Avengers vs X-Men has been the big blockbuster summer crossover and is nearing its finale. The first issue came out on April 4th and its been a long time coming. Its a mammoth task to incorporate most Marvel heroes and create a 12 issue arc using 5 highly acclaimed authors. Some negative reviews have been given but I am not here to dwell on those, however the biggest problem I have had is that the story has dragged. The authors have written different issues and this has been created by Ed Brubaker. I feel I say this a lot but he is one of my favourite writers, and has been since his Captain America & Daredevil runs. He can craft a great story with good pacing and bring out a character’s inner turmoil well. This issue is no different.
It has taken a long time to get here but the plot takes relatively large strides involving Cyclops and Hope’s power struggle. Cyclops has become a megalomaniac and has been chasing Hope for a very long time, and its finally time for confrontation. It plays off well but the parts I truly love are the side plots coming into fruition and these involve Emma Frost’s descent into chaos, Xavier making a stand and Magneto facing the truth. I have theorised for the last three years that Cyclops is gradually turning from the belief of Xavier’s dream to Magneto’s nightmare. Testament to this is Xavier being exiled and Magneto being a mentor to him. The belief that mutants are powerful and should rule to protect their species, not live together with humans as equals has never been truer. The phoenix force provides a brilliant crescendo for this personality change and allows Professor X to realise he has failed as a father and Magneto to see he has watched the creation of a monster. Brubaker dedicates the majority of this book to the action between Cyclops and Hope but the few panels focusing on Xavier and Magneto speak volumes and show you the future of this book.
The artwork by Adam Kubert is on the whole good. The heroes’ visages are chiselled and crisp allowing for strong action fighting stills and well built drama. I find the perspective a little difficult to follow. The panels move from being close up to far away and then from a different angle. It is like watching a scenes from different viewpoints and I find the flow jerky. The colouring is bright an colourful and once again adds to the epic story. I like how the raw power of the phoenix force is bright yellow and almost a little whitewashed and it feels like the power is blinding the reader. This is by far my favourite AvX book and it feels like it is building to an interesting and game changing climax.