Comic Vine Review

26 Comments

Guardians of the Galaxy #2 Review

5

The Badoon assault London while King J-Son decides the fate of Earth. Oh, and Rocket Raccoon shoots aliens, too!

This review contains spoilers!

The Good

You know how sometimes Brian Michael Bendis crafts really average work with superhero teams and other times he creates something absolutely brilliant? Well, GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY isn't legendary like his early material with NEW AVENGERS (at least not yet), but it's still an incredibly solid and totally satisfying read.

Bendis has yet to really dive into the core of these characters (except for Peter Quill, of course), but he's still doing an able job giving new readers enough to get a decent grasp on the cast's unique personalities -- except for Gamora, she's really dull here. Long time fans, however, will probably feel like there's something to be desired with this aspect. Also, hate to break it to ya, but at the moment, it really seems like they're glossing over his death and just hoping you'll get with the program.

While this chapter juggles between an intergalactic conference and the battle in London, the highlight isn't the meeting between powerful forces or the lasers ripping the city apart. No, ultimately it is Rocket Raccoon and his lovable banter that stole my affection. I can't help but wonder how much of an influence Marvel Studios has over this title (don't be silly, we all know the movies impact the industry) and whether they've specifically asked Bendis to put a strong focus on making the space animal so darn lovable (merchandising, yo). Regardless, Bendis is quickly turning me into a fan of the little dude. Yes, Groot gets no love in this one, but that's because it's blatantly obviously he'll be the one to save the day in the near future or at least serve as a big factor. So, if you're one of the Groot fans upset by his lack of appearance, I say fret not because his time will surely come.

A few small issues aside, Bendis deserves credit for producing a sharp script. From the first page to the last, this is definitely a hugely entertaining sci-fi tale with tight pacing. There's nothing out of the ordinary here, it's just done really, really well. As for the art, there's a lot of people involved. Usually, that can make for a jarring experience, but that thankfully isn't the case here. There's an appropriately different style for the two drastically different set pieces (the meeting / battle in London) and the result feels organic instead of distracting. There's a praiseworthy splash page with a hologram, and, just like any CNN exec will tell you, we all love good looking holograms. My only tiny gripe with the art is Drax's face. Occasionally, he looks like he's smelling something absolutely fierce -- it's as if Galactus cut the cheese and he's forced to smell it.

The Bad

Like they even state in the issue, this isn't a good representation of Drax the Destroyer. The killing machine/powerhouse is really lackluster in the combat department, and seeing as he's my favorite character out of the entire batch, this was a tad disappointing -- especially after he barely had a role in the first issue. Clearly, there's something wrong with him -- be it physically or mentally -- so hopefully this will be expanded upon in the next issue. Additionally, I thought it was really odd Drax called out he "has a shot" when he was about to attack the ship (way to have great aim with a giant axe, buddy), yet later tells them not to talk to him while he's fighting. Nobody likes a jerk, Drax.

While Rocket Racoon was hilarious, I could have done without the final use of his catch phrase. The one prior to that was pure comedic gold. Adding it again immediately after really took away from the impact.

Finally, if their boots have jets, why'd Drax need Gamora's aid? I get he's tired and all, but why would using those boots require energy?

The Verdict

It doesn't take a genius to see the King has set everything up from the get-go and Grood will save the day since he's currently left behind, but I'd be a total liar if I said I wasn't pretty excited to pick up the next issue. I was never big on cosmic stories and honestly, I was skeptical because Bendis is on roughly a gazillion other titles, but GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY is some mighty amusing stuff.

26 Comments
Posted by Trevel8182

Very dissapointed in Bendis's take on the GOTG mythos.

Almost as dissapointed by the disrespect shown to Captain Britain and MI13.

Posted by k4tzm4n

Very dissapointed in Bendis's take on the GOTG mythos.

Almost as dissapointed by the disrespect shown to Captain Britain and MI13.

I contemplated addressing that, but instead I viewed Tony's remark as a sign of his snarky nature more than anything else. After all, we all know CB is quite a powerhouse and I'm sure Tony does, too. As for why they didn't actually show up... I honestly don't know, I guess we're supposed to assume they're occupied elsewhere -- just like we do whenever a major incident happens in New York and the dozens of nearby heroes don't appear.

Staff
Posted by Trevel8182

@k4tzm4n:Stark didn't seem clever, or sure of himself, which would have worked i think.
Perhaps instead of what was used something along the lines of "Yeah, there are UK heroes, but I'm here so why would we need em?"
Heck he even says he'd do anything to get it over quicker, so he really wants the GOG to think he's the only help they've got.
Actually it kinda makes sense in universe, look what happened during the Skrull invasion, Stark helped cause it during the illuminati attack on the skrulls, he knew it was coming but could do nothing to stop it, extremis got trashed so bad he needing to install the "retcon Punch!" (TM) CD ROM to fix himself, AND he accidently set up Norman Osborn to the top job.
Captain Britian saved the UK in 4 issues, with goddamn Excalibur to boot.

Posted by PeterCSM730

I don't understand how this is a perfect five stars given the amount of "bad" listed in the review but otherwise it's very helpfully written. I haven't been able to get into this series because the characters aren't interesting to me. They don't seem like their previous distinct selves but like entirely new and similar creations.

Posted by Cap10nate

I wasn't a big fan of RR's catch phrase. I thought it got real old real fast and the book could get quite annoying if They alternate that and I Am Groot every panel where there is a battle in the future.

Alao, the set up with the council looks just like it did in Maximum Security when the other aliens decide that humanity is too dangerous and try to figure out how to curb the human threat. Could have been a little more original than that.

Posted by SimonM7

I picked up the 0.1 and #1 of this, and the inclusion of Iron Man has put me off more than it has drawn me in. It doesn't help that everything has this Mass Effect flavour, either, because while I understand that it has legions of fans, I was really soured on the series even before 3 came along. It all seems to play a bit too much to what they reckon people already like, plugging Iron Man in like Batman/Wolverine to boost it, when he only really serves to cripple the sense of unexplored territory. I guess it's just not half as "cosmic" as I was hoping, and as a virgin to those aspects of the Marvel universe it has severely under-delivered for me. I may check back in if it proves to get going, but I really think Iron Man is tethering it in a way that I'll continue to find it disappointingly familiar.

Posted by Kerrigan

Thus far, this is big, loud, not-too-bright fun.

Which is fine.

Posted by akbogert

At this point I am trying to decide whether to read this or stick with Nova (my wallet won't support both).

And honestly I haven't really been convinced that this would be the better choice, since I'm enjoying Nova.

Anyone reading and liking both who can give a better perspective on that?

Posted by Danial79

I'm not really digging this series as much as I did the old one, but I'm still willing to give it a few more issues. I agree that Rocket's "catch phrase" was funny at first, but got old fairly quick and overstayed its welcome.

@akbogert said:

Anyone reading and liking both who can give a better perspective on that?

I'm reading both and I personally think Nova is the better of the two, so I'd say stick with it.

Edited by tigerkaya

My advice to Bendis, stick to street level heroes and X-men. Your talents are wasted on everything else in Marvel.

Edited by JamDamage

I hate cosimc books but I love Bendis so I jumped on with 1.0 and I'm ever so glad I did. I want to see if I can read a few more issues and know whats going, but right now I'm just a little lost. What ever. I'm here to stay. So far Bendis is being Bendis and that is being my favorite writer. Well....him and Remender. Bendis is killing it with multiple books right now tho. His X-Men books (2), Ult. Spider-Man, and this. I'm a happpy Marvel fan right now.

Posted by blackcobalt

The only thing that I have to say is that I despise Starlord's current costume. I say bring back the uniform and the mask.

Edited by tigerkaya
Posted by Baberaham_Lincoln

Bendis' take on GotG feels very... cliched =/. The conflicted leader, Badass weapons dude (RR), Emo/Jerk h2h fighter (he used to be cool as hell >=O), Rebellious "take no shit from no one" girl, and a DUHHDOIII brute (i know Groot's actually a genius)... I can't agree more on the Drax point... i know it's still early days, so hopefully Bendis can fully flesh out Drax down the line, and i'm missing Star-Lord's old mask and helmet.

Also get Iron Man out of there, they could've put in Moondragon or my fav character from the old gotg, that was ADAM WARLOCK... damn even Cosmo would've been better

Posted by millennium

@cap10nate: every time he said it it just reminded me of the sniper from team fortress 2 saying boom head shot and i still find it funny that Jeff Bridges is star lords dad in the book

Posted by tigerkaya

@cap10nate said:

Also, the set up with the council looks just like it did in Maximum Security when the other aliens decide that humanity is too dangerous and try to figure out how to curb the human threat. Could have been a little more original than that.

I found it odd that The Council would let Annhilus into the group with him being from the Negative Zone and the fact they'd let him in after trying to commit genocide on a galactic scale to the point of using Galactus as a bomb to wipe out both universes' or the fact the invited the Brood a seat the, being equivalent to a xenomorph. Seems more like this Council is just more written as a "Most Popular alien race.

Posted by The Mast

Guys, Star-Lord doesn't have a helmet because a good-looking movie star is going to play him in a movie next year.

Because when it comes to this, Marvel would rather change the comics to appeal to movie fans who don't read comics. Because to Hell what WE think.

I loved #1, but I agree with sentiments echoed above. You don't start a cosmic series and spend the opening story on Earth.

Edited by Night Thrasher

@akbogert said:

At this point I am trying to decide whether to read this or stick with Nova (my wallet won't support both).

And honestly I haven't really been convinced that this would be the better choice, since I'm enjoying Nova.

Anyone reading and liking both who can give a better perspective on that?

I'd stick with Nova. Although Loeb isn't my favorite writer his Nova is pretty good and it's a whole new character so the way he's writing it doesn't spit in the face of the outstanding Nova ongoing before. To me Bendis should just rename his title Space Avengers because this team doesn't act or feel like the Guardians of the Galaxy. I'd say pull Nova, read the DnA trades of Vol 2 GotG and wait for Bendis' run to finish and get it of comixology or in trades

Online
Posted by akbogert

@danial79: @night_thrasher: Thanks for the input. I don't really understand the time differences between Nova and Guardians -- are they concurrent? Is this a prequel? Does Gamora just change outfits between books arbitrarily? -- but at this point I have gotten the sense that as an introduction to Marvel Cosmic, Nova is slightly less sacrilegious.

And thanks for the heads-up as to future Guardian pursuits. I do hope this book moves in a direction that fans are able to stomach, especially considering this is inevitably the way the movie will go and thus the way the whole corner of the Marvel U will be heading.

Posted by Extremis

Is this titled GOTG #3 out of mistake or just to spite ish 0.1?

Edited by akbogert

@extremis: I asked earlier. Seems to have been an unintentional, but unchangeable, error.

Edited by The_Hat

I really, really want to like this new take, but I really, really don't. This isn't the GotG that I know and love. This is some Iron Man book set on Earth. I'm still waiting for Bendis to give any of the Guardians a personality. It goes to show how much faith you have in your characters when you feel you need Iron Man to carry the book, pretty much re-imagine Peter & incapacitate Groot before the end of issue 1. And "Blam! Murdered you!" is not a cute catchphrase. It's quite disturbing actually. DnA's GotG was a cool, funny book, allowed to do its own thing in its little corner of the Marvel Universe. It was rebellious & a bit rock & roll. I thought that was the version i was going to see on the big screen. This is bland & forgettable, written by a writer with one eye on Hollywood. It breaks my heart that I may drop this...

Posted by WhatJ

5 Stars thats a joke really this is just bad.. I really have only this to say has to what Bedis has done to Guardians of the Galaxy ...

BLAM MURDERED YOU.......

Posted by Killemall

Guardian of the Galaxy 03 is already out =(

Why is Australia so slow, we have only got GOTG 02 thus far....

Posted by akbogert

@killemall: Note that right under where it says #3, it says #2. You're not behind. The title just has an (unfixable) typo, but the review is about the issue you have.

Posted by Killemall

@akbogert: Oh i am not behind, hurray :)

But i am normally behind by few days, not sure why it arrives a little late on Australia.