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Sunday, June 10, 2012 

Avengers vs. X-Men's 5th issue makes fools of the first team

Wow, if this article on USA Today is correct, Marvel never even intended to try drawing in the moviegoers who've seen the Avengers film. It says:
In the new issue of Avengers vs. X-Men, the Avengers tussle with the X-Men on the moon and Tony Stark uses special Iron Man armor to stop the incoming Phoenix Force from obliterating Earth and possessing the mutant Hope Summers as its new host.

Mission accomplished? Not so much. Stark instead broke the Phoenix energy into five parts and it inhabited not one but five mutants — X-Men leader Cyclops, Emma Frost, Namor the Sub-Mariner, Colossus and his younger sister Magik — making them all-powerful and shifting the dynamic of Marvel's 12-issue event series.

"The mutants are now the Earth's mightiest heroes, capable of doing all this cosmic-scale, epic (stuff). And the Avengers are scrambling to keep up and keep things in perspective," says the issue's writer, Matt Fraction.

Making the Avengers walk a mile in the X-Men's underdog shoes was appealing to the Marvel brain trust, according to executive editor Tom Brevoort. "It completely changes the stakes and completely changes the landscape of the story and where it's going."
And it does nothing to appeal to anybody old or new to both superhero teams. Make the X-Men the big winners here, but why do it at the Avengers' expense? I also can't understand the idea of making the Sub-Mariner a mutant, since he's really a half-humanoid Atlantean, and hardly qualifies as part of the mutant species that's been muddled up for 2 decades now.

And here's where it gets even more ludicrous:
"Undoubtedly, a lot of what the X-Men are doing, it's fist-pumpingly cool," says Marvel's editor in chief, Axel Alonso. "Of course the looming question is, at what cost? And will there be a tipping point?"

Adds Fraction: "They're wildly evolving the world overnight. They're doing the work of a Phoenix, only instead of one there's five and each one has their own personality and thoughts, and things are great at first. But they're the X-Men. They're going to stop getting along at some point, and batten down the hatches."

Meanwhile, the Avengers are hiding out and watching of all this unfold, and there will be some differences of opinion about what's going on. However, Captain America isn't going to back down, which causes Cyclops to make the statement that Marvel already is using as a teaser for the AvX second act: "No more Avengers."
So they're paraphrasing that line from House of M where Scarlet Witch (or rather, her robo-duplicate) declared, "no more mutants"? Now isn't that insulting. They certainly didn't intend to cash in on the movie at all, judging by how reader-unfriendly this crossover is turning out to be. It's not cool at all, and the only cost involved is the cover price for the miniseries' issues. And the Avengers wouldn't just hide when there's danger looming.

And at the end, they blatantly declare the following:
The "game-changing moment" will lead into the final round of this grand bout, says Alonso, who looks at it in boxing terms.

"It comes down to heart, grit, stamina — just the will to win," he says. "When it comes to that endgame, it's about what are people willing to win, and the most fascinating stories are always ones which you challenge the reader to think differently.

"What we're willing to do, where we're willing to go with the material, there will be people (ticked off) at what we're willing to do at the end of this act."
They really enjoy boasting that, don't they, that people will be angry, for the wrong reasons, instead of feeling happy. It just shows how little respect they have for old and new audiences alike. And that's just why nobody should be wasting their money on a crossover that's little more than a pointless fight between 2 superhero teams instead of a story about heroes vs. villains.

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So far AvX is mildly more interesting than Fear Itself, but that's not saying much. Tony builds armor that splits the phoenix force? Oh brother, that's just moronic. Do we need any more evidence that they have run out of ideas, and that they think they can wow us (as if we are 10 year olds), with nonsensical stuff they just pull out of their hind quarters?

I'm sorry, but you have to realize that both teams, the Avengers and the X-Men, have saved the world countless amounts of times, yet it is the Avengers that receive all the acclaim, while the X-Men are still despised, endangered and even still hunted. Why? They have the same power sets, and despite mutants being a different species, they still try and protect humanity in it's fullness.

The X-Men have always been the underdog, and the Avengers have done diddly squat to aid them following the events of M Day. Also, the Avengers don't help out with worldly issues, leaving human wars and struggle, and millions to die daily when they have the power to stop it.

If you preview the next few tie-ins relating to the AvX, we see the Phoenix Five outlawing war in the world, they've begun to restore food shortages, and are utilizing the Phoenix Force for its healing potential.

What is wrong with the X-Men being the Earth's Mightiest Heroes and making real change? Unfortunately at the moment, the Avengers do not have the power to change the course so they need to just sit back and let the Phoenix do its work, of course until shit hits the fan.

So in conclusion, I do not believe this makes fools of the series or the teams involved. The Avengers need to eat up some humble pie for the moment, and the X-Men finally get their chance to shine, even if we all know it will not end up that way.

Once, decades ago, the comicbook and newspaper strip character Flash Gordon was a household name, a true titan of sequential art.

But inevitably senescence occurred. Decadent stories and endless repetition debased the sense of wonder and ultimately the sense of purpose of the stories. Recycled plots bored people to tears and Flash Gordon fell into shadow, never to recover.

And so to Disney's undead comicbooks, masquerading as the Marvel comics they once were. Zombie characters, most of whom have died and come back... The same old "cosmic" forces rehashed with no new ideas... In fact in the case of the witless Avengers vs X-Men it's barely even more than the 1964-1970 continuity of Marvel back when it had a coherent universe.

It's hard to understand how anyone could see this sort of endless crossover crap as anything more than the worst sort of mental masturbation.

Haha, this sounds almost goofy enough to buy for laughs. Is Stark gonna make an anti-Galactus armor next?

I think it's just another stupid "heroes vs heroes" story, a trend that started with Civil War and unfortunately continues to this day.

BTW, John Byrne turned Namor into a mutant (explaining the ankle wings as his mutation) back in the 1990s. Sadly, everything else that was actually interesting about that series was dumped, but that remains.

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  • From Jerusalem, Israel
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