Tuesday, July 16, 2013


NEW AVENGERS VOL. 1: EVERYTHING DIES (Marvel, 2013; Hardcover)

Collects New Avengers (Vol. 3) Nos. 1-6 (cover dates March- July, 2013)

Writer: Jonathan Hickman

Artists: Steve Epting with Rick Magyar

Colorist: Frank D'Armata

This is the second relaunch of the New Avengers, making this the New New New Avengers. Cripes. The roster of this team is roughly the same as the New Avengers: Illuminati mini-series. We have Mister Fantastic, Doctor Strange, Black Bolt, Namor The Sub-Mariner, Iron Man, the Black Panther, and Captain America. At least, Captain America was a member until he wasn't.

There are plenty of talking head moments here, but at least they are necessary in order to convey the story information and not just filling out pages with bad “witty” dialogue. Hickman's writing is good for the most part. He uses the movie version of Tony Stark, which seems to be the way that his personality will be portrayed in the comic books from here on out. I do have some issues with the heroes not acting completely heroic, including what they do to Captain America, but this is, all in all, a satisfying read. 

The team is dealing with something called the Incursion, where multiple Earths from the Multiverse are colliding into one another as the result of a tiny contraction in the Multiverse timeline. There is a chain reaction, with Earth crashing into Earth as our heroes are scrambling to find a way to stop it. The Infinity Gauntlet rears it's ugly head (or glove as the case may be), and I can't help but suspect that this whole thing will be spun off into the upcoming Infinity mini-series and crossover event.

The cover of this book by “Jock”, which was originally used for issue 1, is a complete joke. Not only is it ugly, but the way that everyone is posed makes them look like a lame '90s Alternative band, all standing around looking in different directions, pretending not to be interested that there is a camera there when in reality they thought long and hard about how to look “cool”. Not much curb appeal. If I weren't an Avengers completist I wouldn't be the least bit inclined to pick it up based on the cover art. Thankfully the interior art is done by the always brilliant Steve Epting. I can't imagine why the existing cover was chosen for the final product.

Why is the Beast wearing goggles that make him look like Hellboy?

That gripe aside, I enjoyed this and am looking forward to Vol. 2 of the New New New Avengers.
Junk Food For Thought rating: 4 out of 5.

The OCD zone- Good god, talk about moving backwards. Marvel is now using chapter break pages in these Marvel Now! Premiere Hardcovers and moving the covers to a gallery in the back of the book. It's sick and it is wrong. It goes against the very laws of nature. Stop the madness, before it's too late! Won't somebody please think of the children?

DVD-style Extras included in this book: The following variant covers are featured in the cover gallery in the back of the book.
#1 Variant by Skottie Young
#1 Variant by Steve Epting
#2 Sketch Variant by J. Scott Campbell
#2 Variant by J. Scott Campbell & Nei Ruffano
#2 Variant by Simone Biachi & Simone Peruzzi
#4 Variant by Stepahnie Roux
#3 Variant Pencils by Dale Keown
#3 Variant by Dale Keown & Morry Hollowell
#6 Variant by Joe Quinones & Matthew Wilson

Paper rating: 3 out of 5. The glossy coated stock paper is a bit on the thin side. The warping is ridiculous. The printer seriously needs to let those green trees cure a bit before turning them into paper. These shriveled, semi-warped books are getting old. My books are stored in a 100% climate controlled environment, so this is unacceptable. It also happened with the DC Before Watchmen hardcovers which were printed at the same time by the same printer, R.R. Donnelley, Inc. The Chinese made hardcovers do not have this problem.

Binding rating: 4 out of 5. Glued binding. That free digital download code card glued into the casing needs to be done away with. It makes reading the last issue of these books a pain in the butt. These hardcovers are shrinkwrapped, so why not just throw the card in and seal the book?

Hardback cover coating rating: 4.5 out of 5. The coating on the dustjacket-free hardback is remarkably durable. It has a dull matte finish and I thought that it would be easily scuffed. I am happy to be wrong.

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