Comic Review: Avengers Volume 1

I covered an awful lot of Justice League material last week.  So, why not take a look at what Marvel is doing with their version of the all-star team?

Yes, it’s time to check in with the Avengers with the first volume of their current series, subtitled The Final Host.

The book opens with the Avengers disbanded, but big threats never stay away forever, so when dead Celestials start raining from space onto the Earth, that means it’s time for Earth’s Mightiest Heroes to reunite.  And it just so happens the Avengers “Big Three” of Thor, Iron Man, and Captain America were just having a conversation about that now that Tony is out of his coma, Steve is no longer a Hydra agent, and Thor has found a replacement or two for his classic hammer.  Cap sees it as a duty, Thor wants to fight stuff, and Tony is generally reluctant to get the band back together.

Of course, there are bigger things going on.  Odin has asked the Black Panther to investigate another Celestial’s grave, a task the Panther does with a little help from Dr. Strange.  Space stuff means Captain Marvel flies in to deal with things.  And, just because giant bugs seem to be popping out of the ground on top of everything else, Jennifer Walter’s Savage She-Hulk (now with less articulation!) and Robby Reyes’ Ghost Rider all come in to help as well.  Will they be able to do something about the Final Host of Celestials, the problems begun a million years earlier by a young Odin and his own Avengers team composed of prehistoric versions of many Marvel legacy heroes, and with Loki involved somehow?

Well, of course they will, but the question isn’t “if” but “how”?

Jason Aaron took over writing duties here, and he’s clearly building a little off his work on both Thor and Dr. Strange, so knowing at least a little about what’s happening in those two books would probably help a little, but may not be that necessary.  Combined with Ed McGuinness’ artwork–which always produces a clean, somewhat cartoonish look–the story may not be the deepest for showing new sides to different heroes, but it does have some entertaining conversations and generally friendly squabbling.  Odin’s story sets up some future work, and, well, Ghost Rider has some skills he didn’t know he had when the chips are down.  I liked it, but didn’t love it.  Let’s say 8 out of 10 despairing Man-Things.

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