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Review: Nova #11 (Duggan)

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Posted by: Timelord, Columnist
12/14/2013 - 1:29pm | Updated: 44 weeks 4 days Ago
Writer: 
Gerry Duggan,
Art: 
Paco Medina,
Cover: 
Ed McGuinness,
Publisher: 
Marvel
Price: 
$3.99
Release Date: 
December 11, 2013
The degradation of the Nova mythos continues with the truly terrible NINO #11.
 
The first three-quarters of the issue is devoted to the totally un-interesting minutiae of NINO’s personal life where he’s first said to be blind but seems to walk around surprisingly well for someone who can’t see.  Then there’s some warmed-over teen Peter-Parker-ish clichés about dealing with the school bully followed by some equally hackneyed scenes about school problems and babysitting his sister before he goes off into space and fights some spiders in a scene lifted right out of the new Hobbit film.  Yawn.  Personally, I was rooting for the Spiders to win and mercifully rid us of NINO once and for all.  And frankly, the Spiders should’ve won.  It’s pure contrived silliness to believe that NINO could realistically win such a fight.
 
I see Duggan is going to continue the sad precedents of Loeb/Wells in disrespecting and demolishing everything that was good, exciting, and innovative in true Nova mythos - and replacing it with hackneyed, implausible nonsense.  This character is a totally unlikeable, blundering, idiotic, annoying little jerk.   He’s depicted as being rude and boorish to a very nice teacher who is genuinely concerned about him and sincerely attempting to help him.  Not very heroic.  And not a very good role model for the pre-pubescent audience at whom this travesty of a (so-called “cosmic”) comic book is apparently aimed.
 
Once again NINO’s mother proves she’s unfit and needs to be reported to child protective services.  She’s depicted as skipping out on paying a Doctor’s bill, leaving a proven irresponsible minor in charge of babysitting his sister, and once again allowing 15-year-old NINO to go off into space (on a school night no less) and use vast powers he is not trained to use in life-threatening situations.  NINO and his sister need to be removed from her care as soon as possible, and she needs to spend some time in the County Jail.
 
Being rude to good teachers, skipping out on bill paying, having minor children participate in life-or-death combat operations, glorifying ineffective parenting, disrespecting the importance of education?  Exactly what kind of message is Marvel/Disney trying to send to the kiddies anyway?
 
You know what else is annoying?  NINO’s presumptuousness and the level of obliviousness to plausibility that must be exercised by any reader to actually be entertained by this NINO nonsense.
 
NINO has never been inducted into the Corps by anyone in authority to do so.  
Yet – being untrained, undisciplined, and having no empowerment by any authority – he presumes himself a member of a para-military organization and goes about performing police actions.  It’s no different than a 15-year-old child putting on his deceased police officer father’s uniform, strapping on a gun, and driving around enforcing the law whilst claiming that it was his right to do so because his deceased father was a cop.  Would anybody realistically respect that?  Or would some responsible adults put a stop to it?  I think we all know the answer to that question.
 
Medina’s art was an improvement over last issue, but he’s got to do something about NINO’s mother’s eyes!  Why does he always draw her as sporting these huge, round, “bug-eyes?”  Is she really an alien in disguise?  If so, that would explain a lot.  I guess irresponsible parenting is the norm on her planet.  Curiel’s colors are well done as usual and are really the best part of this waste-of-time-and-money comic book.
 
In a scene lifted right out of Return of the Jedi, Duggan gives us a big bad for next issue (that NINO couldn’t possibly beat in a fair fight) sitting on his throne with a scantily clad girl at his feet.  Yawn.  Hey Duggan, maybe you, Loeb, and Bendis should just admit that cosmic isn’t your thing and go back to writing super-heroic fantasy.  Ripping off popular fantasy, science-fiction, and science-fantasy isn’t good cosmic - and neither are constant quotes from Star Wars.  We had actual science-fiction writers on Nova and Guardians of the Galaxy in the past who actually understood, liked, and respected the characters and the mythos upon which the characters were built, and those stories were BETTER than the watered-down trash you’re cynically dishing up for Avengers-zombie consumption.
 
Friends, if you want good and true Marvel Cosmic, leave Loeb’s NINO and Bendis’ Garbage of the Galaxy on the shelves and buy the Star-Lord reprints from the 1970’s that are now available (even though the cringe-worthy covers depict Bendis’ Star-Lord).  Also, check out John Byrne’s new Star Trek comic book.  As for Duggan’s NINO, let’s all be the responsible adults that NINO’s mother isn’t and boycott NINO so that it can come to a quick, well-deserved end in the dustbin of comicdom where it belongs.
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