Written by Jonathan Hickman
Art by Esad Ribic, Salvador Larroca, Mike Deodato, Butch Guice
Published by Marvel Comics
Release Date: December 24, 2013
Jonathan Hickman kicks off the next phase of his Avengers run with #24.NOW, providing a soft jumping on point for anyone who was intimidated by the scope of Infinity, but wants some Avengers goodness. The grand scope of Avengers is still present, and it is apparent immediately that this team is not getting smaller, nor are the issues they will face. Issue #24 features a massive problem, but Hickman deftly deals with it in a single issue, using the events to plant seeds for storylines to come. This issue is a fantastic primer for the next Avengers arc and as the tension built toward what is one hell of an ominous ending that had me clawing for the next issue. The fact that #25 is not in my hands right now is personally offensive, considering what Hickman has built toward in this issue. Alongside the seeds for the future, Hickman does an excellent job of showcasing the team dynamic of the Avengers and the role that each character plays on this mega-team, which was nice to see. Some of these characters play hard, they each blow off steam in their own way, and some…some never stop. Showing this dichotomy between the leaders and the team members was a brilliant storytelling move and played out very nicely in this story. Hickman is far from out of ideas since the epic Infinity and it looks like more golden times are coming for Avengers fans.
Esad Ribic is the primary artist on this issue and he does a superb job of keeping a strong “Avengers” feel to his artwork. His recent Thor work was immediately iconic, but rather than just transferring that style directly over to Avengers he delivered a different look that captured the Avengers brilliantly, showing relief, sadness, and vigilance through amazing facial work. Ribic’s style is well adapted to by Larroca, Deodato & Guice so that the flow of the issue is not broken, even with four artists. The art brings the weight Hickman’s script needs and does the story great justice.
Avengers #24.NOW is a solid start to the next phase of Avengers and Hickman does not appear to be slowing down one bit after the huge events of Infinity. Avengers fans have a jam packed issue of things to love within these pages, with some great art and fantastic storytelling. ‘Nuff said.
The Verdict: 9.0/10