Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Avengers Assem.......................blah!

Captain America is alive!

Tony Stark once more wears the suit of iron!

The God of Thunder is an Avenger again!

We emerge from Seige into the Heroic Age of Marvel, when we will once again see greatness as the 'big 3' come together at the formation of a new Avengers (as opposed to the NEW Avengers.) Steve Rogers has been handed Norman Osborne's old job as chief of United States security and he has gathered together a large assortment of former heroes and made a simple request of them:

Avengers Assemble.

Those two words, for me, have been a timeless reminder of the true power of Marvel's team comic book. Written by some of the greats in the industry, this team book is Marvel's answer to the Justice League and at its core it too has always had a BIG 3. In recent years the events of Civil War and other events have shattered the bonds that made those heroes great, and now Marvel is setting out to rebuild them.  For a guy like me, who has always had a soft spot for nostalgia and the iconic characters who stand amongst the Avengers (and in case you're wondering......my Avengers DO NOT include Spider-Man) this book should be a rallying call for the emergence of a new time at Marvel.



After a read of this book I cannot recommend it to anyone. I found it particularly uninspired and utterly vanilla. It could have been written by the kid down the street and I'm not sure it could have been less captivating. The surprise on the last panel is mildly intriguing, but comes too late to make up for an uneventful encounter with Kang, a lot of subplot development that I couldn't care less about, and a Steve Rogers who looks a little bit too bright and chipper for a guy who's seen his world torn apart by the failure of the Avengers in recent years.  Plus the awkwardness between Tony and Steve isn't nearly awkward enough to be real after what's gone before. I'm not sure that John Romita Jr is the right artist for this book, that while entitled for the onset of The Heroic Age is really about rebuilding the greatness that lies in ruins.

Romita's art hearkens to a brighter time in the past, or that may yet be coming, but seems out of place in what should be a somber, if optimistic, time amongst Earth's Mightiest Heroes. All in all, the book doesn't work for me in other ways than the art, and its a bit of a footnote, but it starts to compound other concerns. I need the Avengers to stop pretending that Wolverine and Spider-Man belong with them, and I need this rebuilding to be exactly that.....a rebuilding.  You don't just wipe the slate clean and start over with everyone bonding, which too much of this book felt like to me.

Sorry folks, but this is one big disappointment from Mr. Bendis and he's going to have to do a lot of hard work to convince me that it's going to get better.

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