Worlds Collide and Teams Clash in Avengers 672

by Spencer Irwin

This article will contain SPOILERS. If you haven’t read the issue yet, proceed at your own risk!

Avengers 672 opens with both the Avengers and the Champions having the same fight in two different places. A new satellite is about to reveal images either confirming or denying proof of the High Evolutionary’s Counter Earth, a planet sharing our orbit on the far side of the sun. Nova and Peter Parker have both been to the planet, but Amadeus and Wasp insist that it cannot exist because it would defy all laws of physics and throw off the balance of the entire solar system. Mark Waid and Jesus Saiz use this scenario — of two planets that cannot share the same orbit without causing destruction — to illustrate the problem facing both of these teams: they can’t be in the same place without tearing each other down.

Interestingly, there are still some solid bonds between the two teams — Peter and Miles and Amadeus and Hercules all get along famously — but the former members of the All-New, All Different Avengers are still dealing with the same tension that caused them to split in the first place, way back in the wake of Civil War II. I wish Waid would dig a bit more into those specific grievances, but for now, the culture clash between the adults and the teenagers is a simple and effective enough explanation for the hostility between the two teams.

Their conflict is best represented by the Vision and Viv, whose argument early in the issue leads to Vision deciding that it would be best for them not to work together in the field.

Like all the clashes between the two teams, it’s an issue that could probably be resolved if the two parties sat down and tried to calmly explain their situation and see the others’ side, but that’s something neither the Avengers nor the Champions seem to have the time or patience to do. Until they do, though, their partnership will remain a toxic one.

The meteor emerging from the supposed location of Counter Earth and the objects on Earth vibrating in and out of existence suggests that the High Evolutionary is losing control of whatever technology allows his Counter Earth to defy the laws of physics, and that it could very well lead to the end of everything we know. To win, the Avengers and Champions are going to have to figure out how to reconcile the two worlds, to find a way for both to peacefully coexist — but to do that, they’ll first have to do the same with their two teams.

The conversation doesn’t stop there. What do you wanna talk about from this issue?

3 comments on “Worlds Collide and Teams Clash in Avengers 672

  1. I don’t know why I read this issue. Maybe because the tease for the upcoming No Surrender story was one of the few vignettes in Legacy that really worked, instead of lost. I kind of wanted to have faith in the story, despite having a list of bad writers on it. But damn, this was bad.

    Why was the first issue of a story all about the Avengers and Champions colliding about a falling rock? Why wasn’t it about something that served to demonstrate a meaningful ideological difference between the teams?

    Why were the Avengers trying to stop a meteor? Why didn’t Jane just summon up a posse of similarly powered heroes like, say, the Ultimates or Quasar? If you are writing a book set in a world where the existence of multiple people who semi routinely deal with meteors exist, why are you writing a scene where it comes down to a bunch of guys with wings and web shooters?

    Why are the Champions trying to stop a meteor? Isn’t their focus supposed to be on superheroes as social activism? And again, when they have only a single member who honestly has any ability to complete the task, what are they doing?

    Why is something called a possible extinction level event bveing dealt with by teams so completely, inadequately able to deal with it?

    If the Vision and Viv are supposed to be representative of the greater difference and disagreements between the two sides, why is it so shallow? Why is their argument about minor procedural differences, instead of actual meaningful disagreement of ideology? Why doesn’t the Vision’s advice in any way acknowledge the need to assist the more vulnerable firemen? What even is the disagreement being shown here? Is it really ‘You should do it my way, not your way?’. Does Waid understand that despite the hormones complicating things, arguments between teens and adults work on the same principles as any other argument? That they don’t argue because of some biological imperative to argue, but because they have actual disagreements? Does Waid understand that ‘You should do it my way, not your way?’ is a meaningless argument? Does Waid understand this issue is built on meaningless conflict?

    Why is Nadia being so cynical about Counter Earth? Shouldn’t Nadia of all people be the sort of person that is excited by the possibility of something so inexplicable? Isn’t Nadia the exact sort of scientist who would be excited by the chance to puzzle something out this inexplicable? Isn’t the girl who thinks that she can do anything with science marvel at the possibility of seemingly impossible? Why does Waid of all people have no idea how to write Nadia’s voice? Why is the only legitimate conflict in an issue all about the struggles between the Champions and the Avengers, between scientists and personal experience?

    Why is the arrival of the Champions seemingly down in such a seemingly dramatic, intense way when at this point, there is literally no conflict? Why is Kamala’s voice so wrong? Why is the only legitimate disagreement between the Champions and the Avengers immediately backtracked by Sam apologising to Kamala? Why is there a single panel of Herucles talking about his club disappearing, not contextualised anywhere in the narrative?

    Once everyone is up int he air, why isn’t the actual action sequence with the meteor used to demonstrate the conflicts between characters? Again, what is the point of starting this story with a falling meteor that completely fails as a dramatic engine? Why does the meteor disappear, without contextualisation? Why isn’t there a single panel where someone notices this pattern and draws attention to the idea that something is happening, so that these events work on an issue level instead of feeling like a like too chaotic plotting?

    Why is Sam such an arsehole to Sam (or at least, why is Falcon such an arsehole to Nova)? How is this a natural disagreement? Why is the guy who already apologised to Kamala now being such an arsehole to her on the exact same point? What changed?

    Why does Vision say he and Viv are better apart? WHy is Viv so hurt by that? Is it to do with Viv’s actions in the cold open? But wasn’t Vision’s point there that Viv is better when she follows Vision’s instructions? Is it to do with Viv’s response to Vision getting hit possibly compromising her? But Viv, despite her emotional response, did everything exactly according to plan? Is it merely a tactical decision? But then why is Viv is hurt? Is it because she thinks Vision is injured and wants to be near her father to look after him? But why doesn’t anything make clear that he is injured, instead of merely taken a hit? Is it because she thinks the vision is angry/disappointed at her? Why?

    Why does every Waid book make me ask a million questions on the very basic plotting and character stuff? Why does nothing ever make dramatic sense? Why is he still writing this book?

    Why did I even think to give him a chance again?

  2. Dammit Matt, I didn’t like this comic a lot in spite of it having a ton of characters I really like and I knew all the voices were off and I knew the tension was forced and lacked feeling and I knew there were all kinds of problems in logistics and logic and cohesiveness… but I still liked it at least a little bit because I just like so many of the characters and it was at least visually a treat to see them all together (although I’m not a fan of the coloring)…

    Was the first page ever explained? The Spider-Man image and voice mash-up.

    Dammit.

    • The first page wasn’t explained, but it worked as functioned. Unlike the disappearing objects, that felt like the story needed to do something that connect it to the larger story instead of just being things that randomly happen (like have someone bring up the fact that things disappearing is a consistent issue), the first page does what it is supposed to. Tease where the story is going to. It created a mystery, and planted the idea that everything that was happening would lead to that. That worked. Everything else was a problem.

      And yeah, I like so many of the characters as well. And I would love to read a story with them all together. Hell, I love the idea of the Champions a lot and would love a story where the Champions and the Avengers come into conflict. Just not this story.

      And it is a shame that it is so bad, as the upcoming No Surrender story seems like it has a lot of potential and it is hard to muster enthusiasm for such a thing when this is the quality of Avenger book being released. But as much as I love the characters etc, it isn’t just about the characters. It is about the issues themselves

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