Who will answer the call to guard the galaxy? Your Major Spoilers review of Guardians of the Galaxy #1 from Marvel Comics awaits!
Writer: Al Ewing
Artist: Juann Cabal
Colorist: Federico Blee
Letterer: VC’s Cory Petit
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $4.99
Release Date: January 22, 2020
Previously in Guardians of the Galaxy: The Great Empires are in turmoil. The rule of law is dead. And amidst the chaos, the Gods of Olympus have returned — harbingers of a new age of war, reborn to burn their mark on the stars themselves. Someone has to guard the galaxy… but who will accept the mission?
ROGUE GODS IN OUTER SPACE
We open in the capital of the Kree Empire, as a young blue child tries to explain to their parents that “Nowhere is safe.” Smash-cut forward to the entire world in flames, as someone who might be Zeus hovers over the chaos. Far away, on Halfworld, the remaining Guardians of the Galaxy are enjoying their retirement, with Rocket Raccoon recovering from a surgery that removed his cybernetic enhancements and Gamora wanting to just live a normal, quiet life for once. That’s when Nova arrives with bad news. Drax, Groot and Gamora refuse his calls, but Rocket and Star-Lord find themselves compelled to get involved, sneaking off on a ship to assist, only to find that Nova’s team is only six people, including them. With new members Marvel Boy, Phyla-Vell and Moondragon, they make their way to the Kree homeworld to find that the Olympian gods have returned after their recent deaths (which I’m pretty sure happened during ‘Avengers: No Surrender’), leading to a desperate battle and the last page reveal of what may be a new Guardian: Hercules himself!
“IT’S US OR NOBODY…”
This story does a great job of showing the toll of endless cosmic madness on the psyches of the players, and gives a really good explanation for some of the usual Guardians gang not returning to action. Ewing’s script also makes everything feel very personal, from Rocket’s new attitude to the loss of the Kree to the sudden return (?) of Hercules, and the assembled team is one that I’m very interested in seeing more of. The real star of this issue is the art of Juann Cabal, which combines detail and texture with classic superhero design work, making for some incredible scenery. He even returns Marvel Boy to his original shorts costume, which I’ve missed for some reason. Perhaps the best part of it all is the next-issue blurb that explains that this is part of a two-part story and not a six or eight issue epic, which I hope will give this team some room to grow and develop. Since this is the fourth or fifth Guardians relaunch in as many years, it would be nice to give these characters a chance to become the Next Big Thing.
BOTTOM LINE: AN IMPRESSIVE START
In short, even though it’s another universal cataclysm that has forced Peter Quill and his team out of retirement, it feels new and exciting, leaving Guardians of the Galaxy #1 with a better than average 3.5 out of 5 stars overall. With Ewing handling the writing, I’m more interested in a Guardians title than I’ve been in a while, and I’m hoping that Hercules is going to be sticking around as well.
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GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY #1
Unto The Breach
The return of the Olympian gods creates a whole new set of problems, needing a whole new set of Guardians and it all looks really great.