By Jonathan Hickman & Salvador Larroca
Apparently, when this issue was first solicited, there was some outcry from fans. People thought that Hickman was going to pull a Bendis and bring the original Avengers to the here and now (like All New X-Men). Well, that’s not exactly the case. It is, but it’s not what you think.
Hickman is instead using these original Avengers as a way to further his saga of multiple universes, incursions, and a bunch of stuff that I can’t keep track of. Hey, I buy and read 12-18 Marvel books a week, so cut me some slack. Anyway, Hickman cleverly uses these originals from another universe and the AIM scientists who brought them here as a way to put another part of the bigger picture in play. This book is all about the slow burn, so it’s nice to get another chunk of this expanding plot.
Our Avengers don’t actually get much screen time. They only show up on the last page. Instead, we’re treated to the original Avengers, as well as AIM and SHIELD intrigue. Hickman is something of a sci-fi guru, so having an organization like AIM as a primary focus works with his strengths.
Salvador Larroca is a fine artist, but this isn’t his best work. A few of the AIM scientist’s bodies and heads are positioned weird and it will throw you out of the story for a page or so. To be fair, the original Avengers look pretty incredible. This series has spoiled us with engaging art to help the epic storylines, but that appears to be over for the time being.
Even if the art isn’t what it used to be, Hickman comes through and knocks this issue out of the park. Avengers is still one of the best titles Marvel has to offer. With another piece of the story in the books, things are looking to get even more exciting.