Avengers: Prime #1
Writer: Brian Michael Bendis
Pencils: Alan Davis
Inks: Mark Farmer
Colors: Javier Rodriguez
In the wake of SIEGE, we get SIEGE: Aftermath, which kicks off with Avengers: Prime #1, a book which serves as the first time in years that Steve Rogers, Tony Stark and Thor have been side by side as Avengers.
Well…they’re not exactly side by side. Yet, at least. The book picks up almost immediately after the conclusion of Siege (with just enough time having passed for Steve to change clothes), with the group surveying the ruins of Asgard. Thor informs them that with Heimdall injured and the Rainbow Bridge destroyed, he doesn’t know what could happen to the power that ties Earth to Asgard now. Before the three can come up with a solution, the trio is sucked through to a far off land, where they are promptly seperated.
Avengers: Prime already starts off on the wrong foot by taking these characters and whisking them away to a strange land and almost immediately separating them. The story moves along very quickly, not giving us a lot of time to really gel with the characters. When we do see them, they’re arguing and at each other’s throats. Yeah, we know what these characters have been through, but they’ve always been civil with each other to some degree. The only one that seems to be in character is Thor. Not that we can tell. Before you really get a feel for how the characters interact with each other, you’re suddenly whisked away to a strange, fantasy land, where nothing makes sense. For the first issue of a mini, this starts off pretty muddled.
I’m also not sure I’m a fan of what is happening to Steve. I like him taking over Nick Fury’s job, yeah. And I like that he’s not immediately becoming Captain America again. But he’s a little too James Bond all of the sudden for my tastes, like he’s always got the proper gadget. And the black turtleneck/black pants/brown gloves ensemble he’s wearing here just isn’t cutting it for me.
I’m hoping that Avengers: Prime is able to pick up as it goes, as I was really excited about seeing these three characters together again. But, as Josh was pointing out to me while I was writing this review, these three characters are really weird when you put them together. It’s not at all like Superman and Batman, who share a mutual respect because they’re considered the best of their kind; these are radically different people who share ideals that benefit themselves, but often times directly conflict with the people they’re side by side with. Yes, they share a mutual respect and friendship, but at their core they really shouldn’t get along at all.
Hopefully, as Prime goes on, it will delve more into their relationships, and won’t just be a journey through a strange land in which the group arbitrarily accepts their differences before moving on with their life. But, for now, I’m not too terribly impressed.