|AVENGERS No. 1.1, January 2017|
Admittedly, the appearance of the Fantastic Four’s arch-nemeses, fresh from annihilating “Doctor Richards’ team in the middle of the Pacific”, is wonderfully nostalgic as the “evil counterparts” understandably consist of their original roster: The Wizard, The Sandman, Paste-Pot Pete and Madame Medusa. But even Bentley Wittman imperiously commanding his team-mates “To the Grav-Sphere! You have three minutes!” can’t completely overshadow the appallingly contrived reasoning behind their unprecedented surprise attack upon the “dollar store Avengers”. It’s certainly hard to agree that, having just ‘secretly’ killed Mister Fantastic, The Human Torch, The Thing and Invisible Girl, the villains’ next logical step would be to murder the Avengers’ new line-up in front of numerous media cameras “for publicity”..?
Just as disconcerting is the Eisner Award-winner’s dubious motivation as to just why the likes of reformed criminal Hawkeye actually want to be an Avenger. Stan Lee’s “dazzling script” portrayed the “carny life” archer as someone determined to make amends for the death of his beloved Black Widow at the hands of the Communists. Yet Waid would rather have his readers believe that Clint Barton actually did it simply because Steve Rogers pointed out to him that he would have a butler if he resides within the mansion; “Jarvis, I feel like lobster tonight.”
Perhaps this comic’s strongest selling point is therefore the incredibly vibrant breakdowns of Barry Kitson. Whilst the British penciler is arguably no Jack “King” Kirby, his lively depictions of Iron Man blasting his way through the Masters of Evil, and Flint Marko later pulverising Captain America with his trademark sledgehammer fists is undoubtedly alone worth the cover price of this twenty-page periodical.
|Writer: Mark Waid, Penciler: Barry Kitson, and Inker: Mark Farmer|