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on 16 October 2017
The new Dark Phoenix saga arrives, brings the death of one of the premier heroes in the canon and sets us up for the Red Onslaught. Really good event comic, I enjoyed this. Artwork is the usual high standard we've come to expect from Marvel.
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on 8 January 2013
Fanboys and schoolchildren working on the "who would win if Y fought X" will love this. Unfortunately, it is also a perfect example of how not to write in a shared world, whether professionally, as here, or in fanfiction.

Firstly, if you are going to retcon canon extensively, make sure you have given your reasons. Here the authors have picked and chosen bits of the long Phoenix/Dark Phoenix saga and dismissed the rest. It is unfortunate that the bits they have picked do not fit together. If the retcon of the original Dark Phoenix saga in 'Phoenix Rising' did not take place, and Jean Grey really did die on the moon, then, really, fellas, Jean wouldn't have married (and subsequently divorced) Scott, and it wouldn't be the Jean Grey School.

And that is just the simplest of the problems created here. I find suspending my disbelief rather difficult.

Likewise, it is not enough, when you have characters acting so far away from their normal behaviour - particularly characters like Captain America and Scott Summers - it is not good enough simply to excuse it by having another character (in this case Iron Man and Magneto) say, "Hey, you're acting like me," and expect that to cover your asses as an explanation.

As for having a polar bear in Antarctica just so you could do a call-out to 'The Empire Strikes Back' - spare me!

Setting all that aside, there is some fun dialogue, and some really nice art. Not so much on the characters - some of which look very odd - but on the splash panels.

You do get a lot for your money, though, and the production is lovely. See if you can get it discounted.
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HALL OF FAMETOP 10 REVIEWERon 20 May 2013
This storyline, running through issues #0-12 of Avengers Vs. X-Men, is written by all the big guns, and drawn by other big guns, and is collected in Avengers Versus X-Men. It begins with the return to action of the Scarlet Witch and ends with the arrest of Cyclops for crimes against humanity. Nova crash-lands in New York bringing news of the approach of the Phoenix force, which leads the Avengers to try and gain access to X-Man Hope. Cyclops doesn’t approve and fired the first shot in a battle that will ‘change the Marvel Universe forever’ again. It is well-written and excellently well-drawn, the plot actually makes more sense than most big events, though characterisation occasionally takes back-seat to plot development, but this is a comic book, not War and Peace. When the Phoenix force arrives, Tony Stark’s attempt to stop it causes it to split up and infect five X-Men, who use the force to create almost a House of M-style utopia - but without the bad stuff – while the Avengers descend into almost a rerun of the Civil War / Dark Reign period, which I am sure is not just a cheap copy but meant to show the corruption of power, as the Phoenix 5 slowly become corrupted by their power, and turn on each other in order to acquire more. Eventually the Scarlet Witch and Hope are able to bring the story to a conclusion, as absolute power corrupts absolutely, we get a final resolution to the House of M event, and, this being America, someone has to go to jail for it all…

I only gave it four stars because, despite the power corrupting business, Cyclops seemed to be acting out of character, though that may have been building up over the past few years of X-crises.
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on 9 November 2014
awesome comic, awesome read
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on 7 December 2016
Great product, delivered on time.
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on 25 September 2015
I'm not going to explain the entire story like other buyers have. I never really understood the point of that but hey. I decided to grab this as I noticed a copy in a book shop for £17.99 and then found it here for £7.00 (great value by the way for such a big book). I enjoyed this book for about 60% of the story. Then I got bored. The avengers characters are interesting and fun in this book but I have no time for Xmen. I never have and this book sealed the deal for me. The backbone of the story is pretty cool but the endless fight scenes are all over the place and it just never ends. Maybe I've been reading too much Batman over the years but I just wanted a bit more from this book. I ended up skimming the end and couldn't wait to get back to Grayson, Sex Criminals and Batman New 52. If your a Marvel or Xmen fan you will probably love this. Not for me this time.
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on 1 February 2013
I suppose that the purpose of the big Marvel events such as this is to bring in brand new readers to the title and cut through all that has gone before - it can be the only reason for completely ignoring the personalities of the characters that are supposed to be portrayed here. Even so this book fails as it deals with the Messiah saga from the X-men - which has been ongoing for over 10 years so new readers are unlikely to understand to status quo coming into this book.
It is mainly written by decent Avengers writers (Bendis) and X-men writers whose stories were hated by fans (Fraction, Brubaker, Aaron)the good X-men writers (Gillen, Carey) are kept well away in order to increase the Avenger's status after the film.
Hilariously though in the attempt to portray one side as in the right they go far to far and actually make them responsible for everything that happens if you read the story and not just look at pictures of punching which is all the writers assume anyone reading this will do.
This should be avoided - but the new titles it has led to look to be really good so far - and Marvel can at least be praised that it didn't do a DC and treat it's readers like complete morons.
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on 6 March 2013
I'd been somewhat concerned that this was going to be just a big punch `em up. I was pleasantly surprised. The plotline is one of great important to X-Men comics, dealing with the return of Phoenix and what comes afterward, and it's dealt with quite well. At times there's a bit too much plot over characters, but in many of the issues characters still manage to shine through. (I think Bendis and Aaron do the best job at various points.) My only major problem with the core store that the way that five certain characters start to act dramatically out of character halfway through the comic. Yes, there are good reasons for it, but it feels very artificial and we don't really empathize with them afterward. Still, a great story with great repercussions [7/10].

The additional books in this collection, the Infinite and the AvX issues, aren't actually that important. I think the storyline would be just as good without them, and I'm unlikely to reread them if I read the series again. Still, the AvX were generally enjoyable and I thought the last two issues were particularly good. [5+/10].

I do have two complaints about the physical hardcover. First, the idiots at Marvel mar the art throughout by pasting stupid "ARs" on it, so that you can scan them with some artificial reality program (knocking yourself out of your reading experience while you do). NOT COOL, Marvel. Leave the art be. Second, it's glue bound which means it's hard to read stuff toward the margins, which is a struggle throughout the book. I don't know why they went cheap on the binding of this £40(!!) book when they could have given it the omnibus treatment. These two elements detract enough from the comic to bring my rating down.

(If I were just reading a TPB of Avengers vs. X-Men #0-12, without the stupid "ARs", my rating would probably be higher.)
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on 18 September 2013
First off, John Romita Jr's artwork is stunning in this. That guy just gets better with age. The other artists do a decent enough job too, but his pages in particular are a joy to behold.

On to the actual story itself.

It was built up so much, I was expecting something big and amazing. Don't get me wrong, it is still fun to read, but when you compare it to other X-Men books (Astonishing X-Men run by Joss Whedon, The Dark Phoenix Saga, even Second Coming and Messiah Complex), it just seems a little bit shallow at the emotional level.

Other reviewers hit the nail on the head when they say that the characters were written to behave differently to how they would otherwise, just to get them to fight each other. Cyclops and Captain America were made to act super aggressive, completely outside of their character.

[SPOILER]
One example, Captain America asks Wolverine to do him a big favour and help him. Wolverine puts his loyalties to Cyclops and the other mutants to one side and agrees to help him. During the mission, Wolverine goes off on his own, not sticking to Captain America's orders. A bit later, they go up in a plane with a couple of other Avengers. Captain America and the other Avengers beat the hell out of Wolverine for not following orders, kick him off the plane to plummet several hundred feet into an arctic wilderness. Erm, okay, Captain America and the Avengers have never acted like that in my entire experience of reading comics. Later on, Wolverine re-joins the Avengers and fights alongside them as if nothing happened. To me it felt like the writers put that scene in just to have an excuse for Wolverine to fight Captain America. Felt odd and very out of character.
[SPOILER FINISHED]

The above example is one of a few silly moments in the book. Besides the odd WTF moment, this is still a fairly good read. Just not the epic classic a lot of people would lead you to believe.

It is what it is. A big, fun, action blockbuster, lots of explosions, fighting, special affects, bang, bang, boom, boom, ooh pretty! Just don't expect to be deeply moved by any of the characters or story.
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on 22 November 2012
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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