Sunday, January 30, 2005

Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes #6 - A Review

Written by: Joe Casey
Art by: Scott Kolins
Colored by: Wil Quintana
Lettered by: RS & Comiccraft
Editor: Tom Brevoort
Publisher: Marvel Comics

I’ve never been a big Avengers fan. Oh, I read the odd issue when I was first getting into comics and discovered the wonders of Kurt Busiek’s run with George Perez’s artwork. But I didn’t really start reading it until Geoff John’s all too brief run. So I’ve never had the deep-set emotional attachment to the team that many who are now ranting and raving over the aftermath of Disassembled.

Oddly enough, for all the talk of the classic Avengers, I’ve heard precious little talk about this series, which retells the story of how the team was founded: from the first incarnation with The Hulk up through (as of this issue) Thor and all the rest of the original squad save for Captain America all but leaving the team and the stage being set for Quicksilver, Scarlet Witch and Hawkeye to join up.

The comic fleshes out a lot of the finer details of exactly HOW that change came about and modernizes the creation of The Avengers for the modern world. Still, I wonder if this story really needed to be told. That is not to say I don’t like it: I do. There are a lot of noteworthy elements here, such as Jervis being responsible for Hawkeye’s approaching the Avengers and giving him the kick-in-the-pants needed to truly make an attempt at redemption. Still, for every nice touch like that there are touches like the characterization of Captain America here. While not as annoying the “drill-sergeant-from-Hell” of The Ultimates, the flash-back haunted, revenge obsessed Captain America here is still far and away from the original concept of ol’ Cap.

Scott Kolins artwork is sketchy and under-inked, looking much like a more-detailed and less dark Bryan Hitch. In an odd-way, this approach to the book coupled with the pastel coloring lends it a look that makes it seem somewhat like a faded book of the 60s, where there was precious little inking and fewer shadows.

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