on 28 April 2013
A fairly slim tome this one - only 7 issues - but some of the greatest Avengers issues ever! Starting with that classic #181 and the Gyrich ordered new line-up that has been reprinted in so many different books but never fails to entertain this collection shows the pay-off issue #182 that blows the mystery of Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch's parentage wide open. (Loved seeing the alternate version of page 7 included at the back too!).
#183 and #184 are oft-overlooked classics involving a battle against the Absorbing Man which has yet to be equalled and contrasts the ways in which Ms Marvel and the Falcon officially join the team.
#185-#186-#187 are the main thrust of this book - a rollercoaster combination of exposition, continuity, characterisation and action that in modern Marvel books would take 12 issues to complete at least!
The letters page of #192 is included, explaining how all the aspects of the backstory were brought together and it's a fascinating journey. 'That page' from X-Men #125 is also here - which cemented the answers to the mystery at last once and for all!!
Stunning in this book is the artwork. John Byrne has his fans and his critics but when inked by Klaus Janson (who I believe he didn't like inking his stuff!?) there is a cinematic quality to the end result that raises these issues into classics. (Gene Day inked Byrne on #181 and there is a clear difference - almost scratchy in comparison.)
Avengers issues between about #150 and about #200 for me were about perfect and this book shows why!
on 18 July 2010
Well, yes possibly.
The book begins with a new Avengers rosta under the supervision of the wonderfully oily Henry Peter Gyrich who was to become a Marvel Comics mainstay effectively representing US National Security interests, later to provide many a major storyline within the Marvel Universe.
Writers Michelinie, Grant and Gruenwald then go on to document some minor heroic encounters and hi jinks (courtesy of Beast and Wonder Man) before getting on with the business of sorting out some major continuity problems surrounding Quicksilver, Scarlet Witch and WW2 Heroes the Whizzer and Miss America not to mention a certain "Magnetic" supervillain thus tying up some loose X-Men threads.
The quest takes the Avengers to Eastern Europe, to take on primeval demons and the "Knights of Wundagore" itself, all beautifully realised by the creators. Cue some wonderful Gothic European settings straight from classic Hammer movies where the supporting characters speak richly accented english no doubt and the Innkeepers warn against "the strange lights on the Mountain". All this and a Talking cow.
The juxtaposition of the Avengers against this backdrop works wonderfully and the John Byrne art who incredibly was doing duties on this and the X-Men at the same time is superb .
I wont ruin the plot by giving it all away but at this price for such a classic you cannot go wrong!
on 20 June 2012
If a book could evoke the sparkling magic that late 70s/early 80s Avengers stories were...this would be it.
If you are not in the mood for the overestimated snapping lines (and stupid plots) typical to a B.M.Bendis era, but are searching for a story that conveys all the heroics of a good, solid, Marvel-style story do yourself a favour and read it.
The art is great, in a very classic way (after all, it is John Byrne inked by Klaus Janson!) and the story, the pacing and the framing are superb.
David Michelinie writes some fantastic Avengers stories, and most of all, he works magic together with superartist John Byrne. Of course this book is famous for the origin story of Quicksilver and the Scarlet Witch (wich is of indeed very good) but in it you'll find also an amazing confrontation between Crusher Creel and Hawkeye, with timely backup by the other avengers, in one of the most down-to-earth locale ever shown in Avengers comics.
I like classic Marvel books, I loved this one.