No formal bouts to adjudicate this week (at least, none that we set up on the ballot; had Magik vs. Doctor Strange been an option, the X-Men would have had their first tally in the win column). There’s still some fun action to report, and, so long as you’re enjoying the ride, the third issue of Aaron and Romita Jr.’s Avengers vs. X-Men doesn’t disappoint.
Speaking of disappointing…
Last week Cap missed an opportunity at being disappointed in Hawkeye and Spider-Woman’s mid-crisis makeout session. This week, he lets Wolverine know how disappointed he is in the hairy bastich’s insistence on extreme measures with a fist to the face and a mid-flight quinjet ejection. And… it counts. I’ll admit, the judges had to deliberate a bit longer here, since the actual words “disappointed in” weren’t spoken, but, ultimately, Gene won the argument. “If this doesn’t say Cap is disappointed in a fellow Avenger, nothing does.” So… score it, fans. Five points for all entrants who predicted this eventuality.
The only other AvX book this week was Avengers Academy 29. It’s a decent comic, but doesn’t really add anything to the overall storyline. Longtime X-fans, or anyone who read up on the whole Phoenix Saga in anticipation, will love the final splash page, however.
Here are the leaders through week 5. Note that the bonus points for liking The Institute or Comics & Collectibles on Facebook haven’t been factored in yet. Which means, of course, that some of you still have a chance of adding a quick two points to your total. Get on that.
Four weeks in on Idle Time’s Avengers vs. X-Men contest, and we already have our fourth one-on-one duel to officiate. This week, thanks to the first issue of the AvX Vs: mini-series, the judging is conveniently taken out of our hands, with “winner” clearly stated at the conclusion of each of the comic’s two battles.
The main card focuses on one of the off-camera contests from AvX 2. Tony Stark, man in the Iron Suit, versus Magneto, Master of Magnetism. No contest? You’d be right, if you picked the second-smartest guy in the Marvel U to take the day’s honors. Decision: Iron Man.
The Thing takes on a familiar foe in the back-up battle. Despite Namor’s homefield advantage, the ever-loving blue-eyed Ben Grimm emerges from the San Francisco bay after having been declared the winner, “for now…” Decision: The Thing.
This week gives us three books under the AvX banner: Wolverine and the X-Men 9, Avengers 25, and the second “round” of the main series, Avengers vs. X-Men 2.
Check out those tie-in books, True Believers. Jason Aaron just might be the best there is at what he does. And what he does is write Wolverine. Bendis is united with a real legend on this Avengers book. Welcome back, Walt Simonson. I could make the same “best there is” comment about you and drawing Thor. But what we’re really waiting for is that second issue of the limited series and the expected showdown between Captain America and Cyclops.
Only one book with the AvX banner this week, and New Avengers 24 is mostly flashback setting up the opening bell of last week’s Avengers vs. X-Men 1.
Even so, there’s a tense stretch of four or five pages featuring Luke Cage all riled up and dealing with a crowd of protesters outside Avengers Mansion. Come on, Luke… Say it… Say it…
But no. “In this house” is as close as he gets. Those of you who predicted that “Luke Cage yells “In MY house'” at some point during the event, are going to have to sit tight. No points scored this time around. But don’t worry: there’s a really good chance Cage is going to get pissed off again before this story wraps, and it could very well happen at home.
But for now, the points tally from last week hasn’t changed.
It didn’t take long for the scoring opportunities to pop up in our AvX Pick ’em Points Pool. Even before the actual “versus” action unfolds, Cyclops gives that bratty Hope kid an optic blast to the gut.
The following contest entrants, who all successfully predicted that “Cyclops optic-blasts a fellow X-Man,” are up 5 points after just one week and a single issue. Remember: everyone can score an easy two points just by liking The Institute and our partner in this endeavor, Comics & Collectibles, on Facebook. And if you’re heading over to the C&C Facebook page, you can check out pictures from Tuesday’s Avengers vs. X-Men Launch Party. Thanks to Gene, Pam, Rex, and Erik for making it happen!
Marvel’s billing this as the biggest event in comic book history. And here at The Institute, the only thing we love more than superheroes is superhype. We’re pretty excited. In fact, for the next six months, Avengers vs. X-Men figures to dominate a good deal of real estate on this here website in a way the goddam Beatles could only dream of. In fact, that might make for an interesting battle itself: will The Institute house more pictures of mutant mayhem or Liverpudlian pop stars?*
To properly celebrate this auspicious occasion, Idle Time, in collaboration with Sacramento’s Comics & Collectibles, is sponsoring a contest with a degree of complexity and inanity completely commensurate with the average comic book storyline. The faculty here could no sooner decide on an appropriate contest than we could agree on a side to support. Clearly, the smart money is on the Avengers, but there are those among our collective still blindly allied to the misguided mutant agenda. That’s why we created two different contests, with two completely different ways to win!
Bear with me, and I’ll try to make this explanation only slightly less verbose than the typical RPG player’s manual.
First, get your hands on one of these: AvX Ballot. You can download the pdf, or you can pick up a copy in person at Comics & Collectibles. Don’t waste any time, True Believer! After you’ve finished reading Avengers vs. X-Men #0 (out this week!), submit that completed form to the store, or email a copy to firstname.lastname@example.org. The deadline is 6:00 PM on Tuesday, April 3rd. Then, to celebrate the real event kick-off, come back to the shop starting at 8:00 for anAvX Launch Party! Pick up your first issue a day early! Pick up some variant covers! Pick a fight! Continue reading Avengers vs X-Men: The Idle Time Contest!→
…and win this limited edition Brian Wilson bobblehead!
First off, let me thank Jimmy Chew for talking me into this year’s The Giant Race half marathon. And even after I said I’d run it, his incessant “have you registered yet?” reminders ensured that I got a bib number before it sold out.
Of course, it’s been a good long while since I’ve run any kind of marathon, full or half, and getting my legs up to speed has been a drag (especially since my old marathon training team has either moved to the east coast; given up running shoes for a bicycle; or just opted for the most sane alternative to running which is, simply, not running).
When training alone, scintillating conversation needs to be replaced with music. The iPod Shuffle figured to be a great running buddy: it’s lightweight, clips to my shorts, and holds two gigs of tunes. What really sold me was the way it could auto-fill itself from your iTunes library, guaranteeing an exciting randomized playlist and miles of “guess the artist” fun.
I went from thinking this was a clever little device, to thinking it was stupid, to thinking it was cleverly sadistic in the span of three runs. Granted, it’s been pulling from over 35,000 songs, but this miniature robot prankster somehow manages to jumble in as many forgotten spoken word tracks, bluegrass banjo disasters, and instrumental lullabies that it can find on my hard drive. Instead of having fun being surprised by a song and wondering, “who sings this again?” I yank out my earbuds wondering (sometimes audibly, which can be embarrassing if there are other runners about), “what the hell is this and why was it on my computer?”