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Best New Comic Book Battles: 01/25/13

Deadpool dukes it out with Lincoln, The Justice League goes to war, and X-O Manowar takes on armored aliens!

Welcome to the latest edition of 'Best Battles!' The goal of this ongoing feature is simple: celebrate the fun and frenetic fights that took place in this week's new comics! After reading through my pile, I've managed to pick 3 favorites and a whole lotta honorable mentions. Once you're done enjoying the pictures and commentary, you're welcome to speak up and share your own top 3!

As Bane once said, "let the games begin!"

WARNING! This obviously contains spoilers!

Deadpool vs. Undead Presidents

The zombie Presidents stand no chance against Wade Wilson now that he's sporting a glowing sword that can slice and dice them. Enchanted by Doctor Strange, Deadpool's latest toy is a pink weapon of destruction that these undead politicians fear. This issue proves why they have every reason to fear the blade as Deadpool uses it to violently slash them apart. But before we get to the gruesome goodness, check out how good Deadpool looks as Marilyn Monroe. Please try to resist making a cat call while sitting at your computer. That would just be weird and sad.

"Imperfection is beauty"

Shame on Tony Moore for making the Merc with a Mouth pull that off so well. It's definitely a close second to Deadpool's infamous Marvel Girl outfit. Anyway, back to the zombie slaughtering. Sorry, JFK, but you're the first to go. Unfortunately for him, the last thing he saw before dying (again) was Deadpool's "little Wade."

"Ask not what your country can do for Deadpool, but what Deadpool can do for your country.."

So far, the story has been taking down Presidents one by one, but this issue goes full speed ahead and Deadpool racks up quite a kill count. Writers Gerry Duggan and Brian Posehn recommended Pantera for this scene, but I think "MMMBop" is far more fitting. Click that link and enjoy the slaying, Viners.

Wade's clearly a Ryu fan, so hopefully he'll one day drop the epic hurricane kick noise.

Ten dead Presidents later and it's time for the main event -- Deadpool vs. Abraham Lincoln! But this is nothing like the other matches. Wade's now been shot in the head twice by the sixteenth President, so it's personal. The two put aside their weapons and face off in a UFC ring. Prepare for shirtless zombie Lincoln pummeling Deadpool!

Goodbye, old wallpaper. Hello, new wallpaper.

Wilson might be a highly skilled mercenary, but Lincoln is... well, Lincoln. The famous U.S. President dishes out a vicious beating on Wade, even slugging him across the face with a folded chair (see the homepage image for that one). Yet the signature wrestling move was only the beginning. As Lincoln obliterated Wade with his fists, the real pain came from his words.

It's okay, Wade, I don't hate you.

Wade has endured far worse, though. Deadpool responds to Lincoln's cynical question with not only a fair answer, but also with a sword to the neck. Luckily for Lincoln, the 27th U.S. President swoops in and recovers his lopped off head before swooping away.

Name one other comic with a flying bathtub.

Curse you, Taft!!!

Justice League vs. Ocean Master & Atlantis' Army

The only thing standing between Boston and Ocean Master's army is the Justice League. Aquaman thinks he can placate the situation, but unfortunately for his allies, Arthur has a reputation to keep in front of his brother, too. He has to show his dominance over his peers and convince his brother to cancel the assault. Sorry about what's going to happen to your jaw, Kal-El.

To be fair, it was a sucker punch...

While I can somewhat understand Arthur's mindset, Wonder Woman bluntly points out how ridiculous his actions are. Arthur has an eloquent retort, though -- a massive punch. Use your words, Aquaman!

Aquaman: 2 Justice League: 0

Alright, so that's two totally unfair strikes Arthur has now landed on his friends. I'm not really sure what Superman is doing during this time because I'm fairly confident Arthur's punch wouldn't keep him outta commission for more than a few moments. Regardless, Diana is more than capable of holding her own and she finally gives Aquaman a taste of his own medicine.

You had that coming, Arthur.

As much as I love Batman, he's definitely fighting above his weight class here. It's just too bad he didn't put up more of an effort before being swiftly taken down. Arthur saves The Dark Knight from a fatal strike, but nothing could prepare him for what comes next.

Hear that? That's the sound of a thousand Batman fans screaming at once.

Orm's army emerges from the ocean and it is truly a sight to behold. The art team really did a brilliant job with this stunning splash page. Sorry, Boston, but you're screwed. Save them, Ben Affleck!

Jaw = dropped.

Wonder Woman, Supes and Aquaman attempt to fight the army but it's not long before Ocean Master displays how ridiculously overpowered he is. Superman has to save Diana from a tornado of water and then decides to let loose. That "retreat" panel rocks -- it's just too bad Superman's display of dominance is cut short.

That's some darn fine coloring.

Not only does Orm control the ocean, but he also controls storm clouds (sorry, but you're no longer special, Storm). Now, I'm not the biggest Superman expert around, but I feel like this attack really wouldn't be enough to keep Kal down for the count. What do you think?

Maybe it's magic lightning?

Save them, Cyborg! You're their only hope!

X-O Manowar vs. X-O Commandos

You know how excited that Nintendo 64 kid was, right? That's exactly how I felt reading this fight. Seriously, if you're not already reading this series, this is the issue to buy. Like, right now. Go get it. Oh, you need a reason? Okay, hopefully this terrific encounter will convince you.

Reason #4,032 why Aric's a boss.

Odds are many of you aren't reading this (shame on you!), so I'll be kind and give you a quick recap. Aric, a warrior from the past, is using an armor that The Vine, advanced aliens, worship. They're rather pissed that they can't use the armor and a mere human could. Once he gets in the suit he escapes their captivity and heads back to Earth. Now, they're coming to take him out. They send X-O Commandos his way, but despite superior numbers, they're chumps compared to him. Caught up? Good. Now let's get back to this crazy good battle.

RMMMBL in the Bronx.

Impressive attack, Commandos, but it'll take way more than that to keep X-O Manowar down. In fact, I have no idea what it would technically take to defeat Aric while he's rocking the armor. In spite of having an incredibly advanced armor, an energy sword is by far the coolest thing he has at his disposal. The follow will prove why.

I can't get over how epic this fight is.

So, do you feel motivated to start reading X-O MANOWAR yet? The answer is probably yes, but I'll throw in the end result of that energy blade attack just to be safe.


In case you're wondering, yes, this issue is a good jumping on point!

Honorable Mentions

What are your top 3 this week? Sound off below!

Gregg Katzman is a freelance writer for Comic Vine & IGN Entertainment. Be sure to follow him on Twitter and feel free to provide feedback in a thread made just for this ongoing segment!

83 CommentsRefresh
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Posted by Man of Lengend

The Deadpool fight was the best, followed by the Nightwing Joker fight!!

Posted by noobslayerprime11


Posted by saoakden

Was Ocean Master always that powerful? Controlling oceans and storms? Well now I think about it he is called Ocean Master but HOLY COW MAN AQUAMAN IS PRETTY STRONG! & Ocean Master looks like he shouldn't be taken lightly. Guess that's the last time I make fun out of Aquaman's villains. Young Justice is also making me think Aquaman's enemies can be a good threat. Black Manta is sure threating there and currently Ocean Master is kicking the Justice League's ass. & by the looks of the images, by himself! Oh and the army showing up, that falls under I think were screwed moment or Holy sh*t!

Posted by ScottishWarlord

Whats the name of the comic with the NightWing vs Joker fight?

Posted by k4tzm4n

@ScottishWarlord said:

Whats the name of the comic with the NightWing vs Joker fight?


Posted by Dernman

What is it with these one hero villains taking on the entire league lately. No was Oceanmaster should have been able to do what he did. Though I'll admit the fact that he can manipulate the water and the storm is nice.

Posted by fury714

Christ. Must go get JL now. Now we know the real and fairly obvious meaning to "Ocean Master"

Posted by MSchiwal

I am fairly certain that the Atlantean artifacts like Orm's spear are based off of magic and not technology... so yeah it would be magic lightning... I feel Aquaman' s strength level is good here... sure he is able to punch Superman over 100 feet... but doesn't seriously damage him and he is probably on the same level strength wise as Diana so long as she has her bracers on...

Posted by UltimateSMfan

those be some damn good fights!! YES,Sucker Punch and Magic Lightning!! good call Gregg.....only logical explanations.

plus i think supes musta just stood back to watch what diana wld do to Aquaman ;)

Posted by Batnandez

UFC ring? It's a cage Gregg, a cage!!!

Edited by lifeboy

Since the topic is fighting, may I suggest that you always carry a knife in your everyday life. Preferably very sharp or better yet, a loaded gun.

Just a free tip from your friendly neighborhood spiderman:-)

Posted by Saren

Finally! I have waited years for proof that Storm can solo the Justice League!

Posted by entropy_aegis

I like Orm's new power set but sorry it's gonna take a lot more than that to take out Supes and Diana.

Posted by CaptainMexico

WHY IS BATMAN SO USELESS IN JUSTICE LEAGUE COMICS!!! In his own series he's a badass that fights owls and punches horses.

Edited by bsavelli

the hanson/deadpool mash-up was unexpected. thank you very much for that

Posted by Guardiandevil83

@CaptainMexico said:

WHY IS BATMAN SO USELESS IN JUSTICE LEAGUE COMICS!!! In his own series he's a badass that fights owls and punches horses.

I think because now he is fighting characters with abilities beyond what he's seen before. And to be fair, Bruce was completely unprepared for this fight, and until that point skeptical of Atlantis actually existing. The people he has encountered people capable of hurting Wonder Woman and Superman. He would have to almost always prep for things like that.

Posted by CBninja

Ya I'm not to happy about how a pissed superman went down. Other than that I'm really enjoying this book.

Posted by dondave

Good choices

Posted by mk111

Okay, I'm sorry, but Superman and Wonder Woman looked waaaayyy too weak. I heard that New 52 neutered many of the characters, but that is way too much.

Posted by jwalser3

@mk111 said:

Okay, I'm sorry, but Superman and Wonder Woman looked waaaayyy too weak. I heard that New 52 neutered many of the characters, but that is way too much.

He bench pressed the weight of the Earth for 5 days. How is that weak?

Posted by mk111


And yet he still looked like a chump in this battle scene....

Posted by jwalser3

@mk111: A comic character being inconsistent? You must be new. Haha.

Posted by hyperman

Wait!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Superman saving Wonder Woman????????? I thought she had finally gained the power of flight?

Posted by mk111


Nah. Unfortunately, this isn't the first time I've witnessed a character being weaker than he/she should be, but still.

Aquaman decks Superman, and than he and Wonder Woman get pwned by Ocean Master. My goodness, next we'll be seeing Hal Jordan getting beat up by Black Manta.

Posted by jwalser3

@mk111: I think it's safe to assume it's magic enhanced lighting.

Posted by mk111


Well, I guess that would explain Superman, but not Wonder Woman. She has been facing gods, demi-gods, and sorcerers her whole life. Magic lightning should not be that effective.

I hope that in the next issue, Wonder Woman and Superman make a comeback, but I fear that they'll be rescued by Vixen.

Posted by jwalser3

@mk111: Vixen......My lord

Posted by mk111



Posted by Reignmaker

I bought 5 issues this week. 3 of them were the top 3 battles mentioned here. And 1 got an honorable mention.

To others who are saying the Nightwing-Joker battle should have broke the top 3, it didn't really feel like a real fight to me. We see Nightwing running into several rigged bombs over several pages before there's a two-page sequence where he finally gets some punches in before going down. That might be enough to break the top 3 some weeks, but I think Katz got it right this time around.

Katz...dude...Batman's treatment in JL is a problem. He's done nothing except get owned over 16 friggin' issues! At least make the guy look semi-competant or get him off the team! Someone needs to have the balls to approach Geoff Johns about this, because the community has been talking about it for a while. I hope that someone will be ComicVine in the near future.

X-O Manowar was the best battle I read this week. Favorite comic I read was surprisingly FF.

Edited by OutlawRenegade

Great choices this week. Maybe I should give Valiant a shot?

Cyborg to the rescue, haha

Posted by frozenedge

@Reignmaker: Batman's been people he really shouldn't be able to beat for years. And it's only due to prep time at that. Was he really prepared to be fighting someone as powerful as Ocean Master appears to be?

Posted by Reignmaker

@frozenedge: I can't tag people in the browser I'm using, so apologies. If this was an isolated incident in a Geoff Johns comic, then I'd agree with you. Unfortunately this is how Johns writes Batman on a continual basis - as someone who consistently gets owned and makes stupid decisions.

Posted by mk111


I don't see the problem with Batman losing to Ocean Master. Its Superman and Wonder Woman losing to him that feels wrong.

Posted by StMichalofWilson

@noobslayerprime11 said:


I know right?!

Posted by Press Oblivion

Good stuff here! Deadpool is too much.

Posted by comicfan11

Aquaman and the Atlanteans are THAT strong in the NuDCU. 
Andd it makes perfect sense if you followed any of Aquaman's series or John's interviews.
Get used to it people. 

And Orm uses magic. Of course he would take Superman out with a sustained attack.

Posted by Ddecourt

@comicfan11 said:

Aquaman and the Atlanteans are THAT strong in the NuDCU. Andd it makes perfect sense if you followed any of Aquaman's series or John's interviews.Get used to it people. And Orm uses magic. Of course he would take Superman out with a sustained attack.
Posted by roboadmiral

@CaptainMexico: Because Geoff Johns is, for some inexplicable reason, completely against Batman ever doing anything useful.

Posted by MeloDet

Yeah, unless that was magic lightning (and not just lightning summoned by magic) then Superman shouldn't have been taken down. He was able to take 10.1 Gigawatts of electricty in Action Comics 14 without even passing out, so I don't see how a non magical lightning strike (usually in the megawatt range) could knock him out.

Posted by comicfan11
@MeloDet: Ocean Master was and is first and foremost a wizard. A sorcerer. He is a magic user. Pre DCnU he also cast actual spells and stuff with incantations, candles etc etc.
Supes didn't job to the lightning.
Posted by GodOfMischief

That X-O Manowar book looks really good. I don't know much about DC, but I never knew Aquaman was that strong lol.

Posted by comicfan11
@GodOfMischief: He had similar feats pre reboot, but they were not so often and mostly in books people didn't read.
He KO punched Superboy (during his Hawai phasis) and KO punched Olympian a class 100 character called the "Greek Superman", with flight, Hercules strength and Achilles invulnerability.
Posted by entropy_aegis

@comicfan11: Sorry but that excuse doesn't work,"it's magic" so what? it's still lightning.Not like Orm was displaying any amazing spell work,he just shot them with common bolts that could have easily been avoided,blocked and frankly Diana has the bracelets and magical power as well so why was it so effective against her? it's just another case of making the villain look cool in his maiden appearance.

Posted by entropy_aegis

@comicfan11: However I would really like to see Ocean Master's Pre-Flashpoint feats,any scans? I've found his databases to be incredibly lacking.

Posted by comicfan11
@entropy_aegis: It might not work, but I think it's the best "explanation" we are going to get.
You can either accept it or be mad about it. Either way it's canon as of Wednesday.
And Diana having relation to magic, means next to nothing. 
Thor is the God of Thunder in Marvel and there are issues where he is KOed by lightning.
Posted by GodOfMischief


Damn, lol. He seems pretty badass from what I've seen recently. Though a lot of people seem to think of him as a joke.

Posted by kid Apollo

this might be me nit-picking but wouldnt it make sense for both JFK and Lincoln to have bullet holes in their heads? what? did they regrow a face while they were underground?

Posted by AskaniSon295

They should find away to work in Nautika from Stormwatch into the DC storyline.

Posted by entropy_aegis

@comicfan11 said:

@entropy_aegis: It might not work, but I think it's the best "explanation" we are going to get. You can either accept it or be mad about it. Either way it's canon as of Wednesday. And Diana having relation to magic, means next to nothing. Thor is the God of Thunder in Marvel and there are issues where he is KOed by lightning.

That is correct,I'm not really not mad about it,it's not the first time something like this has happened nor will it be the last.But I do wish the writer had put more effort in to it,would've only made Orm look more cooler,as it stands right now most people will just dismiss it as PIS in the long run.

I notice you seem to be a big Aquaman fan? could you make respect threads for Orm and Tempest?

Edited by comicfan11
@entropy_aegis: He had some nice feats. During the "Search for Aquaman" storyline he was holding back Superman and Wonder Woman via magic (water manipulation), but it took place on the surfaced ruins of Atlantis, which amped his power.
He also warped reality, when he got Aquaman's bones at some time, and changed history. He had become Aquaman and Arthur was Ocean Master. the whole Sub Diego history was rewritten.
He had other feats like beating Aquaman and I believe an entire army when he got access to some magical stones from the Arion comics and was pretty powerful, but Aquaman beat him in "planar battle".
He also destroyed an entire mountain with his staff (or at least the whole city under the mountain.
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