Avengers Assemble #3 Review

 

Avengers Assemble #3In Avengers Assemble #3, the Avengers face off against the whole of the Zodiac!  They also find themselves in a surprise ending that feels awfully similar to their recent big screen adventure…  Spoilers ahead!

Avengers Assemble #3

The Zodiac has busted into the Helicarrier to square off against the Avengers.  What happens next is big fight as the two teams thrash each other.  Soon, the Hulk decides it’s time for answers, he takes off with Leo and attempts to beat answers out of him.  When Leo finally begs for mercy, his powers leave him and filter up toward the sky.  Iron Man discovers this version of the Zodiac’s powers are being filtered from someplace in space.  When the entire Zodiac’s powers are taken away, the Avengers look for answers, but gets them from an unexpected guest…  The puppet master of the new Zodiac, Thanos!

We all knew this team and this book was released to cash in on the Avengers movie.  For a long time, Marvel’s been doing everything it can to promote the Avengers in general.  Obviously after a gigantic opening weekend and a run that might put the screws to Warner Brothers’ Dark Knight Rises in terms of box office gross, it’s hard to argue that the plan hasn’t worked.  We all knew this book was a way to put these six characters together.  They looked to Avengers scribe Brian Michael Bendis and his longtime collaborator Mark Bagley to put the book together and sell a ton of comics.  That’s worked fairly well too.  I, for one, have very much enjoyed the higher levels of fun and adventure of this book that seemed to be absent since Bendis took over as the head Avenger guy.  This issue isn’t any different.  It’s a big ol’ fight book and shows each Avenger doing what he, or she, does best.  Sure, it’s a little chatty, as to be expected from Bendis, but it brings the fun the movie did.  Marvel gambled a bit that this Avengers book would be attractive to the movie going audience who wanted to get into some comics.

That’s yet to be seen, but I can definitely say this book would be a great series for kids who want to go get some Avengers comics the moment the movie’s credits roll (trust me, I saw it firsthand on Free Comic Book Day this past weekend).  The higher adventure is geared to the younger crowd.  It’s exactly the sort of thing I found so darn cool about comics when I was a kid.  It’s got the characters the audience just saw in the movie.  It’s got a much more fun and loose feel to it just like the movie.  It’s not as bogged down with years of stories, with added slant toward more “mature” readers who can follow the heftier storylines.  It’s just fun.  A lot of that should be credited to Bagley’s fantastic art.  This is a guy that if he wanted to do some more Avengers series down the line, I’d gladly role out the red carpet for him.

Where kids will thrill at this series, issue #3 may turn off some older readers.  It won’t take long for the older crowd to find how similar this book is to the action scenes of the movie, and how much it hopes to cash in on the final scene shown during the credits of the movie.  The main action of this issue takes place on the Helicarrier and it gets messed up pretty good by having high powered characters fighting on board.  Thanos’ appearance at the end as a string puller for the Zodiac mirrors his reveal during that last scene of the movie where he was shown to be pulling the Chitauri and Loki’s strings in his bid to conquer Earth.  Older readers may see this as a little more than simply pandering to give the movie’s audience more of the same of what they saw on the big screen.  So, to that, I would say buyer beware that this series is, and always has been, a transparent marketing ploy hoping to symbiotically exist to boost excitement for the movie and the movie’s success to boost this series.  So, yes, I’m saying, “Marvel Comics is actually selling a comic with the main intent to *gasp* MAKE MONEY!”

All that being said, the reader can either enjoy the more classic, adventure-heavy story or rail against it for schilling the movie and vice versa.  I have decided to enjoy the adventure since it does take me back to what made me love comics as a child in the first place.

A COMIC BOOK BLOG RATING

Pros Cons
Great Bagley art. Bendis delivers action, adventure, and fun – pretty much everything I believe a comic book should be. It does follow the ultimate feel and the action parts of the movie and some older readers will likely want to complain about that.
Rating
85%

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I'm a lifelong geek. I don't hide it. I don't deny it. My true geek love is comics. I love reading them and discussing them. I am definitely much more a Marvel guy than DC, especially when it comes to my favorite, The Avengers. Questions? Comments? Email me at geoff@acomicbookblog.com