Wednesday, October 30, 2013

The Classics - West Coast Avengers #1

   Thanks to the popularity of the movie Marvel's The Avengers, the team is enjoying great popularity - and that means numerous titles starring the characters.

   Back in the mid-'80s, the series was also very popular - racking up huge sales - so a California version of the team was created and given its own mini-series. West Coast Avengers was also a hit, so a regular series followed.

   I was really happy to see the creative team assigned to the book, which included my all-time favorite Avengers writer, Steve Englehart, and two guys best known as inkers (but also outstanding artists in their own right): Allen Milgrom and Joe Sinnott.

   But for some reason the series didn't really work at first.

   The team leader was Hawkeye, and maybe that was the problem - he's a character who works best as a joker, a wiseass - not as the leader.

   Among the members were Mockingbird, Tigra, Wonder Man and Iron Man. Also appearing in a supporting role was Hank Pym, still recovering after losing his mind and virtually becoming a villain.

   I didn't care for that version of Hank at all (though Englehart would eventually redeem him), and the rest of the characters (except for Iron Man) were mostly second bananas.

   There are some good character moments, a deadly team of villains is assembled, and several plot lines are set into motion in this issue (which would also tie into the Vision and Scarlet Witch mini-series), but the fight scenes are clunky, and even the art is a bit stiff.

   Don't get me wrong - I didn't hate the comic at all. In fact, I enjoyed quite a few of the stories over the course of the series. But my expectations were so high, and it was a bit of a disappointment that this issue didn't quite hit it out of the park.

Grade: B



1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I like the later John Byrne issues of this title; they're the only ones I saved.

Happy Halloween!
Sam Kujava