Where the second issue left me not even really wanting more, this week’s release of ‘Avengers & X-Men: Axis’ had my full attention now that the villains became involved. While the first issue hinted at how this Axis was going to happen and change the status quo of the Marvel Universe, I believe we saw the actual events play out in this issue even though it was never directly addressed. In fact, if you were keeping your reading at the speed of the break neck speed of the action, you may very well have missed what was hinted at.
Rick Remender has finally brought the current crossover into a truly favorable area in this issue. I’m not sure if he just likes the villains more or has been waiting for the truly interesting part of the story arc to kick in in before really getting his creative juices going. While it was a fun take getting the villains all in order here, I felt that Carnage felt slightly off. However, it was more than made up for it by a well written Deadpool (as the Merc with the Mouth) interacted with both Evan, who makes a fun return to a look we haven’t quite seen him in yet, and The Avengers by helping out Iron Man.
Leinil Francis Yu handles the art superbly in this one with some great action sequences between the villains and Red Skull who are duking it out big time. I have to say there was a big improvement over Kubert’s work from the previous issue. I think Yu has a better take on the characters as they look great on page.
I was extremely disappointed in the last issue, though in this one I feel that we’re truly getting somewhere. I believe this entire AXIS and inversion that Scarlet Witch believes will save the world from Red Skull and separate what is left of Xavier’s soul and powers from Red Skull’s clutches worked here. Not only that, but I think it worked a little too well. As Loki had previously said, Doom is only waiting for his chance to turn on everyone, either by purpose or accident. I think his working with Wanda may just be the final tipping point of what caused the falling out at the end of the issue as well as some of the other changes we’ve seen.
My theory is that this is going to be the true cause of what makes Iron Man change his ways as well as what helps push these villains to continue on a heroic path. We’ll see as the issues play out but I felt that this was a great springboard to the next issue and if that is their plan, it was a fun way to do it. A fun way that is easy to retcon when the event is over as the spell is dissolved or another one is cast to right the wrongs that were committed here.
‘Avengers & X-Men: Axis’ #3 delivers an action packed issue that could quite well be the stepping stone to many of the upcoming changes in the Marvel Universe. What started off as a series that I wasn’t enjoying is turning into a potentially great read depending how the next couple of issues play out on page.
AVENGERS & X-MEN: AXIS #3
Writer: Rick Remender
Artist: Leinil Francis Yu