GLX takes a look at the trade paperback collection of Age of Ultron.
Writer - Brian Michael Bendis
Pencillers - Bryan Hitch, Brandon Peterson, Carlos Pacheco, Butch Guice, David Marquez, Alex Maleev, and Joe Quesada
Inkers - Paul Neary, Tom Palmer, Roger Bonet, Brandon Peterson, Butch Guice, David Marquez, Alex Maleev, and Joe Quesada
Colorists - Paul Mounts, Jose Villarrubia, and Richard Isanove
In 2013, Age of Ultron was one of Marvel's key "event comics." The hype leading up to it from Marvel tried to convince the average comic reader that the mini series would be a "must read." Cut to 2014. The hype surrounding Age of Ultron has died down, but the trade collecting the series, and the Avengers issue that served as a prologue, made its way to store shelves. Standing on its own, Age of Ultron is not a "must-read" work, but that does not necessarily make it bad.
Granted, outside of the characters trying to deal with past mistakes, and finding a way to correct them to make a better future, there is not that much depth to the writing. For better or worse, this is a story where the plot takes priority over character. Despite that, Brian Michael Bendis keeps things enjoyable. The action moves along without feeling rushed or drawn out. That said, this is partially due to the entire series being in one collection.
The individual issues themselves do not provide much in terms of gripping conclusions. Even the ending does not do a good job of justifying its relevance outside of acting as a prelude to future events. In hindsight, it is easy to see how some readers could have felt cheated for paying $4 an issue that did not deliver enough "meat on the bone."
The majority of the art in Age of Ultron is drawn by Bryan Hitch. With the assistance of Paul Neary, and Paul Mounts, Hitch's art does a fine job of giving some necessary oomph to a decent script. Midway through the story, Hitch stopped producing original art for the series. Instead, artists such as Brandon Peterson, Carlos Pacheco, and Butch Guice stepped up. While their art is not technically bad, the different artists on Age of Ultron have such distinct styles that the final product lacks a strong artistic identity.
Age of Ultron is a competent work, but it is too emotionally thin for something that should mean something to fans of the Marvel Universe. There might be something for fans of comics that show familiar characters in situations that differ from the main Marvel canon. Those interested in reading this would be best served by either checking it out on Marvel Unlimited or at a local library.
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