Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Comic Review Wednesdays - Mighty Avengers #28

Mighty Avengers #28
Plotted by Dan Slott
Scripted by Christos N. Gage
Pencils by Khoi Pham

The Mighty Avengers have been busy since they assembled. Between the unspoken threatening Earth, and a traitor in their midst it doesn't seem like things are going to be slowing down anytime soon. Quite the opposite, really. By all appearances it seems like things are about to boil over; the scarlet witch confronted, cameos abound, and the Earth facing extinction? The heat hasn't broken yet, and it doesn't look to be getting any cooler this Fall.

Gage's script is something of a difficult beast. On one hand, it's impossible to deny that events have moved foreword, and on the other, it seems as nothing was really accomplished in this particular issue of Mighty Avengers. Indeed, the "Scarlet Witch Vs. Young Avengers" promise advertised on the cover (in both image and logo) is little more than a teaser. Largely this issue is a lot of set-up, with little plot pay-off, but Gage at least makes it interesting. The light that's shed on this stories villain makes him exceptionally more interesting, and that alone makes the ride a lot more fun. In addition to this bit of character work, the issue also sets up a new major conflict, proves a few laughs, and delivers a sold fight scene for the action hounds. To be blunt, it makes a run down the checklist "necessary components" but doesn't do too much else. Solid, but unremarkable.

For this reason it's a difficult comic to review. Certainly Gage could likely have made better use of some of his precious comic pages/panels but it's hard to hold it against him. It's with issues like this that a person begins to understand the difference between good writer, and great writer, and that's often a difficult line to uncover. Even with Slott-- A solid plotter, hysterical character writer-- at his side, Gage's issue simply feels on the "good" side of adequate. The kind of comic you didn't hate, but might not pick up again. Money is tight after all.

I'm not one for ambivalence-- generally, I think it indicates ignorance, if not stupidity but tonight all I really can muster to say about this is "It was okay."

RATING: 6 out of 10.
To be redundant, it was everything you'd expect an issue of Mighty Avengers with Slott's name attached to be, but with nothing to write home about. Slott/Gage's Mighty Avengers has been a fun, if obscurely decorated ride and this issue is merely a breather in which characters are moved around for awhile so that the plot can continue. To hook into this title you'll need this issue, and issue 27 at the very least.

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