Avengers Vs. X-Men is here. And what better way to handle this than to have our resident Avengers fan (Geoff Arbuckle) and our resident X-Men fan (Victor Kutsenok) come together in a place of neutrality to talk about their favorite teams coming to blows over a cosmic power coming to Earth. Now, Round 8, also known as Avengers Vs X-Men #8!
Avengers Vs X-Men #8
Geoff: Whoa boy, Victor… Avengers Vs. X-Men #8 brings war to Wakanda! Namor goes ape spit and drowns the African country. I guess we can’t say we didn’t see that coming. Namor has always been a loose cannon when it comes to his temper and how he felt others should recognize his authority. But to essentially destroy a nation? That doesn’t sound like “Utopia” to me…
Victor: No it does not. I will not defend Namor’s actions in any way, shape or form. Even saying “this is war” and Wakanda’s citizens were casualties of war is not a fair statement. Basically, what happened here was what I fully expected to happen. The Phoenix took over Namor’s emotions and finally made his rage and sense of monarchical superiority drive his actions. It didn’t help that Emma pushed him into action last issue, which also shows the Phoenix effect start to work on her as well. We knew this was coming. What was surprising was the after battle situation. Now that was both surprising and unexpected. Speaking of battle, now this was one awesome one.
Geoff: Oh yeah. I LOVED the two page spread of the Avengers coming down on Namor. That was a pretty iconic scene for the series. Then follow that with each one taking their shot at Namor and, for the most part, he just takes it. This issue is one of the more effective ones in the whole series to date as well. You could actually feel the action. I really have to give it to Brian Michael Bendis and Adam Kubert for putting together one hell of an issue.
Victor: The action was extremely well drawn. Kubert really is a master of action. He really is my favorite of the three artists to do this series to date. What Namor does to Rulk was incredible and you could actually see the pain and shock clearly on his face. I also really loved the opening splash. Namor raining hell down on Wakanda is just stunning. I really wish Kubert could have drawn the entire series.
I also definitely agree that this issue has a much more realistic feel to it than the last few. Something about the mood being set by Bendis and the way the battle plays out. You can feel the Avenger’s struggle and desperation as they battle with everything they have against an overpowering opponent.
So what do you think of the surprise twist when Namor fell? Also, I was completely blown away by Xavier’s words. If Scott’s surrogate father is now against him, how will Scott react?
Geoff: I wondered what would happen if they could actually defeat one of the Phoenix Five. I didn’t quite expect the Phoenix Force to go back to the others though. That only tells me that these last four issues are just going to see each of the remaining Phoenixes continue to get stronger and stronger until BOOM! Marvel NOW! It’s definitely foreboding that’s for sure.
I was about ready for Xavier to step in. His words have to mean something to Scott and if he starts feeling remorse or even anger at the way Xavier feels, I can’t help but to think it will start making him struggle with the Phoenix as well.
Victor: I like the Phoenix building into one host and it is a really “convenient” way to transition into Marvel NOW. Definitely a much better thought out and executed concept that freaking Flashpoint. Still, this makes me feel a bit confused as to why Hope is even necessary. Just have Wanda shatter reality again. Or does Bendis not want to repeat himself. (He still will if this “event” actually does lead into Marvel NOW)
Xavier joining the fight is a clear sign that the Phoenix is taking over. Scott, as the most noble of the five, will resist it the longest, but eventually he will fall too. Also, I’m now pretty sure Jean will not be returning. (Damn you Marvel NOW for your stupid teasing)
What I really found interesting and foreboding was Spider Man’s comments at the end. That, and the preview image to next issue. Spider-Man is the ultimate superhero to me. He is, without a doubt, the one hero that almost every other super hero secretly respects. I hope he has a wonderful last stand. The every man versus the gods. Such a great set up for an amazing issue. Hopefully Bendis does him justice.
Geoff: What’s even more foreboding is Cap’s reaction to Hope’s very legitimate question about the plan. Cap realizes the fight is getting harder. They are losing numbers. A nation was drowned. Things are getting harder and the odds are getting longer.
Victor: But at least they are in a place of relative safety. Though how safe they can be from the Phoenix is definitely questionable.
So any other thoughts before we go to our grading? Any predictions on who falls next? My guess is Emma or Magik. And if Magik falls, Colossus will go immediately after her.
Geoff: I think Emma and Scott will be the last two standing and I think they will be busier fighting each other than the Avengers. I definitely think you are right, the Rasputins are probably going to drop soon. At least that’s my prediction. How do you see the end shaking out?
Victor: Well, I see a valiant effort by Spider Man next issue where he falls in battle heroically while causing another member of the Phoenix Five to fall as well. Maybe in a last stand defending Hope.
I see the Phoenix corrupting Emma fully and having her turn on Scott in an attempt to gain his power as well. I see the power building in Scott until he finally breaks and is forced to unleash it against Hope who will be the last one standing against him. I see a guest appearance by Cable possibly bringing Scott back from the brink of destruction as Hope and Wanda channel the power of the Phoenix to reshape the Marvel Universe. But that’s just me.
So onto grading. This issue gets the X-Men stamp of approval at 100%. Incredible art. The best of the series so far. Amazing, gut wrenching, emotional story. Colossal action. Some cool plot twists and surprises and a great set-up for the end run of this incredible event. What do you think, Geoff?
Geoff: I have to agree with you 100%! This issue was fantastic. This has been a great event so far and it doesn’t seem like we are going to slow down. This just feels worthy of being called an event. Marvel’s definitely getting this right.
Victor: I agree. Hopefully they end it well too as that always seems to be Marvel’s downfall. In any case, I am really hyping up next issue in my own head. I hope I don’t disappoint myself. Til then, I bid you adieu.
Geoff: Good day, sir! See you next time around!
A COMIC BOOK BLOG RATING
|Well written, superbly drawn. Exciting and amps up the arc to prepare for the final four issues of the series.||None|