March Classic Heroes Madness - - - March 09, 2011

 

INVADERS NOW  #1 – 5  (Marvel/Dynamite limited series Nov 2010 – Mar 2011)         Christos Gage & Alex Ross – Story.  Christos Gage – Writer.  Caio Reis – Artist.               Vinicius Andrade – Color Artist.  Simon Bowland – Letterer.                                                                     Alex Ross – Cover Artist.

Start with THE INVADERS in current time = Namor, The Sub-Mariner.  James “Bucky” Barnes, Captain America.  The Golden Age Vision.  Steve Rogers, Super-Soldier.  Jacqueline Falsworth-Crichton, Spitfire.  Thomas Raymond, Toro.  Joseph Chapman, Union Jack.  Jim Hammond, The Original Human Torch.   Add Zombies, Nazis, super-villain Uberkommandos, an other-dimensional Lovecraftian elder demon-god, and mad scientist Armin Zola.  Put them in conflict with the fate of the planet at stake.  Write a credible script and include elements that bring insights into the characters and the team, their values and principles.  Sprinkle with sharply scripted dialogue.  Add some incredible interior art and colors.  Top it off with exquisite painted covers.  That’s a recipe for a classic series.  Wow, does this ever taste good!  It entertains and satisfies.   It creates the same “feel good” sense of being that the debut of the Bendis Heroic Age Avengers team managed to evoke.  If only all Invaders sagas could be this good!

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ISSUE #1 HIGHLIGHTS:  A zombie with enlarged muscles and berserker rage creates chaos inside a Netherlands hospital as the contagion spreads through bodily fluids.  The Golden Age Vision unites the other five members of The Invaders as he infers that “only those present at the beginning may see this through to the end.  Only The Invaders can save this world now.”

ISSUE #2 HIGHLIGHTS:  It seems the original Invaders have encountered a zombie threat before - - during World War II  - - and it’s a regretful part of their history that they’d like to forget!   As they relive those days and the shameful resolution they were forced to take, we readers are treated to some great dialogue as the members discuss all their options back and forth. I don’t want to reveal any more details.  You have to read it to get the full effect, but it is very powerful and Christos Gage defines it perfectly and makes you feel sympathy for these characters and pride at the same time.

ISSUE #3 HIGHLIGHTS:  The Invaders travel to the original site of the infection and try to gather enough information to help those (Tony Stark, Reed Richards, Henry Pym, Hank McCoy) trying to help them find the cure. The art in this series is beautifully detailed, and the battle scenes in this issue are breath-taking.  So are the final pages when The Invaders prove how much heart they have by suggesting the ultimate sacrifice.

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ISSUE #4 HIGHLIGHTS:  Just when the story appears to be wrapping up here, it takes another turn in the road and gets even more complicated and less likely to be resolved the way that The Invaders would like.  Some incredible double page art and large panels move the action along at a fever pace.

ISSUE #5 HIGHLIGHTS:  The art and story combine to create a gorgeously depicted and wonderfully told resolution to the problem.  I’ve tried to indicate how good this book is without giving too many details away and I’ve deliberately not elaborated on some major plot elements.  I hope I’ve given you enough information to convince you to check this series out.  It’s simply the best story featuring The Invaders that I’ve ever read!

This story ranks right up there with the best of Gage’s work on AVENGERS: THE INITIATIVE.   The great art by Reis will remind you of the better interior panels of Alex Ross (when he did more than just covers), and I can’t decide whose art I like better.

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