A TMNT: The Armageddon Game #2 Micro-Review – Biting Off Too Much?

***This is where we keep it nice and simple. Comic book reviews in 100 words or less. Straight, concise, and to the point.***

TMNT The Armageddon Game 2, cover, 2022, Vincenzo FedericiTITLE: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Armageddon Game #2
AUTHOR: Tom Waltz
ARTISTS:
Vincenzo Federici, Matt Herms (Colorist), Shawn Lee (Letterer)

RELEASED: October 26, 2022

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

This issue leans largely in a sci-fi direction, as two of our heroes go with the Neutrinos to an “intergalactic slash interdimensional way station.” There they meet a character that longtime TMNT comic book readers will recognize…

It’s all a bit of a drag for me, though. I’m much more interested in those four imposter Turtles we see on the cover, and what they’re doing to ruin the reputations of their counterparts.

There are a lot of things going on in this Armageddon Game story. I’m starting to wonder if it’s biting off more than it can chew.

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

Power Rangers Dino Fury, “Guilt Trip” Review

SERIES: Power Rangers Dino Fury

EPISODE: S29:E18 – “Guilt Trip”
STARRING: Russell Curry, Hunter Deno, Kai Moya, Tessa Rao, Chance Perez, Jordan Fite
WRITERS: Becca Barnes, Alwyn Dale, Maiya Thompson
DIRECTOR: Charlie Haskell
PREMIERE DATE: September 29, 2022

SYNOPSIS: Void Queen’s forces try and divide the Rangers’ attention across the globe.

New around here? Check out the Power Rangers review archive!

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

Ollie and Amelia are looking to book a stay at the Stine Hotel, which is supposedly haunted. I can only assumed that’s named after famed kids horror author R.L. Stine.

I wonder how much mileage they got out of that gag with the “bird poop” on Ollie’s mom. You think the little kids laughed at that? Hmm…

It’s always nice to see the actors on different sets and in different environments, i.e. something other than the usual locations. Dinohenge, Buzzblast, etc. The set they came up with for Osaka, Japan, seems a little on-the-nose as far as the look of the little buildings, the paper lanterns, etc. But I suppose they have to get the point across to the little kids, right? I appreciated the lab set too.

Sugarhit, the monster in this episode, throws pies and tries to lure the Rangers into a trap using a giant meringue shell. That’s not quite as cheesy as the Rangers getting baked into a giant pizza back in Turbo. But it’s close.

Either way, this show is gloriously ridiculous.

Javi before a fight with Sugarhit: “Let’s pound this cake!” That…is not a line I would have used. Let’s just say that. Let’s just say the double entendres aren’t fit for a young audience.

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

Power Rangers Dino Fury, “Things Unspoken” Review

Fern, Green Ranger, Power Rangers Dino Fury, Things UnspokenSERIES: Power Rangers Dino Fury

EPISODE: S29:E17 – “Things Unspoken”
STARRING: Russell Curry, Hunter Deno, Kai Moya, Tessa Rao, Chance Perez, Jordan Fite
WRITERS: Becca Barnes, Alwyn Dale, Maiya Thompson
DIRECTOR: Charlie Haskell
PREMIERE DATE: September 29, 2022

SYNOPSIS: Izzy’s Ranger duties jeopardize her relationship with Fern.

New around here? Check out the Power Rangers review archive!

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

“Things Unspoken” is a really good episode, with Izzy facing some serious secret identity drama. Not just with Fern, which is obviously the center of this episode, but with her choice of college, as well as her father. Power Rangers doesn’t always maximize its potential for drama when it comes to the heart-wrenching “hero life vs. personal life” stuff. But it does with “Things Unspoken,” and it’s the fans that ultimately reap the benefits.

So Izzy doesn’t want to attend her original college of choice, because it would take her away from Pine Ridge, the epicenter of her Ranger duties. This jeopardizes her relationship with Fern, who is attending said college. It also potentially puts her at odds with her father, who’s been working with her toward getting into that school.

The way this episode was assembled made me think of the way the show would write a character off back in the Mighty Morphin days. Jason, Zack, and Trini went away to a peace conference. Kimberly went away to be a competitive gymnast. And if the show were still operating the same way, Izzy would have gone away to college with Fern.

Green Ranger, Power Rangers Dino Fury, Things Unspoken

That entire playground fight sequence with the Green Ranger, Mucus, and the Hengemen was excellent. It looked like at least part of it was Sentai footage from Ryusoulger. If that’s the case, the transition between the Japanese and American footage was pretty seamless. Well done.

As Fern is leaving Pine Ridge on the bus, she calls out to Izzy: “May the power protect you!” That was a nice little moment. It does pose the question, though: Is that phrase public knowledge? I thought it was just a thing for Rangers…?

Oh well.

If we were ever going to get a same-sex kiss on this show, that last scene at the bus station would have been the time. Not that I was expecting one. This show is reticent enough about male-female kisses. Let alone one between two women.

Still, we got an “I love you” from both sides. By Power Rangers standards, that’s pretty good.

I had a thought about Fern as the episode was ending: As we know, the Dino Fury Rangers are sticking around through next year’s Cosmic Fury season. But if they wanted to extend the Dino Fury stuff out even further, they could make Fern into a Ranger in whatever incarnation of PR follows Cosmic Fury. I’m sure Jaqueline Joe, who plays Fern, would be up for it. And Tessa could come back here and there to do cameos. Seems like a win-win scenario to me!

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

George Lucas on Star Wars: The Rule of Two

***Think what you will about George Lucas, but in terms of Star Wars, it can all be traced back to him. That’s why I always find it so interesting to listen to him talk about it. His creative process, the reason certain decisions were made, and how these movies became the pop cultural staples they are. This space is dedicated to just that. This is “George Lucas on Star Wars.”***

***New around here? Check out Primary Ignition‘s “George Lucas on Star Warsarchive!***

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

Count Dooku, Star Wars Episode II Attack of the Clones

The Scene: Count Dooku asks the captured Obi-Wan Kenobi to join him against Darth Sidious. Obi-Wan refuses.

George Lucas Says (via the Attack of the Clones commentary track): “I was able to get in this little thing of, you put two Sith together, and they try to get others to join them to get rid of the other Sith. So Dooku’s ambition here is really to get rid of Darth Sidious, and he’s trying to get Obi-Wan’s assistance in that. … So that he and Obi-Wan can overthrow Sidious and take over. And it’s exactly the same scene as when Darth Vader does it with Luke to try and get rid of Sidious [in The Empire Strikes Back]. So whenever you get too many people together with these Sith Lords, they all gang up and they all try to get rid of the strongest one. … So the one facet of the Sith reality is that they’re constantly plotting against each other, and therefore there can’t be more than two of them at any time.”

I Say: One of the recurring elements in Star Wars is greed and a lust for power. It’s most plainly on display with the Sith’s “Rule of Two.” Whether you’re talking about Sidious and Dooku, the Emperor and Vader, or Snoke and Kylo Ren in the later films, you always have two individuals who are so hungry for power that their partnership is inevitably doomed from the start. I’ve always felt there’s a truth to this notion as far as the nature of evil is concerned. No matter how long you can make it lasts, it’s destined for self destruction.

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

The Essential Clone Wars: “The Wrong Jedi”

***I must confess that, despite being a huge Star Wars geek, I have yet to see the landmark Clone Wars animated show in its entirety. I’m aiming to rectify that to a large extent here, as we look at pivotal episodes of the series in, “The Essential Clone Wars.”

Ahsoka, Anakin, Star Wars the Clone Wars, The Wrong JediSERIES: Star Wars: The Clone Wars
EPISODE:
S5:E20 – “The Wrong Jedi”
WITH THE VOICE TALENTS OF:
Ashley Eckstein, Matt Lanter, Meredith Salenger, Nika Futterman, Stephen Stanton
WRITER:
Charles Murray
DIRECTOR:
 Dave Filoni
PREMIERE DATE:
March 2, 2013
SYNOPSIS:
Ahsoka is put on trial for her alleged crimes.

***New around here? Check out our Star Wars review archive!***

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

This episode represents an ending of sorts for The Clone WarsA few different endings, actually.

“The Wrong Jedi” was the final Clone Wars episode to premiere on Cartoon Network, which had been the show’s home since its inception.

The episode aired on March 2, 2013. Mere days later, Lucasfilm announced the end of the series, in conjunction with Disney’s purchase of the Star Wars brand. This, as Dave Filoni and everybody on the Clone Wars crew was apparently already working on a 22-episode sixth season. It wasn’t until later that fans learned they’d be getting an abbreviated season six. So for awhile, this episode served as the series finale for The Clone Wars.

As we’ll see, it’s also the ending of Ahsoka Tano’s apprenticeship under Anakin Skywalker. Obviously, her fate and whereabouts during the events of Revenge of the Sith had been the source of various questions since the series started.

Ahsoka, Star Wars the Clone Wars, The Wrong Jedi

All in all, if this episode had indeed been the series finale, it would have worked for me. It’s obviously got a lot of drama, features a great many of the show’s expansive list of characters, and ties up enough loose ends with Ahsoka while also leaving her around for future projects.

This wasn’t the end. But it very well could have been.

From a writing standpoint, it might have made sense to have Anakin turn his back on Ahsoka in the wake of all the evidence mounted against her. But the fact that he didn’t speaks to his loyalty as a character, as well as the bond he and Ahsoka shared. It makes what happens at the end of this episode all the more sad.

The great Tim Curry voices Palpatine in this episode. He took the baton from the also great Ian Abercrombie, who passed way in January 2012. It’s easy to hear Curry’s iconic voice in his portrayal of the character.

Anakin discovers that Bariss Offee has framed Ahsoka for the murder of Letta Turmond. Bariss taking such drastic action against the Jedi Order is the weakest part of the episode, in my opinion. It’s a pretty steep turn for her to make, and I’m not sure I fully buy it.

Also, when she wields Asajj Ventress’ red lightsabers, she says, “I think they suit me.” So does that mean she’s gone to the dark side?

The ensuing fight between Anakin and Bariss takes them in front of a class of Jedi younglings. I’m sure that was meant to be poignant, and symbolic of the Order falling apart. But in truth, I couldn’t help but think about how many of those kids (if any) Anakin murders during the events of Revenge of the Sith. Yeesh…

At the end of “The Wrong Jedi,” Ahsoka opts to leave the Jedi Order, despite being cleared of all charges. Again, from a writing standpoint this episode does a good job of making Ahsoka sympathetic. Her departure from the Order feels justified, as the Jedi left her hanging out to dry when she needed them most. Heck, I’d have left too…

One thing I might have changed: We never find out what the verdict is going to be as far as Ahsoka’s innocence or guilt is concerned before Anakin bursts in and clears her name. I might have had them pronounce her guilty. Thus the Jedi would be about to let her forfeit her life for nothing. All the more reason for her to leave the order.

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

A Thunderbolts #2 Micro-Review – Eegro the Unbreakable!

***This is where we keep it nice and simple. Comic book reviews in 100 words or less. Straight, concise, and to the point.***

Thunderbolts 2, cover, 2022, Sean Izaakse, Chris O'HalloranTITLE: Thunderbolts #2
AUTHOR: Jim Zub
ARTISTS:
Sean Isaakse, Java Tartaglia (Colorist), Joe Sabino (Letterer). Cover by Isaakse & Chris O’Halloran.

RELEASED: September 28, 2022

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

This new Thunderbolts series has been quite enjoyable thus far. It consistently makes me chuckle. Considering it’s tone, that means it’s doing what it’s designed to do.

I’m kind of in love with Eegro the Unbreakable, both from a writing and design perspective. I’m thrilled we’ll be seeing more of him.

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

Epic Covers: Tim Drake: Robin #1 by Sweeney Boo

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

This week’s Tim Drake: Robin #1 has been a long time coming. As in, more than 10 years. Tim’s Red Robin series, which was really good, ended when the New 52 began. Then he got that awful costume, and he was downplayed, and it was just bad, and-

I fear I’ve gotten off topic.

I always appreciate when artists create content that’s sexy without beating us over the head with it. That’s exactly what Sweeney Boo does with this variant cover for Tim Drake: Robin #1. Yes, it shows off Tim’s muscles. But it’s all in the hand being behind the ear. It creates a shy sexuality that’s fitting, given all the emphasis on Tim being bisexual over the last year. That’s something that will no doubt be explored in this new series.

Here’s to a new era of Tim Drake stories!

Tim Drake Robin 1, cover, 2022, Sweeney Boo

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

Batman – One Bad Day: Two-Face #1 Micro-Review – Sins of the Son

***This is where we keep it nice and simple. Comic book reviews in 100 words or less. Straight, concise, and to the point.***

Batman - One Bad Day Two Face 1, cover, 2022, Javier Fernandez, Jordie BellaireTITLE: Batman – One Bad Day: Two-Face #1
AUTHOR: Mariko Tamaki
ARTISTS:
Javier Fernandez, Jordie Bellaire (Colorist), Ariana Maher (Letterer)

RELEASED: September 20, 2022

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

This issue is centered around a seemingly reformed Harvey Dent throwing a birthday/retirement party for his father. Kudos to Mariko Tamaki, as I don’t think we’ve met Harvey’s dad before, have we? I know he’s been referenced…

There’s a great sense of dread that permeates much of this story. It’s like reading a Greek tragedy. You pretty much know what the ending is going to be, and you know it’s not going to be good. But somehow you can’t look away.

What’s more, it’s a beautifully drawn and colored Greek tragedy, thanks to Javier Fernandez and Jordie Bellaire.

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

A Daredevil #3 Micro-Review – Why the Hoodie?

***This is where we keep it nice and simple. Comic book reviews in 100 words or less. Straight, concise, and to the point.***

Daredevil 3, cover, 2022, Marco ChecchettoTITLE: Daredevil #3
AUTHOR: Chip Zdarsky
ARTISTS:
Rafael De Latorre, Matthew Wilson (Colorist), Clayton Cowles (Letterer). Cover by Marco Checchetto & Wilson.
RELEASED:
September 14, 2022

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

This opening scene has Daredevil in a coffee shop, talking to a cop while wearing a gray hoodie over his superhero outfit. Here’s my question: Why even bother with the hoodie? People can see you’re wearing a red mask. They can see your red Daredevil pants. Who does he think he’s fooling with that hoodie?

It looks like Daredevil is going to be a nexus point for a few different Marvel heroes. We’re already seeing a good amount of Luke Cage. And then we’ve got the man revealed as leader of the Hand…

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.

Epic Covers: Spidey as Green Goblin?!?

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

Over in The Amazing Spider-Man, Spidey’s getting some tech help from an extremely unlikely source: Norman Osborn, a.k.a. the Green Goblin. Thus, the very Goblin-esque look he’s sporting on the cover of this week’s ASM #8.

I like this cover by John Romita Jr. (with Scott Hanna on inks and Marcio Menyz on colors) because it creates instant intrigue. In giving Spider-Man visual traits that line up with his arch nemesis (the glider, the green lighting and…is that the Spidey version of a pumpkin bomb?), the reader instantly has questions about what’s going on. Thus, a desire to open the issue.

I’ve been a critic of John Romita Jr’s in the past. But this one is a winner, right here. Easily the best cover of his to come out of this new ASM volume thus far.

The Amazing Spider-Man #8, cover, 2022, John Romita Jr, Scott Hanna, Marcio Menyz

Email Rob at primaryignition@yahoo.com, or check us out on Twitter.