Sunday, May 2, 2010

Eternals: Manifest Destiny TPB

What a colossal disapointment. The Knaufs had done a wonderful job picking up after Neil Gaiman's relaunch, so seeing everything peter out like this is really depressing. The first Eternals trade was filled with awesome re-imaginings and fascinating new personalities for some of the Eternals. Thena was a caring mother. Ajak was a schemer and not to be trusted. Phastos cared more about his mortal life than his Eternal one. It was a fantastic set up.

But I have to assume the Knaufs sort of gave up when the book was cancelled.

There is no resolution to Ajak's betrayal of Makkari. There is no explanation for new Eternals like Viralkin and Vampiro showing up. Sersi's fate is never explained. Heck, the whole point of the series was the Eternals facing off against the Horde, and that gets breezed over. We have to assume the Eternals won since the last issue takes place a hundred years in the future. What a mess. Why bother reading any of these if we were just going to assume the Dreaming Celestial took care of it? This is the worst conclusion I've seen since Unbreakable. I know the Knaufs can do better. Heck, there is one great idea in this trade. When Ikaris wants to take on Druig's faction without involving the rest of the polar Eternals, he drafts the X-Men. That's a fun idea and the Knaufs handle it well. Again, I've got to assume they weren't interested in speeding up their conclusion, so they just skipped it.

The art is inconsistent. Eric Nguyen draws most of the regular series material, and he's fine, although a huge step down from Daniel Acuna's visionary pencils in the first volume.

The Eternals annual is reprinted here too. Fred Van Lente and Pascal Alixe tell a perfectly acceptable filler type story, but when the riveting main plot is not going to get any resolution, I can't make myself care about pages that could have furthered the core storyline.


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