By Jonathan Hickman and Leinil Francis Yu
The events of Infinity #4 appeared to have finally given our heroes the advantage that they so desperately needed. Unfortunately, this is short lived. Infinity has become a seesaw, one minute the heroes are on top, only for the Builders to regain their strength and kill a few thousand more Shiars and Skrulls. It can be irritating, but Hickman writes it well enough for it to be a clever device used to toy with our emotions. Seriously, how the heck do you beat these Builder guys?
In this issue, most of everybody’s favorite heroes take a backseat. There isn’t much Captain America or Thor, but smaller players get their due. Captain Universe and her role in Infinity have been a little vague, so it’s nice to see her finally get her moment. She’s sure to be a more major theme down the line. Gladiator has been written solidly and issue 21 is his time to shine, for sure. Also, Hickman is finally peeling the metaphorical onion that is the Gardeners. For being such odd and enigmatic characters, they really are interesting.
Cap has a final play and it is crazy, to say the least. Actually using the Annihilation Wave as a weapon against the enemy? Hickman writes this scene with a certain Shakespearean bravado usually reserved for old Claremont X-Men issues. It makes for some striking character moments and brings a smile to my face.
Leinil Francis Yu is really impressive. Space battles seem to suit his style quite well. The Builder’s battle with the Annihilation Wave is truly something to behold. As stated before, Hickman calls for many epic moments and Yu is certainly up for the task of not only bringing them to life, but adding his own tension to the scenes.
If you’re reading Infinity, Avengers #21 is not a chapter to be missed. Hickman’s impressive plans are starting to become clearer, with this issue being a true turning point for the series. With Yu’s pencils working their usual magic, this is another fantastic chapter of Infinity.