Monday, November 05, 2007

Well, That's Pretty Impressive

As I rule I have no use whatsoever for Halloween. I didn't care for it particularly as a kid, see no use for it as an adult ,and have even less patience for grown adults who do. My surliness in this matter should come as a surprise to no one.

But if the holiday involved more people walking around dressed like this . . . well, I would probably change my tune.

Remember, folks, the gentleman's name is Blackagar Boltagon.

Also, who knew that Apocalypse was such an oenophile?

I've always liked Apocalypse, or rather, the idea behind Apocalypse, given how few good stories he's been in. It's rather surprising in hindsight that he didn't make it into Morrison's X-Men run, but maybe his pedigree was too recent to be of interest, considering that Morrison's X-Men stories were more concerned with providing riffs on "classic" X-Men scenarios than dealing with a great deal of the muck and mire of post-Claremont X-shenanigans.

The great tragedy of Apocalypse (well, besides the raft of bad stories written about him), is that he's one of those characters whose definitive story has already been written. There's not a lot you can do with him after The Age of Apocalypse. Kirby never properly "finished" the Fourth World, so you can say that Darkseid is still a fairly open-ended character -- Morrison came close with "Rock of Ages", but that wasn't so much a Darkseid story as a, well, everything and the kitchen sink, with Darkseid's alternate-future Earth being but one component. Lee & Kirby did some fantastic, defining Dr. Doom stories, but they also left room for future interpretations.

However, The Age of Apocalypse said pretty much everything you can say on the subject. It was pretty good, for super-decadent 90s post-Image action-driven corporate comics (talk about your qualifying statements!), but it had the unfortunate side effect of sidelining a character who had been very methodically established over the previous decade as one of the X-Men's top bad guys, just a notch below Magneto and the Sentinels. Kind of like Thanos and the Infinity Gauntlet -- what do you do with a character like that after you take him to his zenith? Apocalypse showed up a couple of years back, if I recall, after lying low a long time in the aftermath of the late-90s clusterfuck that was "The Twelve". ("The Twelve" was a storyline so bad it somehow managed to encompass Wolverine being impersonated by a Skrull, Apocalypse being revealed to be a wizened old man in a giant puffy Apocalypse suit, and then having Apocalypse and Cyclops merged into one person. Or something.)

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