So I present to you ten things I liked in Avengers vs. X-Men:
10. Random civilian reaches breaking point
Someone like this should be in the background of every major superhero battle.
9. Wanda's dream journal
8. Colossus creates whales with legs
7. The most expensive punch in history
Emma is actually one of the most reasonable characters in AvX until she becomes a phoenix host (and even then she's aware of her own descent, unlike the other hosts). I like the caption in the top panel, and I like how Magneto is reflected in Tony's armor in the third panel, but the second panel illustrates one of my biggest frustrations with the initial clash between the Avengers and X-Men.
The Avengers keep claiming they are there to help Hope, but they never lay out how they're planning on helping her. Look, as a Marvel fan I'm used to heroes initially punching each other before figuring out that they're on the same side. It's a classic cliche. But in AvX everyone just digs their heels in and stands their idiotic ground. The Avengers' strategy to bring Hope back with them sucked.
Speaking of Magneto, I should note that outside of the 12 core AvX issues there was a series called AvX: Versus which as far as I could tell were expanded fight scenes from the core book. I only bought one, which featured the fight between Tony Stark and Magneto, and although I enjoyed the art and the imaginative fight, it was enough to convince me I didn't need to buy the other issues.
6. The Beast politely disagrees
I think, editorally, the Avengers and the X-Men are supposed to come off as equally justified, but it's hard not to see the Avengers as being on the "right" side when it turns out they were right about the Phoenix hosts. All the same, I feel the X-Men are more sympathetic here, and the Avengers come off as vindictive. Instead of hunting the phoenix hosts and blatantly opposing them and their peace work, maybe they could have worked with them and monitored them that way? Then the Avengers could probably have maintained some of the peace-and-free-energy efforts even after the phoenix was destroyed.
Which is a long-winded way of saying, Bravo, Beast. Bravo.
5. Tony's suicidal plan angers T'Challa, surprises no one
Once again, Tony's plan to save his friends involves killing himself. T'Challa was around for Tony's Red Zone self-sacrifice, so he's used to it. That doesn't mean he's okay with it though; he actually slaps Tony in the next panel. I think this can be read two ways: either T'Chall likes Tony more than he lets on, or he's offended by Tony's lack of originality.
4. Charles's scarf matches Erik's helmet
I really like that scarf.
I actually like all the Charles/Erik scenes in Avx:
3. Wanda enters a room like a badass
The writers took their sweet time bringing Wanda into the story (this is issue...five? six?) but at least she gets to enter with swagger. At this point I was hoping she'd leave with Hope and turn her back on both the X-Men and the Avengers. Kind of like how I wanted Katniss and Rue to somehow survive the game without playing. But no, Wanda and Hope side with the Avengers, needlessly prolonging the story by several issues.
Wanda does look great, however!
2. The actual ending
Having Wanda and Hope join forces to wish away the Phoenix is nice. It neatly frames Wanda's return and provides something positive that she can do as a direct result of House of M. It ought to help her and the rest of the Avengers put Disassembled and House of M behind them. And I like the actual panel here--Wanda and Hope holding hands and having the ability to vanquish a powerful force.
That said, having this happen in issue 12 of a storyline is ridiculous. This was not a 12 issue story. It was at most a six issue story, and the twists and turns that filled up the twelve issues felt arbitrary by the time it ended. What was the point of training in K'un-L'un? Absorbing the dragon? Having the Phoenix split into five who then destroyed each other until one was left? Teaming up with Wolverine only to drop him into the Arctic? Having Tony use religious imagery to explain that he doesn't know what's going on (but it probably involves Hope and Wanda standing next to each other)? And how the hell did he come to that conclusion?
For that matter, having this be the climax of Hope's destiny as the savior of the mutant race is seriously anticlimactic, and I can only hope there's more for her to do.
I wish Hope actually got more than 5 minutes to be the Phoenix host, or, if the writers were dead set on Scott as the host, I wish the story explored his relationship with the Phoenix. I feel like he could have been an interesting antagonist, but no, he was boring.
1. Steve and Tony are BFFs
Seriously, Steve and Tony were constantly standing next to each other, leading presentations together, bickering and bantering, planning secret weapons together, and asking after each other. It was heartwarming, and by far my favorite aspect of AvX. They are once again true partners.
Honestly, they should do all their Power Point presentations together.
That last panel helpfully demonstrates how Tony can kiss Steve while keeping his helmet on.
I wish this sentiment got more exploration, considering the ways AvX mirrored Civil War.
I love the layout of this page--the way the figures of Cap and Tony stand independent of panels, and the way their body language is very different from each other.
Best of all, AvX ran that Komen ad where Tony has a cancer scare, which harmonyangel brilliantly described as bizarre and slashy, like one page of condensed hurt/comfort.
This entry was originally posted at http://garrideb.dreamwidth.org/32674.htm