For the May comicbook meetup, we focused on sharing all our favorite or noteworthy Team-ups, Cross-overs, and Guest-Stars. These are stories that make the “shared universe” concept of comics so fun – while we may really be fans of a particular character, it’s always a neat level of excitement to see them interact with other characters from that “universe.”
Luke had an extra-special cross-over – a Movie-and-Comics Crossover – when the Predator went hunting for…Batman! He also shared the Marvel “galactic” epic, featuring all of Marvel’s space-faring heroes and villains: Annihilation, because it is “how to do cross-over well”
I shared a comic I’ve shared before because I love it so dang much – Wisdom #3, featuring a guest appearance with Shang-Chi, the Master of Kung Fu, as he fights a Welsh dragon! I also brought Alpha Flight 13, the first issue after main character, Guardian, is killed. Wolverine, of the X-men makes an appearance – in a DREAM SEQUENCE. My final book was a short arc in Ultimate Spider-man where the Ultimate X-men made an appearance, and demonstrated how a skilled writer can handle a truckload of characters, and still let their personalities come through!
Shawn brought a special issue of The Flintstones that featured the time-traveling Booster Gold, and an issue of The Flintstones in “double-vision“ that played with 3-D like experience, showing you the characters in both cartoon vs movie versions.
He also shared an older issue of the classic team-up book “Brave and the Bold”, featuring Batman and WildCat, because “it’s just so bad and weird”.
Shawn’s final book utilized a story-trope that can often be quite fun – the “body-swap”. In the All-New Wolverine Annual – the body-swap was of X-23 (a Wolverine clone) and Spider-Gwen (“Spider-Man” from a parallel universe), except both characters are women, and it was nicely done.
Jony brought a few X-books – like an issue of Excalibur that focused on Kitty Pryde and the X-babies, from the Mojoverse.
Her other two books were some of the stranger cross-overs/guest-stars, both from the New Mutants. There was the issue of New Mutants that had a cross-over with the motor-cycle racing “Team America”, and had one of the biggest reveals of that team. The other guest-star was of “Thor Frog”, shortly after the Mutants were killed by the Beyonder during Secret Wars II!
Don brought two seminal Marvel guest-appearances to share. The first was a significant “first meeting” of that between Daredevil and the Punisher, in the story “Child’s Play.” The second was an issue of Fantastic Four called “A Small Loss”. It is a pretty devastating story with many cameos from across the Marvel Universe, as the FF seek to deal with a medical emergency.
Jihan shared some DC books and one from Dark Horse. The first up was Justice League International, featuring the “buddy cop” heroes of Blue Beetle and Booster Gold as they try to find a serial killer only to learn what is going on is so much worse!
From the same creative team, he also shared Justice League 3000, featuring heroes we recognize, but only kind of, as they’re all grown from portions of the DNA of the original Justice League!
Then Jihan went cosmic, sharing the classic Starlin/Mignola collaboration of -Cosmic Odyssey, a galaxy-crossing story featuring a variety of DC characters.
Dark Horse Comics’ Umbrella Academy doesn’t necessarily feature a standard guest-appearance/cross-over, but does feature a variety of characters and is a great ensemble book.
Andrew chose to bring two books featuring the same character as a guest-star – John Constantine. In Swamp-Thing , “I like him (Constantine) cuz he’s just frustrating and annoying to Swamp Thing…” and is always one step ahead of the Earth Elemental. In contrast to that story, when Constantine appears in Sandman, it’s Constantine who is out of his element!
Emilio brought an issue of The Mighty Thor, featuring Hercules, and it was “truly the best comic I have ever read.” ‘Nuff said. He also shared some vintage Marvel Team- Up issues featuring Spidey stories and some very awkward scripting!
Javier shared a three-issue Superior Spider-Man/All New X-Men/Indestructible Hulk crossover “that shouldn’t have been good, but it was.”
He also shared another cross-company crossover between X-Men (Marvel Comics) and Wild C.A.T.S. (Image Comics), between Deathblow (Image) and Wolverine (Marvel), and another movie/comics crossover, with Wild C.A.T.S/Aliens!
Javier had two final examples to share – one was a Captain America team-up book that he said could have been called “Things Not To Do With Sequential Media”, but did feature neat appearances of Bucky, and Black Widow, teaming up with Cap. Javier referred to Thor the Mighty Avenger, though as a great example of HOW to do cameos/guest-stars.
Chris showed us FF #17 which dealt with one of Marvel’s long-time friendships – that between Spidey and Johnny Storm – the Human Torch! He had a Spider cross-over to share, too, featuring Spider-Man and Daredevil, both dealing with a character each has had many stories with – the Black Cat!”
And finally, Chris shared the epic DC vs Marvel series because it was “total 90s – Ben Reilly as Spidey, Mullet-Superman!”
Kate brought a Superman/Shazam story by Judd Winnick and Josh Middleton. As she put it, “I like reading team-ups with Superman because what can anyone bring to that team-up? – and it’s always a good story if it’s a good writer.”
Molly shared Batgirl: Destruction’s Daughter featuring the character, Cassandra Caine, having some real good team-ups with Robin and Spoiler.
Molly brought one other book, but started with saying, “I tend to buy books that end up being very disappointing…like “Black Widow and the Marvel Girls”, a bunch of team-ups with the Widow, but this time it turned out to not be that bad…