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Avengers VS X-Men #1: Review

Apr 2012
Brian Michael Bendis, John Romita Jr.

Story Name:

(no title given)

Review & Comments

Rating:
4 stars

Avengers VS X-Men #1 Review by (April 12, 2012)
Most of the current members of Avengers teams are shown here at the end, apart from those who have just left for space. The Avengers are missing Quake and Storm. The New Avengers don't have Jessica Jones. The Secret Avengers are without Ant-Man (Eric O'Grady) and new members Venom (Flash Thompson) and Human Torch (Jim Hammond). A surprise presence is Black Panther, who turned down membership in Avengers #19. But he's at a loose end now his own series is finished. Black Widow, Hawkeye, Iron Fist, Luke Cage, Mockingbird and Wolverine are shown equipped with heavy-duty battle staves. There are 3 characters with split Avengers/X-Men loyalties. Beast is on the space team. I wonder if Wolverine is really on the helicarrier at the end, given the stance he is going to take in upcoming issues. But nothing is said here about Storm, who joined the Avengers in Av#19. She's shown on this and some future covers as on the X-Men's side, but hasn't so far she hasn't been specifically mentioned in the blurbs for any issues.

The X-Men split during the Schism and Regenesis events. Wolverine wanted to keep young mutants out of the fighting, while Cyclops seemed to be willing to sacrifice anything for the cause. Cyclops' side remain based on Utopia. Wolverine's side returned to Prof X's old school. There are misleading references to Jean Grey and the Phoenix again, saying she had to commit suicide to stop it. That Jean Grey was a copy created by the Phoenix Force. And Cyclops says they were young when they last dealt with the Phoenix. This seems to ignore everything that happened since Uncanny X-Men #137. Namor has been with the X-Men since the founding of Utopia during Dark Reign. Utopia seems to be still independent from the US, even after the end of Dark Reign/Siege. In 1 panel near the end another group of mutants is seen with the main bunch. They are Danger, Domino, Magma, Warpath and 2 others I'm not sure about.

Avengers Tower was destroyed during Fear Itself. Since then the Avengers have been bunking with the New Avengers in Avengers Mansion, while Stark gets his tower repaired. Now they can move back home. I'm sure Wolverine is in 1 panel at the Tower, but he seems to get forgotten about by the writer/artists in the rest of the Nova incident. It's an odd mixture of folks at Avengers Tower. Iron Man and Protector are on the Avengers team. Ms Marvel, Spider-Man and Wolverine are from the New Avengers. Black Widow represents the Secret Avengers. Hawkeye's now in both Avengers and Secret Avengers. Captain America is in charge of all the teams, though he's been with the adjectiveless one for the past months. And Thor hasn't been on any team for a while. The teams that Cap set up after Dark Reign/Siege, and reshuffled a bit after Fear Itself, are going to be ignored, at least for the duration of the crossover event. Witness the group sent off to outer space in Secret Avengers. I can't help but feel that Black Widow and Hawkeye are included in the early part of the issue, with little to do, for movie reasons. Nova Corps is a bunch of intergalactic cops which includes Earthman Nova/Richard Rider. Rich was last seen trapped in an alternate universe after The Thanos Imperative mini-series. The Point One 1-shot suggested that the guy here is also called Nova, but it's not necessarily Rider.




 

Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Avengers VS X-Men #1 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
We open with the Phoenix Force devastating part of an alien planet.

Ms Marvel arrives at the rebuilt Avengers Tower, where Iron Man and Protector are squabbling over techy matters. Suddenly the assembled Avengers see something hurtle down from space and knock the wing off an aeroplane, and then knock the top off the Empire State Building.

The team splits up. Thor uses a hammer-whirlwind to guide the plane into the river. Iron Man incinerates the falling wing. Ms Marvel catches most of the falling building, while Spider-Man catches falling debris and people in his webs.

Meanwhile Captain America, Black Widow and Hawkeye fly a quinjet after Protector to the site where the space-object landed. And find a barely-conscious member of the Nova Corps who warns them "It's coming".

On the X-Men's Utopia island, Magneto and Emma Frost watch Hope Summers training with Cyclops. Suddenly she manifests the Phoenix effect.

Cap and Iron Man brief the President and his cabinet. They have found the energy signature of the Phoenix on the Nova uniform, and have deduced that the Phoenix Force is headed our way. they're sending a team (Beast, Captain Britain, Ms Marvel, Protector, Thor, Valkyrie, Vision and War Machine) to intercept the Phoenix in space before it gets here. (This team's adventures will be followed in Secret Avengers from #26.)

At this point Iron Man is alerted to the Phoenix effect on Utopia.

Cap goes to visit Wolverine at the Jean Grey School in Westchester. Logan tells him the Phoenix is coming for Hope. Cap asks him to help persuade Cyclops to work with the Avengers. Logan predicts Cyclops won't see sense. But Wolverine (re)founded the school to keep young mutants out of fights, so he's reluctant to take sides.

The Utopia X-Men, now including Colossus and Sub-Mariner, are discussing Hope and the Phoenix. Cyclops hopes to use the Phoenix as a force for good this time. The others aren't so sure it's possible to control it.

Captain America arrives and asks them to hand over Hope. He and Cyclops exchange heated words, and Scott blasts Cap with his eye-beams. The SHIELD heli-carrier de-cloaks, holding a large array of Avengers (Black Panther, Black Widow, Daredevil, Dr Strange, Giant-Man, Hawkeye, Iron Fist, Iron Man, Luke Cage, Mockingbird, Red Hulk, Spider-Man, Spider-Woman, Thing, Wolverine).



John Romita Jr.
Scott Hanna
Laura Martin
Jim Cheung (Cover Penciler)
Jim Cheung (Cover Inker)
Justin Ponsor (Cover Colorist)
Plot: . Letterer: Chris Eliopoulos.
Editor: Tom Brevoort.

Characters

Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Black Panther
Black Panther

(T'Challa)
Black Widow
Black Widow

(Natasha Romanoff)
Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)
Colossus
Colossus

(Piotr Rasputin)
Daredevil
Daredevil

(Matt Murdock)
Doctor Strange
Doctor Strange

(Stephen Strange)
Hawkeye
Hawkeye

(Clint Barton)
Iron Fist
Iron Fist

(Danny Rand)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)
Luke Cage
Luke Cage

(Power Man)
Ms. Marvel
Ms. Marvel

(Carol Danvers)
Nova
Nova

(Sam Alexander)
Red Hulk
Red Hulk

(Thunderbolt Ross)
Spider-Man
Spider-Man

(Peter Parker)
Spider-Woman
Spider-Woman

(Jessica Drew)
Thing
Thing

(Ben Grimm)
Thor
Thor

(Odinson)
Wolverine
Wolverine

(James Howlett)

Plus: Giant-Man (Scott Lang), Hope Summers, Phoenix Force, Protector (Noh-Varr).

> Avengers VS X-Men: Book info and issue index

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