Marvel’s new Doctor Strange comic gives him an all-new power source

Al Ewing and Javier Rodríguez’s DefendersThe book was beautiful from the beginning. A supernatural adventure in which Doctor Strange, along with some magically selected companions, travels through multiverses on a mission to find a good guy and stop him. But with this issue, Ewing and Rodríguez put a very different kind of power into its characters hands.

In fact, one might say it’s the fundamental underpinning of all of comic book magic.

Yes, I’m talking about the four color printing process.

Were there other things happening within the pages of comics we love? 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. You may not have enough context. However, there will be many great comics. This is the latest edition.

Taaia (yellow), Cloud (cyan), Harpy (magenta), Doctor Strange (white), and the Masked Raider (black) represent the magical sign of Five, represented by the four colors of the color printing process and white, the color of the page, in Defenders #3 (2021).

Image: Al Ewing, Javier Rodríguez/Marvel Comics

Strange is the type of metatext that keeps me moving: Strange says the strength of this Avengers team comes from their representation of the Secret Fire and the Tarot houses, and thus form the five elements of a pentagram known as the Sign of Five. They are “all the colors” of magic — which Rodríguez represents throughout the issue as yellow, cyan, magenta, black, and white.

That is, the four colors of the four printing process that combine to make all the colors on a printed page — and white, the color of the page itself. Whatta chef’s kiss.

Ratcatcher  holds a knife to the throat of Dr. Jocasta Joy, explaining that he has to eat the child in order to become a rat so that Amadeus Arkham can’t find him. She calmly tries to talk him down, until he is suddenly tased in Arkham City: The Order of the World #1 (2021).

Image: Dan Watters, Dani/DC Comics

The first issue was a great read. Arkham City: The Order of the WorldThe success of this project is due in part to Dani Stewart and Dave Stewart who brought out some great classics. SandmanThere are some great vibes in the series. Most Arkham Asylum stories are eventually about how everybody who gets put in the Asylum — staff included — slowly goes madder just from being there, but Order of the World seems like it’s pointed somewhere different than that old well, and I’m curious to see where.

A technological spider-gadget unfurls and snares Spider-Man until he cannot move. “Please relax,” it says in a recorded voice, “You will be released in one hour. Please use this time to reflect on your life.” in Amazing Spider-Man #75 (2021).

Image by Zeb Wells/Patrick Gleason/Marvel Comics

That would be my opinion. Amazing Spider-Man #75 is a great place for new readers to pick up the book but honestly… it really feels like a continuation of Nick Spencer’s just-concluded run, which was spectacularly dense and continuity-heavy. But the quips are fantastic.

“Okay, fine,” says a woman in the passenger seat of a car. “I’ve been dead a thousand years. I hate Paris, I work for a demon, and I need you to help me get out of this.” “And that copthing back there?” asks the driver, a large woman with dyed hair. “That was one of the good guys. You call them angels.” The two women are driving a police car that’s slightly on fire in Dirtbag Rapture #1 (2021).

Image by Christopher Sebela/Kendall Goode/Oni Press

Dirtbag RaptureIt all starts with one idea: A protagonist that can house the restless spirits inside her mind earns a living reluctantly transporting dead ghosts from their final location to somewhere nicer. As you can see, the story gets more interesting on the last page. Continue readingIt can be complicated.

Ajak the eternal argues with Ghost Rider about how the Avengers are using a Celestial’s corpse as their home base in Eternals: Celestia (2021).

Image: Kieron Gillen, Kei Zama/Marvel Comics

The Eternals are doing a bunch of one-shots while the rest of their ongoing series gets ready for its second arc, and they’re all really good. The Avengers are using the dead body of one of the Eternals as their headquarters. This is what two Eternals have to face this week. This is quite rude.

All ten thirty-something protagonists of The Nice House on the Lake sail across the lake in a speedboat at sunset in The Nice House on the Lake #5 (2021).

Image: James Tynion IV, Álvaro Martínez Bueno/DC Comics

This is just to say that DC’s creator-owned horror comic The Nice House on the LakeThe art is still very difficult to rip.

Illyana Rasputin/Magik slays brood alien after brood alien in flashes of blue, green, magenta, and purple, before one of them impales her on their claw and she floats through darkness with the Shadow King in New Mutants #22 (2021).

Image: Vita Ayala, Rod Reis/Marvel Comics

Rod Reis has great art and is a true artist. New Mutants, as the gang gets trapped in the Shadow King’s illusions. Amazing, beautiful work.

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