The time has come to once again celebrate the latest wave of phenomenal action scenes. There were a lot of great options this week (the honorable mentions section is crowded), but we've sided with three that bring a nice dose of variety and excellence to the table. First, we're going to highlight some very cool parts of DC's latest action-packed event. After that, we'll jump over to Marvel's universe to witness a melee between two skilled combatants. Last but most definitely least, we'll see three individuals attempt to defeat one of Marvel's most formidable characters.
"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.
FOREVER EVIL #7
Ladies and gentlemen, the conclusion to Geoff Johns' and David Finch's latest big event, Forever Evil, is finally here! If you still haven't read FOREVER EVIL #6, I feel obligated to warn you this article discusses a new character whose identity was revealed in that issue. That means if you've fallen behind and don't want basic spoilers about who popped up in the penultimate chapter, now is the time to leave.
Are they gone? Good. Seriously, how could they still be behind when this issue had a delay? At any rate, Alexander Luthor has made his debut and the dude is an absolute powerhouse. He's able to absorb the powers of others -- after brutally killing them, of course. After a violent skirmish with Ultraman, this titan from Earth 3 targets the New 52 version of himself and his villainous allies. It didn't go well for Ultraman or Deathstorm, so you can bet this won't be an ideal fight for New 52 Luthor, Black Manta, Deathstroke, and Captain Cold.
The encounter basically goes as expected and that means it isn't flattering at all for the group. Deathstroke gets a savage punch to the face, Black Manta's pummeled with stunningly fast strikes, and Luthor gets a slug across the face before he can even utter a word. But Alexander forgot about one character: Bizarro. You don't think you can obliterate Luthor's face and his monster will just stand around and do nothing, do you? GO GET HIM, BIZARRO!
Bizarro saving the day and being the big hero would be awesome, but as you probably could have guessed by now, that obviously isn't the case. Sadly, the imperfect duplicate fails to topple Alexander and there seems to be no stopping the formidable threat from Earth-3... or is there? Luthor realizes that if his alternate self needs to scream "MAZAHS!" to gain his abilities, then perhaps Black Adam -- if close enough and if a lightning rod is in Alexander --could scream "Shazam!" and it would strip their enemy of his powers. Considering the foe's might, this won't be an easy task to complete. Seeing as Black Adam is the key player in this plan, Sinestro will serve as a distraction as Black Adam attempts to close the gap.
Does the plan work or does it fail miserably and Luthor is able to save the day with another idea? Overall, this may not be the best issue around for Batman, but it's an absolutely fantastic one for Lex Luthor and sets him on a path that most definitely has our attention.
Elektra heads to Monster Island with a single objective: locate Cape Crow and bring the infamous assassin back alive. It turns out she's not the only one going after Crow, though. While following a pair of tracks on Monster Island, Elektra sees Scalphunter and Lady Bullseye are also searching for the character. Elektra Natchios warns the two to leave, but obviously, they don't comply. Both characters go on the assault and it gives W. Haden Blackman (the writer) a little opportunity to show off Elektra's agility and reflexes.
Scalphunter is removed from the fight in a pretty exciting fashion and honestly, it's something I'd rather not ruin for you, especially since it requires a bit of extra context. Besides, I'd much rather jump right into the highlight of this action scene: Elektra vs. Lady Bullseye! Between this and her showing in the latest issue of SECRET AVENGERS, it's clear Marvel's aiming to boost Lady Bullseye's formidability. And when you have a showing like the one below and the one in Ales Kot's book, it's safe to say they're doing a mighty fine job making her feel like a bigger threat.
Everyone needs to take a moment to appreciate how amazing Michael Del Mundo's pages are. Seriously, let's take a break from reading for a second and gaze at these images once more. Okay, you're now back? That's some outstanding stuff, right? Even if you aren't the biggest fan around of the narrative (which isn't likely), you can't help but appreciate how spectacular and well-made these panels are. Anyway, let's get back to talking about the battle. As you can see above, it's a close fight, but Lady Bullseye seems to have the edge. Truthfully, Elektra's history of feats are better than Lady Bullseye's, but as I stated above, it seems like Marvel's attempting to make Lady Bullseye a top contender.
Action scenes like this one are the reason why this weekly article exists. When you have a universe full of deadly fighters and super powers, action scenes are going to be frequent, but the ones that are done well deserve proper recognition. This battle is a cinematic joy and it reels you right into the melee. You can feel the force of every hit and appreciate the speed behind every dodge and block. It's beautifully executed and a total thrill to read.
THOR: GOD OF THUNDER #22
King Thor and Old Galactus had an epic fight in the last issue and the mighty Thor just wasn't, well, mighty enough to prevent the cosmic being from snacking on Midgard. King Thor has been tossed into the depths of space, but his granddaughters -- the Girls of Thunder! -- have come looking for their grandfather. When they see he's no longer on the barren planet, they demand answers with a whole lot of force.
Thor's relatives are bringing some heavy weaponry to this battle. Ellisiv is armed with Fandral and Hogun's melee weapons; Frigg is wielding Stormbreaker; and Atli is swinging Jarnbjorn around. As we saw in his fight with King Thor, Old Galactus may look weaker than usual, but he's still a colossal obstacle. For the moment, though, the numbers advantage is proving critical and each of Thor's granddaughters are landing massive attacks on the big fellow.
ELEKTRA isn't the only Marvel book with jaw-dropping visuals. Esad Ribic and Ive Svorcina do a tremendous job bringing Jason Aaron's thrilling script to life. The blasts are awe-inspiring, the damage done to Galactus is impactful, and there isn't a stale panel during the brawl. The visuals most certainly live up to just how incredible a fight like this should be.
Frigg is able to toss Stormbreaker into Galactus' mouth and viciously commands it to return to her. The weapon's damage produces an explosion that would impress even Michael Bay. But does the horrific attack make the Eater of Worlds admit defeat? Or will the trio soon see why even the Son of Odin failed to best Galactus? As always, if you want to find out, we recommend getting your hands on a copy of the issue.
- MAGNETO #4
- UNITY #7
- SINESTRO #2
- THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #2
- BATWOMAN #31
- HULK #3
- GREEN LANTERNS: NEW GUARDIANS #31
- ROGUE TROOPER #4
- TRINITY OF SIN: PANDORA #11
- AVENGERS WORLD #6
- BATMAN & FRANKENSTEIN #31
- DEADPOOL ANNUAL #2
- ZERO #8
- TMNT 30TH ANNIVERSARY SPECIAL
- DAREDEVIL #3
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 and have a good weekend!