Axis Review & Spoilers: Avengers & X-Men #7 By Rick Remender, Adam Kubert, Edgar Delgado & Jesus Aburtov

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AVENGERS & X-MEN: AXIS #7 (of 9) Review & Spoilers

Story by: Rick Remender
Art by: Adam Kubert
Colors by: Edgar Delgado & Jesus Aburtov
Letters by: Chris Eliopoulos
Covers by: Jim Cheung & Paul Mounts; Ryan Stegman & Frank Martin; Greg Land & Frank D’Armata
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $3.99

“End the Line” (20 pages)

Rick Remender packs quite the punches (literally) in a score of pages. There are two main paths here focusing on two Omega-level villains: Apocalypse and the Scarlet Witch. One is a clone of the first mutant to ever emerge on Earth while the other is a conduit of chaos. Both unstoppable by the looks of it.

I’ve been following AXIS all along. I actually held off on ordering the entire mini and only bought the first issue for the hell of it. I had taken a foolish hiatus on the Avengers titles. By last weekend, I came to my senses and caught up on the back issues. I digress!!! The point is this: despite the simple premise, #1 left me intrigued to keep reading (but not necessarily buying). As I kept reading all subsequent issues, I decided to purchase them. MY PPRREECCIIOOUUSSEESSSSSS!!!

This issue, to me, is the ultimate pay-off (so far)!! On with the show!

Havok and Cyclops stare at Wasp in her holding cell while they discuss the need for the Gene Bomb. Havok still remembers his marriage to her and their offspring. He ponders if any human can be spared. Cyclops coldly tells him no. For the betterment of mutantkind, every homo sapien will be extinct. When did Scott become the antithesis of Professor X’s dream? He doesn’t flinch in telling Alex that his wife would be lamb to the slaughter to ensure the future of homo superior. Nightcrawler teleports to inform the brothers that Steve Rogers has a new army of Avengers to oppose them. As Cyke asks for the identity, they are transported to the battle scene. The inverted villains are the newest incarnation of the Avengers. I shudder at the thought!!

That mêlée is just window dressing for the first true battle. Spider-Man and Deadpool infiltrate Apocalypse’s ship in order to shut down the Gene Bomb. Spidey, in his ever-sharp wisdom realizes that there’s no way the two of them can take down a powerhouse like Evan Sabahnur formerly Genesis/Kid Apocalypse. Even in his Zen-like form, Deadpool is as loony as ever and charges in. He definitely embodies the motor mouth as he chews the fat non-stop while dodging Apocalypse 2.0’s eye beams. Spidey has no luck diffusing/dismantling the bomb. The closed quarters fight now has gone outside. Spidey gets a few jabs in the most scientific way disproving Big Blue’s theories on evolution while giving him a swift kick to the face. Too bad it’s like kicking the biggest and most solid rock formation.

The “villains” now get a bit of exposure. Carnage saves Spidey from Nightcrawler’s sword. While making a semi-serious statement, Spidey still cracks wise when he states he cannot vocalize (nor process) thanking his former tormentor. Sabretooth takes the righteous path only to be blasted by a ruthless Storm. He’s in a world of trouble now that the X-Men have become merciless.

Back to the main fray. DP’s new personality spewing love child mumbo-jumbo gets him nowhere as the Big A pummels him. This is definitely a new philosophical perspective: “Love is a lie. A tool used to control the weak…Hate is the truth of the world.” Smashdown!!

The second of two major fights picks off from last ish. To say that Wanda is pissed is a gross understatement. Not even the mighty triumvirate of Dr. Doom, Magneto, and Quicksilver are a match for her. Not even!! I’m confused here. While Wanda wipes the floor with her father, brother, and ex-lover, her spell doesn’t faze Magneto because he’s not her blood relation. HUH?!? When did this happen?? Left field for sure! Hate is the order of the day here. AXIS is living up to its name given that this is a twist which has left me in knots @_@ Wanda cranks up her hatred to level infinity as she takes down the Master of Magnetism. I’m perplexed. Did she take him down because he is family or because she’s so far off the deep end that there’s no way to overcome her? The elusive Doom manages to teleport away as Wanda vows to burn down his beloved country.

The All-New Captain America and the Superior Iron Man arrive in San Fran to convene with the other inverted Avengers (Thor, Kluh, Cage, and Medusa). Their objective is frighteningly simple: kill all their enemies which are their former teammates and the militant mutants.

DP vs. ‘Poccy reaches its apex. Remender resolves some backstory here. In Uncanny X-Force, Deadpool just didn’t have it in him to assassinate Evan. Don’t think that the former shell has forgotten since he tells the mouthy merc that he was responsible for slaughtering his progenitor’s body. ‘Poccy really puts the hurt on DP so much so that blood splatters everywhere. With one final blow, he decapitates ‘Pool with his enormous fists. As he stands victorious in a Hamlet-esque pose, a time bomb has just hit the 0.01 mark with the teasing words “To be continued!

WWWOOOOOEEEEEE!!! I can safely say without any hype that this issue is THE ONE that upped all the others. It’s about time that this story becomes streamlined and focuses on the nitty-gritty. It’s always exciting yet daunting to want to read or to try and incorporate every single member from either team. Even if it’s possible, that move becomes counter-productive to the meat of the plot. It’s evident (and sufficient) to have the focus on a member from each expansive team: Apocalypse of the X-Men and the Scarlet Witch from the Avengers. Done! Rick Remender wraps up all his past works by presenting them into this current context. He wrote each character well but kudos to his voicing of Spidey, Witch, ‘Poccy and especially Deadpool. He wrote each of these individuals with such passion and conviction. It left me engrossed and has me literally begging for more. With two issues to go, the evil might be taken out of the equation but another alteration to the Marvel landscape is imminent.

Adam Kubert captures the three main characters’ faces so superbly!! From the Scarlet Witch’s scowl to Deadpool’s derpy face to Apocalypse’s angry eyes. Wanda really appears as a witch as she powers-up to the nth degree. Apocalypse is worthy of his stature (pun intended) as he makes putty of the regenerating degenerate. Fabulous poses by the background players.

Edgar Delgado & Jesus Aburtov are another two men unfamiliar to me. I love the elegance of the red and black in Wanda’s costume on page 12, panel 5. In contrast, I care nothing for Pietro’s new costume. YUCK!! What horrible colour combo! In fairness, this is not Kubert’s design but he has to remain faithful to the current developments in All-New X-Factor. Great depiction of chaos magic lightning and energy bolts.

Chris Eliopoulos rises to the occasion with any challenge thrown his way. He really must enjoy the made-up sound effects. The bigger, the better, right?! Best new onomatopoeia: SCHUTNKK!!! That alone takes up 1/8 of the page. I’m sure he’s not responsible for this but seeing the trade dress for Axis appear as header and footer on page 1 is completely unnecessary.

To sum it all up, as the world keeps on turning and the axis keeps tilting, I give this book a 324 degree spin out of 360 (90%).

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