Spring 2018 will go down as a milestone era for Marvel Entertainment, with the runaway success of their film franchises Black Panther and The Avengers. Marvel characters and stories have transcended pop culture and have now become household names. Hoping to cash in on this success, Marvel has rebooted its flagship comic franchise, The Avengers, with a new first issue and a reimagined roster that includes familiar characters from the films and television series.
Marvel legacy was built upon team based comic books; first with the Fantastic Four, then later with the Avengers. The Avengers titles always gave readers the chance to immerse themselves in huge stories with the best characters in Marvel’s Stable.
Following this template, this new incarnation of the Avengers features the three most familiar characters that longtime readers and casual fans associate most with the Avengers: Captain America, Iron Man and Thor. Longtime readers may know all the trials and changes that have affected these three characters over the last year. However, new and casual fans are given enough of their backstory during their first meeting together, where each discuss their individual state of mind and why the Avengers must reunite under their leadership. Personally, this is where the book shines. The dialogue between the three characters reveals each of their own concerns and hopes for the future the state of the Avengers. Writer Jason Aaron provides enough characterization in the limited space given that each character feels as if they are each struggling to cast their burdens aside for a new beginning.
Surprisingly, creators Jason Aaron and Ed Mcguiness have chosen to include some interesting addtions to the rest of the roster. Fans will be happy to see Black Panther and Dr. Strange partner up in a side mission underneath the earth’s surface, as well as Captain Marvel and She-Hulk’s vignettes to establish their ties to the main story. Although, the most surprising addition to the team is the latest incarnation of the Ghost Rider, Robbie Reyes. Reyes is a relatively new character in the Marvel Universe, having held his own title and being feature in the tv series, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. It will be interesting to see where Ghost Rider fits in with this team of established main event heroes, but it is refreshing to see a newer character join the ranks of Marvel mainstays like Thor.
The one complaint that I have is the introduction of the Avengers from One Million Years Ago. Featuring the First Black Panther, The Original Sorcerer Supreme, Odin of Asgard, and The First Iron Fist; these characters can be confusing for newer readers who have not read the Marvel Legacy one shot issue from a few weeks ago. While their inclusion aludes to a bigger role in the overarching plot in the future,perhaps the creators could have waiting another few issues before including them so soon.
Marvel is guaranteed a best seller with this newest volume. Hopefully, the creators can turn this version of the Avengers into one of the most memorable versions in Marvel History.