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Posts Tagged "apanelfromeveryissueoftheavengers"

AVENGERS: CELESTIAL QUEST

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I have to love Avengers: Celestial Quest because it’s written by the great Steve Englehart, who was one of the founding fathers of Marvel Comics as I grew up on it. His stint on Batman is one of the greatest ever (it was the one that turned Joker from a silly ditz into a truly frightening villain); he wrote the Avengers-Defenders War; he turned Patsy Walker into Hellcat; and he was responsible for one of the best Dr. Strange runs of all time.

But by the 1990s, he was past his prime. Or so we all thought. With Celestial Quest, he made a story about his weirdest creation, Mantis, a character who started with the Avengers, moved to the Justice League, and, with this miniseries, returned to Marvel. It’s true, look it up.

But these posts are about Thanos, not Mantis, and what Englehart did for the Mad Titan here was pretty cool. Above, you can see how in one page he recaps the past 20 years of Thanos’ history, all leading to this character moment:
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The story is a wonderfully bizarre assemblage of weirdos and cosmic concepts that all culminates, essentially, in Thanos becoming a complete narcissist.

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In the end, he rejects Death once and for all…

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I’m pretty sure this was Steve’s last work for Marvel.

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THE AVENGERS INITIATIVE

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I know I’ve stopped reading Avengers for this blog, having read every single issue up through the Civil War, but I thought a good “post script” on my “Every Panel of the Avengers” series would be a note about Dan Slott and Christos Gage’s great series Avengers: Initiative.

The book was underrated–written off my many, including me, as a fully dispensable book that existed solely to support the post-Civil War/Dark Reign period.  That was a mistake.  In fact, the book served as a great transition from Tony Stark to Harry Osborn’s periods as head of SHIELD.

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The book took a realistic approach to training superheroes, with paramilitary education formal basic training.  One wonders why The Avengers never did something like this sooner?

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Real Dan Slott fans know that he did a similar thing with Spider-Man, after he lost his spidey-sense–having the character train with Shang Chi.

The book also gave us Tigra’s baby–a character that Marvel hasn’t done enough to develop.

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In fact, one of the hardest things to do in comics–especially Marvel/DC comics–is to introduce new characters.  But this book did so throughout it’s run, as well as reviving a lot of esoteric, unused Marvel characters.  Check ‘em out:
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RIP to a great series.

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NEW AVENGERS #21-25

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I don’t love Howard Chaykin’s art, but this shot is fabulous.

The Civil War is the end of my review of The Avengers.  I know I promised to review every issue, but we’re coming close to the current period, and this is where “event fatigue” really begins to set in.

I don’t plan on stopping covering Fantastic Four, because it gets all the better when Jonathan Hickman comes on board–but this is where Avengers really peaked.  Maybe in five or ten years, I’ll pick it up again–but after this, there was a sea of Avengers books.  Some good, some bad, some bland…But the book never again got as good as it was before this.

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Yes, it did.  I’m out.

Thanks for reading, and stay tuned for a panel-per-issue examination of another great series!

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