A.I.M. has taken the initiative in its fight for domination. After capturing Tony Stark and brainwashing him into their own “Advanced Iron Mechanic”, they unveil another force under their control, FIN FANG FOOM! In a full on battle for the city, can the Avengers overcome the odds, or will they fall before one of their own? MARVEL ACTION: AVENGERS #3 is on store shelves now from IDW Publishing.
Writer: Matthew K. Manning
Artist: Jon Sommariva
Letters: Christa Miesner
Cover: Jon Sommariva
Publisher: IDW Publishing
Release Date: March 20th, 2019
Cover Price: $3.99
Previously in MARVEL ACTION: AVENGERS: The Avenger known as Iron Man has been captured by A.I.M., Advanced Idea Mechanics, and brainwashed into believing that he is actually a member of their organization. They also have successfully brainwashed the entity known as Fin Fang Foom into their service, and plan on using him to help facilitate their high jacking of a vibrainium shipment.
NO BAD DEED GOES UNPUNISHED
Aboard the S.H.I.E.L.D. helicarrier designated Howler One, a team of agents are processing their latest prisoners, Madam Masque and the unprincipled U-Foes. Fingerprinted, photographed and contained, it is standard procedure and goes without a hitch… mostly. Madam Masque, one of the most deadly of Iron Man’s foes, has a back-up plan, as usual. As she enacts it, she not only obtains freedom for herself, but for the U-Foes as well. Donning wing suits taken from S.H.I.E.L.D. storage, they make good their escape. Gee, I wonder if we will see them again?
Meanwhile, aboard an A.I.M. ship, a young soldier readies himself for the coming battle. A.I.M. took him in when no one else would, and he wants to pay them back. The leader of the assault lets him know that it will be his duty to monitor the Iron Mechanic while he, in turn, monitors and motivates Fin Fang Foom. It is an important job and it is made clear that any doubts in the young man’s mind about his actions or mission should be dispelled, or else.
High above New London, Connecticut, the aggressive forces of A.I.M. and the assembled Avengers clash. The Avengers, consisting of Black Widow, Black Panther, Captain Marvel, Captain America and the mighty Thor not only have a mission of defeating A.I.M. and protecting the vibrainium, but of finding some way to bring their teammate back to the side of right. Using aggressive team tactics and a barrage of attacks, the Avengers manage to open up a possible gateway into the brainwashed Tony Stark’s psyche, and he begins to question his actions. The wildcard is the young A.I.M. soldier, Agent 4-9-12, who is monitoring the situation. How will he react, and what about the failsafe bomb that was unintentionally activated? The Avengers had better get to avenging, or someone else may well be avenging them!
WHAT YA GONNA DO WHEN FIN FANG FOOM COMES FOR YOU!
MARVEL ACTION: AVENGERS continues the line of all ages books from the Marvel stable which are being published under the watchful eye of IDW Publishing. As with the Marvel Action: Spider-Man I reviewed previously, I still think this is an odd arrangement, but it is one I enjoy. This book, while promoted as all-ages, is suitable for adults as well. The story has not been “dumbed down” as some all-ages titles seem to be and there is a great continuity feel to everything. This is the Avengers you know but never read. It is history and action brewed down to a fine story that captures all the feeling and mythos that you have always loved about the characters, but none of the baggage of current events.
That feeling of solidity is largely thanks to writer Matthew K. Manning (Beware the Batman, Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) and his experience with writing licensed titles. He cuts through all the baggage that a character may have in their current monthly title and distills the essence of them into a sort of archetype for the character which embodies all you love about them but none of the bad. Additionally, he is laying out overlapping plot lines that are taking their time to surface organically, as with the way the Madam Masque sequence ties in with the Fin Fang Foom presence that leads to the surprise reveal at the end of the issue. He is laying the foundation of the story, and when he finally is able to reveal it, it has the potential to be as solid and enjoyable as anything he has ever written.
On the art front, we have Jon Sommariva (Star Wars Adventures, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Amazing Adventures). He has a friendly, fun, action-packed style of art that calls back to some of the famous artist of the genre but is distinct enough to call his own. His character designs are wonderful, and I really have fallen for his Advance Iron Mechanic armor, and home that it makes appearances in the future. Great panel layouts, aggressive action sequences, and distinct character designs make for a great read.
BOTTOM LINE: ALL-AGES ACTION EVERYONE WILL ENJOY
Sometimes you may just be looking for a book that you can just read and enjoy, without having to catch multiple crossovers and callbacks. Many times an all-ages title can fill that role, but the stigma “all-ages” generally carries (i.e., kiddified), stops many “serious” comic fans from picking them up. That’s a shame, because this is a damn fine title. I can enjoy the story, pass it on to my kids, and never worry about them getting lost by the complexity, but at the same time know it is setting up the foundation for a lifetime of fandom.
MARVEL ACTION: AVENGERS #3 is an all-ages title which is truly for all ages. Pick it up and enjoy!
Marvel Action: Avengers #3
Solid writing, spectacular art, and a lot of action makes Marvel Action: Avengers #3 a must pick up title for fans new and old.