If this is any indication this probably will become one of the best Avengers stories in years.
This series originally had a very bumpy start I mean really bumpy the shipping schedule was atrocious and ruined the flow of story to the point where I had to re-read the book to remember what had happened but overall the story was really good and a strong opener when read I one go but last issue was amazing and showed the series was back on track properly.
In the 11th century Thor is having a drink bragging about his strength when Apoclaypse attacks him behind after a fight Thor returns to Asgard to ask for his father’s help. Apocalypse returns to his ship and meets Rama-tut who reveals the other person who will ruin his future Folkbern Logan, Wolverine’s distant ancestor.
I vowed to cut down on 5 start ratings because I don’t think I should have given out so many but sorry this book was just too good this has all the makings of an Avengers classic. I was very happy that Thor is the focus and especially one of the Thor’s from Jason Aaron’s fantastic Thor run and I was really happy to see Rama Tut brought into this as he looks like the most intriguing villain in this series the way he’s manipulating everyone. What really got me excited for this was the fact that one of the plot points for this series (the Apocalypse twins) spins out of the truly fantastic Dark Angel saga but introducing new elements and characters into the story if this is any indication this will be a great Avengers story like the Dark Angel Saga was a great X-men story.
What I really liked is Remender’s choice to use Young Thor I loved seeing the difference between the Thor’s in Thor god of Thunder and I’m glad this was used here as it created continuity between the two series as Thor here is basically the same in characterisation as in his own book which I was pleased Remender did. The opening scene of this issue was excellent showing you what a ride you were in for as Apocalypse attacks Thor on literally the second page it shows you the ride you’re in for and the fight after is interesting if short but it helps to emphasise the difference in Thor’s character at this point in time but really this scene is set up to get the characters at war with each other but this was a great opener to the story.
Really what I was looking forward to was Apocalypse proper Apocalypse not the kid version we have now (which I really like)but this is the first time Remender has written a full issue with him in he has written him in cameos but never a full issue with him in and well it was great to see he’s a great villain in this and I’m pleased Remender chose him for this issue as it helps to link this more with the upcoming storyline even though this is 10 centuries in the past which was one of the best parts of this issue which is even though it’s several centuries in past it shows distinct links with the upcoming storyline so this made it feel like a prelude to the upcoming story while still being an excellent standalone story (it does stand pretty well on its own).
Minor point but I enjoyed seeing Asgard as it was in the 11th century I liked seeing the different designs of the characters and I liked seeing how it has involved it is only a minor point of the issue as it only appears for a few pages but I loved it and I loved especially seeing what Loki looked like at that point in time.
Probably the most interesting point is how Apocalypse when to kill Thor but the ancestor of Wolverine as well Folkbern Logan this was clever of Remender as it took a second to realise what had just happened this was a clever twist to the story and while I won’t spoil his involvement it is very interesting what happens and it is an intriguing plot point especially if this is going to be continued in the future. What I will say is the four Horsemen or rather a version of the four horsemen and this develops into a fantastic fight with Thor in which shows how headstrong he is at this point in his life also showing his brutality and strength.
Kang comes into the story in his own way and he is Spoiler behind all of this all along I love Kang I admit so to see him doing this just made this issue all the more worthwhile for me and the way this issue is left off you can obviously tell that Kang has it planned for the long game and that he is going to come into this series in a big way because he really in this is just acting from the shadows not properly showing what he is planning and I like it that way it adds tension to what he is doing and I can’t wait to see what he is doing when it is revealed. Yet the way the issue ends adds extreme tension and raises the stakes for what is to come as you can tell Thor has just done something really bad and what he has done will affect the future in a big way.
The art Acuna for most people you either love or hate him his style is so drastically different from almost every other comic artist and that sometimes throws some people off but I fall into the love category especially with this particular issue this is a vast improvement over the art of the past 4 (not the 5th I love Olivier Coipel so much) but for sheer effort put into the book this out shines all of the other artists because he pencils, inks and colours the book I know he’s always done this but on this it stands out more than his other works because he really seems to have stepped up his game because the colours stand out more the detail is better on the backgrounds than his other work (where it would seem a little fuzzy and unfocused) it just looks better all round in this and I especially like the detail on the four horsemen when they appear and I love the fire affects he uses in this book which actually look pretty realistic and so do the characters which all look alive and realistic which is great as in some books that detail is left out so that was really impressive.
Do I really have to tell you anymore how much I liked this? This was a clever prelude not set in the present just before the events unfold but actually raises the stakes by going back in time 1000 years to be precise giving you an idea of what is to come and what the villains have planned but also this was a thoroughly enjoyable story that stands fairly well on its own I am very happy Remender has decided to continue with the Dark Angel Saga and this looks to be a great follow up to it and I can’t wait for more and I’m really happy this that this now has a good monthly artist on it now as I was sorely disappointed with art on the first few.