Brandon Borzelli’s Geek Goggle Reviews
Avengers Vs X-Men #2
Aaron, Romita, Hanna & Martin
The fight is on between the Avengers and the X-Men. I found this issue to be very polarizing as I liked it from a straight-up fun comic book perspective. On the other hand I disliked so many individual elements, such as the lack of explanation or the characterization of certain characters. Even the artwork had its ups and downs to the extreme. Essentially if you like a brawl with not a lot of substance then you have it here. If you want everything to line up then you will be disappointed as it appears this book is shooting for the lowest common denominator to appeal to the widest possible audience.
The X-Men, led by Cyclops, fire the first shot at the Avengers (this occurred in the previous issue) but then think it over and fire off the second shot as well and then all hell breaks loose. The book actually isn’t simply wall to wall fighting. For example, Red Hulk and Colossus appear in two panels together and don’t appear to move at all. While Cyclops is at the center of everything and appears to be everywhere.
Some of the elements I liked were how Cyclops calls out the Avengers for taking instructions from Wolverine, the “lunatic fringe”. I liked how Cyclops had a strategy for almost every situation. I also liked how Aaron narrates the book with captions that give off the character’s powers and their relationships that are being damaged.
On the other hand I found little things to really annoy me. For instance, why would Emma’s first job be to protect Hope instead of crushing the psychic defenses of the Avengers? How many other X-Men can protect or flee with Hope? Cyclops barely convinces anyone among the brain trust that he is doing the right thing so how is it that the X-Men go all in? Are we really to believe that Wolverine would kill Hope? Honestly? After his whole deal with leaving the X-Men was to protect the kids. This may all play out in issues to come but they were eye-rolling elements in this one.
I love Romita’s pencils. However, in this issue the art doesn’t come together at all. There some panels with stunning details and others that barely reach sketch status. There is one panel with Wolverine’s jaw dropping open that I actually laughed at which is not good nor is it something I want to do with anyone’s work. If this is the big event for Marvel then wouldn’t you have absolutely perfect art? I found this issue to fall way short of that.
I think this event is off to a decent start. If this were an else-worlds story it would be awesome. However, this is in-continuity and therefore you need to play the characterizations straight and that was not done here. The fight has not been “sold” to me. I plan to stick with this for now though as I did actually enjoy reading the “fun” aspect of this comic.
3 out of 5 Geek Goggles