Mighty Avengers #3 by Al Ewing (Comics Review)

As the larger cosmic event Infinity begins winding down, so do the various tie-ins and current arcs going on in the related books. Mighty Avengers, a book which launched in synchronicity with the event in September, ended its first arc this week, and it has been doing quite decently from what I’ve heard of the sales for the first two issues. Of course, there’s also the matter of the exact make-up of the team, which has generated no small amount of buzz itself.

This is a book that showcases the minority characters, and characters that are seemingly overlooked by the rest of the Marvel universe considering that most of the books the publisher is putting out right now are X-Men books with largely similar teams, and Avengers books that are all about the high-profile heroes. Al Ewing has done great in bringing together all these characters and telling a really fun story involving them, partnered up with some decent artwork,

Mighty Avengers 03Like I said, this issue brings to a close the first arc on this brand-new series, and is a not-so-subtle hint that Infinity is also ending this month. After all, we have the next Marvel event due in January, Inhumanities, and as we all know, Marvel loves its crossovers. I mean, we’ve already had three major events this year alone. Anyway, while Mighty Avengers has dealt almost peripherally with Infinity, the event still provided a catalyst for this team to come together. Luke Cage, the former Power Man, now leads a (new) Heroes for Hire team and it is this team that runs face first into Thanos’ invasion of Earth. Last issue, that whole angle changed quite dramatically to a supernatural Lovecraftian angle and the Mighty Avengers, who have their own Twitter hashtag in-comic by the way, end up fighting this god from the beyond, with some help from the hero known as Spider Hero.

This issue is defined by the one-liners, Spider Hero’s in-depth knowledge of the supernatural, and the character interactions which were quite good. In particular, I loved the face-off between Superior Spider-Man and Spider Hero, who is an unknown character wearing a Spider-Man inspired costume that he… liberated from a costume store IIRC in the first issue. With SSM being a very science-oriented man and Spider Hero being fully into the magical side of things, there is a lot of back-and-forth between them. It helped increase the fun of the story.

We also get to see Blue Marvel and Monica Rambeau do a right number on the god from the beyond, Shuma-Gorath, and that was most fun, more than I expected at any rate. Sure, there is a certain cheesiness and campiness to the whole thing, but I still found it all to be a great piece of writing because it reveled in those aspects and wasn’t afraid to go all-out with them. The whole event is rather dire since Shuma-Gorath wants to consume the entire reality and remake it to his will, but hey, it just adds to the humour value here.

Also, Al Ewing brought back the current Power Man, Vic Alvarez, and the current White Tiger, Ava Ayala. These two exited the team in the very first issue owing to differences with Luke, more so given Superior Spider-Man’s haughty, arrogant attitude. And they are back with a bang too!! Spectacular moments in the story captured really well by Greg Land’s artwork.

Story-wise, the only negative for me was that some of Luke Cage’s dialogue towards the end felt forced. And there was a little too much exposition in general from Blue Marvel, which was quite odd. They just didn’t flow so well.

With the artwork, in totality, I’d say that Land’s pencils have improved significantly since his facial expressions were better this time. Just slight exaggerations this time in a couple rare panels, very minor stuff. He draws a really goofy Shuma-Garoth that feels horrific since you already have that context from the story, and its fun to see all the heroes take him down, especially once Vic and Ava step in for the fight. There’s this weird couple of panels which are unclear as to whether Monica is floating in the air or lying on a rooftop following the wounds she’s sustained in her fight against Proxima Midnight in the previous issue, and those added to the oddities in the issue since the artwork was generally much better in almost all respects. Jay Leisten’s inks and Frank D’Armata’s really good colours also added to the whole immersive aspect of Al Ewing’s story and Land’s artwork. I want to see more from these guys!

With the first arc over, I’m hoping that Al Ewing can take the story off in its own direction and create a really separate Avengers team in all respects. One that feels more relevant than all the other high-profile Avengers books.

Rating: 8.5/10

More Mighty Avengers: #1, #2.

Posted on November 9, 2013, in Comics Reviews, General, Review Central and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

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