Comic Reviews: Jupiter’s Legacy and Avengers!
Mark Millar and Frank Quitely bring us the first part of the “Greatest Superhero Epic of All Time” this week, and I have to say, that statement does ring true so far. Of course, this is only the first issue, but there’s enough teased here to definitely ensure my return to this world, and the issue gives us a first-hand example of why Mark Millar and Frank Quitely are some of the best in the business.
Focusing on the Utopian and his fellow heroes’ children, Jupiter’s Legacy yet again has the “heroes in the real world” premise, but the twist is that they are in our current world of 2013. These children let their aging parents handle the superheroing, while they do more important things like make endorsement deals and hang out at clubs. Not understanding the importance of helping others, we get some really great characterizations of not only the children of the heroes, but of the Utopian and his brother as well. After taking out a villain, the heroes can’t believe that their children couldn’t be bothered to help out, and it’s interesting to see how some of them either understand their children’s stance on sitting out or can’t understand why they aren’t more like they are.
Mark Millar has crafted some very interesting characters and plot here, and gives us just enough of an origin of the Utopian that we’re curious to see how it plays out in future issues. So far all we know is that it has to do with a mysterious island. This Fantastic Four meets Lost premise is very cool, and tying it into the Great Depression is an inspired choice. Millar’s depiction of the general indifference the children have towards superheroes and helping humanity is really spot on for how a lot of high school and early college age kids behave, and I’m really interested in seeing how the simmering tensions between Utopian and his brother (Utopian thinks they should stay out of politics, while his brother thinks they should take over) will play out in upcoming issues.
As for the art, Frank Quitely, as always, hits it out of the park. It’s been a long time since we’ve seen his work (probably since Batman & Robin) and his art is stunning here. The character designs are powerful and striking, and he’s absolutely at the top of his game in this issue. Jupiter’s Legacy will go down as one of his crowning achievements in the world of comic book art.
Fans of both Millar and Quitely will find plenty to love here, and those of us who read books from the “big two” will also find a lot to like as well. There’s a lot teased in this issue that will hopefully lead to an amazing comic, so get in on Jupiter’s Legacy now before the eventual movie adaptation comes.
It seems like I’m in the minority, but I’ve really enjoyed Jonathan Hickman’s run on Avengers, and this issue is no exception. The Avengers are called in to examine what happened to Omega Flight, the Canadian super team that went missing after the events of Ex Nihlo’s attack on Earth in the opening issues of the series. This one and done issue has a great central mystery that is actually resolved at the end of the issue, but it also leads to some interesting developments for Earth’s Mightiest Heroes.
Hickman gives us a smaller roster than usual, but this allows him to have some great moments amongst the team members. Long time allies Captain American and The Falcon have such a great interplay in this issue that I really hope Hickman gets the chance to team those two up again. Mike Deodato handles the art duties, and his art fits into the art style we’ve come to known in the past on this series. This issue of Avengers can be picked up on it’s own, but fans who’ve been following the series from the first issue will probably get more out of it.