Monday, April 6, 2009

Agents of Atlas #3

Do you get the feeling that not everyone working in comics today understands the purpose of the cover?

Not to belabor the obvious, but working by Chuck's rules, the cover should serve as a tease for the story inside, should feature striking art (or at least a strong layout or a dynamic image) and it should not give away any surprises or plot twists. Too many covers these days are just generic posters featuring the leading character(s).

The latest issue of Agents of Atlas fails that list on several levels. It depicts a scene that doesn't happen in this issue (although it might appear in the next issue), the artwork is murky and it's hard to make out what's going on, and it gives away the surprise guest star who shows up at the end.

On the plus side, it does follow the Julius Schwartz rule for comic book covers: it features a gorilla. Also, the story inside is quite good.

The ongoing series starring the most unusual team in the Marvel Universe actually has two different stories running through it. One focuses on the team solving a mystery in the 1950s involving ghost pilots, and the other has the team dealing with Norman Osborn in the present.

The story by Jeff Parker is building nicely, and the art in each era is quite good.

I get the feeling that the story is in danger of painting itself into a corner - but creating that scenario is probably the goal of the creative team. I'm looking forward to seeing where the story goes from here.

Grade: B+

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