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Avengers #16 (The sphere sucks Spoilers)

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Punchy

Staff Writer

Postby Punchy » Thu Jul 18, 2013 10:11 am

I’m loving how Hickman is finally letting all of the various balls he threw up in the air at the start of his run drop, and how they are all dropping right on the Avengers’ heads at the same time. This issue was crazy-packed with cool moments.

The immediate threat to the Avengers is the weird Robot dude who woke up on AIM Island and flew right at them. This Robot of course kicks all of their asses. On top of this, you’ve got AIM attempting to recapture the Robot (using the same piece of kit that brought Hyperion into the Marvel Universe I think), the Space-Knights are involved somehow, and sooner or later the New Universe guys are going to get involved.

I loved the scenes between Starbrand and Nightmask, and how it slowly became clear just how powerful these characters are. It takes longer for the brain to evolve than the body, and Kevin is now gaining some kind of super intelligence, or cosmic awareness. I loved how it was revealed that they could escape at any time, that they are so much stronger than the Avengers thought. I’m guessing the fact that these scenes are set ‘weeks ago’ means that Starbrand and Nightmask will come to save the day next issue. But I’m probably wrong.
Oh yeah, and to make things even worse for Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, the stress of dealing with so many problems all at once causes Bruce Banner to Hulk out right there on the Helicarrier. It never rains but it pours.

My only real problem with this story is that the Avengers aren’t really characters in it, they are just there to react to insane shit and barely actually do anything. I know we already know most of these characters inside-out, but it’s hard to care about the actual team at this point. I thought Hickman was doing a lot better at balancing characterisation and plot recently, perhaps thanks to Nick Spencer’s dialogue, but this issue was not about the Avengers, it was about all the threats. Plus, what does any of this have to do with Infinity!!? Stefano Caselli’s artwork continues to be an unabashed delight though, he’s such a consummate superhero artist, I have no complaints there.
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Keb

<( ' . ' )>

Postby Keb » Thu Jul 18, 2013 11:23 am

I like that this isn't character driven. I think that's how team books should be. I see it a lot like Morrison JLA where the characters do their own thing in their own titles and come to this title to contribute to a story. Makes it easier on the reader.
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Punchy

Staff Writer

Postby Punchy » Thu Jul 18, 2013 11:30 am

Keb wrote:I like that this isn't character driven. I think that's how team books should be. I see it a lot like Morrison JLA where the characters do their own thing in their own titles and come to this title to contribute to a story. Makes it easier on the reader.


Yeah, but there are a lot of characters on this team who don't have their own series.

Black Widow
Spider-Woman
Falcon
Shang-Chi
Sunspot
Cannonball
Manifold
Smasher
Captain Universe
Hyperion

That's well over half the team.
User avatar

Zero

Zombie Guard

Postby Zero » Thu Jul 18, 2013 11:33 am

I thought Hyperion had quite a bit of characterisation so far, ditto for Captain Universe. I hope as the series moves past Infinity some more characters will get storylines centred on them (Smasher I suspect will be at the centre of something).
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Keb

<( ' . ' )>

Postby Keb » Thu Jul 18, 2013 11:43 am

Zero wrote:I thought Hyperion had quite a bit of characterisation so far, ditto for Captain Universe. I hope as the series moves past Infinity some more characters will get storylines centred on them (Smasher I suspect will be at the centre of something).

Yeah but those are characters key to Hickman's story. I too think Smasher, Hyperion and Captain Universe will be more central to the overall story. Same with Starbrand and Nightmask.

The characters that existed prior to Hickman taking over that he didn't repurpose for the sake of his story probably won't have deep story arcs that focus on them. Maybe an issue here or there (like the Shang Chi thing in 11) but I really don't see Hickman using these Avengers titles to explore individual characters in-depth but rather as pieces in an overall story and I like that.

Its what Morrison did in JLA despite having a large rotating cast of characters without their own titles. It works.
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Zero

Zombie Guard

Postby Zero » Thu Jul 18, 2013 11:48 am

Keb wrote:Yeah but those are characters key to Hickman's story. I too think Smasher, Hyperion and Captain Universe will be more central to the overall story. Same with Starbrand and Nightmask.

The characters that existed prior to Hickman taking over that he didn't repurpose for the sake of his story probably won't have deep story arcs that focus on them. Maybe an issue here or there (like the Shang Chi thing in 11) but I really don't see Hickman using these Avengers titles to explore individual characters in-depth but rather as pieces in an overall story and I like that.

Its what Morrison did in JLA despite having a large rotating cast of characters without their own titles. It works.


Couldn't agree more, the book has been excellent so far and I don't see that changing.
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Stephen Day

Wrasslin' Fan

Postby Stephen Day » Thu Jul 18, 2013 8:53 pm

Punchy wrote: I loved the scenes between Starbrand and Nightmask, and how it slowly became clear just how powerful these characters are. It takes longer for the brain to evolve than the body, and Kevin is now gaining some kind of super intelligence, or cosmic awareness. I loved how it was revealed that they could escape at any time, that they are so much stronger than the Avengers thought. I’m guessing the fact that these scenes are set ‘weeks ago’ means that Starbrand and Nightmask will come to save the day next issue. But I’m probably wrong.


This would be my one problem with this story. The Avengers should know just how powerful the Starbrand is. One of their own members, Quasar of course, had control of it (or at least the original version, but probably not the version we're seeing right now), for a significant period of time. It should be in their files that it gives its wielder pretty much unlimited power. This is information they have.

having said that, it's a minor quibble. I'll be willing to accept Hickman ignoring this bit of continuity if it leads to an enjoyable story. Right now I'm thinking that will probably be the case, but until that happens, this bit of inconsistency is going to really bug me.
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fieldy snuts

Rain Partier

Postby fieldy snuts » Thu Jul 18, 2013 9:36 pm

Anyone notice Captain Universe advocated what the New Avengers are currently doing? (destroying other Earths to save theirs).
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Stephen Day

Wrasslin' Fan

Postby Stephen Day » Thu Jul 18, 2013 11:00 pm

fieldy snuts wrote:Anyone notice Captain Universe advocated what the New Avengers are currently doing? (destroying other Earths to save theirs).


Yep, it's interesting to finally see these two stories intersect.
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Juan Cena

DANG!

Postby Juan Cena » Fri Jul 19, 2013 12:10 am

I've been kind of thinking that the book has kind of lost it's voice leading up Infinity. It's been lacking the epic feel, even with the cosmic stuff with Capt. Universe, Nightmask and Starbrand didn't seemed a little Earthbound. I think it's suffering from Hickman having too much on his plate.

Kinda sad about it. I'm not have Panda Bear going through my head like I did with the first issues. :cry:

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