Superhero team-ups have a long and storied history, and for this edition of Choice is Yours I’m pitting my favorite team stories of the past 5 years from both sides of the major modern comics coin against each other. There will be some healing factors employed. Neither one is the marquee group of Marvel or DC – though there’s an argument to be made about how, in comics at least, The Avengers and especially The Justice League haven’t exactly been front and center – but both are most excellent, unique, writer driven runs.
Gail Simone’s funny and furious take on Secret Six started in 2008 and ran for 36 issues, ending last year. She cut her teeth on the group some years previous for a stand-alone 6 issue arc, but really came into her own once she fully grabbed the reigns, wringing more than you’d have thought possible from characters like Catman, Scandal, Ragdoll, and Batman villains Deadshot and Bane. I have a particular fondness for the twisted (and literally twisting) dandy Ragdoll and the cool-as-hell asshole Deadshot. Simone has a great sense of both the intimate team and the DC Universe at large, filling the stories with heretofore unpopular or overlooked characters, as well as an impressive slate of brand new ones.
Remender’s Uncanny X-Force, meanwhile, has been one of if not my favorite ongoing series of the past year. It was just announced this week that his run, and indeed the series itself, will end with #35 (Issue #30 came out 2 weeks ago), giving it an almost identical sized run to Secret Six. The similarities don’t end there, as this is the “darker” side of X-Men, meaning basically that they do the killing thing. But it isn’t one of those 90s style comics that is purely obsessed with violence, instead delving into deep characterizations of characters like Psylocke and the previously unremarkable Fantomex, who after this series, I would love to see get his own series. Remender eventually embraces wider mythology as well, expertly weaving in both Otherworld and The Age of Apocalypse. These are both truly excellent comics. The Choice is Yours…- Whole Milk