Brandon Borzelli's Geek Goggle Reviews
Hickman & Opena
The latest Marvel NOW! launch is a big one in the form of the Avengers. The book is presented in an epic movie trailer way that definitely adds plenty of appeal to the comic. The story is very fast moving as it calls in the key Avengers and then immediately puts them in dire straits. The book isn't without flaws as there is no grounding in any sort of continuity and the villain isn't exactly a household name. However, between the epic opening and the stunning art the book rises to a level that is worth a look. I enjoyed the read.
Perhaps the best move that Hickman makes in this book is using the Avengers line up from the 2012 summer movie. The book definitely reads as if it's a continuation from the movie franchise, which works well for the casual reader or one that doesn't necessarily follow any of the Avengers comic books. On the other hand, the book feels out of continuity from the general Marvel Universe which makes this book have the "skip-able" appearance. It's a dangerous line editorially.
The book uses an old trick by having an anonymous narrator provide some dramatic lines while the story is birthed and plays out. It certainly gives off the movie trailer feel, which is probably a good move as it adds a little bit of extra drama to the book. On the other hand, a reader might dislike being spoon-fed the drama as it calls attention to the fact that the dialogue and the plot isn't capable of pushing the drama across.
The whole story is the Avengers head to Mars to stop a threat and they get defeated easily. The bad guys send back a message to Earth which kicks off the story for the rest of the arc. It's a good story but it isn't really what makes the book stand out.
Opena's art is breathtaking in this issue. Normally a good artist, this book elevates it to amazing status. There isn't a Marvel NOW! book that provided an epic level of art as this book does. Just turning the pages and ignoring the words and the reader gets the sense of story importance that most books just don't provide. The flip side to this is that you are paying four bucks for a story and not pretty art. However, if you appreciate dramatic and stunning art then this book is parallel to none.
Avengers is a hot property and this book is matching that status perfectly. While the book has some flaws and feels like it isn't attached to the greater Marvel Universe, this comic book is entertaining nonetheless. I enjoyed this issue and definitely recommend checking it out.
4 out of 5 Geek Goggles