Thursday, April 12, 2012

Avengers Assemble #2

The toughest thing about writing a super-team like The Avengers has to be coming up with an opponent that can actually offer a challenge.

And at first brush, you might think the first opponent in the new Avengers Assemble comic is a poor choice. After all, the Zodiac have been convenient whipping boys for Marvel's heroes for decades.

But give writer Brian Bendis credit - he's recrafted the team of bad guys into a genuine threat. In fact, you now wonder how the Avengers, even with powerhouses like Thor and the Hulk, can stand up to them.

The origins of the Zodiac's new powers is explained - sorta kinda - at the top of the issue, and most of the rest of it is given over to action, as artist Mark Bagley and inker Danny Miki put the heroes through their paces.

I'm impressed that they've managed to craft a team that mirrors the movie lineup and keeps the characters in line - mostly - with their big screen versions, all while keeping the story set firmly in the "real" Marvel Universe.

There are still lots of questions to be answered, but in this year of the Avengers, this is a strong addition to the lineup.

Grade: A-


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