Marvel headlines the brand new wave of Marvel NOW! with this first title. Does the effort by Rick Remender and John Cassaday live up to the hype?
When I first heard about Uncanny Avengers, I was less than enthused. It sounded to me at the time like an idea thought up by rich Marvel executives looking to get richer: “Oh, our two biggest franchises are the Avengers and the X-Men! Let’s squish them together and make money!”. To be honest, I’m still not convinced that wasn’t the impetus for this book. I was also concerned that my personal favorites, the X-Men, would be pulled into a style of story that didn’t fit them. The mutants are masters of the soap opera, but could they work in a full fledged superhero team-book?
Despite my concerns, I still put down the $3.99 (ridiculous) and picked up my own copy, variant cover and all. Why? Two reasons: Rick Remender and John Cassaday. These two are masters of their craft, and after finishing Uncanny Avengers #1, I have to admit, they’ve created something compelling.
Cassaday’s artwork is wonderful. Some people might not appreciate the detailed style that he works in, but after so many issues of Avengers V.S. X-Men penciled by John Romita Jr., this artwork feels like a breath of fresh air. Flowers, brains, explosions, all of these are rendered beautifully. Often times it’s the art that carries a scene, like Xavier’s funeral, or the “talk” between Rogue and Scarlet Witch.
This book is the immediate heir of the AVX story, and as such Remender spends no time recapping the events of those issues. That’s great for someone like me, who read all twelve issues of AVX, but I imagine it might be a little shocking for someone unfamiliar with the story to begin this book at the funeral of Charles Xavier. Otherwise, the book’s scripting is flawless, and the conversation between Scott and Alex Summers stands out as a very cool, very real moment.
Uncanny Avengers #1 is a great start to the series and worth checking out. Only time will tell whether or not my fears are unfounded, but for now I’m happy enough to sit back and allow Remender and Cassaday to tell their story. With talent like them, there’s reason to believe this book may be extraordinary.