Two Guys Talking About Avengers Assemble #5 By Brian Bendis and Mark Bagley

Pulse Glazer
We’re back again, hopefully to stay. With Marvel doing a soft-relaunch, Bendis is going from being weak on one of our most favorite titles – Avengers – to tackling Grey and I’s favorite Marvel property of the past few years – Cosmic Marvel and the Guardians of the Galaxy. These two properties meet with Avengers Assemble #5 so what better way to return than to review this title?

Grey Scherl
We could have had an issue of AvX to thrash the hell out of!

 

Glazer
But this was good! Let’s return with the positive.

 

Grey
But seriously, for those who may not know, the two of us are big fans of the cosmic stories Marvel had been publishing the last several years under the control of Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning, chief amongst them, Guardians of the Galaxy. We may not be regular Avengers readers, but we follow our Guardians.

 

Glazer
Which is why we bought this movie cash-in title to begin with. The Guardians return!

 

Grey
And Starlord gets an awful redesign!

 

Glazer
You see, when Abnett and Lanning left, DNA, as their fans affectionately call them, had broken the team up. Star-Lord, who was dead or trapped in a pocket dimension with Thanos is back… without explanation… with an awful redesign.

 

Grey
Nova, Rich Rider, was there too. That’s how they really capped off their time in the cosmic sandbox, by removing their two cornerstone characters to eliminate the biggest threat in the universe. Sure, they did the Annihilators minis, but The Thanos Imperative was really their endgame.

 

Glazer
So, naturally, when Bendis brought back the Guardians and Thanos with no explanation, we hated it, but a strange thing happened. Grey, care to explain?

 

Grey
The issue is….if you can ignore everything that happened with cosmic Marvel between Annihilations and Annihilators vs Avengers…..pretty damn good.

 

Glazer
It’s the best Bendis team book I’ve come across. Everyone is in character, everyone is acting logically to figure out what Thanos wants and how he’s going after it.  The Guardians get strong personalities and the teams don’t have a stupid fight with them.
It’s actually even way better than the Guardians episode of the Avengers cartoon.

Grey
Which is hard to do since that episode was phenomenal.
Though to tack on to the Guardians problems, and this one goes back to the obvious fact that Bendis never read The Thanos Imperative, Drax is alive and on the team, despite dieing during that event in a pretty….matter-of-fact way. I think he was atomized by Thanos.

Glazer

Right, but, and I’m an avowed Bendis critic, the guy is putting out his best work across the board in years.  Assemble – excellent, New – very good, and Ultimate Spider-Man/Men are both excellent where even Fulton loves them.

 

Grey
He’s having a resurgence after scraping the bottom part of the barrel for the last several years, I can’t deny it. I can, however, point out that his greatest successes lately have come in continuities he has created or flat out ignored.

 

Glazer
Still, better than nothing since it’s not like he’s going anywhere.  Why don’t you explain for us the plot of this one?

 

Grey
The most-likely-movie-inspired Guardians roster joins up with the Avengers to explain how they are, essentially, the space Avengers, and that Thanos wants to rule the Earth. It was actually pretty straight forward, but the little moments made the issue. Like the fact that Bendis actually gets Rocket and Starlord…even if that costume is an eyesore.

 

Glazer
I’m sure it wasn’t a Bendis design. Who drew this?

 

Grey
Mark Bagley

Glazer
I usually love his design sense… hm.

 

Grey
If this was any other character I doubt I’d mind, it’s very classic space super hero, very silver age.
But Peter Quill isn’t a super hero.

 

Glazer
Sure he is, in much the way Cap often is – he’s a solider – or, rather, a general.

 

Grey
Yeah, but Captain America’s look shifts more and more by the year into something that looks like armor.
I mean, have you seen the Marvel NOW! promo image with his new look? He looks like a soldier and it totally works for him.
Just like Starlord’s helmet look…that helmet was freaking awesome.

 

Glazer
I don’t like the costume, but he’s being written as the same guy. Hell, there’s a pretty major shift in Star-Lord between Annihilation and Conquest.

 

Grey
He had all of his tech implants ripped out and was forced to lead a Dirty Dozen team on a suicide mission.

 

Glazer
And now he’s been trapped with a demi-god in an evil universe. I can see another shift, I guess.

 

Grey
Let’s be honest, it never happened.

Glazer
I’m not ready to say that yet.  Someone will explain it away somehow. It won’t be Bendis, I’m terrified it’ll be Loeb, but it will happen.

 

Grey
Loeb will have to do it when he explains how a Nova exists again after the Nova Force got locked in that dimension along with Nova, Starlord, and Thanos.
I imagine Bug is going to die a horrible death soon.

 

Glazer
I’d be okay but Bug dying. He’s a fun character, but Rocket is comedic enough that we don’t need both.
Someone else, Warlock or Groot or Major Victory, will be reintroduced to be a part of the movie-verse.

 

Grey
I hate the character of Major Victory, but as far as making a movie connection, you really can’t do any better. He has Captain America’s shield, that’s an instant connection.

Glazer
I don’t know if they want to do time travel, but if they’re willing, it works. Nova works nearly as well as a tie in.

 

Grey
If you’re going cosmic you might as well do time travel

 

Glazer
I think they’ll be wary of it. Just call it a hunch.

 

Grey
I agree with you, I just think the shield would be cool. Groot is the real must have.
I’ll also toss in that Thanos coming to Earth for the Infinity Gems was the most predictable thing Bendis has possibly ever done.

 

Glazer
I’d love Groot, but I don’t think he’s must have. I just see one more character being added. My guess is still Adam Warlock.
But Thanos ISN’T coming for the gems. He doesn’t know the gems are there.

 

Grey
Alright, then next question, where the hell are the gems? Is Cap storing them all together?
I bet you Cap is storing them all together.

 

Glazer
That’s something that I don’t expect adressed for a few years.
But I’d rather talk about who we know is on the Guardians roster. How do they do these guys for the movie?

 

Grey
I imagine it’ll be addressed next issue.
The team is actually pretty movie friendly if you break down just what each character is.
You’ve got your human leader in Starlord, which will give audiences a point of view character.
Gamora is your sex symbol.
Bug is obnoxious comedy.

 

Glazer
She works as a Black Widow-esque spy, too.

Drax will essentially be Kratos meets Hulk.

 

Grey
Rocket is a Raccoon. That talks.
And has guns.

 

Glazer
Bug dies so Rocket can be comedy gun Raccoon… and breakout star.

 

Grey
Rocket is going to be the star of the movie, let’s just get this out of the way and declare it now.
Audiences love Ted right now? They’ll fucking adore Rocket Raccoon.

Glazer
Agreed fully.

 

Grey
He’s pure personality and violence in an adorable shell.

 

Glazer
They need another power-house. Groot or Warlock. Maybe Nova.

 

Grey
Nova deserves his own movie.

 

Glazer
I doubt he gets it with the rush to Avengers 2

 

Grey
Warlock would be a lot of work, and it would pay off, but establishing the perfect evolution of man isn’t the easiest concept.

 

Glazer
I don’t think we get much by way of origin for Guardians.

 

Grey
Groot should be a lock, he’s a tree that announces “I AM GROOT”. He’d be the best CGI ever.
I imagine we get Quill’s told in five minutes and that’s it.

 

Glazer
Right, that’s got to be it. I don’t know if they do two full CGI characters.

Grey
For a Raccoon and a Tree, yes, yes they do.

 

Glazer
I’d love it, but I can see a studio exec thinking that will make the team not taken seriously.

 

Grey
On the note of the book though, it bitchslaps continuity, but it’s a fine issue. I love that the Earth is officially closed down and off limits just as much as I love that they flat out get called primitive beings with godly powers.

 

Glazer
It makes great sense, but with the Shiar here this week in AVX it’s bad editing.

 

Grey
I was hoping you’d point out that apparently there’s a ruling class of space that makes the rules.

 

Glazer
That there’s been off and on for awhile.

 

Grey
Maximum Security

 

Glazer
Various councils have existed since at least the 70s.

 

Grey
I also like how Cap was offended by the primitives statement and Iron Man is like “Yeah, that’s pretty accurate.”

Glazer
That was an awesome moment and fully accurate.

 

Grey
The humans of Marvel’s Earth are pretty set in their mindset that they are the best things ever and completely infallible. Despite that they don’t even seem to understand Earth politics, let alone galactic ones.

Glazer
It makes sense why – Earth humans are constantly being invaded and genetically manipulated by these aliens. It’s very well thought out.

 

Grey
Like, remember when Iron Man tried to tell Nova that the Civil War was bigger than the Annihilation Wave.

 

Glazer
Right – time… and Skrulls…. have given him perspective.
Well, looks like we like this, time for a rating?

 

Grey
Spending a year running from Norman Osborn will do that to anyone.

 

Glazer
Ha, that too.

 

Grey
I’m going to give it a 7.5.
It was really enjoyable, and I’m giving it a fair “ignoring the continuity holes” review. Because the people this is geared towards aren’t the people who read Guardians.

 

Glazer
I’m going with an 8. Bendis’ best team book work since at least pre-Civil War. I fully expect an annoying answer to the continuity issues here, but as they have no reason to explain that yet (the Avengers don’t know Quill was dead and the Guardians already know how he returned), I won’t hold it against this issue.

 

Grey
I’ll tell you one thing, New Avengers this week gets a 9 from me, but that’s a review for another time!

 

Glazer
See you in a couple days everybody!

 

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