Pick of the Week

Pick of the Week – 04.04.2012 – Avengers vs. X-Men #1

What did the
iFanboy
community think?

1202
Pulls
Avg Rating: 4.0
iFanboy Community Pick of the Week Percentage: 23.9%
 
Users who pulled this comic:
Story by Brian Michael Bendis
Art by John Romita Jr. & Scott Hanna
Colors by Laura Martin
Cover by Jim Cheung

Size: 0 pages
Price: 3.99

In comic books—specifically in Marvel and DC comic books—summer event season is akin to summer movie season. It’s the time for big, bombastic tales of adventure where heroes battle villains with the fate of the world at stake.

These days it’s popular to deride comic book events, and I’ve certainly done my fair share of complaining, because lately comic book events have, for the most part, felt stale and lacking. The cycle of events has been rote and the actual execution of the events has left something to be desired.

But there’s always that hope that the next event will recapture the magic and glory of those events from the past, those events that people still talk about and remember fondly.

Marvel Comics is probably saddled with the most event baggage right now. Ever since the financial bonanza six years ago that was Civil War, it’s been living in a rather stringent perpetual event cycle that has seen way more misses than hits. (Except for that one year when Marvel actually listened to fan complaints and didn’t have a major line wide event… and sales tanked. Go figure.)

Enter: Avengers vs. X-Men.

On the surface, Marvel’s latest event is a fairly obvious attempt to recapture the glory days of Civil War—it’s hero vs. hero all over again. But there are reasons why these kind of stories are so popular. It encourages tribalism by pitting fans against fans. 2006’s “I’m with Iron Man” is 2012’s “I’m with the X-Men.” It satisfies that primal need to see allies come to blows as they do in just about every young kid’s imagination when they gathered all of their action figures together and staged giant battles that inevitably lead to Wolverine fighting Spider-Man. And it allows that classic comic book store discussion—“Who would win in a fight?”—to play out, in an “official” capacity, on the page.

But all of that is irrelevant if the execution fails and if the story is lacking.

One issue in to Avengers vs. X-Men and what we have is a situation being set-up where the stakes are high, the conflict is compelling, and our lizard brains get stimulated when Cyclops blasts Captain America and suddenly there is no turning back the inevitable brouhaha.

Here’s what you need to know: The Avengers discover that The Phoenix Force—that uber-powerful bit of cosmic energy that once inhabited Jean Grey and that she gave her life to stop—is on its way back to Earth. What they don’t know is that it has already arrived and that it has taken up residence in Hope Summers, the so-called mutant messiah. Nevertheless, The Avengers suss out that Hope is probably the target of The Phoenix Force and so they show up at Utopia to take her into protective custody. The X-Men, who have become increasingly isolationist over the years, are having none of that. Cyclops and Captain America talk and then argue and then there’s an optic blast and suddenly it’s “Avengers Assemble!” and “To me, my X-Men!” and it’s on.

Again, like Civil War, the story breaks on a philosophical difference of opinion. In this case it’s a question of how best to protect the world from this incredibly dangerous sentient energy force. Each side thinks that they are best equipped to handle the threat and each side is full of enough hubris to let things come to blows. It’s an incredibly simple premise and that really works in Avengers vs. X-Men’s favor. The players, the stakes, and the threats are clear and all that’s left is to take those parameters and tell a big, fun, action-packed story.

Who better to tell that story than writers Jason Aaron, Brian Michael Bendis, Ed Brubaker, Jonathan Hickman, and Matt Fraction? Yes, some of them have grown long in the tooth on their particular books, and some of them have bungled events in the past, but taken as a whole these guys are responsible for some of the best comic books of the last 12 years. If you’re someone who follows creators then you have to have faith that these five guys can get together and pool their strengths to knock out a rollicking super hero story. There hasn’t been a gathering of writing talent like this since DC’s 52.

But unlike DC’s 52, Marvel has lined up top-shelf artistic talent for Avengers vs. X-Men and modern day legend John Romita Jr. absolutely knocks this issue out of the park. I’ve always been a big Romita fan but this is the best work I’ve seen out of him since the first run of Kick-Ass and as much as I’m looking forward to Olivier Coipel and Adam Kubert, when I finished this issue I found myself wishing that Romita would draw the whole series. Credit veteran Scott Hanna’s inking in helping Romita’s art achieve a clean, bold look. Romita’s style evokes such a classic superhero look and it just screams “Marvel!” on every page. It must be in the blood.

If you’re not a regular reader of Avengers comics or X-Men comics, you can jump on in, the water’s fine. Everything you need to know to enjoy the story is right there on the page. Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past ten years all of the major players should be pretty familiar to you through their various starring roles on the silver screen, and those characters that aren’t familiar are explained well enough that you pretty much have all the information you need to have fun.

Avengers vs. X-Men #1 is just the opening chapter in a 12 issue story (plus tie-in issues if you’re so inclined) so there’s a lot of time left for things to go wrong. But it’s a damn good opening chapter that sets the stage for what one hopes is a fun and action packed summer event. And I hope it is because these are the kind of stories that superhero comics can do better than anything else.

Conor Kilpatrick
The Avengers are going to wipe the floor with those stinkin’ mutants!
conor@ifanboy.com

Comments

  1. What did you think about the Nova digital story that came with it?

    • Didn’t read it.

    • that one in my opinion was better than the main story

    • Agreed. DC was the first to adopt digital but marvel has quickly pulled ahead of them in digital bang for your buck. those panel transitions and focus effects were awesome. my only complaint: dubstep

    • Totally agree, the Infinite story blew this one away for forward thinkingness.

    • Does AvX Infinte only come with the purchase of the digital copy? I’ve had no luck downloading it for free with the hard copy.

    • its at the end of the main story. gotta flip sll the way through

    • Weird. It only unlocked AvX #1. Oh well.

    • It’s also available separately for ¢.99 at comixology and marvel app.

    • Yeah the AvX: Infinite digital was amazing! I loved the shifting focus digital effects in it as well. I’m genuinely getting excited about these new digital series and what they can do with them.

    • The “Infinite” format was well-employed, and I will be in to buy more in the future. It wasn’t the most innovative thing on earth, but it is the first method a publisher created strictly for digitally-endemic purposes.

    • I personally loved the new Infinite format. I have been enjoying digit comics for a while now, but it has always felt a little odd/forced to read something created for paper in digital. Not horrible mind you, just slightly “off”. The Infinite format felt awesome! I especially liked how the panels background wouldn’t change sometimes and the action just moved through it. I’m very excited to read more!

    • Was the infinite comic a one-shot just to show what future ones would be like or is it a new digital series that marvel is doing. And @christopheduran I used the code at the end of the hard copy and got the infinite with the digital AvX #1

    • This opening chapter did nothing and told me nothing that wasn’t explained in the one sentence preview “It’s Coming.” Yeah it might be, but I’m going.

  2. “Get off my damn island” felt very Charlton Heston which is always a plus.

  3. Am I the only one who didn’t like the art? a lot of it just looked rushed to me. some of out was great though.so I guess I mostly found it inconsistent leaning towards not great.

  4. This was the first Avengers and/or X-men book I’ve bought since the 90’s… It was cool… I’m sticking with it. That says something.

  5. Yes yes yes

  6. No one draws action like Romita. A true successor to Kirby.

    • uhm..

      dude.

    • I’ve been thinking the same thing for a while. His style has gotten rougher and simpler over the years, but even better at conveying sheer energy and action. Not QUITE as intense as Jack but he’s about as close as it gets in the Marvel/DC realm. That’s not to say that it actually looks like Jack’s stuff…but spiritual successor? I’ll buy that

  7. This event looks like it’s off to a good start. Didn’t like the art as much as other people might, but that’s probably because I never really liked JRJR’s art in the first place but whatever. The story seems to be going on the right track, though. The only other problem I had with this book is that Cyclops is kind of a dick. Otherwise, it was pretty damn good.

  8. I bought this against my better judgement; I am an u abashed DC fan but grew up loving Marvel, only to feel cheated by the Marvel events past.

    Still, hard to deny the allure of a book like this.

    It was okay… But definitely not my pick of the week. Not when Swamp Thing and Animal Man were so good.

  9. I would have given it to AvX: Infinite. Very forward thinking book with beautiful art.

  10. I heard an add for this on ESPN radio which was unexpected and kinda cool. Not a big marvel fan but I might check it out then again I may not.

  11. (Sees Pick of the Week)

    (See’s AVX banners on the site)

    Ah….I see what you did there.

    Good review, but I read it in the shop and I could care less for it. Now if you want REAL fun go read OMAC #8 (which is also my POTW). It’s sadly the final issue of the series but god damn was it amazing. Didio and Giffen just does not care if the story makes any sense. But you don’t care if it makes sense when Giffen is drawing gorgeous pages along with Scott Koblish and HiFi.

    • Stop it.

    • i doubt its the case here but it is sad how many sites reviews are swayed by advertising.

    • People actually consume the creative endeavors of peole and don’t pay for it?

      Then go on the internet and spew an opinion?

      And people actually allow them to do it?

      ahhahahahha

    • IF AvX wanted to sponser my house, I’d give it a good review and put posters streetside.

    • I can also see what Conor ‘did’. He picked his favourite book and wrote a review of it.

      That’s it. Stop looking for conspiracies where there are none, TNC. It’s annoying.

    • Pretty sure that advertisement is on every comic site right now probably because Marvel wants to advertise it.

    • A few things. 1.) To be fair, this book was the community’s consensus pick of the week, too. 2.) A few weeks ago, someone (Josh? I think?) picked Peter Panzerfaust over Batman even though there was a Batman ad on the site at the time, AND Batman had like a 90%+ POTW from the community that week. 3.) I am also not a huge fan of advertising for things by a group that is supposed to be objectively reviewing those same things… but this site seems to be mostly for fun, not for hard hitting journalism regarding the comic book industry. And 4.) I think the phrase you should’ve used was probably “I COULDN’T care less for it.” For example, my interest in the book is about a 7 out of 10, so I could care less. You’re comment makes it sound like your interest is at about a 0, so you couldn’t care less.

    • I’m sorry but when I see it on like, CBR too it’s really annoying. Cause it’s tough to separate the review from the ad. That’s just me. I was just trying to make a little joke and clearly I made an ass of myself. Sorry it got people so bent out of shape.

    • @tnc: when i first pulled up the page my initial reaction was basically the same as yours, but after i’ve thought about it i’m willing to give conor the benefit of the doubt for a few reasons:
      1. this is exactly the sort of book that conor would like. no, i don’t know him personally, but based on the podcast and his previous potws, this is absolutely his sort of thing
      2. the ifanboy community generally agrees that this book should be the potw
      3. they have a good track record of telling us when crossovers are bad (see: fear itself)

      now, i haven’t read avx (i may pick it up this weekend now that i’ve read this review), so i don’t know if it’s great or terrible, but the more i think about, the more i think that this kind of thing is just how comics work. obviously marvel would want their ad to go up the week that avx kicks off, which is the same week that conor would choose it as potw (assuming he likes it a lot)

    • Soooo…. Blackest Night #1 didn’t get Josh’s POTW because DC didn’t pay up? No wonder that book didn’t sell.

    • It is little hard to think this book was picked over Winged Ultra Swamp Thing

    • I definitely see where you are coming from @TheNextChampion it is kind of hard not to think it when you see the banners.

  12. Really? Cyclops just blasting Cap that easily when they could’ve talked it out more? He should’ve just shot him with a real gun and end it quickly.

  13. I agree with the first set of comments–the digital /Infinite story to me was far more impressive than the regular story. The main story was hard to accept–after all the shared history it takes so little for the Avengers and the XMen to go at each other? How interesting are characters that are so obstinate? It seems a weak basis for 12 issues–any excuse to start a plot that can be mostly fights. And I’m afraid I saw the art as a bit off–esp the shots of Cap’s face on p. 4, panel 3; p. 5, panel 2; the last panel of the first page where Cap and Iron Man are briefing the White House, etc.. Small thing but for once I respectfully disagree with Conor. But given his enthusiasm I’ll stick with a couple of issues and hope I’m proven wrong and this will actually prove as interesting as one would hope with all that talent in play.

  14. great review, it definitely got me interested in a book i was not even slightly interested in buying before. but i do have to say, the recommendation is somewhat undercut by the giant avx banner on the front page of this site…

    • I’m just gonna post [Comment Retracted] and save time…

    • I’ve yet to meet anyone on staff here, but they seem to stick to their convictions. If they think a book is good/bad, regardless of the hooplah, they’ll say it.

    • yeah, i have no doubt that conor actually loves this book and he would not have made it the potw if he didn’t. it was just a kind of jarring thing to see when i pulled up the site.

    • I imagine that’s the bitch of running a free review website. Ad revenue is the one of the only things keeping you afloat, but the ads are gonna be from the same companies that you’re reviewing.

    • @CaseyJustice: It’s not really a bitch at all. Ad sales and editorial are quite easily separated.

    • @Conor could you tell every TV news outfit in America how to do that, please?

    • No-one ever mentions when the content doesn’t relate to the ads (which is a lot more often…)

      I’d say if iFanboy haven’t earned your trust with their credibility over the last few years, then maybe reading reviews isn’t for you.

      Cynicism is not equal to wisdom, no matter what the internet would have you believe.

    • If we haven’t earned your trust or respect by now, we’re just not going to.

    • I certainly didn’t mean to imply that they weren’t, merely that it can lead to assumptions from some individuals.

      Anyone who thinks that your reviews can be bought has never listened to the show.

    • I guess I can kinda [Comment Retracted] when [Comment Retracted] but [Comment Retracted]. Wait… what’s going [Comment Retracted]? Now you sto-[Comment Retracted]. Aghghe[Comment Retracted]!!

      [Comment Retracted].

    • Man, that is a very specific presentation of Turrets…

    • Haha, this was one of my many ‘countdown till deletion’ posts. I’m really surprised it’s still here. It’s so pointless you’d think they’d come sweep it up… sometimes they slip through the cracks though. Mwahahahahaa!!!

    • @Cooper: “Cynicism is not equal to wisdom, no matter what the internet would have you believe.”

      Put that on a bumper sticker and I’ll buy a dozen. 🙂

    • That was a shot at the integrity of TV news, for the record, not iFanboy.

    • The ifanboys have time and time again defended cynical moves on the part of the comics industry. “It’s just a business! Grow up and understand the reality of the situation!” they cry.

      ifanboy.com is a business, is it not? How can the guys plead that they will never sell out while also constantly telling us that is simply how the world is? What makes them immune to the same forces that considerably more influential people fall prey to?

      As someone who worked in online and print media for over a decade, I can tell you that editorial and advertising are never “separated”. There is always tension there. And when there is a clash, the people that make the money ALWAYS win.

      Marvel’s advertisers would have had a massive issue with the mere thought of dressing this whole site up like that and then having a DC book as Pick of the Week the week they launched their Biggest Event Ever.

      But maybe it was also Conor’s favourite comic.

    • It’s pretty simple … ifanboy earned the trust and respect of every Marvel and DC loving fan-boy-girl out there a long time ago. Do I believe Conor loved this book? Absolutely. I just never read this website expecting to see a non-big two POTW.

      But shame on Marvel for failing in the genuine creativity department.

      Then again, Civil War was fab and impossible to top.

    • It’s not even a question of whether you trust the ifanboys.

      It’s a question of whether you trust marvel ad buyers not to make demands of the editorial. And they totally would. An advertiser would not even consider doing a site takeover, plus sponsoring this week’s show, if there was ANY chance the book could receive a bad review. It would make the product a joke and undercut the spend. It would be a waste of money. Ergo: It. would. not. happen.

      As I understand it, the guys are not the owners of the site anymore? They have bosses? And if there were ultimatums made (which happens all the time – people threaten to pull not just this campaign but every subsequent one) and if the amount of money was significant, there would be nothing they could do about it. Regardless of how much they may have argued. Graphicly is not a charity and exists to make money – its actions cannot be construed as morally or ethically bad (I actually disagree with this point – but I’ve heard at least Josh passionately making the case that business is simply business on many occasions). So, you could assume Marvel would try to manipulate this. And then you’d have to assume that Graphicly would agree to it.

      There is no amount of trust you can “prove” in the past that makes you unquestionable for as long as you live. You have to keep earning it and keep proving it.

      Again, I’m not saying I necessarily think there is foul play here. Just explaining why “Advertising and editorial are separate” and “haven’t we earned your trust?” are not really convincing arguments to the latter.

      And so we’re transparent – yes, I’m bitter about the fact that I have faced the same pressures myself in the past. I have notched a score up or removed an offending sentence when an advertiser has demanded it. Quite a few times. I’ve argued, passionately, and I have lost, because unless you are willing to pack your desk up and quit, then you will lose every time.

      It’s a tough call. Should it have been omitted from the running for PotW simply so these accusations didn’t occur? No, that would be just as bad. So basically, they can’t win. if this was simply Conor’s favourite comic last week, then that’s just a damn unlucky position for his taste to have put him in.

  15. It seems like the review had a lot of “Like Civil War…” in it. I bought this book against my better judgement and thought Marvel was trying to rehash Civil War as well. I, however, don’t see this as a good thing. I’m not buying issue two because of that. My Pick of The Week was The Boys #65, which had a great twist to it. The Boys exists because of books like AvX and for that I am grateful. Thank you Garth Ennis for a great run.

  16. I havent decided on my POTW yet, but I do admit that this totally thrilled me deep down at the kid core that loved Secret Wars and who would spend hours studying the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe. I wasnt really Team Avengers or Team X-Men. As soon as Cap replied “Respecting you” to Cyclops’ inquiry as to where the Avengers where when they were in need , I just really wanted Cyclops to blast him hard. Game on ya damn filthy Avengers! (PS this doesnt mean I will be boycotting your movie come May 4th cuz I am totally seeing that)

  17. This week Marvel released a comic that will be remembered as a milestone for the medium for years to come:

    AvX: Nova #1

    • Man this spinoff sounds really good considering the comment’s I’ve seen.

      And Mark Waid/Stuart Immonen are the creative team? Wow….Why haven’t they worked on something before this?

    • The story wasn’t much – it was a very short piece. It’s the way it was done. This is what a DIGITAL comic should be, as opposed to a traditional comic converted to digital format. Crisp, bright colors, panels changing with button clicks, text boxes appearing and dissapearing, blur features, a whole gamut of effects. And none of it was superfluous or showy, it worked perfectly. I hope Marvel does more like this.

    • If you like the work on the Nova bit then you need to check out Power Play by Curt christiansen and Reilly brown. They use all that cool effects stuff and were a good few months ahead of Marvel. Unfortunately they can’t seem to get out more than 1 issue, but it is worth seeing.

    • I really liked Waid and Immonen’s Nova story and thought the Infinite techniques did make a unique experience, but I don’t agree that it’s a milestone work (outside the fact that it’s the first time Marvel has released something like this).

      There’s a lot of potential in the format, but this Nova book could just as easily have been a PowerPoint deck. I’d like to see a little more interactivity built into something like this. For example, when the Worldmind HUD shows up to deliver some info on the Avengers, it’d be cool to tap and read a dossier on the character, or at least something about the last time a Nova met Captain America. Or maybe we have to tap and hold Nova to keep him from veering off course and to keep the narration coming.

      I don’t know — I don’t want to read a video game, but I feel like there ought to be more to this than just pop up captions and rack focuses.

      In short, it was a solid introduction to an intriguing new format, but it lacked a little “Wow!” factor for me. Well worth the 99 cents though!

    • @ken–you TOTALLY nailed it by comparing it to a powerpoint deck. I was thinking the exact same thing, but couldn’t quite identify a comparison. I think this is a GREAT stepping stone to the next evolution of what a digital comic can be, but its not quite there yet. We’re in the bottom of the 2nd inning in this ballgame i think.

      The thing for me, is all the temporary negative space that is “waiting” for another element to come into view. As a reader i’m made aware of it, but the result is that you feel like its missing content, instead of using that screen effectively. From a User Experience POV, you don’t want to be made aware of a “staging area”. interactivity and hidden content can be revealed more effectively i think.

      Its a design challenge for sure. I don’t know if i want a fully interactive video game experience either. I’d like to hope that there will be a happy medium. I think this is more a design challenge than a technology/developer problem to solve. Are we ready to see “developer” added to the list of creators on a book?

      What i find the most interesting here is creators are starting to embrace a very old graphic design concept. You design your content around the constraints of the final output. A billboard calls for a different solution than brochure or a website. A digital comic should be more than just the settings you use to export from your print file….it needs to be designed for that space from the ground up.

      This has a lot of potential to do something new with the format and medium for the first time since my grandpa was a little kid. Thats exciting.

  18. Wow. Apparently comics like Swamp Thing, Animal Man, and the always excellent Chew were passed over for marvel fluff like AVX.
    Not to be a downer but the fact that anyone can say that this was the best comic out with a straight face bums me out in ways that can’t be described in an internet comment forum. I understand that the pick of the week is a matter of opinion and I respect that, really I do but if this is really a comic that is viewed as a better read than the comics I mentioned earlier, than clearly this site and I are on two different wavelengths.

    • And that’s what’s great about the internet! We can all share and discuss our varied opinions!

      Also, fairly sure the staff of this site are large fans of the very books you mentioned. Correct me if I’m wrong.

    • Sorry your favorite comic wasn’t picked. Maybe luck will be more in your favor next week when we play iFanboy PotW roulette.

    • Did you read it? Don’t call it fluff unless you actually read it.

    • They are not picking the best comic, just the comic they liked the best.

    • It’s interesting that you use those examples, because the overwhelming love that Animal Man and Swamp Thing get on this site make me think the site and I are different wavelengths as you put it. I like both books for the most part (much less so for Animal Man) so the raves that they get (they are the highest pulled books here, even higher that AvX) are lost on me. Different stokes and all that.

    • It was just confirmed on CNN. They projected that AvX is better than Swamp Thing, Animal Man, and Chew.

    • @wayne
      That’s amazing FOX news and CNN agree on the matter. Finally, it only took comics.

  19. I love all the love all the obscure and more literary titles like the above mentioned but am happy to see this issue get pick of the week, it was pure fun, with high stakes and still managed to be serious, and I gotta say I’m not a huge fan of Romita Jr art but his pencils looked much cleaner and tight in this issue. Marvel haters save your breath, the complaining was stale before you started typing. I love Locke and Key, Saga, Animal Man Swamp Thing and many not so mainstream titles but also love the Marvel U and if the pick of the week has to be an indie title every week than its just like the snobby academy awarding “artsy” films every year and never acknowledging many other great films do to genre stereotypes.

  20. Me reading this book: “Oh this is so unnecessary. This is so calculated, such cynical storytelling. This is so ridiculous. This is so… hm… this is so… huh… this is- this is actually exactly the kind of book that turned seven year-old me into a life-long comics fan.” Well done, Marvel.

  21. This issue just was lacking something for me. I’m glad people seem to be enjoying an event for once but I don’t think this is for me.

  22. This issue was AMAZING! I loved the Art and the AR thing was genius. I loved the page where you scan the cyke shooting cap and you see the original print and the one in the comic. I want that page!!

  23. Something about Cyclops attacking Cap has me excited to read this issue. Anyone else it wouldn’t have the same impact but attacking Cap is ballsy.

  24. Man, this book was a lot of fun. I am so excited for this event, my group of friends even created An A v X fantasy League where we drafted Avengers and X-Men, so i was very relieved to see this POTW.

  25. Waiting for the big fat HC if the event ends well like Civil War did without the lateness. I looked at the preview pages of issue zero & was tempted but I didn’t fall back into the event fatigue trap. Thanks for your review Conor & everyone’s comments.

    Matthew

  26. “You’re sounding like me now, Scott.” – Magneto

  27. Did anybody notice the double-page spread in issue 0 with the cop getting smashed by the cars…his proportion is totally off whack.

    • I loved Cho’s work, it was absolutely stunning, it really was. it’s just this one 2-page spread, it really bothered me so much, I just don’t get how he did that, it makes no sense to me.

  28. Glad to hear people were enjoying it. Also, I never even heard of this AvX Infinite thing that people seem to really be enjoying. I’ll have to investigate. Decided long before this came out that this wasn’t going to be for me. It’ll probably be fun but with how long it is and how down I’ve felt about Marvel stuff in general, I just wasn’t into it.

    My major concern with the series is that it ship twice a month over the space of 12 issues. That’s a llllloooonnnggg fight. I hope Marvel can keep up the pace and interest that it seems to be garnering with this opening volley.

  29. Great article, AvX #1 is definitely my POTW. The infinite comic was amazing as well, if each issue stays at 99 cents then I’m in for the long haul.

  30. Thanks for the review Conor, I’ll check out the first issue, see if I like it then judge if I stick to it or not. At least, you got my curiosity picked!

  31. I was completely in love with everything this comic offered story wise. When I caught on with the Marvel AR I was jump like a child in a toy store, excited to see what bonus content I could get on the next page. Sadly I felt the art was rushed and just came short of being better then average. In the bonus content It almost looked like it could have been the inkers fault but I don’t want to point fingers.

  32. Wow. Wasn’t expecting this to get the pick. Haven’t read it yet, but now I’m excited. Really excited for the infinite thing too given the comments. I’d pretty much wrote it off as some worthless extra crap I was going to pass over despite it’s freeness. I mean, I probably have to log into something or create an account or some bullshit. That’s a lot of work for a sloth like me… but now I think I’m going to have to check it out.

  33. I bought the hype and the book and when I finished it, it made me want to read more comics. Not more Marvel comics or superhero comics but comics in general.

    Not many comics can do that.

  34. Hated this issue. Romita’s art sucks everything looks like lego people, Cyclops is a dick and Bendis can’t write the Avengers.

  35. Things that worked about this issue:

    1) For once, the Avengers DID SOMETHING! The plane rescue at the beginning was a perfect way to show off the kind of power set we’re dealing with here. Everyone working to their individual strengths and abilities as a cohesive team.

    2) The art was cinematic in scope. The way the book opened silently, the big panel where the Helicarrier comes down. Even the coloring in the Avengers scene added to the effect.

    3) Everything you need to know is here. We see the danger, set up the conflict, and build anticipation for the next chapter.

    4) The creators have embraced the fact that this is a summer blockbuster type story. Much like Siege, things are moving fast here, action is big, we aren’t decompressing story, and the big-bad is as big-bad as it gets in the Marvel Universe.

    Now, this could go off the rails if the next 10 issues are all about the same thing, or if the side issues of the ongoing serieses don’t add significantly to the story. But so far, this looks awesome. It’s big, fun comics, and there’s room in the tent for this too.

  36. What are they singing on the front cover? It looks like they are battling it out through song!

  37. If you guys liked that AvX Infinite digital story and want to see more stuff like that, you should check out my comic Power Play https://comics.comixology.com/issue/15163/Power-Play-1 which the guys over at Marvel have cited as being one of their inspirations for how to do comics like this.

  38. I really enjoyed this, im surprised at all the love its getting since most of the reaction here and elsewhere has ranged from meh, to NOT AGAIN! since this was announced, either a lot of people changed their minds when they got it, or a lot of people who were excited for it weren’t posting online.

    I did also dig the Infinite comics story, still doesnt feel like digital has quite figured out what it wants to be yet. But its a great step and i love the execution. I cant wait to see this applied to a longer form story (i dont believe digital has to be small doses) that is a little meatier than nova is flying home to deliver a warning.

    2 questions though:

    1. now that more and more digital only comics are popping up, will i fanboy be treating them like the regular printed comics and make them eligible for pick of the week and the weekly discussion, or will you be treating them seperately like you do with trades and graphic novels which have their own thing with book of the month?

    2. what do people think of the augmented reality feature. It worked pretty well for me and was a lot of fun seeing the lightning on the cover and axel walk across the page. While i think the content itself was mostly cheesy pr stuff, the potential here for quality bonus content and even easter eggs and new storytelling tricks is pretty amazing. Im excited to see where this goes

  39. I was not going to read this series, but I trust Conor and I’ve always liked the IDEA of the X-men, if not the execution. It sounds like I need to give the “infinite” version some consideration. (Although, anything with the word infinite in the title sounds like false advertising.)

  40. It never ceases to amaze me how much people love to argue the pick of the week. It’s the most enjoyable book that Conor read this week. It’s the book he enjoyed the most. If I watch Pitch Black and Lost in Translation in the same day there is nothing wrong with saying I had more fun watching Pitch Black. Is it the better movie? No. But it was exciting and fun and just great whereas Lost in Translation is kind of depressing. I love this site but man, sometimes, you folks are the worst.

    Also, this comic was tons of fun. And the art was gorgeous.

    • I don’t know if it’s been done yet, but this seems like perfect fodder for one of Josh’s “What’s Wrong With You” articles – “Insulting the Pick of the Week.” It’s one thing to say a book isn’t your thing or to say “this was my pick and here’s why,” but to insinuate about the reasons for choosing a book, or to bash the chooser’s tastes, is rather crass.

      And if you tend to disagree frequently to the point where you find yourself insulting others, find another playground or build your own. The web’s got infinite space, just carve out a piece and start your own idea.

    • amen

    • totally agree. Always reminds me of that High Fidelity quote…”How can it be bullshit to state a preference?”

    • I use that line so much during my week that I should just scrawl it on my forehead

      “When did this become a fascist regime?”
      “As soon as you brought that bullshit tape in!”

    • I go by the following view on life and it explains me to a T:

      “It’s because they’re stupid that’s why, that’s why everybody does everything.”

    • @RoiVampire: I don’t get it. what should people talk about in the POW thread?

      @TNC: yeah, sure.

  41. Romita is a master, and I know this is all a matter of taste. But I find exaggerated the remark that this is his best work since Kick Ass 1. This actually felt very rushed. Hope and Emma’s face seemed like they were drawn by an entire different artist. I think he has superior work in his avengers run with Bendis. For example http://theheroicage.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/07/Avengers-04-Thor-Galactus.jpg Immonen on the other side was at the top of his game. Overall I didn’t feel very excited about the story. nothing really happened that we weren’t hinted or blatantly told by other comics before. Let’s hope it gets more exciting in the following issues.

  42. Well, I have only read two out of my 16 books pulled this week from the comic shop and right now I concur, this is a great POW candidate and may also be mine. There is some real harsh competition this week and I want to give everyone a fair share at the POW for me before I crown a winner. I know Action Comics will be going back to the book store for a full credit!!
    AVX is all about what super hero comics should be like, reading them for fun and action and mystery!!
    This has it all, great choice and I would also recommend it.

    K

  43. I don’t think this was my POTW, even though I did enjoy and think this event is off to great start.

  44. Not sure just yet if this is my POTW, but what a way to kick of an event! As someone who has grown tired of both Bendis’ writing and JRJ art i have to say, they both stepped up to the plate and hit home runs with this issue. looking forward to seeing how this pans out.

    also for the second time I’m putting this on the record. The phoenix isn’t coming for Hope it is coming for Scott. He has a piece of Jean locked inside him somewhere so deep that not even psychics or scientists could find it.

  45. I hope when the iFanboys go to sleep on their massive pile of money in their giant mansions that they are happy. RICH PEOPLE!

  46. Great start to an event. Super campy dialogue and posturing by all the characters but totally required to get me, a non-Avengers or X-Men reader, into the spirit of why these two groups who have known each other forever.
    Then theres the brilliant JRJR art, with ridiculous facial expressions to match the dialogue. The page where Iron Man and Cap are briefing the Joint Chiefs, the last panel where Tony is un-Iron Manning mad me laugh out loud, looks like he got goosed. Then the top panel on the next page with the Avengers standing in two’s looking all serious, but more importantly why are War Machines little guns sticking out? Why is Sub-Mariner, as you say, talking with a ridiculous accent?
    These are all the reasons I love this issue and then some. I see people comparing it to Civil War, but I think (hope) it’s much closer to Secret Wars. I can only hope for a lot of senseless violence and that the writers don’t try to rationalize any further why they’re about to fight.

  47. I really liked AvX 1, it was fun and a solid start to a big event. That being said, I’ve never been a fan of Romita. Not sure why, but his art never grabs me and his facial lines always seem poorly done. Not that I could do better, just that I never dug his work. It was the only draw back to this issue. My PoTW would be SwampThing.

  48. I thought this was solid, but the Infinite Nova book was definitely my pick of the week.

  49. This was Conor’s POTW…it doesn’t mean it has to be yours…let the complaining end please

  50. I was annoyed by that AR icon that was on all those pages.

  51. This was a fine set up book but nowhere near my POW. Just don’t see it. But hey if Conor dug it that much, that’s cool.

    I have been listening and enjoying this podcast and site for years now, and will give them the benefit of the doubt that advertising $$ had nothing to do with the POW. I have seen them bury other titles that were very prominently advertised here ( Flashpoint comes to mind)

  52. Finally had the chance to read this. I feel like Bendis and Romita Jr. really stepped it up. That’s the best Romita art I’ve ever seen for sure, and I’m a fan of his. I really enjoyed this first issue. Hopefully it stays this good.

    I had trouble with the Infinite comic. I’m not an Apps person and I wanted to read it on my computer. After I spent 20 minutes trying to figure out how I finally realized that you have to use a device. Now that right there is super lame. Got my mom’s IPad and finally loaded the thing up. It was pretty and the writing was good (outside of the ‘dubstep’ part, fucking gross) but I didn’t think it needed to be digital only. I would have rather had it in print and I feel like they could have done that easily. Forcing me on a IPad for something I felt could have been a regular print comic was kinda frustrating.

  53. Alright. Fine. I’ll pick this up. But I’m not happy about it!

    • I bought my first day and date Marvel book because of this potw. Still not excited that it cost me $3.99, but I am actually looking forward to this battle royal.

      I usually tend to favor DC when it comes to the big two, but I must say that the Nova story was fucking great Give me more of that!

  54. I thought schism ended a little while ago? Who knew!

  55. what a let down! for an issue that was mostly devoted to characterization, the characterization sure sucked. bendis is giving us characters who are 100% one thing or the other, but people generally not like that. the top of the terrible characterization pile goes to cyclops. this is the worst version of cyclops i can think of. i understand that these are superheroes, not people, so they might not act the same way that people do, but when a character is that out of touch with the real world i stop caring. avx:infinite was excellent though. that was characterization done right. i could see that being the potw.

  56. My $3.99 was only justified because of two pages. Dear god that Hellicarrier looks sweet. I’m going Avengers for this one. Scott’s way far into megalomaniac territory. Somethings wrong when Magneto says you are sounding too much like him.

  57. Spent $4 and read this digitally.

    It’s too bad Marvel felt it needed to dress up what would have been a compelling story about Hope realizing her destiny with this very tired hero vs hero trope.

    I would have bought a mini (or even a maxi) about Hope. She is what is fresh and new in the X-verse … and it is her leadership that will eventually displace Cyclops.

    But instead we have to put up with twelve issues of fight story nonsense that will definitely not be worth $40+.

    • I’m not saying you’re wrong about what’s coming, but you make it sound like you’ve already read the rest of this series.

    • You’re right. I haven’t. 🙂

      I’m just frustrated with what I perceive to be a lack of ingenuity.

      And in fairness to Marvel, Hickman’s runs on FF and Fantastic Four have been phenomenal … not to mention the bi-weekly enjoyment I take from X-Factor.

    • Not to mention the new Ultimate Spider-Man …

    • Fair enough. I guess the counterpoint to the idea of a series dedicated to Hope’s development is that she can’t carry a book yet (quality discussions aside, Generation Hope never lit up the charts), so she can really only develop as a supporting character like in Uncanny or AVX. My hope (sorry) is that AVX uses her as more than a McGuffin to get the heroes fighting.

      I feel like Marvel has always intended for Hope’s arc to play out over time, but I think we’re long overdue for some answers/resolutions about her purpose. I’m still hopeful (dammit) that AVXwill be the vehicle for some of that.

    • I think you’re right, and we’re both looking for the same thing where Hope is concerned … I’m guessing that I’m going to have to be one of those who sits back and waits to see how this series pans out before jumping aboard.

  58. Has anyone tried the new Marvel AR that was on the issue if so what is your opinion of it?

    • I thought the Infinite Nova comic was really really cool–but you had to buy it separately to get the full effect. It is very different from guided view for comics published on paper and adapted for reading digitally. “Reading” the infinite comic was a completely different (and novel) experience.

    • @Ultimate_Batman: I did try the AR app using a borrowed iPad2 (I have a first gen iPad, so no camera). It was a novel experience, but kind of clunky. You have to keep the camera trained on the page while the AR content plays, or the content stops playing, so you basically have to keep the comic on a low table or on the floor in order to keep the page in the frame. This is probably less annoying with a phone since it’s easier to hold.

      As for the content, it was okay. The AR content is streaming, so speed and image quality will depend on the strength of your wireless connection. Content loaded pretty quickly for me, but didn’t look all that great on iPad 2.

      In short, it was fun, but I will not be clamoring for more AR enabled comics.

      @cahubble09: I’ve posted my thoughts on the Infinite Comic elsewhere in this thread. I liked the story, but wanted more from the “Infinite-ness”. It was basically a digital comic delivered via PowerPoint.

    • @KenOchalek: Well it was and it wasn’t. There were features they added that you don’t see in a standard digital comic like shifting/adding perspectives and focusing/unfocusing of different elements in the same panel that were novel. I agree the story wasn’t as meaty as it might have been, but I felt that for a first time off the blocks effort it was enjoyable and left me intrigued with the possibilities for this medium.

  59. So, you could read this safe little book about superheroes fighting, or read the Boys this week about superheroes fighting, and see how it really went down. I chose the latter and didn’t regret it.

    • Man, just read AvX #1 and it was mayonnaise sandwich on white bread compared to Boys #65. Just read it, Conor, and tell me this was better.

    • POTW is not about “better”. It’s about what someone enjoyed most.

      Enjoyment is not a zero-sum game.

      I enjoyed AVX #1 a lot, but I enjoyed Fatale #4 more, so I made it my POTW. I didn’t read The Boys #65, but I’ve heard a lot of good stuff about the series, so I probably would enjoy it.

      Which one is “better”?

      Hell if I know. Good thing that’s not the point of POTW.

    • YOU WILL NOT ALWAYS AGREE WITH THE REVIEWER.

      NOT ALL COMPLAINTS WILL BE VALID.

      I’m a massive Garth Ennis fan, and I stuck with The Boys for years, and couldn’t get into it.

    • “I’m a massive Garth Ennis fan, and I stuck with The Boys for years, and couldn’t get into it.”

      That’s fine, I guess. But – don’t you guys do this for a living? Why don’t you read more stuff that pushes the envelope, instead of safe, boring, inconsequential pap like AvX? It’s depressing, really.

      “POTW is not about “better”. It’s about what someone enjoyed most. ”

      Agreed. But for some reason, they didn’t read it, and therefore, had no chance to enjoy it. Good thing I chose too, I guess.

    • You’re making a lot of assumptions, and applying your standards of quality to others. Dude liked the comic book. It’s not your thing. So what? I can reliably say that we’ve introduced more people to great comic book work than almost anyone else out there, and I’m super proud of it. If some of us dig mainstream stuff to, great. It’s not either or.

    • @FormerPoetLaureate re: Boys … word …

      And you’re not alone in your critique. But I don’t come to this website looking for outside the box analysis. These guys pretty much hype the big two and that’s it (I’m sure someone is now going to whine that I’m overlooking that once in a blue moon moment when they mention a Boom, Image, Dynamite or IDW comic). Most of what I enjoy reading on this site is related to fans posting comments on the books I read. But I don’t expect this site to show me anything new anymore. I get that fix from Eleven O’Clock comics.

    • Paul Montgomery Paul Montgomery (@fuzzytypewriter) says:

      @cahubble09 – Not even sure where to start. We only mention Image or IDW once in a blue moon? What website are you reading? I’m serious.

    • @Paul Montgomery:

      It’s a figure of speech …

      Anyone can read the weekly podcast show notes and count the number of occurrences of Marvel, DC, Image, Dynamite, Boom, etc. etc. Image books probably get more mention than any of the other smaller publishers. But the lion’s share of mentions go to Marvel and DC books.

    • @cahubble09: But Marvel and DC publish and sell the lion’s share of the books, so it follows that they’d receive the majority of the coverage. While I won’t disagree that the overwhelming dominance of Marvel/DC at the expense of lower visibility publishers and books is an issue for comics journalism/punditry, I don’t think it’s fair to say that iFanboy isn’t doing their part to champion the indie books and creators they enjoy. Walking Dead, Chew, Irredeemable, Rachel Rising, GI Joe are all books from the smaller publishers that I feel like get mentioned quite frequently around here. Not to mention that the Book of The Month is almost ALWAYS something I’ve never heard of before.

      And as far as I know (with the exception of a special preview now and again) the iFanboy staff buy their books with their own money, so of course the site is going to track closely with their tastes and preferences. No one can afford to buy all the comics, and no one has time (or desire) to read all the comics. So sometimes good books get overlooked. Such is life.

    • Oh for the love of…

  60. Personally i have no problem with someone questioning the integrity of this or any other site that publishes news and reviews. In all media this is a big concern, and many comics websites (and magazines before them) can be bought. If you are in this game you should expect to answer this concern from time to time, and i think they have.

    I am convinced this site seperates its editorial and its advertising, the standard of evidence for others may vary and i have been listening/visiting for many years, newer people may not. Certainly anyone paying attention for a while would know the outpouring of love (and POTWs) Hickman and Aaron have gotten over the years here is tremendous. And despite the overwhelming negativity that has been aimed at this project from its announcement (so much so I’m surprised Marvel would even advertise here, i guess they looks at the numbers not the constant bashing in the comments) Conor has expressed (cautious, we have all been burned) enthusiasm for the project based on those creators and i think an overall enjoyment for these type of events when done well. Now if Josh (who has said this kind of book is not for him) had picked it. or if the Fraction issues get a POTW, then id raise a red flag. but even then probably only for a second.

  61. I got back into comics because of this site. “You had me at hello” 🙂

  62. This site has been giving legit pics and reviews for a while. They are some of the only people that don’t brown nose the big two. This is the only sight whose opinion I have come to trust.

    Keep it up, haters gonna hate.

    http://7tattoo.files.wordpress.com/2010/03/25200_1214567684329_1232910695_30982333_6281898_n.jpg?w=349&h=400

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