Comic Book Review: Avengers #690


No Surrender I can’t say enough has been one of the best Avengers stories in a good long while. The Avengers involved, the enemies, the plot, all of it was quality decision-making with stellar results. These fifteen issues was a great reminder of what it means to be an Avenger. Most times we look forward to the finale as the climax of a big battle, but this week it is refreshing to have the opportunity to explore the fallout and how everyone moves forward.

The writing for what came next was perfect for capturing what it is like for these heroes to pick up the pieces of what they return to when the fighting is done. It was nothing new that the mansion would have to be built again, but it was the response to the efforts of rebuilding that mattered most. Seeing the heroes just being people is always crucial when this would be considered their downtime. As with most events like this, you expect some changes. I’m glad from the start there could be those that made sense considering how this game had weighed on their actions.

Voyager from start to finish was a delight. When she was an Avenger, they really made us want to wish this were true. As her own person after, she did nothing but impress when it came to becoming more than the madness of your usual Elder of The Universe. I’m glad that what looked like her disappearing in the issue before wasn’t the case when there was still much more that she could offer in terms of making sure that she was leaving on a good note. How the Avengers responded to her acts of heroism felt proper since they are not the kind of team that judges harshly. Truthfully, their initial reaction to Voyager not being who they thought she was was commendable for their ability to think with their heads rather than heart.

There was some changes in direction as well that I liked for the possibility that may come with the next wave of Marvel books. A lot of the main titles have been announced already, but that doesn’t mean that there can’t be more to come from some who have decide to embark on daring new adventures of their own. That and while some others might be taking a different path which may or may not be for their benefit. Many loose ends were tied rather quickly and to the point. It was important here that they left no stone left unturned when it came down to everyone involved in the Grandmaster’s game. That of course includes the two teams who were fighting for the Challenger and Grandmaster, and the Grandmaster himself. We would expect that this isn’t the last that we would see of any of them and it was for the best that this was the case.

Without the action, there wasn’t too much that stood out artistically aside from the need to simply deliver the same consistency in quality we have gotten for the majority of these fifteen issues. What mattered most here was the effort put into capturing the joy, pain, and celebration of either saving the world once again or surviving this experience. To that extent this art team nailed the atmosphere they needed to create here. And for the most part the atmosphere was constantly changing from setting to setting when there were a lot of characters to get around to in these final pages. They managed a lot within one issue which was impressive for the detail that went into it all. Especially said scenes where we stood on top of the ruins of the Avengers Mansion.

I must say, I don’t know how you can top this. There will always be a better Avengers story to come, but honestly this one had everything you could have wanted from a superhero story. Nothing intricate or too smart either, because that is not the only way to go big. The action was thrilling, the heroes/villains were engaging, and every twist and turn kept us guessing till the bitter end. Avengers #690 wrapped this up very well through substance over everything else. Overall, this was a heartwarming farewell to another era of the Avengers when next week move on to the next formation.

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