Customer Review

17 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mutantkind's Last Hope?, 22 Nov. 2012
This review is from: Avengers Versus X-Men (Paperback)
The Marvel heroes can be categorised in two ways - Avengers or X-Men. There are some who slip between the cracks (like Ghost Rider or Blade) but the majority of heroes have an alignment to one of those sides. The fans themselves are also split with some preferring the X-Men corner of the Marvel Universe and others preferring the Avengers side, so the Avengers vs. X-Men event felt more natural and organic than the rather contrived Civil War, where some heroes acted out of character in order to generate conflict.

Since the House of M storyline, the mutants have been at their lowest ebb and facing total extinction as a species, due to the unpredictable powers of the Scarlet Witch and her cursed mantra of "No More Mutants". After years of struggling as an endangered species, there is a glimmer of Hope, quite literally, when the first new mutant is born. A red-haired girl named Hope. Taken to the future by the time-displaced X-Man known as Cable, Hope grows into her teenage years and returns to the present to embrace her destiny as the mutant saviour.

During her time with the X-men, Hope exhibits powers that suggest a link between her and the entity known as the Phoenix Force. Believing that her destiny is to become a host to the Phoenix and to reignite the mutant race, Hope spends her time training for this ambitious task. The Phoenix itself reappears and heads towards Earth and towards Hope.

The Avengers recognising the global danger that the Phoenix force represents attempt to take Hope into their custody and protection, fearing that if she gains the power of the Phoenix that she would become corrupted and turn into the Dark Phoenix, a deadly and unpredictable cosmic entity. The X-Men refuse to hand over their saviour to their fellow heroes and tensions snap between the groups, leading to one of the biggest Civil Wars between heroes (well, since the last one!)

This event is the culmination of almost a decade's worth of stories which have been building up to this point, starting with the Scarlet Witch's descent into madness in Avengers: Disassembled, which led to her decimation of the mutant race in House Of M, with tensions building between heroes during Civil War and the X-Men's Messiah Complex with Hope and their recent Schism with Wolverine and Cyclops setting up opposite teams. As such, there are a lot of references to earlier events and satisfying conclusions to long running story-arcs. New readers can still enjoy this story without reading the earlier books, but will find themselves missing out of some of the more subtle story beats.

The twelve part storyline is quite epic, with more than one plot twist that changes the flow of the narrative to places you wouldn't expect. Despite the story being collaboratively written by five writers and drawn by three artists, it doesn't ever feel disjointed and works well on the printed page.

What makes this story more interesting than the past events is that there is no real hero or villain in this piece - just two leaders (Cyclops and Captain America) who both believe they are doing the best for their relative races. As an Avengers fan predominately, I sided with their team from the beginning, but it would be interesting to find out whether an X-Men fan would side with Cyclops and the mutants when reading the book.

Reading some of the battles are fun and seeing match-ups that you wouldn't normally see since these heroes usually fight on the same side. I particularly liked seeing Red Hulk getting his comeuppance at the hands of Namor, since he is a bit overused and overpowered, in my opinion. Most of the big names in both teams are featured in this main series, but some of them getting an extended appearance in the supplementary series, AVX Versus, which focuses on the fights rather than the plot.
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Showing 1-6 of 6 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 3 Dec 2012 13:12:58 GMT
TKennard says:
''The Marvel heroes can be categorized in two ways - Avengers or X-Men. There are some who slip between the cracks (like Ghost Rider or Blade) but the majority of heroes have an alignment to one of those sides.''
Sorry mate, but, that is wrong. Way more to the marvel universe than that. rest of the review is ok (I own all titles mentioned in this review and more, been reading marvel for 25+ years, but, do not pigeon hole the marvel universe into only 2 camps, utterly incorrect)

In reply to an earlier post on 3 Dec 2012 17:08:22 GMT
J Brackell says:
Okay, it was a sweeping statement, but nowadays I think Marvel's core heroes are either Avengers or X-Men. Definitely more so than a decade ago, I mean Spider-Man is an Avenger now, as are the Heroes for Hire, Doctor Strange and Spider-Woman. All characters who never had an alignment before. Besides I did mention there are some who slip through the cracks. If you look at the solo books published by Marvel right now, I'd argue 90% of them have an alignment to either Avengers or X-Men. The 10% are the ones that slip through the cracks. As I said, sure, I used a bit of a generalisation but I wouldn't say I'm utterly incorrect

In reply to an earlier post on 10 Dec 2012 20:37:37 GMT
The Fantastic Four ?

In reply to an earlier post on 10 Dec 2012 21:45:26 GMT
J Brackell says:
Given that the Thing was a member of The New Avengers briefly - I would lean towards an Avengers stance for the entire Fantastic Four. Anyway, my original point was in relation to this miniseries - you can group most heroes (most!) as either Avengers or X-Men, with some exceptions (as mentioned earlier - Ghost Rider, Blade, etc) but a lot of the former 'lone guns' are now Avengers - Luke Cage, Iron Fist, Dr Strange, Spider-Man and Spider-Woman. You can spend ages picking out characters who have never been an Avengers or X-Men, but I think my point still stands - the majority of characters have an alignment to either the Avengers or the X-Men.

In reply to an earlier post on 16 Dec 2012 13:04:07 GMT
er,,,,yeah..er..what about Batman ?

In reply to an earlier post on 16 Feb 2013 11:56:41 GMT
Shel says:
This event would only last one issue if The Batman turned up and it would be 28 pages of panels Batman slapping each character one by one.
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