Saturday, October 1, 2011

New Avengers #16.1

This is a "Point" issue, which (I thought) were designed to introduce new reader to the characters in each issue.

All this one manages is to make the New Avengers look like, well, bums.

Hot on the heels of the beating the team took in the New Avengers Annual, here they are taken down a few pegs by Norman Osborn. And is it really time to bring him back already? I still feel burned out from his overuse during the "Dark Reign" storyline, in which he appeared in virtually every Marvel comic book for months.

The real point of this issue is to set up the conflict for months to come between the New Avengers and Osborn's secret H.A.M.M.E.R. organization (still no word on what that acronym stands for, by the way).

The real star of this issue is veteran comics artist Neal Adams, who hasn't drawn the Avengers (as best as I can remember) since the days of the Kree-Skrull War (not including the occasional pinup).

His work here is compelling and over the top - sometimes a bit too much so, but that's because he's swinging for the fence with every panel - you have to admire that. And the double-page spreads on page two and on the last page are amazing.

Brian Bendis' story doesn't really hold up its end of the deal, though there are some good bits mixed in there - as always, lots of snappy dialogue.

I suspect the story will get much more interesting from here, but frankly, even with the excellent artwork, things are off to a sluggish start.

Grade: B+


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