Thursday, October 9, 2014

Avengers & X-Men: Axis #1

   I almost didn't buy this issue.

   I'm not sure why. Maybe I'm suffering from event fatigue. Perhaps it's because I just don't seem to connect with Rick Remender's stories.  And I was never a fan of Onslaught (the powerful character herein merged with the Red Skull).

   But the art is by Adam Kubert, whose work I love - and I felt it was my duty to review it for the ol' blog here - so I plunked down my five bucks for Axis. (Am I the only one who reads the logo as "Sixis?")

   And for that money, I got to read what is, so far, the worst comic book I've read this year.

   I say this because: the story made no sense at all. I've talked before about the tendency in comics today for writers to play Calvinball (in other words, make up the rules as they go along). We get that in spades here, in a stream-of-consciousness tale that reads like a fever dream.

   So as near as I can tell, the Red Skull stole Professor X's powers (a good trick, since the Prof is dead). Then the Skull kidnapped a bunch of mutants and put them in a prison camp. Magneto then killed the Skull, but instead of dying, the Nazi was somehow transformed into The Red Onslaught. (I swear I am not making this up.)

   There's apparently a lot of side-story along the way with an alternate future (that no longer exists) involving the Uncanny Avengers and Havok marrying the Wasp (really?), but I haven't been reading that comic, so I have no clue what that's all about.

   So the comic is all about all the Avengers fighting each other (it's a Marvel tradition!), then the X-Men show up, and the Scarlet Witch almost alters reality again, but then... I dunno, I kind of shut down at that point. It's just all sturm and drang and bad jokes and no actual story content or characterization or characters you care about at all - just a big goulash of action figures with lots of screaming and fighting and no reason to care about any of it.

   I've been waiting for the event that finally breaks this never-ending stream of events. Original Sin came close, but if we're lucky, perhaps Axis will put us over the line.

   Avoid at all costs.

Grade: D


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