- Posted by Johanna on October 15, 2010 at 10:12 pm
- Category: Shopping Guide
I hadn’t expected Avengers Academy to outlast Young Allies (canceled at issue #6, so ignore that #7 solicit), but I suppose it shouldn’t be a surprise — brand name matters, and YA never quite came together the way it should. I’ve always had a soft spot for teen superhero books, and this one, with known adult mentors, is entertaining. In issue #7 (OCT10 0574, $2.99, December 1), Giant Man returns. I didn’t even know he was gone.
I suppose that’s explained by Ant-Man & Wasp, although I can’t get used to Wasp not being a girl. I just think “couple” when I hear those names together. Hmmm, that would be a timely twist, wouldn’t it? Two guy shrinking heroes teaming up in more ways than one?
I used to like reading Hercules, mostly for the relationship between him and Amadeus Cho, but who wants to read almost 20 tie-in comics over four months at $4 a pop? That’s another one off the list through publisher greed. I don’t care about all the deities of the Marvel universe mouthing off at each other in some kind of “Chaos War” — I get plenty of that on the internet. Plus, the dead Avengers (in a comic called, creatively, Dead Avengers) and X-Men start returning, which makes me think Marvel’s ripping off DC’s Blackest Night.
There are also too many Hulks and Iron Mans and Thors. If you love a character, the presumption is that you’ll love having even more of them — but when the series all have throwaway premises and different creative teams, it’s not a consistent experience, just a drain on the wallet. My new rule is to only seriously consider books and characters with fewer than three versions. I want something I can evaluate — and hopefully enjoy — on its own merits. (That policy also makes it much quicker to get through the superhero sections of Previews.)
I haven’t heard anyone say anything about One Month to Live, the weekly miniseries that just wrapped up, about a regular guy who gets superpowers that come with a 30-day lifespan. No discussion usually means that a story was crap, or at best, forgettable. Yet here it is with a $20 hardcover (for five issues). This is exhibit A for the idea that maybe everything doesn’t need to be collected. Maybe a publisher should only reprint works they want to keep in print, stories that people will still want to be reading four or five years from now, not shelf-filler.
Conversely, I’m really surprised it took them 12 years to start collecting Kurt Busiek and George Pérez’s Avengers run in Avengers Assemble (OCT10 0700, $34.99, December 8). That was considered some of the best superhero comics of that era at the time. Of course, back then, they weren’t “writing for the trade”, and it can be difficult to find good break points for stories, which might be why this is such a chunky book, reprinting 11 issues, an annual, and three stories from other titles.