New Avengers #15
Writer: Jonathan Hickman
Artist: Simone Bianchi
Disagreements are big part of geekdom. Which Enterprise Captain was the best? Who is the best Doctor? Marvel vs. DC? Batman vs. Superman? These disagreements are almost as important as the things disagreed on. Since Outright Geekery is all about adhering to the awesome, arrogance of arguing an attitude, when we see something we disagree with we should, nay, are obligated to speak up in outrage. This is a Re-Review!
Last week we got a review for New Avengers #15 from Outright Geekery’s resident Marvel Zombie, and it seemed to me that the House of Ideas undead purification may have glazed his eyes and twisted his senses a bit. There may have been a few redeeming moments in Jonathan Hickman and Simone Bianchi’s next chapter in an ongoing science experiment, but not nearly enough to save the book from being quite forgettable.
Hickman has spun a tale of the infinite multiverse that has allowed for some truly fun looks into alternate versions of characters. This issue open on one of those alternate Illuminati talking about Reed Richard’s miracle machine. You know, the one that first allowed Reed to enter a pocket universe in Hickman’s Fantastic Four run, and then was used by the Illuminati to watch other universes like Cinemax? Well, it can now look into the past of these other universes, like Cinemax on DVR. The science was explained very nicely, and that aspect of the title overall has been great, but, alas, is the only redeeming element of this issue.
Where to begin? Bianchi’s art may not be my cup o’ tea, but it’s not just taste that ruins this artwork. Some panels seem rushed, while others are full of finer details, and, although I completely understand how artists can draw Beast differently from book to book, Bianchi draws the Beast, and many of the other characters, differently from panel to panel in this ish. The inconsistency is terrible. Hickman’s writing is good, and he’s definitely building on an epic landscape that is sure to be great once the bigger picture is made more apparent, but New Avengers #15 trudges through a mire of boring that leaves the reader wanting. Half of the issue is spent explaining how a piece of science works, with Reed and Beast teaching Tony (which is only believable due to this being an alternate universe, but feels equally worthless to the 616 version of the Illuminati we actually care about), then the issue goes into using that newly discovered science to give readers some background on the character Black Swan, which only reinforces that she’s a total bitch, something readers pretty much already knew, and the issue ends with the reveal that Terrax has been giving Black Swan advice, which, again, we already pretty much knew, with that “advice” being to do absolutely nothing instead of taking any action at all. I get that Black Swan did stuff in other universes, I get that she was maybe planning on doing something in the 616 universe, but this issue did nothing to make that entire aspect of the character more attractive as a bigger part of the epic Hickman is telling, and does more to ruin this single issue of a comic.
I get what this issue is; it’s a filler issue that’s building to something more; and that’s quite fine and good, if I was going to read New Avengers in trade. But I’m not, I’m reading them in single issues, and I want every issue to be good on its own, not just fertilizer on a garden that will bloom in the future. I have no doubt that what was being presented in this issue will be important down the road, and that will lead to an entertaining experience then, but this won’t be one of the issues in this epoch that will be looked at as entertaining all on its own.
Writing: 3 Out of 5
Art: 2 Out of 5
Overall: 2.5 Out of 5