New ‘Avengers’ writer Jonathan Hickman wraps up his first story arc since the relaunch began with issue three. In the last issue, we received a closer look at a few of the new faces that Steve Rogers and Tony Stark recruited to be a part of this new Avengers World plan like Shang-Chi, Cannonball, Sunspot, and more. We also learned that Ex Nihilo is looking to transform and “save” the Earth, but if he fails or is met with resistance, his associate Aleph would purge the world and leave it to die. Naturally, Captain America couldn’t let that happen, so his newly assembled Avengers team geared up to head back to Mars to aid the main team.

In this issue, we find out that Ex Nihilo has already begun the process of creating a new Earth, but he’s interrupted by Cap and the cavalry. Our heroes are ready to charge into battle against the creatures he created and the Hulk that has fallen under the control of Abyss. Slightly outnumbered and facing a threat they’ve never encountered before hasn’t stopped the Avengers before and it certainly doesn’t stop them now!

Overall, this whole first story was great. I can’t really say a bad thing about it. While I was reading this issue, I thought things were ending too abruptly and conveniently, especially when the mysterious Captain Universe got involved, but then I kept reading and wasn’t left disappointed upon completion.

During the battle, I like how we were given glances at a variety of different members of the team doing their thing. For people who’ve never seen heroes like Sunspot, Hyperion, and Smasher in action, seeing them briefly in battle was a nice introduction. Because of his little appearance in this issue, I’m looking forward to seeing more of Sunspot.

The newbie’s weren’t the only ones in action as Captain Marvel, Falcon, and Spider-Woman were all spotlighted in battle. The standout from the old crew for me though was Wolverine. He didn’t have a single line in exchange, yet he made me laugh because of his interaction with Spider-Man while they were freeing Thor. Don’t under estimate the comedic effects of a well-placed snikt.

Finally, the last thing that stood out to me was the narration on the last page of the book, especially the two lines in the last panel. I won’t give it away, but I pondered those lines for a good while after finishing the issue. Was it referring to the two characters’ past, or was this more of a foreshadowing line for the future? I’m very curious to find out.

Though it started out fairly complex, Hickman certainly delivered an excellent and enjoyable read for his first outing with Earth’s Mightiest Heroes. There’s so many places to go from here, so I’m looking forward to finding out which path he takes us down next.

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