To deal with the fallout from last month’s world-shaking issue #700, the Avengers organize an international super hero summit, gathering heroes from the most powerful nations on Earth. But no one was expecting the shocking new representatives of the United States. The world is about to become a far more dangerous place. Especially for the Avengers. Plus Hulk and Thor try to go on a date.
The last issue was a big one with lots of action and this… is exactly the opposite. Writer Jason Aaron has crafted an issue focused more on the relationships and personal interactions of characters instead of punching.
The issue is broken into four parts. The new Ghost Rider, Robbie Reyes, is given an introduction as to what it means to be an Avenger by Carol Danvers. The second is a date between Thor and She-Hulk, and the third is Black Panther’s idea to find allies to prepare for the future. The fourth is all about Phil Coulson who’s back from the dead and no longer sees the superheroes for the heroes they are.
The bit with Robbie is short but is full of foreshadowing, especially when a villain is name-dropped and the other three are the bulk of the issue. The Thor/She-Hulk date is interesting and full of humor but something isn’t quite clicking about this pairing and it feels like its come out of left field in a way. Still, it brings a bit of levity to an otherwise serious issue.
The Black Panther’s meeting with other regional leaders is the more interesting bit mixing politics and superherodom together in a way that really makes it much more difficult than just going where you want to save the day. There’s geo-political forces at work and Aaron re-enforces that here.
The Coulson bit is all about character development in why he’s now working with the Squadron Supreme in a sanctioned by the U.S. government team. It’s a heal turn and features events that feel very out of character but at the same time something you could imagine when a lever has been flipped. We don’t get answers as to how he’s back but are delivered a rather shocking ending to really sell the turn from the character we’ve liked.
The art by Ed McGuinness and Cory Smith with inks/finishing by Mark Morales, Scott Hanna, and Karl Kesel, color by Erick Arciniega and lettering by Cory Petit is pretty solid. It works well with decent designs and smooth shifts between scenes. None of it is particularly jaw-droppping but it looks good and the characters are solid. There’s a simplicity about it all in a way.
The issue is all about characters removing the flashy action from last issue and delivering a focus on characters and relationships. Last issue was the beginning of the set-up and this one continues that with some intrigue.
Story: Jason Aaron Art: Ed McGuinness, Cory Smith
Ink/Finishers: Mark Morales, Scott Hanna, Karl Kesel
Color: Erick Arciniega Lettering: VC’s Cory Petit
Story: 7.85 Art: 7.65 Overall: 7.75 Recommendation: Buy
Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review