Friday is finally here and that means it's time to dive back into this week's phenomenal action scenes! We've reviewed a good amount of the latest issues and picking just 3 brawls from them seriously wasn't easy. You'll be able to see the honorable mentions section is pretty packed. But we were eventually able to select a trio of fights that we believe are full of greatness and offer a nice bit of variety, too. Hopefully you'll all enjoy them as much as we do, and if not, maybe we'll win you over with next week's picks!
"Hey, why isn't a battle I love being highlighted and/or listed in the honorable mentions? What gives?!" It's possible we didn't read that issue (A LOT come out each week, after all), or we didn't dig it as much. So, be sure to make suggestions in the official Best Battles Discussion Thread from now on to put this stuff on our radar. We review that before writing this weekly feature and do our best to get our hands on the issues suggested.
SUPERMAN: DOOMED #1
Doomsday is back. Well, sort of. In the latest event, Doomed, a whole new version of the titan has appeared on Earth and he has a ridiculously dangerous new power. You see, he doesn't even need to touch something to kill it now. Everything surrounding him simply dies and the brute absorbs the energy which then makes him more powerful. So, he can literally kill thousands just by going for a casual stroll. As if that wasn't enough, he's using the Phantom Zone to teleport around. He's hopping around the globe, killing countless lives and gaining enough power to take down one individual: Superman. After consulting with people Kal-El trusts -- and one he doesn't -- he realizes that this new incarnation of Doomsday is simply too dangerous and the kid gloves need to come off. If not, millions -- maybe even billions -- could die. And so begins the epic punch fest.
That's right, Clark uppercuts the villain like a total boss. From there, he grabs the big dude and the two clash until they land on Venus. Yeah, I'd say that's a safe distance from any innocents. We're not showing it here, but the process of these two racing and punching all the way to Venus is 11 panels spread across a double-page splash. Not going to lie, it's pretty glorious. But then when they smash into the surface of the alien world and continue their fight, artist Ken Lashley and colorist Sunny Gho produce some magnificent visuals.
Realizing he can't hold back, Superman unleashes his heat vision until the beast is nothing but body parts and flames. Seriously, it's an attack that would make Scott Summers say "okay, that was pretty impressive. I mean, it's no 'get off my lawn' but it'll do." Believing the monster is defeated once and for all, Superman returns to Smallville. Except Doomsday isn't defeated -- not even close to it. The behemoth teleports into the town and then begins to land some ginormous hits on the Man of Steel. It's brutal stuff.
Okay, many of you likely know this fight's verdict (it is the first chapter of a new event, after all), but do you know how? Even if you aren't the biggest fan around of its relatively abrupt ending, there's just no denying that Lashley and Gho make it look absolutely awesome.
SECRET AVENGERS #3
The Secret Avengers are heading to Sokotra -- well, some of them -- to stop an arms deal. As Agent Coulson and Spider-Woman find themselves occupied with other obstacles (I'd explain what these challenges are, but that would ruin half the fun), Black Widow is ambushed by the lethal assassin Lady Bullseye. Natasha's able to barely avoid the first sword attack, but she doesn't fare much better with the following volley of strikes.
There's two reasons why this fight rocks. First and foremost, it's two badass characters engaging in some seriously entertaining hand-to-hand combat. Secondly, Michael Walsh and Matthew Wilson (two MWs on the art? I smell a conspiracy) are an excellent compliment to Ales Kot's script. They nail the comedic moments, but, as you can see with these scans, they're able to deliver some massively enjoyable fights, too. There's a great sense of motion in these panels and the decision to use such bright colors when contact is made really sells the impact. Don't believe me? Here's two more examples of it for your eyes to enjoy. You're welcome, eyes.
Remember how I told you this fight has awesome hand-to-hand combat? No? Come on, it was in the last paragraph! Anyway, Walsh and Wilson deliver big time with the fight's conclusion. Instead of having the encounter spill into many more panels, they managed to fit a series of hits into one lengthy panel. It's such a cool and cinematic way of conveying the quick strikes between these two. It flows so well and it still packs just as much of a punch as the bigger panels do.
Sure, we all know this won't be the end of Black Widow, but do you know what happens next? Does Natasha swiftly turn around and knock Lady Bullseye out with a widow's bite? Does Lady Bullseye have an abrupt epiphany and realize she wants to become a painter, not an assassin? Does a third character enter the picture? WHAT. HAPPENS?! Support what you love and buy the issue if you want to find out. It'll put a smile on your face, and who out there can honestly say they don't like smiling?
FANTASTIC FOUR #4
James Robinson's fourth chapter of FANTASTIC FOUR has the family fighting the Frightful Four (say that four times fast). A majority of the issue is basically one big brawl, so the fact it's earning a highlight spot should come as no surprise. Team battles often feel like we only get glimpses into each fight, but Robinson's able to give each showdown proper focus before moving onto the next one. Marvel's First Family quickly learns this new Frightful Four roster isn't messing around and they can't be taken lightly. Poor ol' Ben Grimm discovers that lesson first.
Things aren't going well for the heroes -- not well at all. Ben's obliterated by a double whammy (you're welcome, Anchorman fans), Reed gets zapped by the Wizard, Sue's knocked off the team's vehicle, and Johnny... well, the poor dude can't use his powers. Luckily for them, the FF -- you know, the substitute team! -- has come to save the day! Unlike the original Fantastic Four, these heroes have better luck and each of them are able to humiliate their enemies... at first, at least.
The advantage is short-lived but incredibly amusing. Ms. Thing swinging the Thunderball and Scott Lang stepping on Wrecker is a blast to see, especially since artist Leonard Kirk and colorist Jesus Aburtov's work is so consistently solid. But all good things must come to an end and it's not long before the team of villains begin to really let loose. Yes, this means the Ever-Lovin' Blue-Eyed Thing gets clobbered again. Poor fellow can't catch a break.
The good guys have the foes outnumbered, so they should eventually win, right? But how do they accomplish this? Do they simply beat them up due to having more combatants? Do they begin to use teamwork and dish out some cool ways of combining their powers? Do they find a way to trick them? You know the drill by now, loyal readers. If you want all the details, you should buy the issue!
- DEADPOOL #28
- JUSTICE LEAGUE UNITED #1
- AVENGERS #29
- ALL-NEW X-MEN #27
- ALL-NEW GHOST RIDER #3
- SUPERBOY #31
- TMNT: NEW ANIMATED ADVENTURES #11
- NIGHTCRAWLER #2
- DEADLY FISTS OF KUNG FU #1
- JUDGE DREDD #19
- BLOODSHOT & H.A.R.D. CORPS #22
That's it for this week, friends! What are your top three fights from this latest round of new comics? Also, don't forget to make nominations every week in the official thread or tell us via Twitter. See you next Friday. Oh, have a good weekend, too!