The Greatest Avenger Who Ever Lived in Avengers #2 "Still Avenging After All These Years"
Where Avengers #1 focused on the setup, Avengers #2 is all action. Celestials are falling from the skies and that's kind of a big deal. Captain America, Thor, and Iron Man immediately jump into action, forming a battle plan to exploit weaknesses. They are soon to be assisted by Carol Danvers. In the meantime, She-Hulk and Ghost Rider have the stereotypical, “I don’t know you” buddy brawl, which we can only assume will result in teamwork down the line. Finally, Black Panther and company are strangely absent from all but a single panel.
The issue starts with narration using green lettering in the typical Norse style of Odin and Thor. It doesn’t take much imagination to discover which member of the Odin family this is (You’ll find out on the last page). It turns out this character is our real antagonist, who is setting things in motion behind the scenes. While Jason Aaron’s exposition works perfectly, I was surprised that the motivation behind the Celestials was revealed so quickly, especially considering the amount of setup and mystery conveyed in the prior issue.
Ed McGuinness' artwork shines, both in the moments of revelation and in action. In the opening sequence, we see the exasperation on Carol Danvers' face as she tries to slow down the descent of a falling Celestial. McGuinness’ perspective and panelwork show the enormity of these beings as they dwarf skyscrapers in the background. David Curiel’s coloring is dynamic and highlights the flexing muscles of She-Hulk, the flames of Ghost Rider, and the metallic sheen of Celestials.
Our story ends in a cliffhanger. The Avengers look thoroughly beat, and the mystery antagonist reveals itself while claiming to be the greatest Avenger who ever lived. I’m excited to read more, but I felt the issue lacked a flashback to Odin’s Avengers.
Avengers #2 packs the action #1 lacked, but answers questions too quickly. Despite that, it ends on a high note and I can’t wait to see what Jason Aaron and Ed McGuinness bring us in the next issue.