We've been waiting for the Phoenix Force to arrive and claim its host. That time is now. It's about to become a whole new game for the X-Men and Avengers.
After four previous issues, the Phoenix Force has finally arrived. With so much at stake, the heroes on each side have to really step up to stand their ground. There are some savage attacks and John Romita Jr. makes Wolverine, for example, look like a victim from KICK-ASS. While the battle rages, we do see other characters like Tony Stark and Hank Pym play to their strengths. Because so many characters are involved, it's great to see them being used in different ways. Rather than just gather as many heroes as possible and throw them at each other, we're seeing the fight take place on different levels in different ways.
We also are teased with appearance of other characters around the world. You have to wonder why they specifically were chosen to be used. Could be expect to see more of them? I do know one in particular is on the cover to an upcoming issue.
As for the main focus of the issue, we do get to see some movement in the plot. Big things are happening and we can expect some crazy action in the second half of this story.
It may not be fair to judge this single issue by the pacing of the entire first five but it feels like it's been taking way too long for anything to happen. All we've seen is fight after fight. Hope has been on the run. Wolverine has been trying to kill her or help her. Not a lot has really been happening. Even the member of the Nova Corps we saw in the Infinite Comics managed to arrive well in advanced of the Phoenix Force. Even while things are getting intense, the action reverts back to simple scenes of character fighting character.
For some reason I was bothered when Tony Stark said, "Testing is for suckers. We're men of science." That just didn't sound like him despite Matt Fraction brilliantly writing him in INVINCIBLE IRON MAN.
I can't say I'm completely thrilled with the outcome of this issue. I won't spoil it and obviously there will be an explanation as to why what happened did. It just didn't seem right.
The AR digital content still feels it needs something more. I don't need to see penciled versions of the pages.
If you've been waiting for something to happen in AVENGERS VS. X-MEN, this is the issue for you. We've been getting a lot of set up along with glimpses of battles throughout the first five issues. Now that the 'first act' has come to an end, we're seeing a progression in the storyline. There is some crazy events unfolding here, and you might also find yourself surprised by how the issue ends. I may have been having high expectations but I've found my excitement lessening with each issue of battles. Now I feel we have something to look forward to. This is a moment that should be noted in the history of the X-Men and Avengers. This issue should be read in order to prepare for the rest of the series.