Mark Waid, Jim Zub, Al Ewing, Pepe Larraz, David Curiel
Weekly comics aren’t a new thing. Batman Eternal was a fantastic example of how to do a weekly series when it ran for a large portion of DC’s New 52 life-span, and it is easy to see the appeal in Marvel following suit by taking their own separate Avengers teams and combining them into an ambitious, broad-scale event that has plenty of potential to deliver.
This crossover combines the Avengers, U.S.Avengers and Uncanny Avengers together in order to help steer the ship and put them on the right track for “No Surrender.” As things go, it’s certainly a fascinating story hook, reminiscent of the Doctor Who Season 4 finale “The Stolen Earth/Journey’s End” and if you’ve ever wanted to know how the Avengers would fare in a similar situation, “No Surrender” is the book for you. There are countless appearances from a slew of heroes, too many to name, and as a result they get a limited amount of page-time aside from a select few, but this is only the first issue, so that’s to be expected. It would be no surprise if each issue spiralled out to focus on the separate groups rather than keep them all together, all the time.
The writing team is certainly a list of impressive talent brought on board. Mark Waid, Jim Zub, and Al Ewing are all involved, and there is always a danger that too many writers would lead to an inconsistent tone and feel, but that is not the case with Avengers #675, which blends everything together seamlessly. It’s actually hard to tell who’s writing who. There are little moments for character development here which should be no surprise given what the first issue has to do, as the sheer spectacle and devastation on display here is evident. The narrative decision to give the spotlight on Living Lightning is an unusual choice, but a welcomed one.
The artwork is on fire here as penciller Pepe Larraz and colourist David Curiel are fantastic. Each page is a visual treat and considering the grand scale of what Avengers #675 is trying to accomplish, it’s no small feat to tackle a book such as these. Both artists keep the tone and feel of the book consistent as it jumps around the globe, and regardless of the environment that the various characters find themselves in, the book’s many set-pieces are always eye-catching. The artwork is sharp and instantly appealing, and every character is treated with respect and care.
Thanks to some stunning artwork and an interesting hook, as well as the sheer spectacle of seeing so many characters pulled together for an event of cataclysmic proportions, Avengers #675 goes big and succeeds. The book does leave you with more questions than answers, but the last thing you want is too many answers this early on, and it’s clear that the writers are able to get a strong element of synergy together. How this progresses over future books for now remains unknown, but the issue itself makes a compelling case for readers to pick up the follow-up.