Mind Capsules – Starbrand and Nightmask #1 and Guardians of Infinity #1

Starbrand and Nightmask #1
Starbrand and Nightmask #1

Writer – Greg Weisman
Artist – Domo Stanton
Colours – Jordan Boyd
Letters – VC’s Clayton Cowles

Starbrand and Nightmask, two New Universe characters revamped and reintroduced to the Marvel Universe at large by Jonathan Hickman, get a shot at their own ongoing series and while it might have seemed like an odd choice out of all the characters that still do not have a title, it surprisingly turned out to be pretty good. The book is an all-ages title and it finds our heroes turning down membership in Sunspot’s New Avengers to instead, go to college and try and expand their horizons, not only through learning, but by being around people their own age and knowing how to relate to others in any given situation. When you essentially have the powers of the universe at your fingertips and can want for nothing, it sets you apart from the rest of humanity and Nightmask in particular does not want that to happen. So it is off to college they go and the book has turned out to be one of the most lighthearted and relatable stories to come from Marvel’s new crop of titles. Greg Weisman perfectly captures that awkwardness at joining a new school and meeting a girl that sets your heart aflutter. Nightmask is quite matter of fact about everything, looking to gain a measure of normality in his life whereas Starbrand cannot help tripping up over everything, much preferring to carry on as a superhero and forgoing the whole experience. Once in school though, the two might find they are in over their heads as trying to mingle with people their own age and who have problems that might seem like the world is going to end will be kind of funny as our heroes have actually faced the world as it ended. The artwork is light and cartoonish though not overly so and Domo Stanton is a perfect choice to take these two characters on their journey along with Weisman at the helm. While we have seen other young-hero type books at Marvel as of late like Nova and Ms. Marvel, this one is slightly different and aside from the usual hi-jinks which are sure to ensue in school, it will be quite intriguing to see what kind of villains they will face, if any. Worth checking out if you are looking for something light and breezy.

3.5 out of 5

Guardians of Infinity #1
Guardians of Infinity #1

Writer – Dan Abnett, Jason Latour
Artist – Carlo Barberi, Jim Cheung
Inker – Walden Wong, John Dell
Colours – Israel Silva, Laura Martin

Once again, Dan Abnett returns to the Guardians of the Galaxy, both the current incarnation and the future version of the team from the year 3000 and by the story’s end, a third version we have never seen before. This tale finds Rocket, Drax and Groot looking for treasure in what looks to be an abandoned ship, but unbeknownst to them, it is akin to a nexus, a place that is in all times at once which is how they meet up with Vance Astro, Martinex, Nikki Gold and Charlie 27. Of course, being the first issue and all, Abnett holds a lot of cards close to the chest, including just how it is this place exists and just how it is that the various teams are going to escape from its clutches. Said ship represents an interesting challenge and endless storytelling opportunities as the Guardians could literally be stuck there forever. What should be a lot of fun is seeing how this collaboration of Guardians will end up acting with one another, especially if it is for a long period of time. Who will lead the group is one of the bigger questions that arises and you know that will cause not only consternation, but outright confrontation. For now, Abnett tides us over with a mystery and with thoughts on the solving of it. The first issue of Guardians of Infinity is a good start to yet another book in the cosmic stable of the Marvel Universe, one which also contains a backup tale starring the Thing which was good, but really unneeded in the grand scheme of things.

3 out of 5

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