Mind Capsules – The Autumnlands: Tooth & Claw #3 and Spider-Woman #3

The Autumnlands Tooth & Claw #3
The Autumnlands: Tooth & Claw #3

Writer – Kurt Busiek
Artist – Benjamin Dewey
Colours – Jordie Bellaire

The various magicians of the fallen city are looking to the man they pulled forward in time, a man they believed to be The Great Champion, to not only save their magic, but save them from the circumstances they now find themselves in.  The only problem being this Great Champion, a man called Learoyd, feels that he is unable to do as everyone asks and of those that are left, they are split down the middle with some following Sandorst and some following Gharta.  The book goes on to show us that Learoyd does indeed have some sort of powers, though if it is magic, it is hard to say but he seems more like a robot as his arm was smoking after he was tinkering around with it.  It is interesting to see that the people that follow Sandorst are turning a blind eye to their situation, not appreciating the dangers that stalk them upon the face of the planet.  While they might know magic and such, upon the Earth, they are at the mercies of others instead of it being the other way around.  Gharta on the other hand does indeed realize this, at least in part and is taking steps with the help of Learoyd to ensure that at least some of them survive.  This series is definitely the most ambitious one that Kurt Busiek has given to the masses thus far, a tale that is huge in the undertaking as he infuses it with the humanity of his Astro City tales, yet paints a much bigger canvas in Lord of the Rings-style.  Half of that credit goes to Benjamin Dewey and his amazing pencils which continue to impress and if possible, look better with every passing issue.  Jordie Bellaire aids the book with her usual confidant and charismatic confluence of colours and together, these three creators are delivering one hell of a solid adventure.

4.5 out of 5

Spider-Woman #3
Spider-Woman #3

Writer – Dennis Hopeless
Artist – Greg Land
Inker – Jay Leisten
Colours – Frank D’Armata

This issue is a little behind the events of Amazing Spider-Man #13 if you were to read it in the reading order that is suggested on the Spider-Verse checklist.  Optimally, you should read this before Amazing #14 to get the proper experience out of the book, but as it is, it still works if you treat it more like a behind the scenes kind of tale.  Here, we see Jessica trying to fool Morlun into believing that she is Loomworld’s Jessica and surprisingly, it is actually working.  Silk on the other hand, is stuck on Radiation World looking for a way to survive when she heads to that self-same bunker she was found in, and where she discovers Ben Parker.  This issue by far has been the best so far as Dennis Hopeless peppers it with a lot of humour.  The ongoing travails of Jessica pretending to go to the bathroom in order to fool Morlun as to her real purpose is hilarious and is one of the most memorable sequences out of this whole crossover so far, simply because it is so funny.  Also nice to see is Silk get some solo time, though her discovering Ben and whatnot is a little like a case of Déjà vu as we have already seen this in a previous book.  The pencils by Greg Land, love him or hate him, are fantastic and look as wonderful as ever.  Some people think he uses too many photo references, and maybe he does, but it does not impact just how good his work looks, referenced or not.  So far this title has been very closely associated with the Spider-Verse crossover, how it moves forward when it is finished remains to be seen but it is hopeful it finds itself an identity so that it might survive.

4 out of 5

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