Sunday, 3 August 2014

Nova, Volume 3: Nova Corpse Review (Gerry Duggan, Paco Medina)

The uneven adventures of Sam Alexander aka Nova continues in this third volume that also sees the title pass 100 issues (the character’s been around since the late ‘70s so that tells you something about his popularity!). 

Sam’s saving the universe or something while looking for dead Nova comrades for some reason and accidentally helps out a slave trader/pirate - oops. I guess this kid’s still learning to be a superhero, right? Hoho… 

Beta Ray Bill and Cosmo make cameos, bad jokes are made by Gerry Duggan, and through it all, Sam’s gotta juggle school, family responsibilities and the most obvious love interest he still won’t hit because this is basically a YA comic! This Nova is essentially early Spider-Man albeit in space. 

It’s pretty clear who the funny one is in the partnership of Gerry Duggan and Brian Posehn on their Deadpool series as Duggan fails to raise even a faint smile with his weak attempts at humour. All he’s got to offer are puns - Nova Corps = Corpse, geddit? And this doozy of a reply when he’s being taught to play chess in detention: “More like chess B-O-R-E-D”. HAHAHAHAHA. Expect that level of hilarity throughout. 

And yet - it’s not terrible. It feels overlong and a bit scattered but Sam’s adventures do hold the attention as there’s plenty going on. Duggan places Nova more firmly in the Marvel Cosmic Universe by having all of his adventures in space and introducing him to the cosmic cast like Cosmo and Beta Ray Bill, and showing him the weird Guardians of the Galaxy hangout, Knowhere. 

Besides the puns, Duggan’s writing is fine for the most part, though there was a totally bizarre school scene that made no sense. A science teacher is arguing with a student over the existence of extraterrestrials. This is a comic set in the Marvel Universe. This volume of Nova follows Infinity, where Thanos - an extraterrestrial - invaded Earth with his fleet of, yes, extraterrestrials. And what about the decades of similar invasions of Earth from Skrulls, Badoon, etc. etc. ?! There should be no question by anyone on Earth in the Marvel Unvierse over the existence of extraterrestrials - that scene was beyond stupid. 

To be fair to Duggan though, Nova has had a revolving door of writers from Jeph Loeb on Vol 1, to Zeb Wells on Vol 2, so he does a decent job of keeping all of the plates spinning. It’s still not a must-read series, but if you enjoy all things cosmic in your Marvel and don’t mind the YA flavour of the comic, Nova’s worth a look.

Nova Volume 3: Nova Corpse

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