Current Reviews


Avengers Next #1

Posted: Thursday, November 2, 2006
By: Michael Deeley

Writer: Tom DeFalco
Artists: Ron Lim (p), Scott Koblish (i)

Publisher: Marvel Comics

The next generation of Avengers is at a crisis. After their battle with Galactus, half the team has left. Leader American Dream thinks they need more powerful members. Kevin Masterson, formerly Thunderstrike, thinks the team should include a wider range of skills. Neither is willing to accept Sabreclaw, a former villain looking to join. But he comes in handy when the team is attacked by zombie-like copies of past and present Avengers. The villains behind the attack are tied into the recently-destroyed Asgard. And their plans include Mr. Masterson.

My only problem with this comic is the zombie Vision. These creatures were created from blood and tissue samples kept in Avengers Mansion. How can you get a sample from an android? Vision has no organic parts! I know they were made with magic, but even magic shouldnít break its own rules.

But thatís a small distraction form an otherwise decent comic. This is an old-fashioned superhero story appropriate for all ages. Thereís dissent within the team that drove away Stinger. (She left for ďpolitical reasons.Ē) Thereís the untrustworthy villain looking to reform. Thereís Spider-Girl beating the bad gal with jokes and jumping. Best of all is Ulik the Troll in a pimp suit. No kidding. Ulik the troll disguises himself in a huge purple suit with pinstripes, fur trim, shiny oxfords, and a wide-brimmed hat with a feather. It looks like the pimp suit from videogame Saintís Row!

DeFalco is clearly going for light humor and action and succeeds very well. This is a light fun read; one that really canít be taken seriously. That works against the bookís favor. Sure itís entertaining, but thereís no compelling reason to keep following the series. Itís like a TV show you enjoy, but donít watch every week.

Iíve liked Ron Limís art since Infinity Gauntlet. Somehow his work here looks more like the Liefeld style than it did in the 90ís! But not in a bad way. Panel composition and certain poses are similar, but this is still Limís work. Inker Scott Koblish compliments this retro-style with speed lines, shading, and minor enhancements. This comic feels like it could have been made 10 years ago. And it would have really stood out then. Today it just feels quaint.

Comics have changed so much in the last 10 years that this book looks dumb and reads stupid. In reality, itís created for a younger audience; an audience that doesnít need crossovers, the burden of continuity, or photorealistic art. This is for readers who want flashy heroes beating up ugly bad guys and mysteries just deep enough to bring them back next month.

Do those people even exist?

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