here’s fair warning, the story itself is fairly harmless. I mean it’s the Get Along Gang. For a lot of my younger readers though you may find it fascinating to learn a little more about this property. This was a show that aired all the time when I was a kid between syndication and cable stations. Nowadays no one airs this along with a lot of shows of the period. Enough of the intro and on with the adventure into the Get Along Gang #1 from Star/Marvel Comics. Where cartoon history and comic book history collide.

If you are a cartoon history fan you’re going to enjoy this look at the Get Along Gang. Even comic fans will enjoy this one as I will dive a little more into the Star Comics imprint Marvel had in the 80’s.

Let’s start with this, I had no idea the Get Along Gang was originally a series of greeting cards from American Greetings/Those Characters from Cleveland. My own experience with the Get Along Gang began with the animated series that aired initially on Nickelodeon for the pilot in 1984 and then from 1984-85 on CBS for 13 episodes. Now you may be wondering how I know of this show that aired in the mid 80’s and that is a valid question. Get Along Gang aired on The Family Channel/Freeform from 1990 to 1993 which was where I remember them from. They also later aired on Pax TV/Ion Television) from 1999 until 2001. Cable TV was wild in the 90’s and 00’s.

Oh and the original pilot on Nickelodeon for The Get Along Gang had songs by John Sebastian of The Lovin’ Spoonful and the theme song for Welcome Back, Kotter fame too. Which I shall link below.

Heck this aired along with all sorts of random programming on The Family Channel back in the day. Get Along Gang was just one of those shows on Cable TV for kids back in the day.

As for the Get Along Gang comic, it was a bi-monthly series from Marvel’s Star Comics imprint lasting six issues from 1985 to 1986. Now if you are unfamiliar with Star Comics, it was an imprint Marvel had from 1984 until 1988. Star focused on childrens comics that ranged from original properties to ones based off of animated series. If you are curious, yes I own more than a few comics from this line. Yes you will likely see them in future Sequential Chronicles. Animated series adaptations are a favorite of mine and I have lots of them hanging out in my collection.

As for my own story in owning this comic, I found it at a local record and comic expo. Needless to say this was the sort of comic that caught my eye because it has history to it. If a comic has some sort of history to it then it is something I will want to own. Considering during its height there were plushes, comic books, and more with the Get Along Gang and now it is rarely mentioned. Outside of oddball comic and animation nerds, like me, no one would ever think about the show. Which leads me to talk about this comic and after that talk about how it impacted pop culture, in some small way at least.

Get Along Gang #1 Cover

No I am not kidding, the Get Along Gang does have a weird place in pop culture. Stay tuned.

Now here’s the thing about the comic, it’s so harmless it’s not even funny. It is about the perfect kid friendly comic ever. I mean ever. Considering that Dave Manak, the writer went on to work at Archie Comics as the penciler for Sonic the Hedgehog comics amongst other things makes sense. As for the artist of this Carlos Garzon, he’s mostly done art for multitudes of companies, inks for DC and so on. That’s the one thing about these is a lot of these people have credits that aren’t as well known as say others out there. Yet I still feel knowing a little about these creators is good because in comics, everyone is important in their own way no matter how big or small. Even working on a comic like Get Along Gang, there’s still craft to it.

Now if you want to know a bit about the characters in the Get Along Gang, it’s not important but you’ll probably get a kick out of it anyway. I mean there’s a Moose named Montgomery “Good News” Moose who’s the leader of the gang and more characters, a dog, lamb, beaver, turtles, and more. This issue is about the gang having their own Winter Olympics. With the dastardly Catchum Crocodile and Leland Lizard trying to ruin their fun. Oh and control over their Clubhouse Caboose. This is the series my friends, this is how it rolls. It’s a kids show comic from the 80’s and it’s adorable and kind of silly. If any of you reading this are parents out there, you could show it to your kids and be fine.

I did think about writing a more detailed plot thing with the Get Along Gang but then I realized, it was the Get Along Gang.

It’s a well made comic for being a licensed comic based off a kids show meant to teach children valuable lessons in the 80’s. The goal of the show is to teach kids to go with the crowd and to get along. Which is also kind of horrible at the same time instead of you know compromising and talking things over, nope you make sure you get along with the crowd. It’s a strange series. If you’re wondering how the Winter Olympics ended for them, the boys and girls had a fight and over meddling from the villains. Then it ended in everyone getting along in the end and having a good time once more. Yeah there’s not much more to it but there is a reason why the Get Along Gang have a weird place in pop culture.

See now this is where I tie everything together. This is a big part why I did this article to begin with. I present to you The Buddy Bears from Garfield and Friends. They never disagree, they always get along, and if you complain you are just causing problems. They’re also hyper educational and are meant to be the safest characters ever. Mark Evanier created them as his way to parody The Ger Along Gang and also apparently Care Bears too. I’m going to post the theme they sing below and you’ll understand what I mean about The Buddy Bears. They were his stress valve dealing with all the cheesy cartoons and by golly it shows, it really does.

 

Prepare yourselves for this song to get as stuck in your head forever as it is in mine. Once you hear The Buddy Bears theme you never forget it. Ever. Never Ever.

It’s weird that I didn’t have more to say on the comic but there we are. Sometimes in The Sequential Chronicles you can only get so much out of something. I’m still figuring this all out as I go along anyway. I swear I wrote about this to talk about The Buddy Bears and Star Comics, I can own that. You will see many more Star Comics books in this too. Anyway, thank you all out there for reading this and I hope you all have a good one. Take care and I shall see you all next time for the next installment of The Sequential Chronicles.

Oh and I also managed to get over 1,200 words on the freaking Get Along Gang. I deserve a medal or a cookie. A cookie medal would work.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Art of Refinding your Mojo

So, hi Internet, this is straight up a blog. Nothing fancy, just me wanting to have a quick chat. I don’t really care that much about SEO here or anything else. All this post is about is really getting my mind back on track again. I’m slowly working my way back to functioning so to speak. It’s weird to admit this and I know not many people will read this blather but hey, here we are. I feel it’s important to sort of talk about what the heck is going through your mind. Some people don’t like talking about whatever goes through their head, me I’m fairly open about it. I was told not to be by more than a few people, which probably messed me up in some way. Oh well, but yeah hang in there for a bit as I talk to you all about me refinding my mojo.

Yet I still keep up the subheading gimmick either way because me. It’s my gimmick now.

In my quest to find my mojo again I’ve sort of been wandering. Just wandering about, not quite sure how to talk about my lost mojo. I’ve been a little shaky at times and not quite in a good headspace on occasion. It’s been a little all over the map in my mind. Maybe it’s heat or just a sense of feeling lost, that’s me. Yet I’m working my way back home. I’ve felt disenchanted with a lot of aspects in comics internet for one thing. Heck sometimes while I talk comics on twitter even I want to keep a level of detachment from the last. Which doesn’t help mojo either way but there we are. As any of us who hang out on twitter or any social media for too long, it’s a freaking hellscape out there.

I had talked about doing streaming for awhile but never could pull the switch on it. I just wandered around the twitch sphere a lot. Mostly lurking and trying to figure it out. I’m the grand master of lurking around either way. Heck getting me talking in a chat room for too long on anywhere is tough as nails. Yes I know it sounds weird from someone on Twitter but Twitter is easier than an immediate chat room. It’s hard to figure out what to say so you end up lurking, so much lurking. I started hopping around randomly. Hopping here and there and I found a random room. Weirdly enough I got welcomed. On one stream I wandered into they were playing Fallout 4 and I found a random Fallout 4 stream. This is where things get interesting.

Heck I am surprised by this one. To think just one random visit turned into something bigger than I expected.

I’ll talk more on this as I get closer to a streaming schedule but I found a group called The Nest. I got welcomed in and they helped me figure out how to stream. Seriously, I had no idea what I was doing but now with one supportive group, it helped get my mojo back. My very broken and battle damaged mojo is sort of healing itself back up again. Now I even want to write more again and get back on track after a period of not caring about much at all. It’s weird to say all of this but again it’s honest and well, sometimes you just have to admit you’re not in the best state of mind. Now I’m getting back in the game so to speak. Figuring out games to stream and a schedule for streaming in general. It’s going to be a lot of fun.

I’m looking forward to seeing where this adventure takes me with streaming and getting my writing life back on track. There will games, there will be talks, and overall, it’ll be a lot of fun. Thanks for hanging in there with me those of you that have. I’m slowly but surely enjoying myself again and I feel a lot less alone in the process. More updates to come and more cool columns as well. Take care everyone, bye for now.

Yes the Ambush Bug is totally random for this post but hey it works as a random image for this. Because actual Mojo is weird.