Sunday, April 28, 2013

New Avengers #5

I'm continually amazed that writer Jonathan Hickman is able to write two different team comics - The Avengers and New Avengers - and make them both about big, cosmic events with all of reality at stake - while making them both completely different and original.

It's the kind of bravura performance we haven't seen in a long, long time - I'm not sure anyone has been able to manage it since Lee and Kirby (though no doubt someone will correct my oversight).

The story isn't easy to recap, but let's take a shot: a mysterious event is bringing Earths from alternate realities together. When it happens, the alternate Earth must be destroyed, or "our" Earth will be lost as well.

The Black Panther discovered the incursion and the woman at the heart of the mystery - the Black Swan. He's gathered the members of the Illumnati (Mr. Fantastic, Namor, Black Bolt, Iron Man, the Beast and Dr. Strange) and together they're facing the possibility of being forced to destroy another planet to save their own.

The team itself is almost chilling in its efficiency, though this time they may face a problem they can't solve.

Add to the compelling story the excellent, dark and purposeful art by Steve Epting and Rick Magyar and you have an outstanding series that is taking us along into some unexpected places.

Like most of Hickman's work, it's challenging for the reader, but very rewarding.

Highly recommended!

Grade: A


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