Uncanny Avengers # 23 (Marvel)


CREDIT: Marvel Comics

Rating: 3/5 – A Jarring Change of Gears in Art Style.
by ComicSpectrum reviewer Shawn Hoklas.

Uncanny Avengers has been a great series that combines a wide range of characters from both the X-teams and the Avengers teams to give the reader a taste of both. Uncanny Avengers balances the ultra popular characters like Wolverine and Thor, with B and C-listers like Havok and Sunfire to have a unique mix of heroes. Writer Rick Remender has balanced the team’s individual exposure effectively while he’s told an epic tale that’s lasted for over fifteen issues, concluding last month. Issue twenty-three is the breather issue, focusing more on characters and less on the non-stop action, allowing Remender to put his characters back into place before the next big arc that leads into Marvel next major event, Axis.

Havok, Wasp and Rogue get the majority of the attention in this issue as Havok and Wasp have to deal with the tragedy of losing someone close to them, while Rogue has to re-learn how to use her powers after the sacrifice she made last issue. There are some touching scenes throughout, especially with the Havok and Wasp storyline, but Rogue’s change in powers and mindset feels forced for future story possibilities and something that we’ve seen before. The ending of the issue hints at what’s to come with an appearance by the Red Skull, but after the emotional stories presented for three-quarters of the book, it feels a bit out of place.

Unfortunately, the art can’t deliver on the story’s emotional feeling. Artist Sanford Greene’s style is extremely different from the artists that have come before and although he’s able to make the scenes with Havok and Wasp work, Rogue’s scenes fall flat with his loose and somewhat exaggerated style. Also, his Red Skull looks comical, rather than scary. It’s a style of art that doesn’t fit the character and again, much like writing, makes the ending feel out of place.

Ultimately, this issue fell short of the greatness the title has shown in the past for me.  As we get closer and closer to the Axis event, it makes sense to have an issue like this that makes the reader care for these characters even more. Unfortunately, it misses that opportunity, and the art inside didn’t meet this reader’s expectations when compared with the art of the previous twenty-plus issues. Hopefully this will be a small letdown in what’s been an overall fantastic series, as Remender and team attempt to right the ship with the start of the next big storyline.

Reviewed by: Shawn Hoklas
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