Monday, April 24, 2017

The Unbelievable Gwenpool #14 Review - Marvel Monday

The Unbelievable Gwenpool #14 Review

Writer: Christopher Hastings
Art Team: Myisha Haynes, Rachelle Rosenberg
Marvel Comics
Release Date: April 12, 2017
Cover Price: $3.99

You Got the Touch!

The continuing adventures of the Unbelievable Gwenpool is one of my guilty pleasure Marvel titles, that has managed to somehow avoid the many various strings of cancellations, issued by the publishing company lately, and seems to have found itself a steady niche audience, who feel pretty similar to myself. The latest issue kicks of a new mini-run, which features Kate Bishop, a.k.a Hawkeye, and the latest iteration of Ghost Rider, or Robbie Reyes in his spare time. I’ll be honest and admit this isn’t the most mouthwatering menu of guest characters to indulge in, but Christopher Hastings has put together a quality series to this point so far, so I won’t hesitate when he provides the opportunity to find out how this latest Gwenpool team-up’s origins are established. Join me inside I promise they’ll be some shenanigans that entertain within the pages of this title.

The issue starts with Gwen and Cecil, her ghost sidekick, visiting Sarah in her New York City apartment with the request to help Cecil ‘touch’ things again, a skill he no longer possesses in ghost form.  Sarah states she lacks the abilities to complete the task asked of her, but is able to conjure up a bathtub portal, which Gwenpool prematurely uses with limited information, to track a lead and help Cecil gain the ability he wants.

From their our story jumps to the west coast, Los Angeles to be exact, as we’re introduced to Kate Bishop spying on a group of Dwarves having a party, because they’re in possession of a magic crystal, and with nefarious intentions for all the wealth in ‘Midgard’ they’re attempting to steal.  Before you question how crazy the realities of the situation truly are Ghost Rider in his car comes literally flying over the roof of the house, aflame, and looking to punish some souls upon the landing.

At this point in the story we realize the ‘bathtub portal’ Gwenpool and Cecil jumped into lead directly into the truck of Ghost Riders car. Eventually the worlds clumsiest duo, Gwenpool and Cecil, are able to get the trunk their locked in to open, but quickly find themselves smack dab in the middle of a shootout, between some angry Dwarfs and a couple different super heroes. While the heroes are busy trying to figure out why a girl is crawling out of Ghost Riders trunk, while fending off the bad guys, Cecil heads off towards the crystal causing the root of these problems.

The big twist of the issue rears its ‘ugly’ head at this point in our story, its revealed that when Cecil gets too close and makes contact with this object, it absorbs what it ‘connects’ with. The result is Cecil being sucked into this mysterious crystal item, just like a prison of sorts.  As the cops begin to arrive on the scene, everyone goes full Chinese fire drill scattering for the hills. Among the chaos of the distraction, Ghost Rider grabs the suddenly all important crystal, tossing it in the back of his open car trunk, as he takes off to avoid dealing with ‘the Fuzz’ just like everyone else. 

The remainder of our issue see Kate Bishop team up with Gwenpool to first evade capture from the authorities for the scene caused with the Dwarfs while also giving chase to Ghost Rider, now in possession of Cecil trapped in the crystal.  As the issue comes to a conclusion we get a dual cliffhanger of sorts with Ghost Rider pulling up to his house, transforming back into Robbie, which leaves he Spirit of Vengeance, face to face and also stuck in the truck with Cecil as his company in the Crystal.  The second of these cliffhangers reveal an older couple back in New York walking into an NYPD precinct claiming Gwenpool as their daughter, which is when our issue officially comes to a close for the month.

Overall this was a solid effort but not one of the best showings so far in a series filled with clever and interestingly unique moments throughout its history.  I’m sure not being a huge fan of either guest star impacts my enjoyment some, however at the same time Kate Bishop seems to be a natural fit as a teammate for Gwen, more interaction between the two would be a highlight next issue.  The fill-in artist Myisha Haynes, with regular colorist Rachelle Rosenberg, does an excellent job of taking the place of Gurihiru here, but adds enough of her own flavor to avoid the art truly feeling just like a just a copy of what’s normally done. I’d like to see her more on the title especially if Gurihiru is going to be out for extended periods of time.  

Bits and Pieces

This is another solid outing from Christopher Hastings and the rest of the Gwenpool team that fans of the series will undoubtedly continue to enjoy. However to the outsiders this isnt an issue that has all the magic in place and I dont think it will convert the haters or anybody on the fence with the Gwenpool concept.


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