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“Our Squadron,” President Phil Coulson says, surrounded by secret service in the White House, “If anyone ever deserved to have a universe revolve ‘round them...” in Heroes Reborn #1, Marvel Comics (2021). Image: Jason Aaron, Ed McGuinness/Marvel Comics

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Agent Coulson is now America’s evil president

Nobody tell Clark Gregg

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Susana Polo is an entertainment editor at Polygon, specializing in pop culture and genre fare, with a primary expertise in comic books. Previously, she founded The Mary Sue.

Agent Coulson has been pretty pissed off at the Avengers for a few years now, ever since evil Captain America tricked Deadpool into killing him. But it seems like things have reached a new height, with the beginning of Heroes Reborn, Marvel’s newest Avengers event.

In Heroes Reborn, Blade (he’s an Avenger right now) is dealing with a classic “I woke up and the world was totally different and I’m the only person who remembers the way it used to be” situation. In this new Marvel universe, the Avengers never existed. Captain America is still on ice, Tony Stark is just a regular billionaire, and Phil Coulson is president of the United States of America. Coulson seems to know something about how all of this came to be.

What else is happening in the pages of our favorite comics? We’ll tell you. Welcome to Monday Funnies, Polygon’s weekly list of the books that our comics editor enjoyed this past week. It’s part society pages of superhero lives, part reading recommendations, part “look at this cool art.” There may be some spoilers. There may not be enough context. But there will be great comics. (And if you missed the last edition, read this.)

Heroes Reborn #1

The Squadron Supreme take on merged supervillains Doctor Juggernaut, the Silver Witch, the All-Gog, Thanos and his Infinity Rings, and the Black Skull, in Heroes Reborn #1, Marvel Comics (2021). Image: Jason Aaron, Ed McGuinness/Marvel Comics

Without the Avengers around, their villains have had very different paths in life, but the likes of Doctor Juggernaut (Doctor Doom with Juggernaut’s magic gem) and Thanos (but with Infinity rings) are kept in check by the Squadron Supreme, America’s official superhero team — who are also a pastiche of the Justice League.

Batman #108

Miracle Molly of the Unsanity Collective asks a disguised Batman if he’s ever considered how much stronger he’d be as the Dark Knight if he let his past go in Batman #108, DC Comics (2021). Image: James Tynion IV, Jorge Jimenez/DC Comics

I very much enjoy how the two themes of Batman comics right now are “move on from the past” and “eat the rich.”

Eve #1

“You have to pen this yourself, little one. I can’t do it for you,” Eve’s father tells her as she approaches a strange door, in Eve #1, Boom Studios (2021). Image: Victor LaValle, Jo Mi-Gyeong/Boom Studios

Victor LaValle and Jo-MiGyeong’s Eve #1 convinced me to check out issue #2. A post-climate disaster story with a lone little girl walking the world with her talking robot teddy bear guardian to plant genetically engineered mangrove trees and save her dad ... these are all things I like.

Cyclopedia Exotica

An encyclopedia entry on the integration of the cyclops minority into Two-Eyes society is interrupted when Etna, a female cyclops wearing only a sheet, steps out of the frame of her caption to say “Oh...he! You’re reading about me, I see. Blegh! What a dull way to learn about a minority,” in Cyclopedia Exotica, Drawn and Quarterly. Image: Aminder Dhaliwal/Drawn and Quarterly

Cyclopedia Exotica builds a world where one-eyed Cyclopes coexist alongside humans, and uses it intriguingly and humorously to examine what it’s like to live in a world that both wants to erase the other and commodify it. Creator Aminder Dhaliwal’s exploration of the metaphor from all angles kept me turning pages.

Marauders #20

Storm stands over her place setting, bidding the Marauders farewell. Seven knives are stabbed into the table. “That’s not all the knives, is it,” says Bishop in Marauders #20, Marvel Comics (2021). Image: Gerry Duggan, Stefano Caselli/Marvel Comics

This week’s Marauders was a tribute issue for Storm, before she leaves the group to join the X-Men in the Hellfire Gala, and it had a running gag of her teammates trying to guess how many knives she keeps on her person at any one time. The answer? Inconclusive, but at least eight.


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