May 4, 2015

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FCBD Spotlight: James Kaplan on All New, All Different Avengers/Uncanny Inhumans


The All-New, All-Different Avengers/Uncanny Inhumans  (Marvel Comics)

As you might gather from the look at Secret Wars #0, Jonathan Hickman does comic storytelling on a huge, macro-epic scale. Apparently there is going to be an Avengers team at the end of Secret Wars (so, it's a relief to know that the universe is not going to cease to exist). If Marvel was going for a contrast to the epic, "designed" feel of the Hickman Avengers, they couldn't have picked a better contrast in Mark Waid, who knows plenty about big superhero stories but always keeps the action and emotion very grounded. This is a very different look for the Avengers, and it's nice to see that some of the strides that have been made in inclusion are not being erased by the events of Secret Wars. I really enjoyed the art here from Mahmud Asrar, with bright colors from Frank Martin. Asrar really gives each character a lot of personality; it's expressive, emotive art which isn't easy to do when many of your characters are wearing masks. It's a nice depiction of action, and works well with Waid's more character focused (while still exciting) superhero storytelling. 

This team includes Sam Wilson as Captain America, the female Thor, The Vision and Iron Man, along with a very strong youth infusion from Ms. Marvel, Miles Morales (Ultimate Spider Man), and Nova.  It's a diverse, interesting team, and we get to see youth and experience interact. Waid excels at bringing the big superhero excitement while never losing sight of the human element (see: Daredevil).  

There's also a story about the Inhumans which is a preview for the new book the Uncanny Inhumans. In this short, entertaining story, two new Inhumans emerge at a film premiere in Mumbai. There's sinister forces who want these Inhumans for their own ends, but Queen Medusa and her team are there to save the day. Charles Soule has a good handle on these characters, including the nobility and commitment of Queen Medusa. Brandon Peterson (with colors from Justin Ponsor) provides highly detailed, compelling art that brings the frenetic action to life. The art team also illustrates how strange and confusing it would be to suddenly change in these unpredictable, drastic ways.

Both books look like a lot of fun, though I'll admit the Inhumans still don't do that much for me as characters.