pspin's Avengers Arena #8 - Game On Part 1 of 5 review

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Avengers Arena #8 Review

Avengers Arena #8 Review

Overview:

The members of the Arena come together in the fallout of issue six.

The Good:

I will admit that when I saw the opening page with X-23, I was a little worried her portrayal has not exactly been the best in this series; but I was pleasantly surprised here when she did not only the right thing, but was written well. Nico, Chris, and Juston (who are the other non-original characters here) are also written well which is a relief as they have also been inconsistent. The story deals mostly with the fallout of Kid Briton’s death and how it brings almost everyone to the same spot. There is also a little twist at the end that gives a little kick to the issue as well. It is kind of like two steps forward, one step back but in a good way if that makes sense.

Dennis Hopeless writes the issue and delivers one of the best issues yet. There is a good balance of characterization and action here spread across the entire cast. It shows that, despite popular belief, he can write existing characters pretty well.

Kev Walker once again delivers some great art.

Jean-Francois Beaulieu colors the issue and it is pretty different from Frank Martin Jr.’s but it is also really good.

The Bad:

***SPOILER ALERT***

SERIOUSLY, THESE ONES ARE KIND OF BIG…

YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED

The biggest problem with the issue is that Hopeless tries to get edgy with Bloodstone and Apex but it doesn’t work. Bloodstone, as it turns out, is apparently gay for Anachronism and it really makes no impact on the story in the slightest. I really don’t understand what Hopeless was trying to do here it is a not really even out of nowhere because there has been the least amount of character development with Bloodstone as it is so there is no real value to the revelation. Due to this the action comes off as an attention grabber instead of progressing the story.

Apex is a man. This was totally out of left field. One minute she is talking to Death Locket as they run from the site of Kid Briton’s death, collapses and gets up as a guy named Tim. I don’t understand at all and this was weird and jarring. Seriously this was a complete shift from manipulative, mean yet clearly female Apex into whiny, weird, and now a guy Apex.

***END SPOILERS***

Verdict:

Dennis Hopeless and Kev Walker deliver a solid issue of a roller coaster series. Aside from two pointless “edgy twists” (if you can call them that) this was a solid issue with solid characterization for existing characters. Jean-Francois Beaulieu’s colors are a nice change of pace and compliment the art well.

3 out of 5

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