UNCANNY AVENGERS #18.NOW – Brought to us by Rick Remender and Daniel Acuña, this ALL-NEW .NOW storyline weaves its way through a set-up familiar to X-Men and Avengers fans. The remnants of the team, the Wasp and husband Havok, find themselves in a world gone wrong thanks to time travel and the destruction of the Earth. It is a nonstop thrillride as they race to complete a mission they failed once already in the past. Acuña’s art leaps off the page, as his use of movement and color is simply breathtaking — as if a painting came to life. The story is also Remender at his best: Desperate heroes up against the worst of odds. Those shades of other stories might turn you off, but here a good goddamn fun story trumps those feelings of same-old-same-old. Oooh, and that final page… One note of caution: While it is the start of a new storyline, I’m hesitant to outright label it a great jumping-on point for new readers since it’s more akin to jumping into the second quarter of a really great game. (So, catch up on what happened in the first when the commercials hit; you may want to track down a few back issues to get a firmer grasp on what is going down despite the giant faux #1 slapped on the cover.) If you have been missing Remdawg’s Uncanny X-Force book and haven’t checked out this book yet, well, what the hell’s wrong witcha? Get on it congregation. 4/5.
IRON PATRIOT #1 – Hey, an all New Marvel Now #1! No really, an honest to Him That Hateth Geeks #1 issue (No .Now bull-baloney here…). The Iron Patriot is a family affair starring the title character, James Rhodes, his Dad and niece. New name, new look, new mission. It all works relatively well, if a bit pedestrian. A nice framing sequence sets up one of the mysteries to come, which so also happens to be some of the most straightforward writing of Ales (Zero) Kot’s career to date; there is more of a mainstream approach at work here compared to some of his more experimental indie work. The family interaction feels natural and works to help build up care currency in the characters. Kot lays out a great dynamic between Rhodey and his Dad that brings an understanding of just how he became the man he is today. Garry (The Massive) Brown’s artwork is nicely detailed without being over-rendered. Panel to panel he tells a good story that never takes you out of the narrative being laid out via Kot’s script. Overall, while Iron Patriot #1 does have moments where the story almost seems too quiet, there is some solid character development here that leads into the final action scenes and another mystery. 3.25/5.
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