I was this close to having the first ever all-Marvel Blue Plates this week, but caved at the last minute. Just thought you'd all like to know. Now, moving onward... Appetizer:
Dark Avengers #1
Not really much to spoil here, as if you've read a single Marvel book in the last three years or so, or if you've seen the pre-solicited cover and have even half a functioning brain in your head, you know exactly who these people masquerading as the new Avengers are, and their assemblage by everybody's (well, except maybe mine) favorite whackadoo, Norman Osborn, is pretty much the entire issue; in typical Bendis fashion, we got a lot of talky-talky, pretty much no action, and tons of padding to stretch this out so nothing of any real import happens, but it manages to happen for about 25-30 pages (f'r instance, we see no less than four separate scenes showing Norman in solo conversations at T-bolts mountain with his new recruits, each of which take at least 1-2 pages, and probably could've been done in 2-3 pages total and not lost anything in the translation); other than the recruitment drive, we see Normie appoint his new right-hand lackey, see Maria Hill and Ms. Marvel separately tell him to essentially piss up a rope, and see Dr. Doom returned to Latveria only to be bum-rushed by a pissed-off Morgan le Fey; I know my review sounds mighty harsh, but in truth the book wasn't bad...just typical Bendis; if you love his stuff, you'll claim this is further re-energizing the medium, if (like me) you think he's a pompous windbag one-trick pony, it's still not bad just more of the same; art's nice too, although Deodato's style is still a bit murkier than I usually like; all in all, not bad, but could've been better. Entree:
Mighty Avengers 21
Now THIS, however, is an Avengers book; I'm no huge fan of Pham's art, but it wasn't egregiously bad here either; and the story and dialogue was old-school Avengers fun with modern sensibilities, mixing cool ideas, classic characters, a huge threat from villains steeped in Avengers lore, and some great characterization; my one complaint is Slott's Pym is gonna take some getting used to for me...at times he seemed to nail his voice and at others it seemed just a little bit off; but Herc, Cho, Jarvis, Jocasta, the young Avengers, Tony...all seemed perfect; anywho...Wanda is back teleporting around the globe picking up worthy Avengers to fight a battle against seemingly nature itself, as the whole world is drowning in volcanoes, rivers of blood, sentient evil plant life, and other nastiness; all this is under the control of Modred, who's literally becoming the Darkhold up on Mt. Wundagore as he calls his boss Chthon back to Earth to inhabit the body of Quicksilver; meanwhile, Jarvis, Cho and Herc go looking for Pym to help lead them against the chaos as the other heroes are all AWOL; tying together Avengers history with current status quo and telling a fun yarn in the process, the real Avengers Assemble! I loved it
, and I'm on-board this book for a while. Dessert:
Green Lantern 37
I complained about the drag created by the Secret Origin arc, but Johns has revved the engine back up to full throttle here; Hal leaves the Blue Lanterns in his dust, and flies to Ysmault to reclaim Sinestro; he's ambushed by the Red Lanterns, and Atrocitus pulls some of his cryptic reverse psych prophecy on Hal; just as Laira's about to rip Hal to shreds, the Red Lanterns are then ambushed by the Sinestro Corps, who are all then ambushed by the Blue Lanterns; Hal breaks through to Laira who is then immediately killed by Sinestro; Hal gets pissed, and at issue's end we discover Hal Jordan, Red Lantern! More action-packed fun from Johns, and more drop-dead gorgeous art from Reis, as usual...I LOVED it.