Avengers West Coast: Along Came a Spider-Woman (Avengers West Coast (1985-1994)) Reviews & OpinionsSubmit Avengers West Coast: Along Came a Spider-Woman (Avengers West Coast (1985-1994)) review or read customer reviews:
100 Reviews Found
Englehart was the best. The whole WCA run is awesome, and this is the best storyline of them all.Mind you: this is just about story. Al Milgrom's artwork is pathetic. Englehart's scripts are so good that they shine through anyway.
The West Coast Avengers (I still don't like the switch to calling them "Avengers West") was the first team book I ever read. It was my book from when I was about 8 years old or so, til it ended when I was graduating from high school. And this was the first storyline of theirs that I read and got hooked on. I ordered this to see if it was as good as I remembered...and I wasn't disappointed. It was even better. Not only does it feature some truly magnificent battles/fight sequences, but this is where Henry Pym finally began to redeem himself, the definitive Mockingbird story that set up everything that happened/went down with her and Hawkeye and still has ramifications today, Moon Knight becoming an Avenger, the change of Firebird to Espirita, and so much more. The whole spread throughout time effect is done brilliantly by Englehart, the art pops in what-to me-is the best way to do comic art-detailed clean lines in colors that truly pop. I loved this book and am very grateful they finally collected it. And while I appreciate them putting in the FF and Doctor Strange stories that take place during it, showing how they effected the Avengers and the Avengers effected them, I wish they had also included WCA #25 so we can see how Wonder Man realizes that he truly needs to stay in the WCA. But that's a small quibble. This book to me, shows everything that was great about Marvel in the 80s. The West Coast Avengers is the most underrated book in the Marvel canon to me. Things that happened in that series effect the Marvel Universe even today. Having this collection is truly a joy.
Just a great book. This was when it was firing on all cylinders. I know they're putting them back out because Hawkeye is key to the team (hey, he finally gets to be a real leader) and he was in The Avengers movie and I don't care. I'm just glad to get some great stories in an excellent format and great price.
This brought back so many good memories. WCA was one of the first comics I got sucked back into in adolescence, right in the middle of this storyline, actually.Having the whole thing in hardcover has made my day.
It has been a long time since I read these issues, but at the time of this writing, there are no other customer reviews for this book, so I'll tell you what I can recall.Englehart is at the top of his game here. He spreads the Whackos all over time and space until, at the height of the story, there are six or seven separate timelines going. Somehow he keeps it all easy to follow. Milgrom's artwork is clean and attractive throughout, as is was the story in which Mockingbird made a choice that condemned her character for many years. I won't spoil anything, but I will say that it was a very "adult" situation at a time when mainstream comics all had to be extremely kid-safe.I recommend this to anyone who likes the West Coast Avengers (singly or as a group), anyone who likes time-related stories, and anyone who enjoys an exciting superhero epic in the Mighty Marvel Manner.
Empty nesters decide it’s time to sell the house and drive across country to their son’s wedding prior to their own divorce. Along the way, they stop and collect memories, meeting up with old friends, lovers, and a daughter who’s pregnant. She’s involved with a former NBA star who is not the father. Seems like everyone they’ve ever known is in a non-traditional relationship, which makes the would-be divorcees look pretty normal. I’m an admitted fan of Richard Dreyfuss (and it’s not just because I’ve been told I look a bit like him). The way this film was directed made it feel like an off-Broadway play. It was fun to watch. Don’t expect anything profound, just light entertainment.
With a movie like this you wonder how all of the otherwise, main characters will work together and support the story. No problems here. While as might be expected, R. Downey Jr. comes across largely central, it is still a good mix and IMHO the best scenes in the movie involve the generated Hulk character. With that kind of successful melding of characters, Hollywood-scale egos and even computer generated characters; you have to give it up to the writers and director to make this the successful film that it is.
After the events of avengers disassembled, the avengers are no more. This takes place awhile after that, with a breakout at a super prison in the middle of New York for some reason. For various reasons, some better than others, there are super heroes in or near the prison and these people become the titular new avengers.I rather liked this volume, the action is good and the writing works for the best part. It is a bendis book, so be prepared for all the self-interruptions and repeated lines that implies. The art is also nice, although it isn't my favorite David finch work. The male necks are all really thick, and his noses seem way too sharp almost. Those issues, combines with his really pronounced cheekbones make his captain America and Peter Parker look almost identical beside the hair color.
This story involves the formation of new avengers after a large-scale prison breakout at the raft prison facility. The first 3 issues set up the situation where the heroes are forced to fight the villains who escaped as soon as electro causes the security systems to malfunction. The remaining 3 issues is formation of this roster of heroes: Spider-Man, Luke Cage, Spider-Woman, Captain America, Iron Man and Wolverine.
I was really disappointed when this version of this book ended because it had all my favorite characters in it and hadn't happened before or after. Luke's team was a really good mix of characters with a lot of good stories to tell. Thing, Spidey, Wolverine and Carol Danvers on the same team was a nice break from the "Big Three" Avengers. Also, it was cool to see a "street level" version of Avengers. This is probably my favorite incarnation of The Avengers. Hopefully, after Secret Wars, we'll see a reasonable facsimile of this team again someday!
What did I like.....? The structure , the story. The meta back story, the art, the layout and the character growth. I've been reading Marvel since the early 1960s and always felt there was some kinship with the works offered, the zeitgeist of the Twighlight Zone and the best of Science Fiction of that decade. This takes all of that and everything that Marvel did after and marches it into a future along all fronts I took note of and probably many more with passion, craft, a quantum scope of style and depth of story that does the Old Masters proud from Kirby and Ditko, through Steranko, Heinlein, Asimov and Sturgeon. Maybe I read too much into Marvel Comics but I grew up in my pre teen years reading classical strains of European mythology. It informed the world views of those peoples. This is the mythology of our new age. Nuff Said.
New Avengers is an important title for the Marvel Universe, and it starts here. The premise: after the original Avengers disassembled, a new handful of heroes have gotten together to carry on the legacy. I don't want to ruin any of the surprises behind "Breakout" (which there are a couple) but merely comment on the importance of the book and the series itself. By this point, if you did not know that Brian Michael Bendis has taken almost complete control of every major Marvel Universe Event since Avengers Dissassembled, you are a little behind. He's an author that you either love or hate for his directions. While two main stories happened prior to the start of New Avengers (Disassembled and Secret War), this is really where the Marvel Universe begins to see its change. The story behind "Breakout" to put it simply is that there is, you guessed it, a breakout, and many, nearly 50 villains from a wide array of comic series escape. This event, which gathers the New Avengers initially, affects the Marvel Universe as a whole for a great while into Bendis' Marvel timeline.(Punisher War Journal which started about the time of the Civil War made numerous references to this breakout during its run, just to give you an idea) New Avengers does not do a BAD job on anything. The dialogue isnt terrible, the action is solid, and the art doesn't leave you wanting more. That said, New Avengers is not a continuously great title. I thoroughly enjoyed "Breakout" and would recommend it to anyone who likes comics. The series afterward i found to be very off and on good...one thing i give Bendis credit for is his overall consistancy (ultimate spiderman comes to mind in that same respect). The importance of the New Avengers (and later the Mighty Avengers) is mostly as a companion to the main events in the Marvel Universe, and the MU is certainly full of events that are worth having extra information for. Although Bendis takes too much advantage of this during Secret Invasion (which is almost completely unreadable without the Avengers titles), New Avengers is a solid read that doesn't always leave you wanting more, but leaves you satisfied enough to continue reading if you have the time
A graphic novel collection of issues 1 through 6. The Avengers broke up after the Scarlet Witch had a breakdown that resulted in the death of several Avengers. But fate brings together a new team when there is a breakout at the Raft, a prison of super powered criminals. They decide to stay together to try and recapture the criminals who got is is a new mix of heroes with a new mission. It is interesting to see a team with an actual mission beyond just catching the latest villain to pop out of the woodwork. The heroes have a good chemistry from the very beginning. Finally the artwork is very nice comic book artwork.
This is a great Avengers team. It features Netflix heros Luke Cage, Jessica Jones, Iron Fist. Spider-man, Wolverine, the Thing from the Fantastic Four, Ms Or as she's called today Captain Marvel, Doctor Strange, And Hawkeyes ex wife Mokinbird. This book has a lot humor and action. I loved it.
This is what comics like the Avengers, X-men, Justice League etc. are supposed to be about. Cool action cool story. It's nice to see a comic finally get away from all of the political drama and conspiracy stories that in the end just dragged on and on. I am so tired of buying collections like all of the Siege books that had virtually no action and were more just tiring dialogue. When I want drama I will watch Smallville. When I pick up the Avengers this is what I expect to see, Luke Cage knocking something out, Spidey being in way over his head, Wolverine cutting crap up. The addition of the Thing was pretty cool s nice seeing the writers getting away from the older up-tight Avenger model teams from back in the 80's and putting some attitude into the team.
This trade contains two annuals and issues 31-34 of the Avengers. At the end of the collection, there is a three page letter from Bendis to the readers. In it, he informs us that he is ending his time on the Avengers to go and write the X-Men. I was surprised when I read it (I don't go to comic book stores anymore (all Amazon) and I don't keep up on comic news), but after thinking about it for a few minutes, it makes ndis wrote 232 Avengers comics -- a record. His 2004 to 2009 run was inspired. I'm a massive fan of Civil War and the Skrull Invasion. Bendis is a master at characterization and dialogue. Unfortunately, the last couple of years have been weak -- Fear Itself and the Avengers vs. X-Men storylines were forced, bulky and too heavy on is trade reads well and is a good book. I do recommend it. It's just not up to par with his other Avengers o problems: (1) Simon Williams attacks the Avengers in the Annuals that kick off the trade (something that Benids foreshadowed 2 years ago). He blames them for a variety of problems (Civil War, Scarlet Witch, Ultron) and says the Avengers should not exist. A few issues later, he returns and is semi-easily accepted back into the fold. Not cool (I'm still having a hard time accepting the Cap-Iron Man peace).(2) The Wasp is alive. She was killed during the Skrull Invasion, and then brought back 5 years later in this trade. It seemed like Bendis was bold when he took over the book and killed off Hawkeye, Antman (Scott Lang, not Pym), the Wasp, and a few other characters, but none of the iconic (or semi-iconic) characters remained dead. Ah, the problems with having to sell a comic forever (see Jason Todd).Bendis is great. I love his writing. He's my favorite author that works for the big 2, and it's not really close. That said, he made a good choice in leaving the Avengers when he did. It's time to move on.
I liked a lot of things about this collection, but there were some major elements I didn't like much, such as the way they reintroduced Hawkeye by having him take over the Ronin identity from Echo (not exactly a spoiler as it happens early on in this collection). The first issue here, which involves Hawkeye's journey back into the world, was very well done, however. I'd absolutely recommend this for fans of that character.We also get the New Avengers coming into conflict with the Hand, which would eventually lead directly into the Secret Invasion story. Overall some good stuff here, though the art wasn't my favorite. One thing I enjoyed about this team of established heroes coming together is when some characters are familiar with some things in the Marvel Universe and others are not, such as Spider-Man and Iron Man knowing Brother Voodoo when Wolverine and Ms. Marvel had no idea who he was. Bendis has always been good at that sort of thing.
The fifth volume of the otherwise great New Avengers series is just average. Essentially a collection of one shots, the volume touches base with most of the major New Avenger characters to get a feel for how they are reacting to the overall Civil War plotline. We get glimpses of characters like Luke Cage and Captain America dealing with the fallout and fracturing of the team. If you love Civil War or the New Avengers this is worth picking up to see the personal touches the main event has on the characters, but there isn't a New Avengers-specific storyline that connects each issue.
Writer Brian Michael Bendis, artist Steve McNiven and the production team have fashioned a sharp, entertaining story around one of Marvel's more unusual characters, the Sentry. Advancing the larger New Avengers story arc, while at the same time including some wonderful character beats, this surprisingly moving storyline is an interesting take on the themes of mental illness, guilt, isolation and the importance of reaching out and asking for help.
I sometimes wonder if Bendis was given the task of writing this book while being told by the higher-ups at Marvel that it had to include certain characters like Wolverine and Spider-Man. That can be a tough task, but Bendis does a great job getting the individual personalities right and giving each character a role to play in the overall ough that is a highlight, the downside here is that there seem to be a few random things going on here (such as an apparent symbiote infestation?) that never really get explained but only show up to further some other purpose in the arc. Maybe they were events from other titles crossing over. I don't e main focus in the second half of this collection is decent, however, as the Hood makes his move with his assembled villains, though the only ones other than Hood who get much face time are the Wrecking Crew and, to a lesser extent, is is worth reading if you want the lead-up to Secret Invasion or if you want to complete the collection of this run. Not essential reading to the big picture though.
Be warned: This collection doesn't actually feature many Avengers for about half the book, new or otherwise. It is a good story though if you enjoyed the main Secret Invasion story and want a more complete background on how the Skrulls infiltrated Earth. It also has a great chapter in which we see the Skrulls' reaction to the House of M, which I thought was a great touch, since the main story revealed Skrulls had been here for a while, and it made sense to see them reacting to events we had already seen from a more straightforward at makes up about half of this collection. The rest are pieces best read alongside the main story, as they pick up in the middle of other scenes taking place in the main is was easily better than Book 1, simply because it at least told a continuous story for much of the volume. Definitely pick this up if you liked Secret Invasion.
The New Avengers can't catch a break. As if the Civil War wasn't enough. Or the fact that they're wanted criminals, and with their former teammates hunting them down. As if it's not enough that they've just faced off against Electra and her deadly group of ninja assassins, the Hand. Now the fit really hits the shan. In the last issue (see New Avengers Vol. 6: Revolution) it's revealed that Electra is actually a shape-shifting Skrull. This causes a big, big problem as these outlaw Avengers now suspect that a secret invasion is in the works. But how long have the Skrulls been skulking around? And how big the conspiracy, how deep the infiltration? Could the Skrulls have been somehow responsible for the Civil War? So, these renegade heroes now don't even know if they can trust each other ("Do you feel Skrully?" asks one Avenger to another). Paranoia sows its seed and quickly threatens to shatter the group. In fact, one member promptly skedaddles.On top of it all, a demon-ridden villain calling himself the Hood ('cause, y'know, he has a hood) is scheming to take over New York's criminal underworld. And he's making quick headway. The Hood is a thinking criminal, and he espouses organization and cooperation amongst New York's criminal element. It also strikes him that, with the Superhuman Registration Act lending ready access to the identities of many in the superhero community, one way to build up instant credibility is to make an example of a superhero. To quote the Hood: "One by one. We get them where they live. All of them. No one is safe. Not the icons, not the up-and-comers." His actions put him and his superpowered crime syndicate on a collision course with Luke Cage and his crumbling outlaw band. So far Dr. Strange's mystical dwelling had provided a foolproof sanctuary for these fugitive Avengers. But not anymore.Oh, and there's also some nonsense about all of New York City being transformed into symbiotes (like Venom). This might've been interesting except that amongst the infected are the New Avengers, so that's no fun. Plus, it was told in broad-stroked flashback by Luke Cage, one of the two who didn't get infected (him because of his invulnerable skin, Wolverine because of his healing factor). Apparently, this symbiote storyline is told in full in an issue of Mighty Avengers. But since I don't follow that series much ("bleccch!" to the Mighty Avengers), I guess I won't get the full lowdown on what is is THE NEW AVENGERS Vol. 7: THE TRUST and it collects issues #32-37 and The New Avengers Annual #2. I figure, as long as Brian Michael Bendis keeps churning out New Avengers stuff, I'll keep reading 'em. To be honest, though, I was getting pretty tired of the Hand story arc, so I'm glad Bendis has (for now) moved on. This new arc paves the way for the next big Marvel Comics event, Secret Invasion, which is an 8-issue limited series. In an IGN interview, Bendis let out that he'd been planning this thing for years and that there's been a hint of the Skrull invasion even as far back as New Avengers #1. Color me though the suspicions and hostility stemming from the Electra Skrull debacle continue to nag our team, the Hood proves to be a hell of a distraction. Yup, I've read Brian K. Vaughan's gritty limited series The Hood (New Avengers). I liked Parker Robbins as a fractured, small-time thug who kind of had the best intentions; I never thought he had it in him to become a formidable crime boss. Obviously the demon in the cloak is influencing the crap out of him. How tough is the Hood? Well, he busted Wolverine up pretty good. In fact, what he did to old Wolvie made me cringe a lot.I can't say much for the Hood's super-powered yoyos. They're mostly lower-tiered villains (Madame Masque, the Wizard, Chemistro, etc.), and I'm pretty sure even Howard the Duck could wipe the floor with them. The only respectable bunch in the Hood's group is the Wrecking Crew. Let's face it, it's pretty much the Hood's intelligence and planning (and a bit of that brimstone mojo) which make him a force to be reckoned a personal way, the splitting of the Avengers into two very different teams is a good thing. The Mighty Avengers took away the characters I didn't really care for (Iron Man, the Sentry), while the New Avengers stuck with the cool set (Luke Cage, Wolverine & Spidey). The New Avengers have recently welcomed Dr. Strange, Iron Fist, and a resurrected Clint Barton into their ranks, and two of 'em are still around by the end of this collection. It's disappointing, though, that Fist and Luke haven't interacted more in these pages. On the other hand, I'm definitely digging Luke's marital relationship with Jessica Jones. Luke and Jessica just feel like a real couple. Currently, their relationship is bordering on rocky, what with the fugitive status and that Skrull thingie. Come to think of it, the way the final issue here ends, it's guaranteed to tick the hell out of Luke ere's really nothing more to say about Brian Michael Bendis, except that the dude is gold. Leinil Yu provides the brunt of the artwork, which tends to come rough and rugged. Nevertheless, it definitely has its own energy and raw appeal. Meanwhile, Carlo Pagulayan's more polished looking stuff is showcased in The New Avengers Annual #2, the site of the no-holds-barred rumble between the New Avengers and the Hood & his supervillain crew. This collection guest-stars Tigra, the Night Nurse, Deathlok (kind of), and the government-sponsored Mighty Avengers (who might actually boast a conscience after all, underneath all that self-righteous bluster).Oh, and in issue #37, Spidey makes Wolverine laugh.
Cindy Lou from Cindy Lou's Cookies is featured in this book as having the best Morning Glory muffin in the US. She also has the most delicious cookies you've ever tasted. She's based in Miami FL. Her website is
Readers, I'm a breakfast person. But not breakfast for breakfast most of the time. I like breakfast all day! And I love trying recommended breakfast places when we travel. Like the San Diego place with the mammoth biscuits we couldn't even finish, or the food truck breakfast tacos we had on our last trip to Houston... It's always been this way for me: midnight trips to the local 24-hour diner in my college and post-college years were a heaven of fried eggs and gravy fries, Corned Beef Hash with Dill Hollandaise was kind of a life-changing discovery when we found our favorite brunch place after moving to Colorado, and the fabulous Cajun Benedict concoction I had for lunch on my last trip to Lafayette is the stuff of dreams! And I haven't even mentioned some of our other local favorites we take visitors to l that's to say that I think (or thought) America's Best Breakfasts: Favorite Local Recipes from Coast to Coast would be the absolute perfect cookbook for me. In their newest book Lee Brian Schrager and Adeena Sussman highlight some of the best breakfasts from around the country and provide readers with the recipes to make them in their very own kitchens. Yum!But there are two things I don't love about this book. First, the title and premise are a bit misleading. The authors don't highlight ALL of the states. In fact, they hop skip and jump straight from LA, San Francisco, and Portland over to Omaha, Kansas City, St. Louis, Cleveland, and Ohio with nothing in between. That's a whole lot of states not covered by even one highlighted breakfast spot! Now I don't know the reason for this and (most of you don't know this) considering I once wrote cookbooks that required places to agree to have their submitted recipes printed in a book, it could simply be that the authors intended to highlight ALL of the states and had issues getting recipes. I don't know. But there are sections highlighting places without recipes in the book as well, so that still doesn't explain why so many states aren't represented at second issue with this book is that in perusing the recipes I noticed a lot of them require quite a bit of prep for multiple components, some of which have to be made a day ahead of time. Now, like I said I'm not hellbent on breakfast for breakfast but when I went to make the "Caramelized Grapefruit with Basil Sugar," for example, I was not prepared to have to let the grapefruit chill for at least an hour before I could eat it. It's broiled grapefruit with sugar! And considering it's got olive oil on it, it was essentially cold, greasy grapefruit...Not all of the recipes were overly complicated or unappealing, though. The "Bacon, Egg, and Cheese 'Paco'" (a brilliant creation courtesy of the Food on a Roll Truck in Miama) is a breakfast wrapped in a pancake (why did I never think to do this?!). "Marlene Schrager's German Breakfast (For Dinner)" is a tasty and easy scramble as is the slightly more time consuming (only slightly) "Devil's Mess" from Richmond, VA's Millie's spite of my above issues, the variety and types of recipes is actually quite nice. There are omelets, crêpes, donuts, breakfast sandwiches, and even pop tart recipes included. There are a number of regional and ethnic dishes as well - "Pozole" (from San Jalisco of San Francisco), "Koko Moco" with a homemade mushroom gravy (from Koko Head Cafe in Honolulu), "Pho Bo" (courtesy of Dông Phuong in New Orleans), Ingrid Hoffman's "Yuca Buns" and an Avena Breakfast Smoothie, and even a Scrapple recipe from DC's Birch & Barley.And while the "Morning Glory Muffins" (Panther Coffee and Cindy Kruse's Baked Goods in Miami) may have made me dirty every dish in my kitchen to make them and Lambert's (Austin) "Frito Pie" requires the forethought (and self control) of keeping extra brisket on hand after a BBQ meal, the argument could be made that there is enough variety and enough recipes like Versailles' (Miami) "Tortilla de Papas" and Miss Lily's (New York) "Coconut Pancakes" to appease even someone like me who doesn't want to think about breakfast a day ahead of time.I do still wish there had been more representation of the other states, though.
These stories are Avengers at their core, nothing new or different but just the base characters doing what you would expect. All solid stories throughout, it’s just not groundbreaking or innovative work.
This is a collection of short stories. I love Geoff Johns' work with the DC Justice League and wanted to see what he would do with the Avengers. Overall it was boring and bland. I've read more exciting Avengers books. I'd pass if given the opportunity.
Johns starts his run on Avengers with a clear voice. Those who liked the clear, positive days of Busiek will experience a shock as Johns drifts toward the dark end of the e art is ever the story lines at times meander.
Geoff Johns snuck up on us at the time and rocked our world with these energizing and compelling Avengers om the Standoff to the Search for She-hulk,Johns stripped the existing team down to the bare bones in regards to action adventure and plotting while taking some bold creative risks and creating a tad of controversy along the way.His gift for characterization shone thru as he wasn't afraid to shake the team to its core,and this was pre-disassembled mind you.He is also responsible for my all time favorite Captain America moment as Cap smashes thru the window telling the Red Skull "Dont you DARE salute that flag!" Melodramatic? Definitely, but Johns could weave in melodrama,shock value and excellent dialogue like few before or after him.I hated to see his run end so abruptly but this collection is a true gem of any Avenger fans collection.Excellent piece of Marvel history and an awesome take on Earths Mightiest Heores.
Geoff Johns does a good job with the Avengers in this second volume. While nothing is necessarily ground breaking for most of the characters used in these stories they are still fantastic representations and moments. Jack of Hearts is the real exception to this and Johns does more in his time with the character than anyone before or since. All the art throughout is great stuff form top tier artists. This run likely isn’t at the top of anyone’s list of greatest Avenger’s stories due to them mostly being forgettable but still worth the time for people who enjoy solid storytelling and great superhero art.
Very enjoyable. Geoff Johns has worked his magic on one of my favorite franchises in only the way he knows how. He shed more light on how being a hulk would be like, and makes the characters feel human. Vision for example, sees something dramatizing, but he (even though is only an android) feels something, and Geoff Johns shows that beautifully. As always he has a great emotional and serious touch on whatever he can get his hands on. I am limited in my review, because I do not like giving out spoilers. But I can say, if you are a fan of Geoff Johns' work, or the avengers, then this will NOT disappoint. My money well spent. I hope you guys give this classic a chance :D
The first half of this volume deserves five stars. The second half deserves four. Johns faced enormous difficulty with marvel editorial, and his finale shows that. Unlike Busiek who ended his run upbeat, Johns writes a somewhat sad farewell. A lingering wish that he could have done more. The art is stellar, Marvel and Johns both have good lists of artists.What ultimately earns this collection three instead four stars is the absence of any additional material. No commentary from Johns. Nothing but a handful of character sketches from the artists. Marvel may as well have just duck tapped the trades together.
Comics are a graphic medium so to me, the quality of the art is just as important, (if not more so at times), than the quality of the writing. Good art can make a story shine, bad art can destroy it, regardless of how strong or mediocre the writing is. For me, this book is split right down the e first story features a solo Falcon, (Avengers #64). The story is kind of mediocre but the art by Ivan Reis (inked by Oclair Albert) is truly breathtaking in spots. There's several big money shots of the Falcon in flight that are really incredible. For that alone I find myself flipping back through this story a e next six, from Avengers #65-70, feature the Red Zone story arc. A poisonous, red, death cloud is unleashed over Mt Rushmore and the Avengers have to contain it and figure out who is responsible. This arc has plenty of action, crisp dialogue and the return of a classic villain. The art by Olivier Copiel, (inks by Andy Lanning) is top notch all the way through showing lots of detail and a great sense of drama.And then the decline starts. Avengers #71 is penciled by Steve Sadowski with inks by Andrew Currie. It features Yellowjacket and the Wasp in a solo story set in Vegas. Whirlwind shows up, the fight ensues and we close. There's some nice character development between Wasp and Yellowjacket as they reach an agreement about where the level of their relationship is going to continue at. The art is serviceable but noting to write home about. It's your basic fill-in issue. Sadowski returns for Avengers #76, the last story in the book. This features Ant-Man and Jack of Hearts and shows some major turning points for both characters. There's some good action but from more of a domestic angle. No supervillains here but you could easily argue the one involved is even more vile.Avengers #72-75 is the four part, "The Search For The She-Hulk." She-Hulk was severley damaged in the Red Zone arc so the Avengers now have to track her down. This story was the weakest of the book so the only thing that could save it was some really explosive art. Instead we get Scott Kollins which forces this mediocre tale to tank. Kollins seems to think he's illustrating a coloring book with wide linework and no shading causing it to look very flat without any sense of weight or drama. He relies heavily on the colorist to pull this thing together and unfortunately, that doesn't happen. On the other hand, you will get to see the She-Hulk with a lion's mane sized pile of hair on top of her head and the Scarlet Witch with a tightly wound perm so there is , this book is half great, half so-so. 50-50. I got this for less than it's original cover price so for me, the good stuff was worth the cost.
Let me start by saying this, I love harry potter. I read the books 2-3 times per year since I was a child. I've grown up with these books. These books are a part of me, I've named my children after characters in these books. I have 3 tattoos, all of which are harry potter. I'm a dedicated fan, entirely obsessed to be candid. I have waited for this book like the rest of you.I can handle the fact that it's written as a play, I was expecting this. I was fully prepared to accept this. I waited all night for this to be released to my kindle (it's 3 a.m and I've just finished). I sped through the cursed child and my final thought was, this was disappointing .I'm skeptical of how much jk rowling actually contributed to this. I get more of a harry potter vibe from the fantastic beasts trailer than this entire book. The plot was bad, almost everything was bad. It was like a poorly written sucks that I'm saying this because harry potter is a part of soul. I went into this thinking it was everything I'd ever hoped for.I'm not saying don't buy the book, by all means buy it. Read it. See for yourself. I'm not being cynical, rowling is the queen of my world. This is the first and likely only bad review I will give regarding her.Just be warned, this does not feel like harry potter. This was not intricate, well excuted, thought out, or clever. The characters were not true to themselves. I think the best way to go into reading this and saving yourself from despair is to read it as a fanfic and not the true works of rowling. It would be tolerable had her name not been involved, I expected so much more.And now I will try to purge this book from my memory and continue to live in her past works of art. I still have big hopes for fantastic beasts and that's enough for now.
Spoilers!!Huge Harry Potter fan-- 16 years of reading!! So I was incredibly excited for the new one. I keep wondering if there's a therapy group where all the disgruntled fans can congragate and weep together. I'm also refusing to consider in cannon as it was not JKR herself who penned. What they did to the INTEGRITY of these characters. I'm sick over it. The entire 7 book series was about friendship, love and loyalty, and Harry knew that; and most importantly, knew that's what made him different from V. You're telling me, he, Ron and Herm didn't continue to live and instil those values in their children? Rose was a bully, who was prejudice against someone without knowing them first. Harry would never said he wished his kid wasn't his, or sacrificed his kid's only friendship over gosip. Harry wouldn't have choosen work over time with his family, which after all he'd been through WAS ALL HE EVER WANTED.If someone were to ask me, what is your favorite thing about Harry Potter?, I would hands down reply: Harry Potter's moral integrity, that is the heart of the series. It's his choosing to sacrifice himself for what is good. It's choosing friendship over suspicion. It's a defiant effort to turn towards the pain of loving and losing, then choosing not to love at all. It's choosing to do what right, and best for others even when it hurts, is inconvenient, or scary. It's fighting for truth and justice, even when you're the only one doing it. And when you move away from those central themes, the integrity of who we know Harry (and friends) to have PROVEN himself to be, you destroy Harry Potter and all that he stood for for 7 books. This new book is the worst kind of trash, the one that destroys the soul of our so, what they did to calm, measured, quirky, wise Dumbledore, making him a weepy, rude mess, who spoke in cliches, issuing a completely unnecessary "apology" to why Harry was at the Dursleys, when Dumbledore had already apologized profusely for that in HP5 AND severely told off the Dursleys in HP6 for their abusive behavior! It was just phony emotional porn! And Ron's a proper idiot who got drunk during his wedding?! He would have never disrespected Hermione like that. Hermione was neither clever, nor charming; she didn't come up with hardly any solutions. And what a weak, floppy mess Harry was during the fight scene?! His 16 year old self could have fought better. It's like they sucked the soul out of the books, like a dementor wrote it!! This is not even pointing out the horrible plot holes! No, I refuse this book is real. It's a bloody mess!
I want to start this by saying that I am a huge Harry Potter fan. I grew up with Harry, I went to midnight premiers of the books and movies. I was so excited for this play. I wanted to like it. I really really did. If you are a fan I would say read it and form your own opinion. Here is what I thought:- Where was George?- Where was Teddy? Because he was in the station in th epilogue.- Where was Hugo? You know the other child Ron and Hermione have.- Lily and James Potter… MIA for most of the play. Like James? Was he even in it?- Why was Ron running the joke shop? He is an Auror. WHAT HAPPENED TO GEORGE? WHY WASN’T HE RUNNING THE SHOP?!- Let’s talk about Ron. Why was he so non-Ron like? His character, all jokes no supporting and listening to Harry and Hermione. Also he is hardly in the play.- Harry’s relationship with Albus. Everything about this is upsetting.o In the last book when they are dropping off the children at the Hogwarts express, the kids are genuinely confused as to why everyone is looking at them and Ron makes a joke saying “I’m famous”. It is deduced that the kids do not know the extent of everything their parents went through to save the world. Yet Albus feel the weight of his dad’s legacy. Huh.o Then we have Harry SEPARATING Albus and Scorpious. Let’s go back to that epilogue where they all see Draco with his family and a joke gets made about not playing with his son. Which then Hermione corrects and Ron says to beat him on test but not to get too cozy and marry him. Again, making it seem that everything in the past is in the past. Then there is Harry’s history of friends at Hogwarts. He knows. He would not separate his son from his ONLY friend.- Albus choosing Slytherin for a friend? Awesome.- The rumors of Voldemort having a child and that not being stopped by the ministry? Stupid. The ministry would have stopped panic about an heir being possible. Also Voldemort was conceived without love. He never cared about having an heir because he wanted to be in power. An heir would have been competition for him.- More on that point. Bellatrix pregnant. She would have loved to mother the Dark Lords child; there would have been no greater honor. But. This does not work with the original time line. Bella is never pregnant, she fights at the battle. And then the gang goes to Malfoy manor there is no baby in sight. And if. IF. Voldemort would have wanted an heir; wouldn’t he have made it a horcrux and offered it more protection?- Sexual tension between Scorpious and Albus. Yet Albus has a crush on Delphi and Scorpious on Lily. I feel as though either they should have been opened about their romantic feels towards each other or this should have not been included.- The flashbacks/dreams Harry has. When Dudley is mentioned (yay!) and you find out petunia is dead. I know she was horrible but I do think Harry would have deep feelings about his mother’s sister passing. I liked the blanket part.- Bellatrix husband somehow got out of Azkaban and raised Delphi. How did he escape Azkaban? Because there is no way he got pardoned. So how did he escape? And after escaping how was there no alarm over him escaping. Sirius Black escapes and the freaking muggle minister is alerted! Then there is a massive breakout and it is all over the daily prophet. But hey, this guy who tortured the Longbottoms into insanity he escapes and it’s cool. Yeah, sounds legit.- The new prophecy. First of all: how did it happen with no one knowing about it except Delphi. Who made it? It’s sounding more and more as if this witch convinced herself that she is the heir of the dark lord.- Cedric. Cedric a character who was noble and good and died oh so tragically. This character who was loyal and kind and helped Harry turns DARK SIDE?!?! BECAUSE HE LOSES THE CUP. WHAT?!?! CEDRIC A DEAD EATER HAHAHAHA NOPE NOT FUNNY. Thank you for turning a good character and completely changing him for the worse. Thank goodness you did not include Sirius Black in your play.- On that same characters changing note. The trolley lady…. Hm. I will just leave it at that.- Polyjuice potion. That s*** takes a month to make. I read the chamber of secrets. Many times. It takes an effing month. And you need a piece of the person you are changing into. But wait not, here I got some polyjuice potion here in my back pocket and I just happen to carry my dad and his best friends hairs at all times. So let’s change into them and break into the ministry.- Btw that potion is not necessary because you can transfigure a HUMAN. Seven books and that never came out. Must be very dark magic.- On the dark magic note. Harry duels Delphi (a eighteen year old) and she is stronger? Um. Do we not recall Harry being a teenager and he beat Voldemort. His wand is the s***. So yeah how does this even make sense?- The no sugar diet. WHAT. Sounds like something movie Ginny would do, not book Ginny.
First and foremost, I was well aware that this was a play, not a novel; but even by those standards this is a disgrace. If it was possible I would give 0 stars. I am horrifically obsessed with these books, for the past 19 years (tattoos, pet names, my adult apartment covered in maps and memorabilia - you get the point). Every Christmas and July 31st I have my own HP marathon - movies, and books, respectively. After re-reading the entire series just a day before reading this I was almost in a HP PTSD shock. I have read awful, poorly written, fanfiction that was lightyears better than this tragedy of a story (even calling it that seems overly kind).The characters you love and adore to abhore are completely missing - just their names remain, and tiny fragments of what seems to be a stolen history of their lives. I sighed, scowled, and groaned mercilessly while reading, and eventually completely gave up trying to understand even a semblance of what was going on in this is is NOT cannon, nor something I can physically or mentally endure sitting on my bookshelves next to what was the light of my childhood (and early adulthood if I'm honest). I will rightly say that I had a massive nerd freak-out, and actually tore the book to pieces to prevent myself from re-reading it, as I knew I would as a sadistic form of torture - and it was cathartic as hell.If you only watched the movies, you may be able to endure this story; but the Potterheads who live and die for these books are just testing their patience, never-questioning love of all things HP, and the sainthood of Rowling by reading this story. (I am aware it is not her writing, and that with the play coming out she was in bind to publish, but that does not excuse this abortion of a story. Even as a play the plot alone is only a modicum of what anyone truly in love with these characters and world would be expecting.)**SPOILER WARNING** So many issues: the timeturner now apparently having the ability to go back decades, and create butterfly effect implications; Hermione's visage as a cold, cruel, DADA professor; Harry's Hermione-like myopic focus on his work, above his family; Ron - as a whole; too many others to list without losing my cool once ter waiting 9 years for another story, this is truly heartbreaking, and worthy of tears!**And yes, that's my cat, Albus, looking on approvingly of the tattered remains of my sanity that night.
I'm just so disappointed. I'm finding it difficult to find the words.Obligatory remarks: I have loved Harry Potter for 20 years. I'm reading the books to my daughter, I have read the 7 books more times than I can count, I have led my students in countless discussions and debates about the books over the last 15 years. I also read more Harry Potter fan fiction than is normal or healthy. I've read every possible scenario of what happens to these characters after the canon books.I was so excited about the Cursed Child that I could barely sleep this week. I knew it was a script, I knew Jo didn't write it. But I was excited. Now, I'm bummed.******I WILL NOW BE SUPER SPOILERY:SPOILERS SPOILERS SPOILERSThings I liked:-Albus is a Slytherin! Yay!! This was my one wish for this book, along with hoping Scorpius wasn't the antagonist.-Scorpius. I'm a huge fan of all things Malfoy. Seriously, Draco Malfoy is my favorite character. I'm pleased with how Scorpius was written in the play. The rumor that he is Voldy's son? Brilliant.-There were times when I could really see the original Ron and Ginny in their characters here. Not often, but occasionally.-Who wouldn't like to see Snape again?-I'm glad to see that Harry is struggling with his experiences. Let's face it, with all he's been through, he would definitely have PTSD. The epilogue in Deathly Hallows always struck me as a little too "shiny happy."The disappointments:-Time moves too quickly, and we get almost superficial glimpses of why both Albus and Scorpius are struggling in school. I would have much preferred for the story to focus more on their experiences at Hogwarts. With Rose as the antagonist with a Malfoy prejudice? That would have been great. Truly great. And unexpected.-Slytherin. On a deep, gut level, I've needed Albus to be a Slytherin. I've always been troubled by the portrayal of Slytherin House in both the books and the movies. They are the Evil House. Why, WHY would Hogwarts condone the sorting of a quarter of the school into Death Eater training grounds? If Salazar Slytherin was so evil and essentially a racist, why does Hogwarts still have a Slytherin House? And what is the message to the students who are sorted into Slytherin? "You're evil, kid. Enjoy being a Death Eater!"Wasn't the takeaway in Books 1-7 that we shouldn't judge Slytherins unfairly? Draco actually saved Harry by not "recognizing" him at the Manor. Narcissa saved Harry by being brave enough to lie to Voldemort. Snape is by far the bravest, most extraordinary character in the series. And let's not forget Regulus Black, who knowingly sacrificed his life at a young age in order to destroy ONE Horcux and give others a chance to finish the job. Slytherin more than redeemed itself in the series. And the epilogue reinforces this when Harry tells Albus that it's okay to be in Slytherin. I knew in 2007 that Albus HAD to be a Slytherin. Surely the House system has changed by the time he goes to school? Surely Hogwarts is sorting students on their qualities and recognizing that all four Houses are valid and none are evil? Surely Hogwarts would rather abandon the House system than continue to train dark wizards in Slytherin?Yes, in The Cursed Child, my dream came true and Albus was sorted into Slytherin. And he became best of friends with Scorpius, just like I had hoped. But there is no redemption for Slytherin to be found. The Slytherin kids continue to be [email protected]#$%!&, even to "their own." They bully Albus and Scorpius. We are never for a second shown that Albus possesses Slytherin qualities, nor are we shown that many people can possess the Slytherin traits (cunning, shrewdness, leadership skills) and still be a good person. This play just reinforces the same old Slytherin prejudices. There was an opportunity to redeem Slytherin, and it was lost. Spectacularly.-Everyone else has said it and I will say it, too: Time-Turners. No. Just...no. There was plenty of material possible without having to revisit the "greatest hits" dates of the original series. How convenient that the play ends on October 31, 1981. It's Back to the Future. And not in a good way. I actually groaned when I saw the date. And again, not in a good way. Not to mention that Time-Turners have always been self-fulfilling; they are a closed loop, if you will. We've never seen them change anything. Going back in time always happened. Essentially, when you go back in time, you're only doing what you've ALREADY done. In Azkaban, Harry and Hermione always were there- they didn't change anything. They didn't change time. They just repeated what they had already done. We also have never seen anyone "go back" with a Time-Turner. They just catch up with the e you telling me that there are no other stories to tell? There are- fanfic is full of better ideas that don't involve traveling through time (and don't get me started on the fact that a canon Time-Turner can't travel that far back.) I was hoping this would be a Hogwarts fic, maybe interspersed with Harry dealing with his issues. Maybe even Snape wasn't dead. In canon, we never see a body after the fact, not a grave, or a funeral. A search for Snape would have made my heart so happy. But maybe I read too much fanfic. There are logical ways to make that happen, too. Draught of Living Death, always carrying Nagini's antivenin with him, etc. Or, barring that, what if Snape's portrait was included instead? Albus befriending the portrait at Hogwarts? Portrait Snape as Albus's mentor and advisor? Sign me up.-Cedric. Where do I start with Cedric? I'll start here: how convoluted is it to imagine that Cedric living would have resulted in Harry's death and Voldy's success? There is no chance that this is where Delphi would have started, prophecy or no. No chance. If I had the ability to travel through time, and I wanted Voldemort to win, I would not start with Cedric Diggory. I would have started with convincing V not to attempt to kill Harry. (I know she gets there eventually, but it's a Plan B.) I would have traveled to another time and killed Harry. Or prevented the destruction of a Horcrux. Or talked V into changing a Horcrux into something less obvious. Or talked him out of taking Nagini to the final battle. Or corrupted Harry into joining V instead. The possibilities are endless. But saving Cedric is not on that list. It's not. It can't be defended. It's a HUGE coincidence that saving Cedric would cause him to become a Death Eater. And logically, Delphi would have not known this or even considered the possibility. The "prophecy" was a ridiculous, clearly last-minute addition in order to lend some credibility to going back to the Triwizard Tournament. But we know Cedric. There's not a chance that he would become a Death Eater. He's the most loyal, fair-minded character in the entire series. It's not even slightly believable.-There's a second Time-Turner? What?? It's like the second launch device in Contact. I know I'm mentioning too much fanfic, but seriously, there are better amateur stories. And better HP time travel stories out there. JK destroyed all the Time-Turners for a reason during Order of the Phoenix. So they wouldn't ex machina the entire story. Are there really no other ideas?? Here's one: Harry being the Master of Death creates some interesting possibilities. I know he destroys the Elder Wand, but maybe he still is the Master of Death as the last owner of the Hallows? Wouldn't that be a better story? Harry discovering he can't die? Or maybe gifted with special powers from Death?-We come to the worst of all. Voldemort has a child. Voldemort. Has. A. Child. It's hard to write that, because that's ridiculous. It's dumber than what most 12-year-old fanfic authors would come up with. It's rehashing the same old tired storylines, a problem that plagues most sequels. "But this time, Voldy's a hot chick!" Not to mention, the logistics of her birth are impossible to believe. This means that Bellatrix was heavily pregnant at Easter, when she tortured Hermione at the Manor. Also, who would have returned to the Manor after the final battle to find a baby? Well, logically, the Malfoys would have. So Draco should know, at the very least. If we insist on this storyline of V's baby, I would have preferred (by a LOT) that Scorpius really was Voldemort's kid. We all knew from the beginning that he wasn't, because we all just knew the story wouldn't have gone that way. What an awesome shock it might be to have Draco produce the second Time-Turner and explain that the rumors are true! And how does Scorpius deal with that? How would his friendship with Albus have progressed? How would Harry feel about his son in any kind of relationship with Voldy's kid? See? It's a more intriguing story than what we were given.-Lack of complexity. Books 1-7 were brilliantly constructed, with hints of what was to come almost from the beginning. The Cursed Child is not complex. There is no challenge. I love reading to my 7-year-old and exploring those complexities in the first 7 books. It's work for her, but ultimately worth it. TCC is formulaic and lacking the depth and cleverness of the originals. Hermione puts simple riddles on her bookshelf to hide the Time-Turner? Really? That's only one example!-I know that this next point is the ultimate fanfic reader hang-up. Let's face it: everyone's gay in fanfic. But I believe I know why, or at least why I enjoy it. Fanfic is the best chance to see how little changes might affect a well-known story and well-known characters. What if Harry were sorted into Slytherin? What if Voldemort didn't bring Nagini to the final battle? What if Lily died but James didn't? What if Sirius didn't go after Peter in '81 and had the chance to raise Harry? These sorts of hypothetical situations are the cornerstone of good fanfic. And they are why fanfic exists, to be honest- to see the ripples in the pond that little changes can make. I think this is why everyone is gay in fanfic. It brings up some interesting ideas: If Harry had a crush on Draco, how would that have affected Sixth Year? Or if Harry had been in a relationship with Cedric, how would that have changed the Triwizard Tournament? Would he have personally tried to save Cedric after the fact? Love and relationships are the big, pivotal plot points in most stories on the planet. Changing relationships up helps us see different possibilities in a well-worn story. It's a fun exercise!I say the above because I want you all to be aware that I am not some fanfic-crazy woman who wants all the characters to be gay. I just like the mental exercise of imagining how little changes affect the entire story. When I heard that the Cursed Child would be about Albus, and then I saw the pictures of Scorpius, I pretty instantly hoped first that they would be friends, and then I wondered how them being more than friends could affect the characters (Harry and Draco can handle being civil, but could they be in-laws?) And I almost got my wish. Scorpius seemed to have deeper feelings. It is expressly written that he has issues with Albus flirting with Delphi. That he was jealous. I know Dumbledore is gay. But come on- they can't be afraid to insinuate that at least a few people in the wizarding world are gay. Statistically, many of them should be. At least leave it ambiguous, like with Dumbledore. Instead, they have to include at the very end that Scorpius likes Rose. Rose, the least interesting character in the whole damn play. And that's saying Thoughts:I suspect that the play itself is spectacular. The acting, the costumes, the sets, the special effects, all of them are most likely breathtaking and divert from the plot issues. But reading just the script exposes all the issues. We have no opportunity to be distracted by the spectacle. That's why I think releasing this was a huge mistake.I'm worried that this has tainted the first books for me. I don't want to read Goblet of Fire and picture Albus and Scorpius (and Scorpius 2) there during all three tasks. Ultimately, this story adds nothing, only subtracts. There must be literally thousands of stories in the wizarding world to tell. I'm so disappointed that JK signed off on a story that included Time-Turners, events from Books 1-7, and Voldemort 2. It's poorly-constructed fanfic that we now are forced to accept as canon.I wish this all hadn't happened. I was enjoying picturing what the whole gang was doing now. Now that I know, I wish I didn't know. I'm going to go back to better stories. I'm going to eat my feelings and pretend it didn't end like this.
I should say, I'm a massive Harry Potter fan. I'm such a fan of the novels that, at times, I can't watch the films because they are nothing like the books. I eagerly awaited the arrival of this script, and hoped that it would continue the story in a way that left me longing for more. I was severely 'll read it in the other reviews, I'm sure, but the plot holes and characterization of this story were just horrendous. There is no other word for it. You might find yourself, as I did, occasionally swept along in the story, but that doesn't make it a good story. It certainly doesn't excuse the poor writing which is filled to the brim with trope after trope, cliche after cliche, corny phrase after corny phrase. That JK Rowling would lend her support to a script of such poor quality is inconceivable. Perhaps she was confunded?By page 42 I was ready to be done, by page 242 I was laughing hysterically. This script is pure tripe. I don't have a problem reading it in script form. I would rather read it in a script than be distracted from its flaws by flashing lights and (what I'm sure is) great n't pay to read this book. Rent it from the library, or borrow a copy if your curiosity is that insatiable.
So, I just finished reading Cursed Child and...I'm incredibly disappointed. I knew full well that this was merely a script and not a full-blown story. I'm totally fine with that..except for the fact that it's terrible.*possible spoilers*The initial excitement of holding a new HP book wore off incredibly quickly. The characters in CC have almost no semblance whatsoever to their true HP counterparts. They are flat and dull in so many ways.And what's with the relationship between Scorpius and Albus? I fully expected this to turn into a full-blown romantic relationship because they reiterate their feelings for one another over...and over...and over...But it doesn't really add anything to the plot when they do!Speaking of plot...this one is terrible! Time travel, angsty teenage drama, more time travel, random daughter of Voldemort, more time travel...There are more holes in this plot than a cheese grater!Ugh..I have read the original HP series through many times, and will continue to do so. But this book will never be reread. I will likely give it away or give it to Goodwill as soon as my wife finishes reading it..o stars because I can't 'hate' anything HP, but this is cutting it incredibly close.
I too am a huge Harry Potter fan. I have read every book and watched every movies multiple times. I was so disappointed with this play. I love reading plays so that wasn't the problem. The story itself was awful, boring, and so predictable. I knew the minute the character was introduced that she was going to be the person who caused all the mess and it really wasn't even an interesting mess. It was just not up to JK Rowling's writing standards -- I was quite shocked frankly that her name is on this.
Read this as a library copy before deciding to buy it. It's that e play format isn't obnoxious; it's easy to read. That's the only thing going for this book; you'll get through it quickly, provided you don't damage it too badly throwing it across the room in disgust every time you encounter another badly-written passage. Everything other reviewers are saying about this being a fanfiction is true. The characters are underdeveloped; after everything we saw in the first books, there was a lot they could have drawn on for who these characters are. They also don't seem to be very British anymore, which is odd. The interaction between characters is wooden and in places just ridiculous. The plot... I won't give spoilers, but let's just say that there's so much deus ex machina that it's downright disturbing. Rather than inventing a new plot, they contrived a way to retread the old plots, which feels cheap and e teenagers don't act like teenagers. Too many of the conversations are exposition tools, and in stilted language that kids don't use. It's as if they didn't actually know any teenagers when they wrote this. The adults, however, DO sound like teenagers. They simultaneously kept the teenage mannerisms of the main HP characters, without keeping their inherent deeper personalities.I don't believe in bad books. But... this is a bad book. Even on its own, it would be a brutal read; as part of the HP universe, it's a bitter disappointment.
**Disney for Anarchists** Before there was a McConaissance there was a Harrisance, That's right, you heard right: Harrisance. Within a few years in the 1980's Harrison da Chicago lead what was arguably the greatest adventure movie ever mounted, and possibly the best science fiction movie ever launched. He was also featured in that adorable little _Star Wars_ trilogy. Not to mention a slew of fine movies like _Presumed Innocent_, _Frantic_, _the Fugitive_, and two thrillers as Jack Ryan. Among my favourite movies from the Harrisance period (if I keep saying it, it will be a thing) were two directed by Peter Weir, an Aussie who never met a cultural clash he didn't want to shoot. Weir directed a couple of American films and chose the right man to lead them. _Witness_ was well-liked and had a righteously tough Harrison cop defending the Amish. But in my opinion, _Mosquito Coast_ was better. Look at the headliners. Harrison Ford , Helen Mirren, River Pheonix, from a story by Paul Theroux, scripted by Paul (_Taxi Driver_, _Raging Bull_) Schrader. The jaded Film Critics at the time weren't exactly blown away by the movie's ambitious scope but liked the way Harrison could play an anti-hero. What's so anti about him? He was great! I wish he was my dad. I would have loved to go on an escapist adventure with a genius inventor father who had grand visions of erecting a new utopia in the forests of Belize by manufacturing ice in the tropics. Okay, maybe he went too far. Got a bit swollen-headed and delirious. Became the patriarchal tyrant he was running away from. But that was from the rage he felt when realizing that while (in the 1980's) he might be able to elude multinational greed, he can't escape human avarice. O the tragedy of humans
Bound for the promised land, indeed. One of the last great epic movies to come out of MGM that was a roaring success, How the West Was Won still has enough quality about it to warrant high praise. The story that drives the film on was suggested by the series of the same name that featured in "Life" magazine 1959. Narrative is formed around one family, the Prescott's, who set out on a journey West in 1839. They and their offspring fill out five segments of film that are directed by three different men, "The Rivers", "The Plains" & "The Outlaws" is under the guidance of Henry Hathaway, and "The Civil War" by John Ford and "The Railroad" by George Marshall. Filmed in the unique Cinerama format, which in a nutshell is three cameras filming at once to project a fully formed experience for the human eye, the production has an all star cast and four supreme cinematographers aiding the story. To name all the cast would take forever, but in the main all of the major parts were filled by stars who had already headlined a movie previously. The cinematographers are naturally key since such a sprawling story inevitably has sprawling vistas, they come up trumps with some truly special work: William H. Daniels, Milton Krasner, Charles Lang Jr. & Joseph LaShelle, four great names who help to make the film a poetic beauty. As a whole it's undeniably far from flawless, complaints such as it running out of steam towards the end (the irony of it since a steam train features prominently), and the plot contrivances, are fair enough. However, when the film is good, it's real good: raft in the rapids, Cheyene attack, buffalo stampede and train robbery, each of them are good enough to be a highlight in separate movies. Even the songs are pleasant, particularly when they revolve around the effervescent Debbie Reynolds, while home format transfers are now finally up to a standard worthy of investment, time and cash wise. Hard to dislike for a Western fan, and carrying enough about it to lure in the casual viewer, How the West Was Won really is a case of they don't make them like they used to. 8/10
Another Intelligent Western from Anthony Mann. Link Jones is on his way to Fort Worth to hire a schoolteacher, having left his wife and children behind, Link appears to be the epitome of the simple honest man. However, the train he is on is robbed by outlaws, thus meaning that Link's past and his dubious family ties are all careering towards a day of reckoning. This was Anthony Mann's second to last foray into the Western genre, and perhaps his most clinical as regards a structured tale of men as complicated as they are conflicted? I always find with Mann's Westerns that a sense of doom hangs heavy, there are very few directors in Western cinema history who have this knack of filling the viewer with such a pervading feeling of unease. Here we have Gary Cooper as Link, on the surface an amiable man, but the sequence of events see him thrust back into a life he thought had long since gone, the term that a leopard never changes its spots sits rather well, but here we find Mann fleshing out his lead character with an acknowledgement that a former life has passed, with Cooper perfectly transcending this well scripted arc. What strikes me mainly about this piece is that Mann's characters are not the quintessential good vs bad characters, these are just men with their own individual hang ups, they all are fallible human beings, and that is something that surely we all can identity with? The acting across the board here is top notch, Cooper is excellent, replacing Mann's stock Western muse, James Stewart, he cements his earthy and identifiable worth wholesale. Lee J. Cobb actually is the glue that holds the film together, his portrayal of Dock Tobin perfectly plays alongside Cooper's emotive showing of Link Jones's confliction. Sadly a negative to me is that we are asked to believe that Gary Cooper is Lee J. Cobb's nephew, a difference of ten years has to be a casting error one feels. Still, the film comes highly recommended, because the intelligence and dark atmosphere of the piece makes it well worth emotional investment, whilst Cooper's two main fights (both different) are seriously great cinema. 8.5/10
They thought the war was over... Escort West is directed by Francis D. Lyon and adapted to screenplay by Leo Gordon and Fred Hartsook from a story by Steven Hayes. It stars Victor Mature, Elaine Stewart, Faith Domergue, Reba Waters, Noah Beery Jr., Leo Gordon, Rex Ingram, John Hubbard, Harry Carey Jr. and Slim Pickens. Music is by Henry Vars and CinemaScope cinematography by William H. Clothier. Set in Nevada 1865 at the end of The Civil War, Escort West follows ex- Confederate soldier Ben Lassiter (Mature) as he travels West with his young daughter Abbey (Waters). Still meeting hostile reactions from Union cavalry officers and supporters in the area, things take a dramatic turn when Ben and Abbey happen upon the aftermath of a Modoc Indian attack that has left a troop of Union cavalrymen dead. However, there are three survivors, sisters Beth (Stewart) and Martha (Domergue), and injured Nelson Walker (Ingram). The Lassiter's try to escort the survivors to safety, but with the Modocs and rouge Union cavalrymen interested in a payroll in Ben's possession a constant threat out in the terrain, it's going to be tough. It's pretty predictable in formula, complete with an uninteresting burgeoning romance, but it's a film that's never dull and it's always compelling as a character driven travelogue. The left over attitudes born out by the war add some spice into the narrative, with Domergue portraying a bile strewn @#$%! from hell and Mature a contemplative father of substance, and there are a good number of action sequences that are thrillingly executed. Cast performances are strong enough for the material, where it's nice to see Mature and Waters' father and daughter relationship play out as tender and believable, and ace cinematographer Clothier's Scope photography is beautiful and keeps the picture consistently airy. 6.5/10
You are leaving Texas at your own peril. You are about to enter Zona Libre. Horizons West is directed by Budd Boetticher with a story written by Louis Stevens. It stars Robert Ryan, Rock Hudson, Julia Adams, John McIntire, Raymond Burr & Dennis Weaver. It's a Technicolor production with Charles P. Boyle on photography. It's the end of the Civil War and the Hammond brothers Neal (Hudson) and Dan (Ryan) return to the family ranch in Texas. Neal is happy to graft away on the ranch but Dan wants considerably more. But Dan's plans are altered after an encounter with Cord Hardin (Burr), an encounter that sees Dan switch to the wrong side of the law. A switch that drives a wedge thru the Hammond family, particularly since Neal has decided to don a badge and become a Marshal of Austin. Interesting and watchable early Western effort from Budd Boetticher. It has some psychological aspects that mark it out as being above average. Themes of greed and family strife are of course nothing new in the grand scheme of the Western movie, but Boetticher and his cast knit them together here with some conviction, notably Ryan who was in the middle of a great run of movies that included On Dangerous Ground, Beware, My Lovely and The Naked Spur. There's no real complexities to the characters, but they are well formed, and the finale has the courage of its convictions. There's also some very neat period costuming from Rosemary Odell, with the quite ravishing Adams benefiting greatly there. The main problematic issues outside of some narrative familiarity come with being asked to believe that Ryan and Hudson (whose limp) are brothers, and that McIntire is Ryan's father (there's only two years between them in reality). Whilst there's sadly a lack of impacting outdoor photography; even if that's off set a touch by the easy on the eye set designs for the town by Russell A. Gausman & Joseph Kish. A more than adequate time filler for the discerning Western fan. 6/10
A Stranger in Rock Pass. Station West is directed by Sidney Lanfield and adapted to screenplay by Frank Fenton and Winston Miller from the novel written by Luke Short. It stars @#$% Powell, Jane Greer, Agnes Moorehead, Raymond Burr, Tom Powers, Guinn Williams, Gordon Oliver and Burl Ives. Music is by Heinz Roemheld and cinematography by Harry J. Wild. Powell plays an undercover army agent sent into Rock Pass to find out who robbed and murdered two soldiers who were guarding a gold shipment. There has always – and always will be – debates about what constitutes film noir, but undoubtedly it is a line of film making that positively thrives on a style that cloaks a number of characterisations. Thus we have the many off-shoots of film noir, such as the Noir Western. Noir Westerns in all actuality don’t number more than 20, and even some of those that get put forward are tenuous additions. Where the likes of Pursued, Ramrod and Blood on the Moon are confidently held up as the leading lights of Noir Westerns, it actually pays to look towards a rarer picture like Raton Pass or this here under seen treasure, Station West, for unseen sub-noir rewards. Station West has it all so as to earn its noir badge. It’s got Powell doing a Western version of Phillip Marlowe, complete with swagger, sarcasm and the ability to nonchalantly smile in the face of peril. Then there’s Greer, fresh from Out of the Past the previous year, Greer is in full tilt femme fatale mode, marrying up her hard beauty with feminist strength. Both Powell and Greer are wonderful, their respective characters constantly jostling for domination, trading quips and glib asides, the sexual tension consistently palpable. The town of Rock Pass is in the process of booming, but with that comes corruption, and it is rife, with unlikely sources pulling the crooked strings. Greed and betrayal are words that hover over the intelligent screenplay, even as the script snaps with delightful one liners and sarcastic wit, there’s a moody ambiance snuggling on up with the fun side of things, these bed fellows are meant to be. While the man himself, Haven (Powell), has a reputation for not towing the party line, he’s clearly in the right place then! Filmed out of beautiful Sedona in Arizona, Harry Wild’s photography is gorgeous for the exterior locations (those rock formations are just visual orgasms), and film noir nirvana for everything else as he brings expressionistic touches to all the key sequences. In the support acting ranks we have Burr as a twitchy lawyer, Moorehead as a stoic wealthy widow, Williams as bad boy muscle, Oliver as the smarm, Powers as the grumpy un-cooperative army captain and Ives as a hotel clerk – cum – balladeer who has a morbid hobby on the side. All of them contribute good characterisations. I can’t say that Roemheld’s score is particularly memorable, and a big fist-fight between Williams and Powell is ferocious but tainted by the over dramatics that were indicative of the time, but from begining to sombre end this is a cracker and it deserves to be better known and loved. 9/10
The boys spoof the western with joyous results. Running at just over one hour long, this Laurel & Hardy film is a none stop gag fest, both visually and orally. Perhaps more well known for being the film that contains the famous "Trail Of The Lonesome Pine" sequence, it should be noted that that scene is merely a part of a structured romp. Stan & Ollie are asked to deliver a gold mine deed to a young lady by the name of Mary Roberts (Rosina Lawrence), naturally they get embroiled in some daft shenanigans as they are duped by the devious duo of Mickey Finn (a delightfully fiendish James Finlayson) & Lola Marcel (Sharon Lynne) into handing over the deed to them instead of the rightful heir. After learning they have been conned we then follow the chaotic attempts of Stan & Ollie to recover the deed and give it to the real Mary. Watch as the boys get maximum laughter out of a hole in Stan's shoe, see Ollie's neck stretched, you will believe that a mule can fly, and embrace the rib tickler that is a saloon chase sequence late in the piece. Throw in a delightful dance routine the guys do to "At The Ball, That's All," and you have a simple recipe brought to the boil with wonderful results. End result? Comedy gold. 9/10
I liked the book. Story line flips between present day (main story) and the back story (WWII). It can be a bit confusing, if you're not used to that. It's a lot like the ABC series Once Upon A Time. I found I couldn't put it down, and read within a day.
"So there are many Africas. There are as many Africas as there are books about Africa-and as many books about it as you could read in a leisurely lifetime. Whoever writes a new one can afford a certain complacency in the knowledge that his is a new picture agreeing with no one else’s, but likely to be haughtily disagreed with by all those who believe in some other Africa." and "Africa is never the same to anyone who leaves it and returns again. It is not a land of change, but it is a land of moods and its moods are numberless. It is not fickle, but because it has mothered not only men, but races, and cradled not only cities, but civilizations-and seen them die, and seen new ones born again-Africa can be dispassionate, indifferent, warm, or cynical, replete with the weariness of too much wisdom." These quotes are just two of a number of beautifully written passages in a wonderful book. Anyone who has been to Africa will know that Beryl Markham "gets" it even though the book is now 75 years past its' published date.
I read both Paula McLain's book, Circling the Sun, & this book & hands down, this was the better book. While both author's are very "wordy", I found Beryl Markham's words intergal to the sentence. Whereas, I felt that Lain was stuffing sentences with excessive words in an attempt to sound like Ms. Markham. That being said, I'm happy that I read both books as they gave me more background knowledge of Kenya which seems to be popping up everywhere nowadays.
I was in love within minutes. Not with Beryl Markum, but with the writing in West With The Night. One person with this incredible writing talent should have written more books. I found myself reading many passages several times over because of the author's ability to see the ordinary and mundane with extraordinary depth of thought and skill with words, turn it into something beautiful and thought provoking. For example, starting with the last paragraph on page 48 we are given a very lengthy and vivid description of silence as the author views it. "There is the silence after a rainstorm, and before a rainstorm, and these are not the same. There is a silence of emptiness, the silence of fear, the silence of doubt..." and it ends THREE PARAGRAPHS LATER with -- "a silence holding the spirit of wanton mischief, like the quiet smile of a vain woman exultant over a petty and vicious triumph." Wow! So much to say about the lack of noise. It's obvious this author is intelligent, perceptive, and a master wordsmith. I did find it amazing that a person with little formal schooling and also not known for being much of a reader could produce such a wonderful piece of art using is is not a memoir. It is a series of individual, not necessarily related, stories that stand on their own, each one excellent. If you want to learn about British East Africa in the early 1900's, or read exciting, heart-racing (yours) stories about near-death (and death) experiences, a little girl running with the natives killing lions, hunting wild boar, and later fly-scouting for elephants, a horse race that defies the law of physics, amazing feats in aeroplanes, or if you just want to read a beautifully written book, this would be the one. I'm going to read it again because I liked it that much.
....but not a book I would have stuck with had it not been my book club selection. What has piqued my interest is the era, people Ms. Markham knew and especially Ms. Markham herself. The rest of the story so to speak. So I ordered a biography and will spend some time searching the internet.
At the beginning the book is very descriptive of nature and people but hardly any action. Half way through it becomes my re interesting as the author refers to he adventures as a pilot. A very good description of the African spirit of natives and colonizers at the time (early 20th Century).
This beautifully written classic is a must-read, about a pioneer female aviator who was pretty much a pioneer in everything else. I did have to skip ahead in some places, when her amazing descriptions of the African savannah and its beautiful wildlife ended with the inevitable hunting scene. Attitudes were different in those days, but I'm not a hunting enthusiast. This book made me want to read a biography of her.
Great memoir of Kenya on the cusp of independence, beautifully written. Best chapters are about hunting and horse racing. Odd to leave out all mention of Kenya's struggles or of the difficult position of longtime Euro settlers. Very little about this great adventurer's heart, or her mother or what it felt like to be flying the Atlantic alone. Or WWII! Worthy read, could have used a couple of maps.
Out of Africa is one of my all-time favorite books, and how wonderful to have one of the "characters" step out and tell her own story. Some of the people from out of Africa are here too. Beryl is an amazing woman, and led an exciting life. The book tells the story of this remarkable woman. Beautifully written.
After reading Circling the Sun by Paula McClain, I was intrigued to read the first hand version of the events in the life of Beryl Markham. She did an amazing job of sharing her life in Africa without getting into all the personal drama. She did not share any of her so called love affair with Denys Finch-Hatton or of her failed marriage which seemed a bit odd, but this book was more an account of how she became obsessed with flying. She did share some of the scariest moments in her flying career. This woman was amazing and very brave in venturing out into the unknown without a radio, GPS or even a life raft. She was the only woman with a Type B pilots license that allowed her to do charter travel in a world that barely knew what planes were. This book was an inspiration to read and allowed the reader a much better understanding of the life of this pioneer aviator.
Steampunk Blockbusterdom! Barry Sonnenfeld's Wild Wild West is a film that I have avoided for over 15 years. I have no frame of reference with the source materials, but even though I'm a big Westerns fan, it wasn't this, or the critical pounding it got on release, that kept me away. It was the original trailers for it, it just looked like a garbled over budgeted mess - which it kinda is. However, that's not to say there isn't fun to be had, because for all its many failings (poor effects, poor script, waste of a strong cast, superficiality), there is some verve and swagger, excitement, Will Smith's likability and some splendid gadgets. Having very low expectations no doubt helped me out, but I would hardly call this a 1/10 type of film. I say chill out with a beer, turn the home cinema speakers up and just roll with it, because thinking about it too deeply could possibly make you angry... 5/10
The Dirty Five. Five Guns West is directed by Roger Corman and written by R. Wright Campbell. It stars John Lund, Dorothy Malone, Mike Connors and Jonathan Haze. Filmed in Pathecolor with cinematography by Floyd Crosby and music by Buddy Bregman. Desperate for men during the last days of the war between the States, the South found it necessary to offer pardons to outlaws to carry out special assignments. Strange dark figures rode under the flag of the Confederacy. Well the central idea of the story formed the basis of better films to come further down the pipe, but outside of Malone's perky performance, there's not a great deal to sing about here. Corman was a master of the cheap production and he does well to keep this from total damnation, but excitement is rare, there's a lot of wood propping up the acting and the predictability of it all renders the finale a damp squib. Its worth in the history of independent American cinema is at least notable, and once the film reaches the stagecoach station and Malone enters the fray; thus the ruffians have something to get in a pickle about, the pic just about holds interest. But come the end you realise it's the sort of Western that achieves the minimum it can to get released and is quite simply the first rung of the ladder for one Roger Corman. 4/10
Ross McEwen - Valiant Gentleman. Four Faces West (AKA: They Passed This Way) is directed by Alfred E. Green and collectively adapted to screenplay by C. Graham Baker, Teddi Sherman, William Brent and Milarde Brent from the novel Paso por acqui written by Eugene Manlove Rhodes. It stars Joel McCrea, Francis Dee, Charles Bickford and Joseph Calleia. Music is by Paul Sawtell and cinematography by Russell Harlan. Ross McEwen (McCrea) robs the bank of Santa Maria but requests only $2,000 and issues an I.O.U. to the bank manager with the promise of paying back the money. The bank manager, aggrieved and agitated, puts a bounty of $3,000 on McEwen's head and quickly finds the law, in the form of Sheriff Pat Garrett (Bickford), aiding his cause. But McEwen is no ordinary thief, and as he makes his way across the lands during his escape, revelations and relationships will reveal something quite extraordinary. All the things are in place here for a conventional 1940s Western movie, with the robbery of a bank followed by a posse pursuit, a serious sheriff on the case, a pretty gal turning heads and some card playing of course. Yet this is far from being a conventional Oater. Old fashioned? Yes! Definitely, but it's a beautifully crafted picture that relies on characterisations - locations - and a story of such humanistic redemptive qualities; it demands to be better known. It has rightly been pointed out before that no blood is shed here, no bullets are fired; in fact bullets play a key part of the story for a different reason, but the action quota here is still very high. With blazing fire tactics used at one point and pursuits through the rocky terrain very much in evidence, the pic often raises the pulses. Tension is also provided by the efforts of McEwen to evade the attentions of the posse and the law, with some intelligent and believable methods put into action. The romance angle is also thoughtful and never cloying, given credence by real life lovers McCrea and Dee, while non white actors play South American characters without charges of stereotype or fodder being brought into play. With first grade black and white photography from Harlan (New Mexico Tourist Board done a favour here), unfussy direction by Green, and a quartet of great performances by the principal players leading from the front, Four Faces West (not the best of titles to be fair) is a treat for the Western fan. It may lack a "shock" outcome but it sure as heck fire casts off cynicism and makes you feel better about people in general. Bravo! 8/10
Wing Commander Gibson's personalized account of his RAF experiences up to and including the Dam Busters raid is a warrior's look at war...something many of us will read and wonder about but never truly understand. Gibson's descriptions can almost put you at a crew station in an aircraft, in a briefing, or in the Officer's Mess. His descriptions of the men he served with bear out the immense respect and admiration he had for all his fellow pilots and crew members. Anyone who has ever owned a pet can only imagine the effect on Gibson of the loss of his beloved dog on the eve of this important mission. This book was incredibly well written and pieces together facts gleaned from the having seen the movie The Dam Busters many times. I was sorry to learn some time ago that Gibson didn't survive the war. Reading his words brought him back to life...if only for a while. A true hero by any measure.
Good read. The Ebook version seemed to have a lot of typos in it. As it was actually written during the war there were many details that were left out due to secrecy. As Gibson was later killed in battle it was never updated. Some may be extremely offended by the name of his dog. Some of the British slang is almost undecipherable.
Guy Gibson was one of the most important British pilots of the Second World War. As leader of the Dambusters raid, he did as much to damage the Nazi war machine as anyone. He has been criticized by some as a womanizer and as hated by his crew and colleagues. We can only let those with first-hand experience make such claims. It's hard to think of any public figure whose name has not become associated with one sordid affair or another. He can be forgiven for not mentioning any personal moral failures. I'm sure that if our fathers and grandfathers who served in military conflicts oversees were completely honest, we might discover another side to them too. The fact is that without men like Gibson, the west could possibly have lost the war. The Nazis were only a few months away from having the atom bomb. The book is well written, full of suspense and highly entertaining. Gibson deserves our unconditional respect and gratitude.