STORY: Jason Aaron (Part 1) and Kathryn Immonen (Part 2)
ART: Adam Kubert (Part 1); Stuart Immonen and Wade Von Grawbadger (Part 2)
The preface pages of Avengers vs. X-Men: VS #1 explains most of what you need to know about this series going forward. While it connects to the main Avengers vs. X-Men event, VS is all about fighting! Small on plot and big on visual appeal, VS is mostly about letting the artists draw some of the biggest and coolest fights ever seen in the Marvel universe. And, Marvel isn’t looking to squeeze every last penny out of you by limiting VS to six issues, one for each month of AvX.
This month brings us the “director’s cut” for the fight between Iron Man and Magneto, as well as the undersea brawl between Thing and Namor. Unlike the somewhat lacking main series, VS isn’t trying to dress up this superhero cat fight with actual plot. After a disappointing second issue in the main series, I was very much hoping that VS would be this event’s saving grace. Unfortunately, while the actual fights are fleshed out very well, the choices for who fights and who wins is absolutely absurd.
Can you really call him ‘Iron’ Man if his suit isn’t made of metal? I mean, I understand not being made of actual iron – that would be ridiculous – but shouldn’t Tony Stark’s suit be somewhat metal? Or at least have some metal parts? I find it very hard to believe that throughout his entire suit, there’s not at least a few metal pieces. But, that’s what Marvel would have us believe as Tony takes on Magneto. And wins. Yes, Magneto takes on IRON Man and loses.
The second extended fight comes from Thing – formerly of the Fantastic Four – and Namor, the Sub-Mariner and ruler of the former kingdom of Atlantis. After getting punched up into the air through a S.H.I.E.L.D. Hellicarrier, Thing crashed back down into the ocean and proceeds to defeat Namor. NAMOR IS THE KING OD ATLANTIS AND CAN BREATH UNDERWATER! I seriously almost became angry when Thing was able to breath using thermal vents on the ocean floor. How ridiculous is that? Namor is the obvious winner of this fight, yet the writers decide to make Thing the victor.
It very much feels like Marvel and it’s writers are trying to throw audiences curveballs with this series. It’s very, very obvious that Magneto should defeat Iron Man and that Namor should defeat Thing when fighting underwater, yet Jason Aaron and Kathryn Immonen (respectively) feel like giving the underdogs the victories makes more sense. Instead, it simply comes off as ridiculous and a slap in the face to readers who supposedly know these characters. I mean, how can Marvel justify making Namor lose a fight underwater? I simply don’t know.