Pick of the Week

Pick of the Week – 10.10.2012 – Uncanny Avengers #1

What did the
iFanboy
community think?

1211
Pulls
Avg Rating: 4.0
iFanboy Community Pick of the Week Percentage: 1.7%
 
Users who pulled this comic:
Story by Rick Remender
Art by John Cassaday
Cover by John Cassaday, Adi Granov, Daniel Acuña, & Skottie Young

Size: 22 pages
Price: 3.99

For the past three months a large portion of the comics hype has been dominated by Marvel Comics and their announcement of their new publishing initiative Marvel NOW!. It has largely been seen as Marvel’s response to DC Comics’ The New 52 reboot which kicked off over a year ago, but with Marvel’s unique spin. We’ve been told, “This is not a reboot” and we’ve been inundated with teasers and covers and all sorts of promotions. But today, on the eve of the fall comics event, the New York Comic Con, Marvel NOW! begins with what has been positioned as the flagship book, Uncanny Avengers #1 written by Rick Remender with art by John Cassaday.

To say that all eyes are on Uncanny Avengers #1 bringing with them tons of questions and speculation would be an understatement. Coming off of Avengers vs. X-Men, Uncanny Avengers #1 is positioned to set the tone, not just for Marvel NOW! but for the characters of the Marvel Universe as whole. Could the new status quo of the Marvel Universe, which seems to bring mutants and Avengers together, be something that actually works? Behind the scenes, the questions of the creators have also been brought up. Could Rick Remender step up to the plate after his years in indie comics and a successful run on Uncanny X-Force and deliver a “flagship” story? And on art, after years of mainly doing covers of varying levels of quality for practically every publisher of (with the exception of the last issue of Planetary and a Rocketeer story), could John Cassaday deliver the quality of art that we came to adore in Astonishing X-Men?

After reading Uncanny Avengers #1, I can honestly say that not only did Remender and Cassaday show up, but they brought their A-game. Consider Marvel NOW! officially kicked off and Marvel fans should be excited.

Now, I was never worried about Remender’s ability to write this book. I’ve been one of Remender’s biggest cheerleaders as he’s delivered quality work in title after title. Fear Agent will go down as one of the great series and he was responsible for one of the most glorious runs in the X-Men’s history with Uncanny X-Force. Remender’s stock in trade is big ideas and during his time at Marvel he’s honed his craft to make his storytelling as tight as ever.

On the art side, I will admit I questioned which Cassaday would we get. I remembered back to that wonderful time of Astonishing X-Men, where Cassaday, along with writer Joss Whedon, helped redefine the look of the X-Men post Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely. He amazed and dazzled with every page, bringing action and dynamics, and balancing it all out with emotion and drama. But then I think back to some of his recent cover work (doing my best to not veer into a Shadowland rant here, folks) and I wondered if after such a long period away from doing sequential work, did he still have it? When I opened up Uncanny Avengers #1, page #2, panel #2, I breathed a sigh of relief. This is the Cassaday I remembered and I was delighted to see that consistency remain throughout the issue.

Within the issue itself, Uncanny Avengers #1 doesn’t begin bombastically and I was actually happy to see that. After the constant conflict and teeth gnashing of the past 6 months of Avengers vs X-Men, Uncanny Avengers #1 takes the slow burn approach to start. Picking up from the ashes of Avengers vs. X-Men, we get to see Wolverine deliver the eulogy for Charles Xavier, which works as a perfect baseline setting point for current, lapsed, and new readers. Whether you’ve been reading every Marvel Comic for the past 30 years, or if you’re picking this up for the first time, within the first few pages you get a sense of the state of the world that we’re entering with this comic. As the issue progresses we learn of the effort that Captain America wants to make to bring together the Avengers and the X-Men, in a joint team to show unity and stand together as heroes. And he starts by recruiting Havok, brother of the now imprisoned Cyclops. But this won’t come with ease, as the issue progresses we get a sense of the deep chasms between Avengers and X-Men, and in the grand Marvel tradition we realize that this may not be as smooth as Captain America hopes. And of course, what good is a story without a villain, and Remender and Cassaday present a familiar face in a truly horrifying way.

Say what you will about reboots and relaunches and number one issues and variant covers, but at the end of the day, the thing that gets me going about comic books is great stories about characters I care about with great art. As a Marvel Comics fan, there’s that certain magic that comes from these characters and I gotta admit, if I were a teenager and you handed me a book where the Avengers and the X-Men were getting all mixed up and interacting with each other, and it had art that looked like this? I’d be pretty stoked. As I enter middle-age, I try to remember that bit of magic that got me into comics the first place and realize that super hero comics are meant to be big, mindblowing at times, and fun. With Uncanny Avengers #1, I’m excited because if this first issue is any indication of what we can expect, then it looks like we’re in for something special.

Now who knows if this book will adequately set the tone for the Marvel Universe or not. There’s a lot of books to follow as Marvel NOW! gets rolling, but Uncanny Avengers #1 will be a tough act to follow. Rick Remender has taken his well deserved place at the front of the line of creators and now has some of the biggest toys to play with. John Cassaday has returned and reminded us why he’s just so damn good. Uncanny Avengers #1 is a magic combination of some of the most talented name in comics doing what they do best and I’m ready to have some fun.

Ron Richards
That said, hey have 6 issues to fix the Cyclops situation before I bail.
ron@ifanboy.com

Comments

  1. Oh, Ron… I’m really sorry to be the one to tell you, but you’ll have bailed by #7.

    • I think Remender is on fire so if it’s issue 7 then so be it but I my money is on Ron (and many others) sticking around for as long as Remender is on writing duty.

    • Agree completely. Liked this issue more than any Avengers stories on the last couple of years…

      It just feels to me like Cyclops is going to be in that red cell for a while!

    • I wouldn’t count on that Alex. Read Consequences and you’ll see what I’m referring to.

    • Don’t worry, there’ll be another X-Men #1 and also New, New Avengers #1 by then. I wish this had been Josh or Connor’s week.

      Batman or Batgirl this week by country frickin’ mile.

    • By Batman, I assume you mean #13? Wow, #13? With a number that high, they must never relaunch books at DC.

  2. That last page made me both smile and cringe. Something terrible must have happened to Rick when he was a child.

  3. Pulled it but yet to pick it up, can’t wait to see the villain and love that you said Cassaday brought the goods, his classic crossed with contemporary style in Astonishing is what got me back into comics. Welcome back Havok’s costume to.

  4. Really nice to see such positivity Ron, – Hope we all keep enjoying it .

  5. Excellent pick Ron! NYCC week two years ago, you picked Uncanny X-Force number one as your pick

  6. Parri (@pazzatron) says:

    I give Remender a 5.
    Cassaday only gets a 3. Not familiar with him before now; I really like his style, but I thought the delivery was a really hit and miss. That last page reveal being a bit hit.

  7. Well said, Ron!

  8. I have’n read this yet but expect some batman backlash over this POTW.

  9. I expect virtual fist fights in the comments! That said, I had a lot more fun with this than with Batman. I think it’s because of my lobotomy lust.

  10. I dug this too, and love the choice of villain and what the first step in his plan is. I hope Havok really comes into his own in this series.

  11. Wow did I not like this book. For the second week Marvel’s most hyped book delivers gore, dismemberment and shock value but little real meaning or motion.

    With all the new launches at Marvel, I had hoped that either it would be a reinvigorating, exciting new start or an easy opportunity to cut back on my pull list. What I didn’t want was something just kind of in the middle. My hopes have been met so far but I can’t say I’m too happy about it.

    • Sorry also meant to say that I thought it was a good review, the enthusiasm is great. I just, obviously, feel quite differently.

    • I agree. This just didn’t grab me. I really hope that Remender’s saving the great stuff for Captain America. I had hope that I’d like this enough to become the 6th Avengers book I’d be pulling, but I…just…no thanks.

    • I agree, this was a well written review but I thought UA was extremely boring. The art was great though.

  12. I really liked Uncanny Avengers and I really didn’t want to. I wanted it to be a #1 that I picked up because I could talk about it with friends and then drop it but I don’t think I’m going anywhere. Remender delivered again. That being said:

    After having had an early look at Batman #13 I was CERTAIN that it was going to be the POTW. The mood, the art, the color, the story… the creepy Joker! I think it would have been Batman if it was anyone but Ron… That being said:

    I can’t believe the love from Ron after the muck Cyclops was just drug through over the last year.

  13. Sorry Ron, the best book was Batman #13. This wasn’t even a contender.

    • Um yeah it was…Batman was great but so was this.

    • It was a contender if the individual reader thought it was a contender.
      We all have our own tastes. Evidently,some people preferred this over Batman, and that’s fine. I, for one, am not even reading Batman, so it wasn’t a contender for my pick of the week.
      It’s great that you’re enjoying good books, but that doesn’t mean that others can’t enjoy other books more.

  14. Was ready for excellence, but this is far from it. a big old “meh”.

  15. I loved this issue, I loved that its makes a good starting point without negating continuity,y convoluted or otherwise. My first real comic which started this crazy past time was Uncanny X-Men #158 and it means something to me that it remains her first appearance. I also loved his take on the Scarlet Witch, she has rarely been this intriguing to me. Most of all, I love the twist ending, it’s twisted and horrific and certainly sets up an awesome storyline. Easily POTW for me.

  16. Rick Remender? Sign me up!

  17. I’m kind of shocked at everyone’s positivity. I was pretty disappointed with this. And red skull looked wayyyy off on that last page.

    • See, I thought so too. I was entertained by the story, and I have faith in Remender taking it up a notch with each installment as well, but I found Cassaday lacking. If I didn’t KNOW he was the same guy that did one of the most stunningly awesome comics I’ve ever read (Astonishing X-Men), I would never have put the two together.

      Thats not to say I have no faith in him, but I do feel like he needs to tighten it up, and I fully expect he will. He’s been out of the interiors bizz for a minute, figure he’s gotta get back in the swing of things. By no means do I plan to stop buying this, but it wasn’t the 5er I was expecting it to be. With the creative team on this, I was expecting a level of epic I just don’t feel I got. I got Awesome. Just not Epic.

  18. I really thought this would be an awesome start to Marvel Now!, but instead what we got was the aftermath of an event that I thought was terrible. This book could have been some AVX follow up or something.

    I’m not sure how anyone could read this and Batman #13 and reconcile making this POTW.

    That being said, I love Remender and if I hear good things in a few months, I’ll catch up. This title is dropped for now.

    • If Ron has it narrowed down to two books, one DC and one Marvel, more often than not he will choose the Marvel book due to his affinity for those characters.

    • Or, he just liked this one better. Due to opinions.

    • CaseyJustice is right. It’s called an OPINION. People have them.

    • It’s interesting how many people, week in and week out, seem to want universal consensus on the POTW. Don’t they realize how boring it would be if everyone agreed on their favorite book each week?

      Don’t get me wrong, Batman #13 was tremendous and will likely be my personal POTW. But I liked Uncanny Avengers quite a lot as well.

      Liking comics is not a zero-sum game.

    • I’ll go with the “opinion” and “different tastes” but… having an affinity for a certain set of characters is still an opinion. Let’s just say Ron “did” have a bias toward Marvel. I think choosing a Marvel book over a DC one wouldn’t be out of the question of you thought both books were VERY close in quality.

      Now, everyone saying this book wasn’t very good… THAT I don’t get. I don’t get it and I don’t care because I liked Batman. Ron will talk about Uncanny Avengers (which is great because of his “opinions” on Cyclops) and Conor or Jeff or Paul can talk about Batman #13…. how do we, the readers/listeners lose?

    • Congratulations, Ken! I think you’re the first person to ever get trolled for being too nice!

  19. Wow, their are some pretty salty Batman fans lmao. Great first issue.

  20. I thought this was a solid first issue for Marvel NOW! The ending definitely creates some intrigue going forward. BUT….. This was chosen as POTW over Batman 13?!? Really? Snyder and Capullo have pulled off a fantastic issue that has a great pace, darkness, art, and references that should be considered higher than a pretty good x-men/avengers comic.

  21. If this even comes close to Uncanny X-Force’s first arc, I will be around as long as Remender is around. Cassaday’s art was spot on and I loved that panel splash on 2 & 3, too! Sold me on the whole book. Pretty sure Cyclops is being set up to be the new Magneto as Alex is posed to be the one who lives out Xavier’s dream.

  22. I really disliked this and the other two AVX books this week.

    As for the art.

    Where did Havok get his costume from? The spacial relations in this book were gawd awful. If Havok put on his costume between panels fine, but he probably should have been saving people while he did that.

    Also the Cap chin straps. Gimmie a break.

    Wolverine’s sidepubes also very unsettling.

    So Avalanche attacked near Avengers Mansion? Or they just appeared on the scene? Or .. what? Maybe if there was a boom or rumble sound effect on the Havok panel on the page before. It was just really crap storytelling mostly

  23. Seeing how Batman #13 and UA #1 are two of the four issues I pulled this week and there’s this much split opinion I can’t wait to take em both in, while I get the feeling I’ll like them both for very different reasons I’m willing to bet I’ll like Batman more but will see things in UA that set up depth for the future of the book that will intrigue me. That being said, it seems as though many readers have a hard time being in an X-Men and Batman state of mind in the same week, they both feel so different and have a particular frame of mind you need to get in to enjoy. It’s almost like I gotta put my mutant or bat helmet on to really appreciate whats going on or its not absorbed properly.

  24. I thought the story was fine, but the art didn’t do it for me. It felt like a season premiere. I just don’t think this is really a great point for new people, certainly not like the New 52 was. So much of this was dependent on moving forward after the last story that many readers will think they need to go back to that. I still think the Marvel universe is too impenetrable. And now every aspect of the universe is so mixed together that I don’t think it really helps any new reader. This book has X-Men stuff, Avengers stuff, and Captain America stuff. I really hope some of the NOW books can feel like they play in their own corners.

  25. Well, I can’t say I didn’t give it a try. I did like Wolverine’s impersonation of Bruce Wayne’s speech from Batman # 1 though. Marvel NOW! is just one dream away.

  26. I liked the issue, but it didn’t quite pop for me. I think Cassaday had a lot to do with that. His work here is definitely miles better than all of his cover work in recent years, but I didn’t get a sense of those dynamic layouts that I knew him for with Astonishing X-Men. Only the last page cliffhanger stood out to me, so I’m holding out that things will just get better in future issues.

    Remender is still on his A game, though I think he needs a hug after that last page…

    I really have to stick myself in the Batman camp though. #13 was just fantastic. The mood, the omens in the opening monologue, and the art. My gosh, was Capullo on in this one. Kudos to this team – this arc is going to be amazing.

  27. Did not read this, but the preview pages looked like Cap was wearing a helmet he made for a Halloween costume. The chinstrap was just hilarious, and those ear thingies were precious.

  28. Wasn’t feeling this. Cassaday’s backgrounds left much to be desired and I didn’t care for the redesigns of Cap and Thor. Red Skull didn’t look quite right either, but the story was fine. I’ll pick up the second issue but if you think this is Cassaday’s A-game, you ain’t read Planetary in awhile.

  29. I think this started too soon or not soon enough. It’s supposed to be Marvel NOW!, but it feels more like Marvel NOW! and the next few months, too! The AR feature, only one of which I accessed, was absolutely atrocious. The story was fine, nothing more. The art was fine, nothing more. I didn’t realize it until I read this issue, but I don’t want to read a comic with Havok as the leader. Justice League #1 was a much better introduction to a new status quo.

  30. Solid Issue. It felt more like AvX 13 then the beginning of a new era in Marvel.

    Am I the only one that fell that Logan’s speec was both out of character and lacked meaning? I expected to be swept into the emotoin revolving Xavier’s death, but it was just very matter of fact.

    Maybe I should have read AvX Consequences, but then again shouldn’t a story really stand on it’s own and not require you to purchase everything to get a sense of satisfaction?

  31. I’m way down the page so no-one is going to care but I don’t understand how this can even be considered for POTW:

    – It was a 1st issue that required about 10 years of Marvel knowledge dating right back to House of M as well as all the recent AvX stuff.
    – The art was shoddy, although I guess this was only me.
    – Half of The Avengers are kinda B-listers.
    – It was short for a first issue.

    When compared to last years JL1 does this really compare. Which boasted new continuity accessible to everyone, a return of fan fav Jim Lee, an A list team and was a bumper issue.

    And Batman was spine chillingly awesome this month (and for an odd issue had more content than UA#1)

    • I agree with all of those except for the point about the art. Not Cassaday’s best but still pretty good.

    • I guess it didn’t click for me, to be honest I think alot of it might have been the colours, they were a little lackluster, not quite muted but not vibrant either. It made the issue feel old fashioned and not new like a #1 should be.

    • Just wondering, but isn’t having an Avengers team with not just A-listers a good thing? B-listers tend to be better accepted characters (because they’re not in ten titles at the same time) and are way easier to do character arcs on than A-listers. I mean, it’s hard to get a brand new take on Spider-Man. But Rogue, Scarlet Witch, or Havok? Tons of stuff to be explored there.

    • Has in occurred to you that many off us life long comic book fan don’t want new continuity, in fact I would straight up hate it. And personally I like a mix of A and B listers, my favorite part of last years JLA was seeing Cyborg get some spotlight. Batman was great this week, but Uncanny Avengers felt bigger and was more fun in my opinion. And that’s what the Pick of the Week is, opinion.

    • your PotW is the book you enjoyed the most that week. end. of.

  32. Love it when the iFanbase gets heated over the POTW!

    I really enjoyed both UA #1 and Batman #13, but neither is without flaw. As good at storytelling and atmosphere as Snyder is, there are issues (like this one) where (in my opinion) he overloads the scene with dialogue and narration. That’s what kept this great issue from being excellent. When everyone is chatting away it’s tougher to create actual tension.

    Personally, my pick was Wolverine and the X-Men #18, by that heartless monster Jason Aaron.

  33. I know I’m not the first to say this but…

    My brain doesn’t understand how this was POTW over Batman 13.

    Plus, I loved Planetary and Astonishing X-Men but I flat out loathe some of the new costume stuff. Especially Havok and Thor. I rate them on the same level as New52 Harley Quinn. Yeah. You read that correctly. That’s how much I dislike them.

  34. I think I’ll take Batman by a hair over Uncanny but they were both great. Im very discouraged by the mindset of some on this site that “I don’t like Marvels business practices so this comic is shit”. You’re entitled to your opinion but for half of these people I think they went in wanting to hate it because they’re mad at Marvel or didn’t even really read it.

    • I really don’t want to add to the wave of hate going on around here, but I think you’re exactly right. Half the people on the site aren’t even going to give this thing a chance, or hold some kind of personal vendetta because Marvel charges $3.99 for a book or double ships.

      Uncanny Avengers is a fine book. It’s nothing mind blowing, but if one man that runs his own goddamn website decides he liked it better than what most other people liked that week than too bad. A pick of the week is not the be all, end all of comic reviews.

      Continue enjoying Batman. Ron’s enjoyment of this book is not going to keep you from do so, or at least I would hope it wouldn’t.

    • It’s a book that some will like and some won’t like, no position is more valid than the other.

  35. I can’t say that I’m surprised that this was the POTW. Ron has always had a hard on for Marvel, Remender, and almost anything X-men related, so it comes off as a little biased but whatever. It’s his opinion and that’s cool. BUT….Batman was better. Just sayin….

  36. it was ok…not a POTW for me but i’m glad Ron enjoyed it.

  37. Geez, and the butt-hurt Batman fans come out in droves. This wasn’t my POTW, but I loved it all the same.

    • 95% isn’t a drove… it’s the majority – lol

    • I’m one of the 95% who picked Batman also. I just think some people are being ridiculous and mean about it.

    • Well every group of people has a handful who are under the impression that their opinions are gospel. Batman was my pick, but I’m not going to be a tool about it if someone picks something else just because 95% of the people agreed with me.

  38. “Knock Knock?”

    “Who’s there?”

    “Batman #13”

    😉

  39. This was decent, put no where near POTW. Batman however…POTM!!!

  40. Forget Uncanny, forget batman, Punk Rock Jesus was where it was at this week! My pick of the week by far. Long live punk rock!

    • Yeah Mike, me too actually! There were some great last pages this week (Batman, Uncanny Avengers, Wolverine and The X-Men) but Punk Rock Jesus was the one that left me with a huge grin on my face! I hope we get to read some Flak Jacket lyrics next month, so fans can write and record real versions of the fictional songs!

  41. I’m really happy for you, and ima let you finish, but Batman had one of the best comics of ALL TIME!! Of ALL TIME!

    (I actually haven’t read my books yet but I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to make an outdated kayne reference).

  42. I’m sorry this POTW had me until the end. The final page left me saying “Hey the simplistic silliness of the Silver Age called they want their plot point back.” It was a good issue but it was nothing compared to what Batman did this week.

  43. This is a book for continuity-philes and that’s the Marvel specialty right? I can see why Ron dug this so much. I’ll have to take his testimony that it was really great since I didn’t read AvX and I’m not fully educated in the Marvel U history of the last ten years. I know the characters, but not the immediately preceding context. So as a “new” reader, this issue failed to convince me to jump on the Marvel Now bandwagon. It seemed like a pretty decent issue, but mainly concerned with the aftermath of AvX plus the new threat at the end that will drive the story forward. Even though I wasn’t in love with Justice League #1, it definitely did a better job as a starting point story and the art was WAY better. I will still be checking out a few other Now titles, but the situation laid out in this one doesn’t make me want to buy UA #2.

  44. This might rank up there with Josh’s Blackest Night #1 POTW snub blunder. Batman #13 will go down in history as a pivotal issue.

    I only read DC books, no marvel at all so i cant really compare both issues, but i was surprised Batman #13 was POTW.

  45. Reading through all the comments makes me glad that I did not even attempt to get on board with NOW. As a “new reader” coming in with the New 52 (and dropping most of those about 6 months in), I was always interested in getting into Marvel, but I never knew how, esp. without some major money and time investment. At first I though NOW was my chance, but then I wasn’t able to follow along, unsure what books to order and basically simply ordered more Image and Dark Horse books instead. I was kinda sad at the time, because I do enjoy super hero stories in general (still like Batman, even Suicide Squad (for its wackiness) and Astro City is one of my all-time favs) and I would love to read some X-Men or Avengers. Marvel just did a very poor job at drawing people like me in. The only thing that got my attention was the renumbering, but I never managed to look through the thicket of books. So, reading these comments, I am sure I wouldn’t have been able to understand what was happening in the book. Too bad, probably another year without a single Marvel book on my subscription list.

  46. Just a question to all the “Uncanny” fans, does the Uncanny tag mean anything? Is it similar to Max (adult, emulates real life and time… ish, etc.)? Just curious, that’s all.

    • In this case, I think it’s just there to refer to X-Men and Avengers working together. In other words, it’s part “Uncanny X-Men” and part “Mighty Avengers”, so you mash ’em together and you get “Uncanny Avengers”.

      Uncanny (meaning strange or mysterious) is the oldest adjective applied to an X-Men title, from back in the day when nearly every Marvel book had an adjective in the title (Incredible, Amazing, Spectacular, Fantastic, Invincible, etc). Marvel plays on this grammatical legacy from time-to-time (Astonishing X-Men, Irredeemable Ant-Man, and many of the current one-word teasers for Marvel Now titles).

      So it’s nothing terribly significant to understanding the story.

    • As I have never really read a Marvel book outside of a few collections (Marvels, some Deadpool, some Punisher, Marvel Zombies), I totally get this confusion. With Ultimate and Max being different lines, the whole slew of adjectives they put on their titles is confusing. What is part of which universe, who is where and why and what version of that character is this? It’s just impossible for me to get into stuff like that. I really, really think that having separate lines that do not need to take each other into account is a great idea (I’d love DC to do this, putting the “Dark” books in their own universe, e.g.), but the way Marvel is executing it (years down the line, by now, of course), is just really unfriendly for new readers.

    • @DerBonk: I think Marvel is attempting to deal with that by using a more uniform cover treatment, starting with Uncannuy Avengers. The Ultimate books have always had a unique and (mostly, I think) consistent cover design, so those books stand out from the main universe stuff.

      Another part of it is having retailers who group the books correctly on the shelf (i.e. don’t shelf Ultimates with the other Avengers books), and offer good guidance to interested new readers.

      Regarding the confusion of new readers, I wonder if the age of the new reader correlates to the amount of confusion they’ll tolerate? The comic that hooked me was Uncanny X-Men #279. It was the middle of an arc just before a much-needed soft reboot. By today’s standards, an AWFUL jumping on point for a new reader. But while that level of confusion would turn me off at age 30, 9 years old I was completely fascinated. I just had to figure out who all these people were and what was going on.

    • Thanks Ken.

    • @Ken: The cover design will help, I guess, and so will the unified name for the line. Still, for someone like me, who will never see any of these books on a shelve or get anyone to explain the event (I have to pre-order from Previews in order to get any books at all, living in Germany), most of that stuff doesn’t help. I mean, I read a couple of blog posts about Marvel NOW, looked at their website and the Previews catalog and I was still confused. Sure, I’m not 9 anymore and it’s clear that children may be more tolerant, but honestly, is this really the main audience Marvel is going for with Marvel NOW? In any case, I don’t care all that much as I am certainly not a Marvel reader. It’s just that I was excited about NOW initially, because I really want to get a taste of Marvel, but how the event finally rolled out, there was just no interest raised whatsoever.

  47. I enjoyed this a lot, but agree Batman was the better of the two by far with Punk Rock Jesus nipping at its tail.Still this was a fun read, and will stick with it for at least the first arc…I still hate supporting a 22pg $3.99 book but I cut down a lot of my pull list so FUCK IT. 4/5

  48. Ron, you’re reallly not doing much to dispel that “Marvel guy” label…

  49. I really enjoyed this also. Batman would have been my pick, but damn if they both aren’t awesome examples of top notch comic booking! So the opening scene, the image in the eyeballs was due to the Phoenix creating more mutants? At first I thought it was Scott.

    And the Thor latte line didn’t work, sorry.

  50. Sorry, but this wasn’t even close. If story-telling is the bench-mark of good work — and I think it has to be — then you simply can’t make the case that UA was superior to the most recent issue of BAtman. You simply can’t.

    I realize Ron LIKED this issue more; I like a lot of things that I’m conscious aren’t that good to begin with. For instance, I like ‘Highlander’ much more than ‘Gandhi’. But up you’ll never hear me say the former is better than the latter — because it isn’t.

    Enjoying a thing and judging it require two different sets of criteria. The pick of the week should be chosen on the basis of what is better and not what you simply prefer.

    I know the site is called “iFanboy”, but you simply aren’t going to be taken seriously if you act like one.

    • “The pick of the week should be chosen on the basis of what is better and not what you simply prefer.”

      I’m pretty sure they have always made the pick what they prefer. So the POTW simply isn’t what you want it to be.

    • @stasisbal

      I never said it should be “what I want it to be.” But I think some work as objectively better qualities than others. If the POTW is PURELY about what someone likes, fine. But it really isn’t that useful an indicator of what is better than what, is it. I’m not trying to offend anyone who thinks differently from me.

    • Sorry. To clarify, what I meant was the POTW as a feature (not specifically what it is this week) is not what you want it to be. It is entirely subjective and I don’t think it was ever intended as an indicator or consensus of what is best. I’d say the community pick is closer to what you are looking for.

    • @iceicebaby: The Pick of the Week is entirely subjective to whomever is deciding it. It has been for 12 years and it will be continuing on into the future. Ron liked UNCANNY AVENGERS better than BATMAN, therefore, for him, it was a better book. Maybe not for you and maybe not for me but neither one of us had the Pick.

      And I appreciate your concern about us bring taken seriously, but we’re doing quite well in that department based on our subjective opinions.

    • @iceicebaby

      I don’t think you can “objectively” make a POTW. That is a contradictory idea. Your opinion is and always will be subjective, so the idea that Ron should have picked Batman over UA because Bats had “objectively better qualities” doesn’t hold up. The site’s POTW seems to more often than not disagree with the “majority percent” POTW numbers on the site, but it’s that single person’s pick. They shouldn’t pick it just because most everyone else did.

  51. @Ron – I know you’re getting a lot of Batman backlash here, but I was just curious: was there something in particular you disliked about Batman? Or was it just straight up that you liked Avengers more? And if so, why?

  52. Surely I’m not the only one who thinks this “MARVEL NOW” is more like “MARVEL….STILL A CONTINUATION OF THE SAME THING BUT NOW WITH NUMBER 1 ISSUES.” Seriously I thought this was supposed to be a reboot like the New 52. Something to get excited about for new and lapsed readers. This is the kick off point for Marvel Now and it felt like a fallout issue of AvX (which I dropped 4 issues in). This isn’t necessarily a complaint about this issue as much as the complete MARVEL NOW disappointment. I am now highly reconsidering picking up all these new number ones since they are just going to be a glorified renumbering scam. I am sorely disappointed with marvel here, they had a real chance to hook me like DC did but now my marvel stack is just going to keep dropping with all this garbage continuity they feel like they can’t toss overboard like DC did (for the most part). What a shame.

    • See, I never remember anyone implying that Marvel Now would be a reboot, but I may be wrong. I think a lot of people assumed it was, because they assumed it was a response to the New 52, but that was never explicitly stated. It was just an excuse for them to promote some of the creative team shifts, a lot like the Big Shots promotion a year or so ago (Waid on Daredevil, Rucka on Punisher, and Bendis on Moon Knight) but on a much larger scale.

    • I’ll agree that Uncanny Avengers wasn’t necessarily the best book to usher in a new era of fresh takes and accessible stories (note: Marvel never called it a reboot as far as continuity is concerned), but I’m not so sure you can judge the whole campaign on the first book.

      I think the real test of Marvel Now will be the reaction to the relaunches of established concepts/characters like Fantastic Four, Captain America, Iron Man, etc. If those books offer the fresh takes and accessible entry points for new and lapsed readers, I think Marvel Now will have been successful.

      But as with a lot of Marvel NOW!, we’ll just have to WAIT and see I guess.

    • @KenOchalek

      There’s an old cliche that’s common sense and good advice: Put your best foot forward. Or, make your best case first. I’m not judging the whole Marvel Now re-launch on UA #1, but I am judging UA and I didn’t like what I read enough to come back for more. If I had read a great adventure in UA #1 that wasn’t mainly preoccupied with previous continuity from the recent big event, then I’d be a lot more interested in what happens next. I’m a non Zombie looking for a way to feel like I’m coming in at a fresh starting place. Maybe some of those other books will get that right.

    • @tripleneck: That’s a totally fair and I think very valid point. The first book out the gate should be representative of the whole initiative, and I can see how Uncanny Avengers falls short of that goal in a lot of ways for a lot of people. My personal feeling is that since Marvel NOW is going to roll out over the next four months, it’s a bit early for anyone to accurately judge the whole thing.

      If someone wants to write it all off at this point, that’s their prerogative, but I that might be a hasty call.

      Last point: Amid all of this discussion, I’m heartened to see people come out of the wood work who are disappointed that Marvel NOW is not a total reboot. Even though I know a lot of the continuity, I’m a fan of clean breaks and fresh starts, and I would have loved to see Marvel’s version of the New 52, but done by (in my opinion, and not in every case) better creative teams. It would have been messy to pull off (abandoning good young books like Daredevil or Wolverine and The X-Men), but very exciting!

    • @KenOchalek Agreed it might be hasty to call it all off this early. However my problem is like @tripleneck stated that the launching book of Marvel NOW should set the tone of what they want to accomplish with it’s initiative. The tone they set to me is that they are just going to keep cranking out essentially glorified point one issues that continue the same thing they’ve been doing for years. I am now extremely hesitant to throw a bunch of money (especially since most are $4) on number one issues that will most likely be completely marred with the same continuity confusion problems.

    • @thompsonlive: I hear you. Did your retailer have the Marvel NOW preview book? I had one pre-stuffed in my bag. It had 3-5 page previews of Fantastic Four, FF, Iron Man, All New X-Men, Cap, Hulk, Thor, Deadpool, X-Men Legacy, Avengers Assemble and Red She-Hulk. The pages weren’t necessarily continuous, so it was more of an art preview, but it got me considering a couple books whose announcements hadn’t excited me. However, like you suspect, there were a couple books that — even in the preview — referenced some potentially-confusing continuity. But again, it’s hard to judge completely — recap pages and deft exposition might alleviate a lot of those problems.

      Come February, when this is all in motion, I think the consensus will pretty much mirror the reaction to the New 52 — there will be great books, good books, mediocre books, and terrible books. Just like… now.

      (sorry, I know that’s lame, but I couldn’t help myself!)

    • @KenOchalek No, I buy digitally and didn’t see any preview book offered on comiXology. I may have overlooked it though in my excitement to read Batman this week. I’ll go back and try to find it.

  53. As for the AVX connection criticism- If you look at the first announcement for Marvel Now, this book was billed from the very beginning as directly spinning out of Avengers vs. X-Men, an event I personally kind of hated, but I understood that going into this. So, I feel like a lot of the criticism on that front is unwarranted. You wanted the book to be something it never professed to be.

    • I certainly did not know that. All I knew was that it was the first big book heralding the arrival of their new marketing initiative Marvel Now and that I should jump on Now. As a potential new reader who might have been convinced to become a regular customer, I still think their first book out of the gate should have been a more new reader friendly ‘square one’ type of story. I was disappointed to read a bunch of people talking about what just happened that I’d already missed.

  54. Man, I know this is you spank bank and all but did you read this before you made it your pick of the week? Did you read anything else before you made this your pick? Bad move.

  55. All critical reviews are subjective and skewed by the perceptions and opinions of the critic. What happens here on iFanboy POTW is no different than any other “top X” list or review published by any other critic of media, travel, food…whatever. And the criticism of the critics opinion is no different either. Calm down.

    Both UA and Batman had high highs tinged with some serious flaws in my opinion. The art seemed a little off in some panels of both. Capullo’s Robin looked more like a Mad magazine spoof of Robin. Some of Cassaday’s smaller, condensed panels (like the conversation panel between Havok, Cap and Thor) looked quickly rendered or poorly inked and lost a ton of the detail he’s famous for. The writing in both also had some hiccups for me. The beginning of Batman had such a weird exchange between Gordon and Harvey, and so many snapped necks in it, that I actually had a hard time suspending disbelief and jumping into the story. It didn’t pull me in until the”Joker’s” television appearance several pages later. Wolverine’s memorial speech didn’t grab or move me and some of the problems with the pacing of the story and panels have already been mentioned.

    BUT on the positive side of things, and there are a ton of them in each comic, that backup story in Batman was perfection. And the exchange between Rogue and the Scarlet Witch…so good and so long in coming. Feelings the mutants may have towards Wanda (and for that matter, Pietro) serve as the perfect impetus of tension on a mixed team of “Marvels” and mutants. And the overall art and writing in each was wonderful. The last panel of Batman made me shiver and seeing Cassaday’s Logan again made me feel as though I was coming home to the Astonishing X-men universe. Either deserved to be POTW. It was a great week of superhero comics reading.

  56. @everyone

    First, the “taken seriously” comment was out of line and I apologize for it.

    Second, the only point that was trying to convey was that the POTW should be about something more than a personal preference. I emphasize SHOULD because I realize it is up to Josh, Ron and Conner to do determine how the selection is made (hey! as Conner pointed out, their formula has led to undeniable success; I’m certainly not going to gainsay that).

    Of course, selections of this sort have subjective qualities to them. I simply don’t think they should be wholly so. Even if UA is the title you prefer to read over all others, I don’t think you can avoid the problem that it clearly isn’t the best work out there on a particular week. At some point, standards have to be used to justify why a standard #1 issue is chosen over arguably the best creative team putting out arguably the best issue of the series. At least that’s my opinion…

    But I won’t belabor the point any longer. This will be the last comment I make. Sorry again if I’ve offended anyone…

    • PoTW is about “which comic book did I enjoy the most out of the stack I read”. Not, which one will win Eisners, or which one had the highest pull numbers or which had the “best” art, etc. it’s ” this book rocked for me the most”, end of story.

  57. Really strong week for me all around, I only picked up three issues but they were Punk Rock Jesus, Uncanny Avengers, and Batman. I think that any one of them could have been a contender for my personal POW, but I’d have to go with Batman. I did really enjoy Uncanny though.

  58. The very act of picking what you perceive as the best/ your favorite comic of the week is subjective. Period. There is absolutely nothing objective about an opinion. Objective opinion is an oxymoron.

  59. I was concerned about the whole concept of this when it was first announced and after reading the issue I have to say that my intuition was correct. Havok, Thor, Rogue, The Scarlet Witch, etc as a team is not a concept that gets me more excited that mutants could be fun again. If anything A vs X DID put the X-men back in their natural role of society outcast and anti-heroes and it seems like Uncanny Avengers is just Marvel putting popular characters in every corner of the Marvel Universe. It seemed like the status quo of what made the X-men so intriguing was back, but this issue just showed the same stale formula that has given us a gluttony of X-men characters everywhere.

  60. Rick Remender on the Red Skull? F*#k yeah!

  61. I am actually surprised at how much I did not like this issue I wanted to like it and I added it to my subscriptions. It better pick up quick or #2 will be my last. I am a Cassaday fan but this is far from his best work and I am shocked that so many seemed to like it. There was no real plot, just a random series of events that were not even that interesting in my opinion. This seems especially bad for a first issue that is supposed to represent a great jumping on point for new readers. Unless I’ve completely misunderstood the point of Marvel Now.

    The dialog is badly done and in some places seemed to be missing entirely. Rogue was especially bad. But so was Thor and Captain America. I’m not sure what the Skull’s lacky’s were supposed to be about but that scene was horribly done both art and scripting. The Red Skull wants to be seen as a hero now? This contradicts just about every other appearance the character has ever made. The Red Skull has always been hate for hate’s sake. I have not read Batman #13 yet, I have no doubt it is a better read. It would be extremely difficult for it to be worse than Uncanny Avengers #1. I’m not being mean, I’m actually very disappointed.

  62. Was really underwhelmed by what they served after all that hype. I haven’t kept up with AvX or most of the Marvel U in the past months, so its obvious this wasn’t supposed to be for me regardless of the #1 on the cover. Big Comics can be really frustrating at times like this.

    The art was well executed, but kinda generic and predictable. Disappointed that this is a big relaunch book with continuity already built in and very few creative risks being taken.

    Pretty underwhelmed and frustrated for this NOW relaunch, and will prob save my cash for a lot of these going forward.

  63. Pick of the week is very subjective, I would have picked Dark Shadows/Vampirella over this.

  64. There seems to be some real sour grapes over this pick and the thing I find interesting is that this comparison is between the first issue of one amazing team of creators to another amazing creative team that’s had a year to develop their craft as as a team. I tend to look at flagship title to flagship title. Let’s hearken back a year to Justice League #1 and I think the difference in quality between Uncanny Avengers and Justice League is pretty remarkable.

    • The flagship to flagship comparison is an interesting thing to consider. It was something I nearly did in a previous post, but given the fact that DC was setting up a new continuity with Justice League and not merely a new status quo like Uncanny Avengers, I left it out.

      In which book’s favor do you find the difference in quality to be remarkable?

      I liked justice league 1 last year, but not enough to stick with it past the first issue. I’m on board with UA for at least an arc, but I think that says more about how much I’ve invested in Marvel’s mega-narrative than any actual quality difference.

    • @Ken – It’s obviously a very subjective response on my part. but reading Justice League left me cold. I felt nothing for those characters and couldn’t have cared less if they cancelled with that issue. That issue was my re-entry into the world of comics and I am thankful my LCS owner suggested American Vampire and Lock and Key or I probably would have never came back.
      Uncanny Avengers felt like it hit the ground running which is the advantage of not doing a reboot. It was a bold story that took risks, as that ending was far from playing it safe. I feel invested and also confident that this story is only going to get better.

  65. As someone who was completely turned off by “AvX” and who thought Marvel NOW! sounds like something out of Tim and Eric, I am shocked by how much I enjoyed this, both the writing and art, and especially the last page reveal, which might be the best last page reveal in quite some time. Oh and John Cassaday killed it. The most important thing for me is I wasn’t lost, everything was summed up quite nicely while at the same time maintaining a forward momentum.

  66. I thought this book was solid. I don’t get the John Cassaday artwork being put down though. I thought this book looked great. As for the way the Red Skull looked, if anything its the best the Red Skull as looked in a long while, more true to the way he looked originally. I’m not a Cassaday fanboy here, this is probably the first book I’ve bought that he’s done the interiors for. I’m just saying this was a good effort, if he’s capable of doing even better than I can’t wait to see if he brings that to the table in his time on this series.

  67. I subscribed, and right now their service is horrible.

    So… la la la la la la….

    Taps toe…

    Doesn’t read about or discuss most anticipated new comic book of the month until next month…

    Enjoys being a subscriber greatly.

  68. I am not even sure if we all read the same comic book. Threadbare rationale for getting the team together and having Havoc as the leader of the team (Remender’s blue eyed, blond Teutonic leanings are starting to make me nervous now). A text book case of a marketing initiative hammered into a shapeless creative endeavor. Remender’s style of abrupt cutaways robbed any scenes of any buildup and emotional impact he was seeking to achieve. And were we really meant to be taking Red Skull’s motley henchmen seriously? Seriously!? Where the new iteration of the Four Horsemen in Uncanny X-Force was sublime and inspired, here when I saw the Living Wind unleashed, I went… surely Remender’s taking the mickey.
    And the art OMG. The same people that lament Land and Larrocca were singing praises of this? I counted a dozen different photo-refs used for Havoc, and about five for Wolverine, I started to wonder if they had gained shape-shifting as a blossoming latent mutant ability. And most of the backgrounds were photographs dropped straight in, poorly skewed and realigned and dropped in… just like that!!

  69. I ummed and ahhed about picking this up but after seeing a load of copies still on the shelf I picked it up with my DC annuals. I thought it was okay. It didn’t blow my mind but it was an ejoyable read. I read none of Avengers Vs X-Men but found it very easy to figure out what had happened prior. I will definitlye pick up #2 and if it’s better then #1 will probs continue for at least first arc. If not will drop.

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