The Lost Lighthouse: The Weekly Rapture 132 – Gotta Go Fast

Welcome back to The Weekly Rapture, our fortnightly pop culture news and reviews podcast!

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Big News

We’ve been off for a while, but this week we chat about the trailers for Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker, Star Wars Jedi Fallen Order, the new Clone Wars series and the Sonic the Hedgehog movie, the success of Captain Marvel and Avengers Endgame, and the new versions of the Nintendo Switch that are coming.

Screentime – Avengers Endgame

This week we review Avengers Endgame, the latest Marvel film and the end of the ‘Infinity Saga’ and culmination of the previous 21 films. We go into pretty heavily into spoilers from 47:05-69:30 so skip that if you haven’t seen it yet! 

Now Playing – Reading/Watching/Playing (a few things as we haven’t had an episode in a while!)
Adam A Record of a Spaceborn Few by Becky Chambers, The Shadow Rising (The Wheel of Time Book 4) by Robert Jordan, and Fires by Raymond Carver/Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood on Netflix, Game of Thrones Season 6 on NOW TV, and Us/Super Smash Bros Ultimate on Nintendo Switch, The Surge on PS4
IanThe Charmed Life of Alex Moore by Molly Flatt and The City of Brass by S. A. Chakraborty /Fleabag Series 2 on BBC Three/The Elder Scrolls: Blades on iOS, Call of Duty Modern Warfare Remastered on PS4

Check out any of those through those Amazon links and we get a kick back! Or you can go through here.

You can as always get in touch through Facebook or on Twitter @lost_lighthouse, email us at thelostlighthouse@live.co.uk or sound off in the ‘leave a reply’ box at the bottom of the podcast page on the website.Fancy supporting our site? Head on over to our Paypal donation page! It’s completely optional, set your own price! Even £1 helps us with hosting costs and we’d really appreciate it! Cheers!

Comic Review – Secret Wars #1

Adam reads as many comics as he can afford. Every week he reviews of one of them, with potential minor spoilers.

This week saw the start of Marvel’s new Secret Wars event, an 8 issue mini series in which the regular Marvel Universe (Earth-616) and the Ultimate Universe (Earth-1610) collide, heralding the end of both worlds and the multiverse itself. Amongst the new tie in series that will be coming up, several comics will revisit old defunct or What if? stories too. Secret Wars is written by Jonathan Hickman, with art from Esad Ribic, colours by Ive Svorcina and letters from Chris Eliopoulos.

“The multiverse is dying. Only two universes remain. Today, Earths collide”

Secret Wars opens in Manhattan on Earth-1610 in the Ultimate Universe, and with the universal incursion imminent Nick Fury and Reed Richards plan to strike first – to save themselves by eliminating the other Earth. Little does Fury know, Richards is working with The Cabal, a group of villains from Earth-616 including Thanos, Namor, Black Swan and Terrax, for some alternate goal. Tony Stark leads the charge, with huge ships appearing above Manhattan in Earth-616. But despite the surprise attack and the firepower, the metahumans of the Marvel Universe start to fight back and win. The X-Men, the Avengers, the Guardians of the Galaxy, the Fantastic Four and an array of other characters slowly destroy the ships. But they also fear the incursion too, and Earth-616 Reed Richards (keep up) and the Fantastic Four have been arranging a ‘Resurrection Ship’ full of scientists to escape the collision of the two worlds, and to rebuild the human race elsewhere. This obviously goes wrong, and plan B seems to be to teleport certain choice heroes into the ship and escape in it. As the worlds collide, the universes glow white-hot and then die, with the final page simply:

The Marvel Universe

1961-2015

The Ultimate Universe

2000-2015

The story continues next week, but it’s a pretty explosive ending. Those who escaped on the ark/resurrection ship will presumably form the main cast of Secret Wars, including Thor, Reed Richards, Captain Marvel, Black Panther and Star Lord, but where it will go from here and how it will end up is anyone’s guess. Somehow the universes will be smushed together and we’ll have a new Marvel Universe.

As a first issue this was pretty impressive. What I have read of Hickman’s work on Avengers or Fantastic Four is very much in line with this, if a little more high-concept, but I think that will be played up in the coming issues. This is an action packed introduction to the story (and the FCBD Secret Wars #0 isn’t totally necessary, though it was pretty good). To totally unfairly compare it to the start of DC’s ‘worlds colliding’ story in Convergence a few weeks ago this was a lot more fun and cohesive, but also much harder to follow if you are even a casual reader, let alone using this as a jumping on point. I dabble in Marvel, and currently only follow 3 books regularly, but consider myself to have a basic working knowledge of the universe. This was dense. Though the only thing that didn’t make a huge amount of sense to me is why Fury and Stark from the Ultimate Universe seem to be so easily and totally bent on taking out Earth-616 rather than working together to find a solution like superheroes would.

Ribic’s art was largely very strong, with the actual action and the scale of the attack looking stunning. The only shaky moments in the art were with a few of the faces of various characters, where they didn’t quite look like a face anyone would actually pull, the most obvious of which was She-Hulk about halfway through. But the bulk of the issue looks great, and Svorcina’s colours make the action and all of the many explosions look intense and vibrant.

If you’re a Marvel fan, you’re probably going to check out Secret Wars. This first issue was a lot of fun, the stakes felt high and I’m genuinely interested in where it goes next. If you don’t really follow Marvel at all… this might not make a lot of sense to you, but you may enjoy it anyway! I really did, so I’m going to see what happens to the survivors of the incursion and what sort of universe we’ll end up with at the end. Pick this up at your LCS or digitally!

Score: 8 Incursions out of 10

Comic Review – The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #1

3

Our pal Kit sometimes write for the site! This is one of those times.

Here you go! Spoilers of course……..

“Maybe it’s just me, but I’m not crazy about super hero stories where everything’s all dark and moody. Personally, I like the ones where good guys fight giant apes on the moon and stuff. Remember those? I do. That was back when comic book worlds were places you wanted to escape to… not from.” – Squirrel Girl

Naturally, this contains spoilers. If you’d prefer to avoid them stop reading this now!

 

The world presented in superhero comics has often become a very dark place. There have been plenty of rebooted characters who are moved from their light hearted and fun origins to a dark and gritty set up where no one can be happy and everyone is put through hell. Many of these dark reboots of course are excellent and well worth a look (compare the current run on Batman with the old ‘Batman Meets Scooby-Doo DVD I have’) but this means the ridiculous and light hearted side gets left in the dirt. Even the comic relief characters – Deadpool, Harley Quinn etc – are usually on one level deeply tortured or insane.

Enter Ryan North and Erica Henderson’s Squirrel Girl. For those of you who may not know her Squirrel Girl is a mutant from the Marvel universe whose powers include – the proportional strength and agility of a squirrel, small claws, the ability to talk to squirrels, a big fluffy tail, and the inexplicable ability to defeat horribly powerful enemies without breaking a sweat! She’s taken out Wolverine, Deadpool, MODOK, Doctor Doom, Ego the Living Planet and Thanos amongst plenty of others.

mTB9V

As you may imagine this is not a very serious comic. It starts with Squirrel Girl singing her own theme tune whilst beating the snot out of some park muggers (detailing her powers of that of ‘Squirrel and Girl). She then moves out of the Avengers mansion, somehow managing to hide her giant tail into some apparently normal trousers and proceeds to go to college under her secret identity Doreen Green in an attempt to better herself and be the best she can. Naturally her first day doesn’t go entirely smoothly, she has to juggle a moody flat mate, hiding her powers and her side kick being captured!

We get to know her side kick Tippy-Toe in this issue (who of course is a Squirrel) who is ever present alongside Doreen and tries to give her advice in her day to day life. The two of them are able to bounce off each other and have plenty of fun exchanges throughout the comic. Doreen herself feels very kind and genuine, if not entirely sure of what she’s doing or the correct way to go about things (while dressed in costume standing at the entrance of her college and shouting ‘I AM NOT A STUDENT HERE’ just being one example) but she does her best to do good and fight crime wherever she goes.

There is a villain, who by the end of the comic has a change of heart and leaves everyone in peace. I get the impression this will be a ‘villain of the week’ style series with each main plot neatly wrapped up in just the one issue.

The art is simple, colourful and fun, the dialogue is entertaining and ridiculous and the action great if a little nonsensical (she’s able to throw someone in the air long enough to fantasize about drinking a coffee in the distant future). It’s very much a comic where you don’t question things too much, and just go along for the ride.

This really wasn’t a character I ever expected to get her own run and this series launch has to be one of the more surprising ones to come from Marvel. They’ve set it up to be the classic college life/secret identity trope which I’m sure the writers will be able to have a lot of fun with. How will this series fair? It looks like they’re keeping the tone in line with the quote I mentioned at the start of this review and I very much hope to see a battle against werewolves on the moon by the time this is done. I expect the next issue will really live up to this where we’ll get to see Squirrel Girl back to matching up against the most powerful beings Marvel has to offer where the threat level is escalated to about as high as it can go and I look forward to it!

I feel this comic well deserves a rating of 9 Nuts out of 10!