Friday, March 6, 2009

New Avengers #50

I had heard so much bad press about this one that I didn't have high hopes. In addition, my store got a damaged copy of NA #50, so I ended up getting it for free (there is a fold on one corner of the book). Due to those factors, I didn't think was so bad. There is some dialogue lifted straight out of Dark Avengers #1, but I've come to expect that in the Bendis verse. One neat detail pops up again when Ares lingers for a moment after Norman Osborn decides to leave the New Avengers to the Hood's gang, implying that maybe our God of War has some second thoughts about his allegiance? I'm not sure. The New Avengers' takes on the Dark Avengers kind of made me laugh, since the internet fanboys have been saying the New Avengers are fakes for years, so now the shoe is on the other foot Wolverine, Echo, and Spidey! :) I thought the splash pages by various artists were nice, and the best was of course Steve McNiven's Spidey page. Bendis really made it work too, with Spidey wondering why he chose this incarnation of the Avengers to join, pretty funny stuff. The book closes with Clint Barton going on the news to call out the Dark Avengers and Osborn. I like how quickly we're getting to this confrontational point, but how the heck will the Dark Avengers remain a working concept for a comic if they face off against the New Avengers anytime soon. And now that the NA know about the DA, I can't imagine they can stall the fight too long.

One other note, in typical Bendis fashion, the Hood's army of goons actually beat the Avengers and force them to retreat, continiuing the awesome New Avenger track record. BTW, I'm not giving the NA any credit for Secret Invasion either, since Thor and Osborn were more responsible than anyone else for ending it.

Billy Tan's photocopied panels were pretty blatant, I'm surprised a professional can do that and still get work.


1 comment:

Newmie Newmz said...

I really liked the last two issues of NA and I'm loving the Dark Reign concept itself.

However, the one thing I find missing (and I mean missing like biting into a ham and swiss on rye and finding there is neither ham nor swiss... and only one slice of bread... and it's wheat) from Dark Reign is why Spider-man -despite his history with Venom, Gargan, and especially Osborn- isn't more outwardly offended by his antagonists' newfound authority and postions of power.

Other than a few animated exclamations of disbelief we haven't seen any genuine outrage from Spidey. Honestly if I expected anyone in the Marvel Universe to feel and display outrage over Osborn's new order it would be Spider-man.

I know Spider-man is supposed to be the fun hero, but I also know that Peter Parker has the depth of character to feel violated by the misrepresentation of Spider-man by Venom/Gargan (and all the future devastation that misrepresentation will no doubt wreak upon so many lives).

If Parker feels any indignity and anxiety over Venom's portrayal as Spider-man then those feelings must pale in comparison to his feelings for Osborn now. How can Peter of all people not find it overwhelmingly offensive to see Osborn portrayed as a savior of anyone let alone the saviour of every living thing on the planet?

Taking all this into account I ask, who has more personal motivation to take on Osborn and his cabal more than Peter Parker, Spider-man?

I can't think of anyone.

So, why is he just sitting on the sidelines?

I get that Hawkeye is angry about the villains taking the Avengers' name and identities. It makes sense that he is leading the New Avengers' charge against the Dark Avengers. But why isn't Spider-man taking point on the charge against Osborn?

I'm not suggesting Spider-man lead the New Avengers during Dark Reign. Nor am I suggesting I want to see a darker, edgier, or more serious Spider-man.

I would like to see Spidey emote more outrage and indignity over this injustice. I'd also like to see him show some initiative and be an instrumental key player in efforts to confront, expose, and take down Osborn rather than just follow Cage and Hawkeye like a groupie.

Then again it is still early in the Dark Reign. So perhaps Spidey is just in shock and as it wears off we'll see him become the capable, motivated hero we know he is. Then we can see him shine as he takes on his greatest foe.

At this point, however, this character is being wasted when he should have a much larger role.