Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Agents of Atlas #1

I was (and am) a big fan of the recent Agents of Atlas mini-series.

It took six good characters who were moldering on the shelf, dusted them off, sprinkled in some fresh new ideas, some excellent artwork, a fun story, and created one of the best team comics in recent memory.

I was hoping for more of the same with this issue - and it's close - but it's really just "some" of the same.

The team is led by Jimmy Woo, a former SHIELD agent and lifelong enemy of the Yellow Claw - and a character I've enjoyed since Jim Steranko brought him back in Nick Fury, Agent of SHIELD.

Joining him are Gorilla Man, Venus, Namora, Bob Grayson (the '50s version of Marvel Boy), and the robot M-11. It's a fun mix of '50s heroes reborn into the modern world, and they combine power, mystery and fun in one package.

The art certainly holds up its end of things - from the Art Adams cover to the interiors by Carlo Pagulayan and Jason Paz, the pages just sizzle with energy and fun.

The story by Jeff Parker isn't bad at all, it's just hampered by two problems. First, the team is being set up to look like a criminal organization (while bringing down the bad guys from within, natch) - that's fine for a while, but I suspect it's going to be difficult to maintain in the long haul - unless they want to tangle with the good guys.

Second, the story is tied in to Dark Reign, and even though we're just a couple of months into that storyline, I'm already sick of seeing Norman Osborn in every single comic book Marvel publishes.

"Atlas" made its rep by being fresh and different. Now's not the time to fall into the "Dark" rut along with the rest of Marvel's lineup. Surely we can get a break in there somewhere.

Grade: B+

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