From Marvel Comics, an infinite number of monkeys and in this issue specifically, Matt Fraction and Oliver Coipel.
Its either up or down with this series. There is no in between. Page after page was driving me into fits of rage (sorry, my Roadblock is showing) and then the Phoenix Force Five shows up and the book is amazing. Then the downturn happens here. I have nothing but complaints.
First is the art. Characters look smaller than the average human, they have bored facial expressions, the poses are not dynamic nor exciting nor heroic. Most panels feature the poses of minimum wage employees forced to wear costumes and not the exciting action packed stances that the most powerful beings on the planet should have. Tony Stark’s first appearance will go by without your notice because he looks more like Logan than himself. Stark alternately has a full beard, day’s worth of stubble or is fresh faced depending on the panel. Then there is his hair, his body type, just everything. The issue features a cool trick from the Avengers. Doctor Strange’s amulet of deus ex machina makes other Avengers (assuming female ones) look like the Scarlet Witch. Although we’re not quite sure which woman is being mistaken for Wanda. One might be Sharon Carter, but that’s the best guess and the only one that even warrants a guess.
The panels are rushed and confusing. Numerous times I have no idea who is battling who nor who is even winning. Even the characters must be confused because they have no reaction to anything. Hawkeye is “dead” (not really but its just another thing to piss you off) and Vision is at least down if not out. What sort of memorial do they receive? “Man down”. Oh good. Here I thought death or injury might matter.
Then Emma Frost sexually manipulates Namor. There goes the last ten plus years of X-Men stories. Emma is just a slut, even with all the powers of a god she has to use her vagina to get what she wants. Lets treat our heroes, our villains, even our gods as sluts. Hey, why don’t we have more female readers?
All of this culminates with Namor bringing an ocean down on Wakanda. I bet all of the millions who would have to die in such a disaster wont be mentioned or mourned in the next issue.
The only thing good about the issue is about a page of Black Panther’s speech. It is the best one sentence explanation I have ever seen to explain T’Challa. “The Black Panther prowls the boundaries between superscience and magic.” Fuck and Yes! Slap that on a movie poster and watch the world become excited and embrace Africa’s greatest super hero.
One page of anything good in the biggest comic book of the year from the biggest publisher. That is not anything near a good success ratio.