Written by Brian Michael Bendis
Art by Adam Kubert
Release Date: July 18, 2012

We’re at the mid-way point of the second act and the rotation has made its way back to Bendis. Brian Michael Bendis is no stranger to writing high profile event books, and that calm and seasoned approach shows in this book. This script reads as though it was written with more confidence than some of the other issues in this series, with the events flowing seamlessly and effortlessly. The events of this issue, like the two prior to it, are monumental to the series and, potentially, the entire Marvel Universe and in the last five pages of the book Bendis ups the ante even higher than it has been so far. His Namor is written perfectly, a rage and arrogance only amplified by the power he has gained, and the broken Avengers are becoming more and more frantic as this conflict continues. The true power of this Phoenix Five is on display throughout the issue, and it is a wonder to behold. With each and every issue these writers are increasing the stakes of this titanic conflict and I am loving how the tension just keeps growing from page to page. The dialogue and pacing of this issue is excellent and I look forward to reading Bendis’ final chapter in this series when his rotation turn hits next.

Art duties are handled by Adam Kubert in this issue and at points the art rivals Coipel’s, and at other times appears unsteady. Kubert is a seasoned veteran, there is no doubting his artistic chops, but a couple of very large awkward panels through me a little. Had this issue followed JRJRs work, I would be singing its praises left, right, and center. With Coipel coming before Kubert the bar was raised a little higher than Kubert met with this issue, though I do look forward to seeing more. His layouts are fantastic, this issue flows brilliantly, and the all out brawl with Namor and virtually every Avenger was a fantastic set of pages to behold. In the end, the art is very solid in this issue and there are moments, as with all Kubert books, that are flat out fantastic. I’m hoping the next Kubert issue continues the strong finish in the final pages of this issue.

Verdict: 8.0/10


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