Comic Book Review: Avengers Vs. X-Men #1

Writer: Brian Michael Bendis

Artist: John Romita, Jr.

Publisher: Marvel Comics

Website: www.marvel.com

By Nolan Patrick Smith

(Victor Valley)–Every year, the big two comic publishers, Marvel and DC, seem to have an epic, mega crossover events that change their respective universes forever. Yes, every year a life changing event happens: DC’s Flashpoint brought about the new 52 era and Marvel’s Fear Itself brought down the realm of Asgard just to name some in recent memory. Yet, after a while, one has to wonder about this seemingly annual occurrence and the relevance it has in the long-range scope for the comic universes. This year, Marvel’s big event is simple; Avengers vs. X-Men-‘nuff said.

Story: So why are Earth’s Mightiest Heroes battling it out with the Children of the Atom? Is brainwashing involved? Shape shifting aliens? Clones? No, thankfully, the story is pretty simple. The Phoenix, the big firebird entity that possessed former X-Man Jean Grey, is headed back to Earth in all its destructive glory, and it’s looking for a host.  The Avengers see this as a threat of course, as the X-Men, mainly Cyclops, sees this as a way for mutantkind to rebound after all but around 200 mutants lost their powers during one of those massive, epic crossovers: House of M. This sets up the two titanic teams to go toe to toe, and don’t worry, you don’t have to wait until the end of the miniseries for some action.

Brian Michael Bendis, the mind behind the Ultimate Spider-Man and many Marvel events in the past, is the writer of this event, along a slew of writers that equal to some of the best and brightest in the business today. This issue cuts to the chase so to speak, with an X-Men and Avenger kicking off the physicality in grand fashion.  A very informative, balanced start, this issue has set a tone for the series that shows that this may in fact change the status quo of the Marvel Universe before it is all said and done.

Art: John Romita, Jr., who in my opinion is one of the best comic book artists to grace the four colored pages, provides the artwork for this kick-off of the series. Romita has worked on most of the iconic Marvel heroes in the past, so he is the perfect fit for this clash of the heroic titans. I have to admit, this is some of the best work I have seen from Romita, who brings to life the emotions raging through the regarded team captains, Captain America and Cyclops, with ease.

Overall: This is the first chapter in what is sure to be a high-octane miniseries and event. Looking back at the various events in the past, it is easy to be skeptical of this series. Yet, after a start like this, it seems like Avengers Vs. X-Men is ready to live up to all the hype, leaving the readers as the clear winners. Highly Recommended, I give Avengers Vs. X-Men #1 a perfect ***** out of 5.

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