I think one of the things I have been enjoying about this issue and the last one is that it is setting the foundation for this series by delving into the characters individually. In the last issue of the AVENGERS we saw the story of Hyperion, how he lost his planet and how he decided to come to Earth. This time around we get the story of Smasher: the only human Superguardian. We don't just get an interesting story in this issue, we also get a look at an interesting character. A character that is unlike any other. Izzy is interesting because she is so "ordinary." Hailing from the Mid-West, she left college and returned home to take care of her ailing Grandfather and to support her Dad. We see some of her character's back story unfold here as a sort of an accent to the overall story of her origin. It was great to see her as this dreamer, a girl who grew up looking to the stars and finally becoming this bigger and larger than her own life had been. It's poignant in the way it's written and laid out, which is what made this issue such a great read.
The art is absolutely breathtaking, then again, you can't expect any less from Adam Kubert. The panels on Chandilar are gorgeous and gives the scene a sort of "larger than life" feeling. It's beautifully done and the colors are vibrant and really reflect what is happening in the story really well. It's just a really pretty issue to look at which only makes reading easier. The series of panels where she obtains her suit are also really fantastic. I loved the way the suit begins to go through the upgrade process, the whole scene is just really aesthetically beautiful.
One of the things I found interesting was the moment that Izzy returned to her ordinary life to see her Father again. It's a bittersweet moment that really utilizes Kubert's talents as an artist. We get this great foundation for the relationship between Izzy and her Grandfather at the start of the issue, and it is nice to see her return after having experienced so much.
The story does jump around a lot, so if you don't pay attention to the signs indicating where and at what point in time many of these events occurred, you may get confused. Overall however, the order of things makes a lot of sense, so I personally did not find it too jarring.
Hickman has really been knocking it out of the park with both NEW AVENGERS and AVENGERS. Five issues in and it is really getting interesting. I love that we are being introduced to the members of the new team individually and I thought it was great to get a closer look at a character like Smasher who doesn't get very much panel time. It's well written and the dialogue is fun and easy to read. Izzy is a likeable character, too, which really helps a lot. Additionally, you have these absolutely breathtaking panels in this issue that will absolutely blow you away. I loved this comic and I am definitely looking forward to seeing what Hickman offers up next.