kerrigan's Avengers #7 - The Last White Event review

The Slow Avengers

Another pulse-pounding issue of Some Avengers Sit In Dimly Lit Rooms And Talk. And, oh joy, yet another half-baked origin story, and yet more portentous sci-fi background noise offered to create the illusion of Big Things Happening.

Many writers want to introduce their own characters. That’s fine. But if those characters remain only thumbnail sketches, and if their introduction consumes the entirety of a book, and relegates established members to the background or to invisibility, then it’s a problem.

A bigger problem still is Hickman’s pacing. We’re 7 books in, about 155 pages, and we’re still scene-setting. 155 pages gets you 80% of the way through the Dark Knight Returns, through or nearly through all the individual Sandman books, about halfway through V for Vendetta. In Hickman’s Avengers, the story has not yet begun, only been sketched out. This can work if the writing is of sufficient quality, and the characters hold your attention (Watchmen was somewhat similarly paced, although a lot more had happened by an equivalent stage). Hickman writes competent but rather flat dialogue, and the characters have little opportunity to actually interact with each other. This is what makes ensemble books work. It’s absence is fatal.

Avengers #7 is in many ways an exemplar of the problems with the series. A few Avengers talk. The half-drawn new characters offer vague and fairly silly warnings and explanations. What we can assume is another new DC-style ultra-powerful figure is introduced. Little conflict, little humor, little characterization, few Avengers, little fun.

Weaver’s art is fine. Hickman does not provide him many dramatic character scenes, but he does well with what opportunities he has.

This book is failing.

6 Comments
Posted by Danial79

I agree that Hickman uses vagueness to elicit intrigue, and technobabble in place of meaningful dialogue, but I don't agree about the pacing. Sure it is slower than your average comic, but sometimes I think it's nice to have a change of pace, whether that's a one-shot story or an epic as this is turning out to be.

For what it's worth, I only JUST learned today that Nightmask and Star Brand are NOT new creations. Who knew! :P

Posted by brewski420

Yea this series is failing. I'm actually about to drop this from my pull list

Posted by hugemonkeyman

I can understand why you do not like this title because you don't know the history of Marvel's "New Universe". Let me give you a quick introduction into an idea that was high concept but ultimately failed in it's execution.

In 1986, then Editor in Chief Jim Shooter wanted to create a new Marvel universe that had heroes and villains but it was grounded in the real world (no alien races, super science or gods) and included real world political events and people. Think Watchmen but with less memorable characters.

This lead the the launch of several books. Some good (Nightmask, D.P. 7, Star Brand, Justice), some okay (Psi-force, Spitfire and the Troubleshooters, Merc) and 1 down-right awful (Kickers, Inc). What all these books had in common was that there was a cataclysmic event recorded in 1986 called "The White Event": a flash of blinding white light that provided some with powers (mutants known as paranormals in this universe) and enhanced the skills of others.

The whole experiment lasted over a year but wasn't very popular with readers which lead to the cancellation of most of the books and wrapping up the remaining stories in one-shot books like The Pitt - a cool story of how the owner of the Star Brand transferred his power to an inanimate object causing a nuclear explosion wiping out the whole state of Pittsburgh. The site of the devastation would be renamed "The Pitt" and a limited series called The War - a story of American paranormals that are trained to assassinate enemies of the United States but don't realize that the enemies of America also have special powers due to the White Event.

This could be an inside joke to Johnathan Hickman - Marvel is relaunching their entire universe with Marvel Now! so let's take that to the Nth degree and relaunch all of Marvel's past characters like the Squadron Supreme and the whole New Universe. Whatever it is, I think it is brilliant and look forward to Mr. Hickman's upcoming story line.

Posted by Timandm

This review is a fine description of the issue...  Well said...

Posted by CrimsonAlchemist

Couldn't agree more with this review.

Posted by That60sGuy

My thoughts exactly on this issue. Such a drab, boring book. I wish I hadn't purchased (same for #4 too). Hickman can continue his experiment but I won't be following.

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