Welcome back once again to Chuck’n Comics! Where sitting on the couch in your underwear in the middle of the day is no longer weird but a fact of life and completely accepted by everyone in my social circle.
Okay, that’s a lie. But let’s disregard that awkward little tangent and get into our next comic review: Avengers Vs. X-Men #1!
Short and sweet: The mutant species is dying off. There are only handful of them left on the planet. The Phoenix force, once inhabiting the body of Jean Grey, is alive and well and heading to Earth. Destroying at least one planet in it’s wake.
The X-Men are far removed from the mutants we knew and loved just a few short years ago. They have hardened.
In New York city, a crashing meteor takes the wing off a plane and crashes into the city. The Avengers assemble, saving the day only to discover that the meteor is none other than the Nova who bears a cryptic message:
The X-Men reside on the island of Utopia, away from the rest of the world where Cyclops brutally trains a young mutant named Hope. As Magneto and Emma Frost watch from a tower, the phoenix force erupts from within her, tossing Cyclops half way across the platform.
With the The Avengers meeting in at the capital and the X-Men discussing the reality of the phoenix returning to Earth, the conflict is inevitable. Cyclops sees the Phoenix as the possibility of restoring the unnatural event of 99% of the mutant population being stripped of their powers. Captain America and Iron Man see the Phoenix as the end of the world.
Moments later, Captain America lands on Utopia to talk to Scott about the Phoenix. The conversation is short lived as Cyclops blasts Captain America out of his immediate vicinity. The Hellicarrier descends and the Avengers are assembled.
Written by Brian Michael Bendis and pencilled by the John Romita Jr., Avengers Vs. X-Men is good but not great. The idea, the concept is staggering: What if the Avengers and the X-Men decided to have a Royal Rumble? Who would be left standing?
The writing isn’t bad but not Bendis‘ best and the artwork by Romita, of which I have loved for a very long time, seems to lack consistency. Magneto’s face on page 25 seems to change looks and I think he even gains a lazy eye. Stuff like that where the character design loses continuity is what I mean because the man has skillz, playa. Having said that, Romita does, as always, find moments to wow us such as on page 4 where a father and son face oblivion. The emotion is so subdued, it’s wonderful.
The idea is impressive enough to carry you over these humps and keep you engaged because who doesn’t want to know how this plays out?! Ring the bell, I’m in this bout until the final bell! It’s Hulk vs. Andre! Foreman vs. Ali! Coke Vs. New Coke! Okay, the last one was never a contest. Drinking New Coke was like replacing all my taste buds with very tiny cow pies that were cooking cow pies.
So, to surmise, writing is alright but not amazing. Art is inconsistent but the concept is staggering and New Coke still sucks.
Check back next time as we jump back to look at Joe Hill’s amazing comic Locke and Key Graphic Novel #1.