Sunday, June 4, 2017

Doctor Strange #21 Review - Marvel Monday

Writer: Dennis HopelessArtist: Niko HenrichonPublisher: Marvel ComicsRelease Date: May 31, 2017Cover Price: $3.99

I’m jumping onto this book as Hopeless comes to the character. I’ve become a somewhat new fan of Hopeless as I’d call his Spider-Woman run one of my favorite books of the last few years. Although some were sad to see Jason Aaron’s run come to an end, I had been really back and forth on the overall feel of it as it seemed to not really grasp whether it wanted to be more comedic or more on the dark side. So I may have been one of the few excited for Hopeless’ take on the book.

That being said...I could have taken it without it being a Secret Empire tie-in. We jump in with Strange already mid combat as we get a little catch up of what had taken place in the Strange book as of late. The world is recovering magic wise and it seems not much of that has changed in this Secret Empire timeline. As the battle progresses though I start to get a little more confused as it seems Strange is battling a creature, inside of a creature, who is in fact inside of another creature. It’s a little weird to follow and ends up being not much other than a cold up as nothing else really comes of it as the issue progresses.

I think Hopeless might have realized how the open would have come across because he instantly wins me over with Jess, Ben and even DareDevil making an apparance as they climb toward Strange’s estate which now seems to be located in the middle of a skyscraper. We learn Manhattan has been encased in some kind of Magic bubble and in fact Baron Mordo has taken up Strange’s Sanctorum for himself as so appointed by Hydra Cap as the caretaker of “Darkforce Manhattan”.

After skipping to Strange we lead off with some contracting information as we were told earlier, and even immediately following this, that magic is still in the same state it was before but Strange makes mention of Mordo now having possession of all the powerful totems and grimoires on the island of Manhattan. It seems like an odd thing to lead off with when going right to Strange throwing small knick knacks into a trash can to make a spell. Though it does pay off fine enough as Jess and Ben fall into the spell disrupting the attempt entirely.

Following Jess and Ben was a giant monster that happens to have his skin burned off from Strange’s disrupted spell which leads to some struggling leading into the eventual cliffhanger that is possibly the highlight of the issue.

Overall I can’t say I really enjoyed the issue. The first third is a confusing battle that is mostly used as recap, the final third is mostly a fight that leads to a cliffhanger while the middle is almost entirely fan service for those following Hopeless from his previous book, myself included. We do get some laughs and some interesting things that come to light with the highlight being the cliffhanger, but it doesn’t come together all that well.

Bits and Pieces:

With some fan service for Hopeless’ previous book, a couple laughs and an interesting cliffhanger, there's a few bits to like in this, but overall it’s hard to  walk away satisfied with the total delivery of this issue.


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