Thursday, February 7, 2013

New Avengers #3

I know the title says New Avengers, but this is actually a continuation of the Illuminati.

That's the name given (in the Marvel Universe) to a select gathering of heroes - the top minds - who have set themselves up to tackle the impossible menaces.

The group includes Mr. Fantastic, Iron Man, Namor, Black Bolt, Dr. Strange and Professor X. In the wake of the Dark Reign, Captain America also joined the group - and the current storyline has drawn the Black Panther into the group.

This issue addresses the problem caused by the death of Charles Xavier, and presents a possible solution to the Earth-shattering menace.

For mysterious reasons, alternate Earths (from other dimensions) are threatening to collide with (and thereby destroy) the Earth.

The team quickly plans a defense - but also must face the unthinkable danger that they might be forced to destroy another planet to save their own.

The issue is loaded with big concepts and several shocking turns - several that may have serious effects on the Marvel Universe for years to come. In other words, another terrific story by writer Jonathan Hickman.

The art by Steve Epting and Rick Magyar is perfect - dark and menacing, epic and sprawling - very impressive work.

My only beef with this series (other than a single plot element I can't discuss without spoiling things) is the covers. They are excellent works of art and cleverly designed - but I'm old school when it comes to covers, and these don't really sell the story inside. Even the logo is easy to overlook. This issue (and the previous one) had abstract covers that give no real indication of the story inside - I worry that they're not drawing in readers.

And that would be a shame, because this is a cracking good story, working with big, cosmic concepts and affecting the status quo in the Marvel Universe - and that's a rare feat. I'd hate for any readers to miss it because of a cover.

Grade: A



Anonymous said...


>>>> SPOILER ALERT <<<<<

Didn't you think the plot twist with Cap America was a little obvious and similar to the Identity Crisis at DC, which also did not thrill me? I REALLY like the idea of the Illuminati as well as the Cabal in the Marvel mythos, but thought an inflexible mind like Cap's seemed a poor fit...


Chuck said...

B, I agree completely - that's the one thing about the book I didn't like, though I trust Hickman has more going on than we might think. We'll see. But I had the very same reaction.