Age of Ultron #3
I’ve been a bit down on this major Marvel event. The first issue felt like the action sequence before the movie credits. The second issue, felt like dragged out set up. Then there’s the inconsistent art. The third issue is a bit of an improvement, but all that’s because of the final page, a big reveal. The rest suffers from a lot of the same issues as the first two issues.
The world has been dominated and taken over by Ultron. This issues sees the heroes continue the debate as to what to do. Which is odd, since the last issue ended with Captain America having this solid idea. So, there’s a debate. And more debate about what Ultron wants or why it’s acting the way it is. Then there’s some movement on the debate which leads to that twist ending.
Some times I like decompressed storytelling and Brian Michael Bendis is really good at it. But here, we’re three issues in and I feel like not much has happened other than that final page in this issue. It’s a hell of a twist and one I wasn’t thinking about. Hopefully the next issue picks it up a bit, like a train speeding up out of the track. We’ll see.
Then there’s the art. Bryan Hitch is off his game here. Something isn’t sitting right at all. This issue is filled with issues, especially when it comes to eyes. That might be an inking or a coloring problem, but there’s a lot of folks who have eyes that seem to wander, is in one is going one direction and the other in another. It’s distracting.
I still feel like the overall whole of the story will be stronger than its individual parts, but so far this is feeling like a bit of struggle to get to the good parts.
Story: Brian Michael Bendis Art: Bryan Hitch
Story: 7.25 Art: 6.75 Overall: 7 Recommendation: Read
Fantastic Four #5AU
Will the rise of the artificial intelligence Ultron cause the premature end of the Fantastic Four’s sojourn across time and space? That’s the tease for this event tie-in. We know the answer. We’ve seen Sue Storm in the main event series. So, this issue deals with the story as to how the Fantastic Four came back to Earth to deal with the situation and we learn who is still standing and who is no longer around.
The issues goal is simple, to tell us how Sue Storm got back from the deep space mission to be standing with the other heroes. It answers a plot hole, so that’s good.
I will admit, there’s some emotional heft to the issue. It got me to tear up slightly and had me thinking about its ramifications. That’s good writing, but overall, the story is pretty flimsy. There’s not much there. Some fighting and the results, but what’s really good though is The Four’s dealing with their children, Val and Franklin. That’s where the emotional heft comes from. So it’s an interesting comic going between that emotional gut punch to the battle scenes.
The art also threw me off. I like the style, but it didn’t seem to fit such an emotional comic. It was a mismatch, which dragged it down a bit.
Overall, it’s a good issue, but just not quite the excellence that lives up to the word “fantastic”.
Story: Matt Fraction Art: Andre Araujo
Story: 7.5 Art: 7.5 Overall: 7.5 Recommendation: Read
Superior Spider-Man #6AU
The Superior Spider-Man enters the Age of Ultron! I’ve been wondering a bit as to which Spider-Man this is. And with this issue, we get a definite answer. Not that I feel like it’s a spoiler, but with it being Doc Ock, this issue explores from his perspective what he thinks about Ultron taking over.
The heroes know who Spider-Man is now, as he revealed himself in the first issue of the main event book. Since they know they’ve got another brilliant person on board Tony Stark tasks him with a mission.
What’s solid about this book is the fact you get Ock’s opinion on the situation. How does a villain react when another one pulls off what he didn’t? It’s well done and a very entertaining read I think.
What’s also nice is how his personality is played up. He’s given a mission, but, just like in the regular series, his ego and attitude gets in the way. He constantly thinks he has the right answer and is slowly learning lessons. This issue, though it switches to the event, keeps up that plot and point that Dan Slott has drilled in. It makes this feel like a continuation of the regular series which is nice.
Overall, the art is pretty good as well. There’s some slight issues, but I really dig the style presented.
As far as tie-ins, this one answers a big question and gives us a unique enough voice and perspective that it makes it worth it.
Story: Christos Gage Art: Dexter Soy
Story: 7.75 Art: 7.75 Overall: 7.75 Recommendation: Buy