It’s relaunch time ladies and gents, which means that we get a new Avengers book! (Not to be confused with a “New Avengers” book, although that’s a pretty good series too) This go-round, Avengers is written by Jason Aaron and drawn by Ed McGuinness. Both are greats in the comic industry by themselves but together can they create a series worthy of the moniker “Earth’s Mightiest Heroes”?
Let’s find out.
Continuing on from Marvel Legacy #1, also written by Jason Aaron, the Avengers 1,000,000 B.C. face down the threat of more Celestials but Odin doesn’t believe the team can beat them back as the Avengers charge at them in a blaze of glory.
Flash forward to the present and we see Tony Stark, Steve Rogers, and Thor Odinson drinking together and arguing about whether or not to reform the Avengers after all that’s happened i.e. Secret Empire, Civil War II, etc. Well technically just Cap and Iron Man are fighting; Thor’s just drinking until he sides with Cap and says that they need to embrace their identities as Avengers. Stark starts to argue against it but his wrist communicator/A.I. warns them of something coming out of space. Cut to Dr. Strange and the Black Panther who are investigating those missing archeologists in South Africa from Legacy #1. Unfortunately they find them or at least what’s left of them, along with several familiar, ancient insignias, strange magic, radiations, and a large hole fit for a celestial.
Meanwhile, Ghost Rider Robbie Reyes is wondering what’s wrong with his car ever since it drove him to South Africa. She-Hulk scares off a cat-calling douchebag. Carol Danvers tries to stop what turns out to be a Celestial hand. It also turns out that there was more to find below South Africa as Strange and T’challa come across some unhatched bug eggs. The eggs hatch and attack Robbie Reyes and then the rest hatch and attack the Dr. Strange and Black Panther.
Next a dead Celestial falls out of the sky and lands in the Hudson. In fact, across the world, dead Celestials are falling out of the sky. What could possibly have enough power to do so? Dark Celestials!
Avengers Assemble indeed! This first issue is awesome! It has everything that a good team book should have at a new jumping-off point. It catches the reader up with what’s happening in the Marvel Universe, character motivations, and general exposition for the issue. No one’s written out of character and Aaron uses everyone to their full potential. I’m a little confused by the use of Robbie Reyes / Ghost Rider because he put a Ghost Rider on the team to mirror the 1,000,000 B.C. team but Robbie isn’t a Spirit of Vengeance like Johnny Blaze or Danny Ketch. He’s just possessed by his dead uncle.
As for the rest of the team members, they’re all great fits! Iron Man, Captain America, and Thor are a great comeback for the team. Captain Marvel will be cool to see as a heavy hitter. Doctor Strange and Black Panther are clearly there for a cinematic comparison but are fun to read too. As a huge fan of the “Earth’s Mightiest Heroes” T.V. show it’s nice seeing T’Challa back on the team. I’m also excited to see Jen Walters as the Hulk on this team as I feel that she has more personality than her cousin. Lastly, the art is great! I’ve been a fan of Ed McGuinness for a long time and I’m so glad that he’s drawing this book. Shout-out to the Colorist (David Curiel) and Inker (Mark Morales) as without them the book wouldn’t be able to pop like it does here.
I can’t wait to see where the rest of this story goes!
Verdict: 9/10 Avengers Assembled