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Avengers #72

Posted: Sunday, November 2, 2003
By: Mike Storniolo



“Search for She-Hulk pt. 1”

Writer: Geoff Johns
Artist: Scott Kolins

Publisher: Marvel

Plot:
Previously Jennifer Walters, also known as the She-Hulk, has been infected by the deadly Red Zone virus. The Jack Of Hearts lowered her radiation and it seemed to give her a Jekyll and Hyde effect like Bruce. Now Jen sets off to Bone, Idaho in search of her cousin Bruce Banner, the Hulk, to see if he can help her. The Avengers stop by this small town to try and find Jennifer. When they find her Jen becomes afraid and that fear triggers her She-Hulk transformation.

Comments:
Overall this was a pleasing issue. Scott Kolins is doing a great job as the new artist on this title and as usual Geoff Johns’ story is fantastic. I find it very interesting that Jennifer’s transformation into the She-Hulk is now triggered by fear. That leaves a lot of possibilities open; in this issue Jennifer was afraid to talk to the police officer. If she gets afraid with small things like that, than who knows what’ll happen elsewhere; I mean there’s not always going to be a place for her to duck into, or a situation that she can just run from. I hope Bruce has something that can put her pack in total control of her condition. Things are definitely going to heat up between She-Hulk and the Avengers in the next few issues. The Avengers are in a pretty tough spot; they don’t want to fight and/or hurt Jennifer but they don’t want other people to get hurt because of her some times violent nature. The Hulk is also going to get involved later on so this has all the potential for making a great story. Obviously, Jennifer isn’t holding out at all. Nearly collapsing a building on Scarlet Witch at the end just proves that she’ll do whatever it takes to get what she needs and she isn’t letting anyone stop her.

For me Geoff Johns does a good job with writing the Avengers. Each story has enough room for characterization and the plot to build, but also enough space for a slugfest. The scene where the officer meets Cap, Scarlet Witch, and Iron Man really captured how a normal person would react to that situation. Not every writer does that; they could have a complete stranger meet Superman and he’d be talking to him like it was his brother…that’s not happening in the real world. If you see someone who can kick your ass ten times over and that’s a national icon, you’re going to be scared. This was a very emotional issue for Jennifer. First seeing the terrible wanted picture of Bruce on T.V., than spilling her guts to the waitress at the restaurant, and finally when the Avengers show up. Superheroes are real people too and they do have feelings that get out once in a while. Given the situation her reactions were completely normal. That’s one thing I’ve enjoyed about Johns’ stories, the ability to write, as it would happen in our world. No one has an everlasting cool, and they’re certainly not perfect…even in comics. When I read a comic I don’t want it to be too farfetched and out there, it’s nice to have a stretch of reality but when it comes to people, I like the writer to keep it real.

Scott Kolins’ art, in my opinion, is a good fit for the Avengers. Kolins’ drawings and Chris Sotomayor’s colors really capture the Avengers feel. The combination is Suitable for the more sensitive, light moments; but perfect for the dark, fighting, angry moments. This team can and probably will go a long way with the Avengers and hopefully open the door to a whole new wave of readers. The splash scenes in the book are done phenomenally! They’re perfectly drawn and colored to offer a great piece for the eyes to look at. There’s really not much more I can say about it without repeating myself over and over.

Final Word:
The issue received 4 Silver Bullets for terrific artwork by Scott Kolins and another good story by Geoff Johns. You get the full value out of your well-spent $2.25. This arc is a good time for new readers to jump on. By just reading the re-cap in the beginning you can tell what’s going on and the story is easy to follow, and the art compliments that in every way.



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