Thursday, July 5, 2012

Review: Avengers vs. X-Men #4

I am really sorry that I’ve gotten so far behind on the Avengers vs. X-Men reviews. Hopefully no one has been realigning on this blog for information about that series. I’m going to attempt to knock the rest of the issues I’ve missed this week/weekend (And because I need to push back my review on Brave and as of this writing I still haven’t seen Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter I don’t have a giant amount of things to post right now anyway). Make you sure you check out issues 1, 2, and 3.

Last time we saw Captain America do what I’ve been waiting for him to do to Wolverine for what feels like forever, in what was almost certainly the high point of the comic. Jonathan Hickman takes over writing duties while the art team, John Romita, Jr. (Pencils), by Scott Hanna (Inks) and colors by Laura Martin (Colors) remains the same.

More silliness from the “House of Ideas” after the jump.

[WARNING: There are spoilers in this review]



Is every character at Marvel an Avenger or an X-Man these days?
After getting beaten up and left for dead in Antarctica Wolverine is rescued by Hope Summers of all people, the very person he’s been trying to murder. However Hope manages to convince him to give her a chance to try to use the Phoenix Force to restore the lost powers of the mutant population, banking that if she loses control of herself he’s the one she trusts to “stop her”. Meanwhile the Avengers and the X-Men continue their battle across the globe, trying to be the first to figure where Hope is.

The art in this series is very hit or miss for me and I think partly it’s because of Romita’s style not meshing well with certain characters, who end up looking kind of bad, and also I don’t think the coloring works with his style at all. I think Romita’s art looks a lot better with dark tones than the bright ones in this comic. Unless there’s a change in the art team I don’t think this will change. In this specific issue it’s mostly fine, but it doesn’t exactly do much for me.

Weak plot and half-ass fight scenes? What's the point of you?
As for the writing…well, in general it’s nothing too terrible but, man oh man, was Hope’s master plan was dumb as shit. Her major scheme was so unbelievably incompetent that for the first time ever I was able to muster a reaction to the character since her debut: disdain. Hope actually seems to agree with Cyclops in that she can use the Phoenix Force to restore mutant kind. So the obvious thing would be to hook back up with the X-Men since their combined (and growing) might would surely protect her from the Avengers, at least until her powers fully manifested. But NO! She decides she’s going to instead recruit Professor Logan, the only character in the entire comic that wants her to actively stop breathing, and is surprised when he betrays her by telling Captain America her plans WHEN SHE ALLOWED HIM TO FLY HER PLANE WHILE SHE WAS SLEEPING! Oh yeah, “Spoiler Alert”; Wolverine’s alliance with Hope lasts about twelve pages before it dissolved. I really feel they could have stretched that plot point a few issues rather than wrapping it up in a manner of pages. But anyway instead of trying to find the X-Men she appears to go out of her way to escape their grasps just as much as the Avengers, which would have resulted in her capture if Cyclops and his team hadn’t been monitoring the situation. Why? We’re not told. So good job, Hope; your brilliant plan was full proof aside from that part where you didn’t think it through.

Like with some previous issues there are still pointless fight scenes that go nowhere that act more like commercials for the other comics that aren’t in the main series. To be perfectly frank though not much happens in this issue. There’s a pretense for everyone to go to the moon, everyone then goes to the moon, and then the Phoenix Force finally arrives on the last page. Also Wolverine kills like four guys. Yeah, they worked for AIM and I’d assume they weren’t great people but I’m not sure they did anything that would have warranted the death penalty. 

Someone please explain to me why this is proper superhero behavior!
In truth this issue could have been stretched out as somehow a lot of plot happens in this issue but somehow felt like nothing really happened at all. I guess it kind of implies that the storytelling wasn’t particularly attention grabbing. The main thing I took from this issue is that Hope Summers is pretty dumb. So bottom line this issue is just more of the same so far and I'm still bored.

Avengers vs. X-Men gets 2 out of 5 Adorable Pandas.



Pros 

-Meh 

Cons 

-The issue feels dull 

-The writing is kind of frustrating


Next time we'll look at Issue Five where soemthing interetsing finally happens. That should be up within the next two days.

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