Due to general business and/or laziness I’ve missed a few weeks of posting so to get back into pace I’m going to go through the current Marvel NOW titles and see how they’re going so far. (We’ll see if I have time for DCnU later)
Captain America (4 issues in) - I’m not a big fan of Romita’s art but at least it’s better in this book than his AvX work. Despite my issues with the artwork I’ve found myself surprisingly entertained by Remender’s current story arc. It’s far out, it’s insane and it’s easily accessible, with no need to follow any other Marvel books to understand the things going on. There’s Captain America trapped on some strange alien world facing an enemy with vast resources interspersed with short vignettes about Steve Rogers’ childhood. I’ve never really followed a Captain America book before, so the childhood stuff is pretty new to me and it’s refreshing to have a new take aside from the boy scout soldier stuff. If Remender’s Uncanny X-Force run is any indication, Cap is in for quite a ride and it might be worth tuning in.
Uncanny Avengers (4 issues in) - from one Remender book to another, this one is the direct fallout of AvX. From the ending of the first story arc, it looks like Remender is playing the long game with this one. It’s obviously not as accessible as Captain America given the AvX background and I don’t even know whether this is the original Red Skull or a clone or whatever. The “team” still has a long way to go given the mistrust between Rogue and Scarlet Witch, and their first “mission” could hardly be called a success. Red Skull’s plan itself seemed a bit too ridiculous and some of his ranting was pandering to modern concerns about American society. But then again, he’s a crazy man who desecrated a dead psychic in order to take his powers, so he might not be all up there anyway. Cassaday’s art isn’t bad but I’m still glad that we’re getting Copiel in the next issue and Daniel Acuna after that. I’m also looking forward to Sunfire. Sunfire! And I think this book is getting Wonder Man too. So, lots to look forward to here.
Avengers (6 issues in) and New Avengers (3 issues in) - it’s hard to discuss these books separately because Jonathan Hickman obviously has some vision for the larger Marvel Universe that involves both of these books, in the same way his Fantastic Four and FF runs worked together. New Avengers appears to be the more complicated of the two books so far, as it involves the new Illuminati facing a universe-level crisis beyond the power of even the fabled Infinity Gauntlet. Avengers on the other hand seems to be focusing more on team-building, with each issue after the initial crisis walking us through some of the newer characters on the team like Hyperion, Smasher and Captain Universe. The only problem with these books so far is that they aren’t really very accessible, especially for someone who would be trying to get into Avengers after watching the movie. There’s a lot of characters and concepts and history to wrap your head around so I guess it’s more easily appreciated by long-time comic book readers. In terms of artwork, I vastly prefer the work of Avengers art team, Opena on pencils and White on colors, they’re giving us some terrific panels comparable to the excellent work on the current Thor God of Thunder series. Not that the New Avengers artwork is bad, it just hasn’t given me any flat-out “Wow!” panels like the other book has. Still, both books books are good to get into for comic fans and based on his FF runs, we can expect that Hickman is preparing the Avengers for what can only be an epic set of crises.
That’s it for now, more later. :D