Writer: Dennis Hopeless
Artist: Kev Walker
Colorist: Frank Martin
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Hello there fellow comic book readers, today’s review is the new series Avengers Arena #1, written by Dennis Hopeless (who I just wrote a review of his other title Cable and X-Force, so be sure to check it out), and art by one of my all time favorite artist Kev Walker (Thunderbolts). Off the bat, most readers will think that this is a ripe off of stories like The Hunger Games or Battle Royal, so is it just a terrible ripe off?
It is both a yes and a no, it is definitely a ripe off, down to the cast being a bunch of kids and that there can only be one “winner.” Yet after reading the issue, I must say it really isn’t bad, in fact it is very good, for a cast so big and a medium with not much room for a lot of time to tell a good story (most of the times) in one issue, Dennis has created something that has made me emotionally invested and waiting for more. Also, using and bettering Arcade was a smart idea, instead of creating a new character, making the story believable. I have to admit I love this title a whole lot more then his Cable and X-Force, with an even more unique cast, Dennis has wonderfully gave me characters that I felt for. I really felt the emotional investment with Mettle and Hazmat, so what happened with them really resonated with me, and makes me hopeful for more well development of these characters, and that this won’t really be the last time I see these characters. These are characters with a good fan base, and they are the future of the Marvel Universe, so lets hope he will do them justice, I hope Dennis can continue with their development without their needless death in the end. Also, I love that there is a good amount of action blended in with a nice amount of dialogue, especially compared dialogue heavy and weak stories of a lot of other Marvel Now titles I been reading so far, making Avengers Arena a exciting and fun read.
As for the artwork, I have always loved Kev Walkers artwork, so his stuff was a big draw for me, making this title an even more worth whiled read. Kev has always developed constant high quality artwork, very detailed characters and backdrops, great action scenes and he actually brings some life and creativity to his pages by changing up his panel designs. Frank Martin has been paired up with Kev many times before, and his color work complaints Kev’s lines very nicely, smooth and vibrant in color palette, making Kev’s lines pop out more.
Avengers Arena was a definite enjoyment, great showcase of character drama, an even blend of action and dialogue, and well develop characters that Dennis seems to have a knack of giving life and making the audience feel a bit of investment in the cast. If you get past that this is an unoriginal concept in pretty much everyway, and read the comic for what it is, a solid teen superhero drama, then there is no doubt that this is a wonderfully entertaining read. Also, having great artists like Kev Walker and Frank Martin definitely made this a title to look out for, so this is a “Definite Buy,” anybody looking for there fix of characters from Runaways, Avengers Academy, or X-23, then check out this fun title.
Here are a few pages from Avengers Arena #1, be sure to pick up your own copy which is in stores now, and like always Have Fun Reading!