Comic Reviews: Avengers vs. X-Men and Swamp Thing!
Avengers vs. X-Men #9
The latest issue of Marvel’s summer event definitely takes the cake, kicking all kinds of ass and upping the stakes in the fight between Marvel’s two flagship teams. With their numbers dwindling, the Avengers make a last ditch attempt to save their fellow teammates from the Phoenix Five X-Men’s prison. The fight will not be an easy one, and more than one member will have to nearly put everything on the line to protect his teammates….
Avengers vs. X-Men #9, written by Jason Aaron, is an awesome installment of the storyline, and may be the best yet. The action hits extremely heavy here, and you really get a sense of the desperation that the Avengers are feeling with their backs against the wall. There’s no easy way out of this battle, and when they storm the hell on Earth prison you start to hope they succeed. A lot of this is due to Aaron’s stellar script, which really captures the tense feelings Captain America and co. are feeling. But the real standout of the issue is Spider-man, who bravely decides to go toe to toe with a Phoenix possessed Colossus and Magik. Aaron nails what makes Spidey such a great hero. Even as he faces two beings completely and utterly out of his power class, Spidey still hits them with his trademark banter, taking a punishing beating in the process that allows his teammates to escape.
Adam Kubert’s art, as always, is stellar on this issue. You feel every punch Peter Parker receives, and the quieter moments between characters like Black Panther and Storm are treated with the same care as the action scenes. While Avengers vs. X-Men has been a rather uneven ride, issue 9 will go down as not only one of the best moments of the series, but for Spider-Man as well.
Swamp Thing #12
Alright,I’m just going to say it: I shouldn’t have trade waited on Animal Man. Not just because I keep hearing how amazing it is, but also because I needed to have read Animal Man #12 before picking up the newest issue of Swamp Thing. Both Scott Snyder and Jeff Lemire (the writers of both Swamp Thing and AM respectively) trade the storytelling duties here, which is a direct continuation of the previous Buddy Baker story. There’s no recap page at the beginning, which is a shame, as I would probably be correct in stating that not everyone reading Swampy would reading Animal Man (and vice versa).
However, from what I’ve pieced together from the first installment of the story (which I’ll pick up), Swamp Thing and Animal Man have teamed up to stop “the Rot” from taking over the Earth. For those unaware, The Rot is essentially an undead version of the Borg: they live to consume flesh and turn it into undead monstrosities. Of course our avatars of “The Green” and “The Red” (Swamp Thing and Animal Man) are here to prevent The Rot from decimating the Earth, which would be easier said than done had they not been trapped in the “Rotworld”, and returned to Earth one year after the Rot takes over. While I may not be happy with having to go back and get part one of this story, Thi issue was still extremely entertaining and left me definitely wanting more.