Tuesday, March 3, 2020

On the Coffee Table: House of M

Title: House of M
Writer: Brian Michael Bendis
Artist: Olivier Coipel

Image result for house of m
via Amazon

House of M was Marvel's major comic book event of 2005 and the eight issues collected here launched the story.  While an ailing Scarlet Witch is struggling to hold the fabric of the universe together, both the Avengers and the X-Men are thrust into an alternate reality.  The mutants role over mankind with Magneto at the helm.  Only Wolverine remembers the way things used to be.

There's nothing like an Avengers story to bring a cast of thousands.  The movies only scratch the surface.  Plus you throw the X-Men on top of all that.  There are a lot of characters to keep track of here!  I am grateful for the movies and for what limited comic book experience I already had.  Despite it all, I was still mostly able to grasp the broader story.  There are some great what-ifs, including what if Gwen Stacey had lived.

A couple of important differences between the Marvel comic books of the 1960s and those of the 21st century:
  • There is less text on the page now than there was in early eras.  This leaves a lot more room and storytelling heft for the artwork.
  • Panel layout is more varied and less predictable.  This can be confusing in trying to follow the story in proper sequence.
Like I said, these eight issues are only the beginning.  I'm not in any rush yet but at some point, I may seek out more.


  1. I miss the days of more text, though I'm not sure if that was common to all comics of the 60s or just those written by Stan Lee. I've never noticed it in DC books of the same era.

    1. I can't say I know the DC comics of the '60s well at all. The closest I can claim is the relaunch of Green Lantern in '59. It's comparable - certainly wordier than the 2020 equivalent.

  2. It will be interesting to see how the MCU integrates the mutants into the movies.

  3. House of M is best known for the phrase, "No more mutants." Ended up being a pivotal moment in X-Men comics that led to the debut of Hope (whose story is explained by that name, thank you), the last big moment for that franchise until the recent Jonathan Hickman comics. House of M also helped solidify Brian Michael Bendis' position as Marvel's top writer. You should definitely check out his Ultimate Spider-Man, if you haven't already. A lengthy run with an alternate Peter Parker, and then the debut of Miles Morales.

    1. There's a lot of ground to cover with Marvel! I feel like I have a steep mountain to climb with Star Trek - I really don't know the stuff after TNG so well - but Marvel runs a lot deeper. It may be a while before I get to the more recent stories.