UNCANNY AVENGERS VOL. 2: THE APOCALYPSE TWINS (Marvel, 2013; Hardcover)
Collects Uncanny Avengers Nos. 6-11 and Uncanny Avengers No. 8AU (cover dates June- October, 2013)
Writers: Rick Remender with Gerry Dugan (co-writer Uncanny Avengers No. 8AU)
Artists: Daniel Acuna and Adam Kubert (Uncanny Avengers No. 8AU)
Colorist: Daniel Acuna and Frank Martin, Jr. (Uncanny Avengers No. 8AU)
On paper, this sounds like it should be a fantastic read. The Avengers Unity Squad, consisting of team leader Havok, Captain America, Thor, Wolverine, Wasp, Rogue, Sunfire, Wonder Man, and the Scarlet Witch are trying to save all future timelines from The Apocalypse Twins, Eimin and Uriel. Kang the Conqueror has been grooming them to make mutants the dominant species for his future Earth, and we are at a crucial juncture in the timeline, making now the time for them to strike.
Things get stupid when it is revealed that they are the children of the Angel. Not to be out-dumbed, we have a new version of the Four Horsemen of Apocalypse. The Banshee, the Sentry, the Grim Reaper, and Daken, Wolverine's son, all of whom have been brought back from the dead, and all being part of some brilliantly executed long term strategy to divide the “unity”. Cue the forthcoming over-hyped and overblown crossover. Yawn.
In Marvel's never ending attempt to make Wolverine the most unbelievable character this side of Superman, we see an 11th century version of him, Folkbern Logan, in the flashback set-up sequence in issue 6. No, I'm not making this up. I wish that I were. God how I wish that this nonsense was the work of Internet fan fiction, but no, this is canon. Also, why the push to mention that Thor and the Asgardians are not “Gods as they believe”? This has been mentioned in the movies and again here.
My opinion of Rick Remender's writing has been lowered thanks to this book. This caption about “ass grabbing” is one of several fanboy pandering moments in the book. This book is rated T+, so this is supposedly for more mature readers. I don't find dialogue like this to be mature, I find it to be sophomoric and embarrassing to read. This is made for the 30-40 year old basement dweller. The Wasp trying to hook up with Havok is also cheesy. Who thinks that this is good writing? I find myself shaking my head at this fratboy pandering crap.
Comics are supposedly all grown up now, right? Then why does Marvel still make cartoons and toys aimed at small children? It would be cool if I could share the main Marvel Universe Avengers with my son, but I can't. He knows that the all ages books aren't the “real” Avengers (his words). Marvel needs to make up their mind and decide if superheroes are really for all ages or if they are going to chase the middle aged readers' wallets down the drain with garbage like this.
I always enjoy the arguments that fans and creators make against anyone who expresses dissatisfaction with the current comic books. You're a dinosaur. You can't accept that the Marvel Universe has changed. Times have changed, and what worked before doesn't work now. So on and so forth. The problem with that argument being that if the foundation of these characters no longer works, then why are they still using it for the movies and cartoons? Flush it all down the toilet or honor it, but quit showing contempt for it.
Nick Fury is now black in the main Marvel Universe? When did this happen? I know that they used the Ultimate universe version in the films, but why does this have to be done in the main Marvel Universe comic books? Oh wait, I know...the typical response to criticism for changing a character's ethnicity is that I am “a racist”. Howsabout changing a character's ethnicity of 50 years is just stupid? No, it's easier to cry racism if fans don't agree with these nonsensical changes to characters. Why not just make Nick Fury a gay Hindu paraplegic woman? That would score oodles more PC points. Plus, to quote the folks who defend this nonsense: Who cares if it doesn't follow continuity so long as we get a good story. Exactly. Let's swap ethnicity and gender for characters all the time from now on, from one arc to the next, willy nilly. I mean, it doesn't matter so long as we get a good story, right? Idiots.
So we have Uncanny Avengers #8AU collected in this book. That's not a typo, the issue number is 8AU. Can Marvel just finally admit that they hate issue numbers? Their endless reboots and renumberings have rendered them useless anyways, and the recent .1, .NOW, and AU numberings have just made a mockery of it all. They should just go to cover dates for issue numbers, i.e. November, 2013 issue. Or better yet, why not reboot the numbering every month! Sure, every month could be a #1 issue. Imagine the sales spikes, month in and month out! Oops, I mean why do numberings matter so long as we get a good story, right? Again, respect the numbering or flush it all down the toilet. If a diehard fan cannot keep the numberings straight then what chance does the mythical mainstream new reader have?
I know that I am ready to quit modern Marvel Comics altogether. I scarcely recognize the characters in this book, and worse still, I hardly care for them anymore. This disregard for the foundations of these characters is off putting. I can still live for collected editions of vintage material (pre-90s) but I wish that the characters that I loved growing up still existed in some shape or form.
Junk Food For Thought rating: 2.75 out of 5.
The OCD zone- The free digital copy code is no longer on a stiff piece of cardboard glued into the book block. It is now behind a sticker which must be peeled off. While still annoying because it “ruins” the book, it is less annoying than the card.
DVD-style Extras included in this book: Uncanny Avengers #8 variant cover by Milo Manara
Paper rating: 4.25 out of 5. Decent weight glossy coated stock paper.
Binding rating: 4 out of 5. Glued binding. It lays pretty flat in one hand.
Hardback cover coating rating: 4.5 out of 5. The cover has the image printed directly on it, no dustjacket required. The coating is a somewhat odd feeling dull matte finish and is scuff resistant with reasonable handling.