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Avengers and X-Men: Axis #1: Review

Oct 2014
Rick Remender, Adam Kubert

Story Name:

We Will All Be Dead Tomorrow: The Red Supremacy, Chapter 1

Review & Comments

Rating:
4 stars

Avengers and X-Men: Axis #1 Review by (October 11, 2014)
Review: Well, the new mega-event gets off to a good start with much at stake against the giant mind-warping villain. Terrific art by Adam Kubert keeps the dizzying number of character from blending together as they start off facing an apocalypse; we could have been given a little more of a look at how this madness was affecting the world but throwing us right in was okay too. The only problem is a certain…familiarity: another Onslaught, Scarlet Witch turning against her friends (as in AVENGERS DIASSEMBLED), the usually silly Plantman becoming another Poison Ivy/Fluoronic Man (DC baddies), a villain getting hold of a hero’s dossier on defeating his teammates (classic Justice League story TOWER OF BABEL). Presumably this will all head off in a creative new direction and details like this will be forgotten. The most unexpected move: leaving Spider-Man (quelling the riots in Manhattan) completely off stage.

Comments: This event grows out of UNCANNY AVENGERS; issues #1-4 showed us the rise of the new Red Skull (actually a clone of the original) and his gaining of Professor X’s telepathic powers; issues #24-25 feature his transformation into Red Onslaught. Story takes place right after Sam Wilson succeeds Steve Rogers as Captain America and Thor loses possession of Mjolnir.

Stop the presses! Something strange I just noticed: Thor lost an arm on his first adventure with the ax Jarnborn after losing Mjolnir. So how come he has two arms and the ax here? I doubt AXIS #1 takes place while he’s on his way from Asgard to the Norwegian Sea. Will he regrow his arm so that it looks normal sometime during the first story arc of the new (female) Thor title? Only time will tell!


Avengers and X-Men: Axis #1 Review by (October 11, 2014)
I have something to add to the missing Thor arm problem. Avengers #35-36 set 8 months in the future have Thor with the axe Jarnbjorn and a *metal arm* which he might get in a later Thor issue. Maybe the Axis creators didn't want to preempt the Thor mag by showing the metal arm here? Or, if the female Thor doesn't appear in Axis, maybe it *does* take place between parts of Thor #1?

This issue was preceded by some bannered March to Axis:- In MAGNETO #9-10 Magneto discovers that Red Skull and the S-Men are imprisoning mutants in a concentration camp on Genosha island. They capture him and torture him. But he is freed by Rogue and Scarlet Witch. UNCANNY AVENGERS #24 shows a different side to the same event. Havok, Rogue and Scarlet Witch are captured by the S-Men but escape and free Magneto. Then in #25 they fight Red Skull and his minions. It ends with Magneto killing Skull, but the fact that RS has Charles Xavier's brain means that he gets recreated as Red Onslaught. #23 also had a scene where Skull ordered the capture of the 3, and said that Arnim Zola was ready to make his move too. UAv now disappears for the duration of Axis, or maybe longer. CAPTAIN AMERICA #24 was billed as part of the March, but it only really qualifies because it is made clear that Arnim Zola has been working for the Red Skull and so the mutates and Unvengers are part of RS's scheme. But on the other hand everything AZ has done since the beginning of the series could qualify, especially the depowering of Cap. In LOKI: AGENT OF ASGARD #6 Dr Doom kidnaps Loki and challenges him to a magic duel. It doesn't have anything to do with Axis yet, but next issue might get more directly involved.



 

Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Avengers and X-Men: Axis #1 Synopsis by Peter Silvestro

The Avengers, led by Iron Man, Thor, Vision, and the new Captain America descend on Los Angeles overrun by plants. It’s a scheme by Plantman to strike against the human world on behalf of the world’s flora. The heroes battle the quick-spreading vegetation but soon are fighting with one another, first verbally, then with their powers. Thor whacks Cap with his axe, Vision slams Thor through the Quinjet into the ground Cap conks Vision with his shield. Iron Man is the only one to keep control of his mind and he quickly clobbers Plantman; Hulk, however, remembering the events of ORIGINAL SIN 3.1-4, stomps him. Deducing that they are being controlled telepathically, Tony emits a signal which cancels it all out and the heroes return to normal. Tony is contacted by Steve Rogers in New York, telling him that every city on Earth has erupted in hate riots and he knows the Red Skull is behind it….

In Genosha, Havok awakens next to his wife Janet (Van Dyne) and daughter Katie—but it’s a fantasy implanted by the Red Skull and Havok is in a reeducation camp. Outside Magneto, Rogue, and Scarlet Witch are engaged in battle with the giant Red Onslaught, who is able to wield Professor X’s telepathic powers against them. The Skull slowly takes over Wanda’s mind, turning her to his side. Havok arrives—and blasts Magneto into a building, where he discoverers Cyclops, Quentin Quire, and Genesis prisoners. He frees them but soon they are fighting among themselves. Havok assaults Cyclops for having killed Professor X and is in turn blasted by Genesis, who is speared through the back by the villainous Ahab….

Back at Avengers Tower, protected from Red Onslaught’s mental attacks, Steve and the Avengers plan to go after the Skull once Iron Man has detected his location. Wasp is mourning the loss of the future where she and Alex (Summers) have had a daughter—which was erased by Kang….

In Genosha, the mind-controlled Scarlet Witch is fighting against her friends. Rogue uses her powers to absorb the villain’s consciousness and is overwhelmed by the images of brutality—until the mind of Professor X surfaces to encourage her to fight. Rogue leaps into the fray and carries Wanda away; once safe Rogue talks her through her guilt and self-doubt and they rejoin the battle. Meanwhile, the other heroes are batting each other and Ahab; Cyclops takes a harpoon for his brother. Just as the Red Onslaught looks most formidable, the Avengers arrive—Iron Man, Cap, Thor, Vision, and Hawkeye—to join in. Then X-Men Nightcrawler, Storm, and Colossus show up to take out Ahab; Scott and Alex reconcile and turn against their common enemy. Then more heroes arrive, Beast, Hulk, Iron Fist, Power Man, Dr Strange, Kitty Pryde and many more. Iron Man informs the villain that he is about to cancel out the telepathic message of hate; Red Onslaught informs Tony that he has found in an inaccessible part of Tony’s mind files on the weaknesses of all the other heroes compiled during Civil War—and unleashes the deadly adamantium Stark Sentinels programmed to destroy the gathered heroes….


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

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Adam Kubert
Adam Kubert
Matt Milla
Jim Cheung (Cover Penciler)
Jim Cheung (Cover Inker)
Justin Ponsor (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Chris Eliopoulos.

Characters

Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Beast
Beast

(Hank McCoy)
Black Widow
Black Widow

(Natasha Romanoff)
Captain America
Captain America

(Sam Wilson)
Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)
Doctor Strange
Doctor Strange

(Stephen Strange)
Hawkeye
Hawkeye

(Clint Barton)
Hulk
Hulk

(Bruce Banner)
Invisible Woman
Invisible Woman

(Sue Storm)
Iron Fist
Iron Fist

(Danny Rand)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)
Luke Cage
Luke Cage

(Power Man)
Nova
Nova

(Sam Alexander)
Professor X
Professor X

(Charles Xavier)
Scarlet Witch
Scarlet Witch

(Wanda Maximoff)
Thor
Thor

(Odinson)
Wasp
Wasp

(Janet Van Dyne)

Plus: Ahab, Angel, Cannonball, Colossus (Piotr Rasputin), Genesis, Havok, Hyperion, Kid Omega, Plantman, Psylocke, Sunfire.