Wednesday, August 28, 2013
Scanned Thoughts: Uncanny Avengers #11
Grab yourself a bottle of Jack Daniels and put on a helmet because you're about to read a review written by a raving drunk. You'll either be brought to tears or you'll be pissed the fuck off by what you read. I make no guarantees that what I say will make sense. I also can't promise that anyone outside the crazy voices in my head will believe a word of it. But fuck it, that's the fun of getting drunk and reviewing comics. You can always count on being able to offer a more twisted perspective. So don't expect to be enlightened all that much. Expect to be disgusted, offended, and possibly turned on by my review of Uncanny Avengers #11. If enough people are outraged or crying tears of joy by the end of this review, I'll know I have done my job.
This issue already promises to cause plenty of outrage. Uriel and Eimin, the Apocalypse Twins, clearly never learned from Doctor Doom why it's a bad idea to fuck with a woman who can make reality her bitch on a whim because they go out of their way to outrage the Scarlet Witch. And they do so by throwing another unpleasant revelation from Wolverine's activities in Uncanny X-Force into the mix. During the uber epic Dark Angel Saga, the sleepy town of Tucker Creek, Montana got blown the fuck up by Archangel to make way for Tabula Rasa, his own personal evolutionary petri dish. Yet somehow Wolverine managed to keep this shit under wraps, probably blaming Hydra or aliens on it. I imagine in the Marvel universe blaming Hydra or aliens is the same as Fox News blaming everything on President Obama. It's sad how well it works.
But like an earlier issue of Uncanny Avengers, Rick Remender goes out of his way to tie in the details of his Uncanny X-Force run into this story. It's a synergy so beautiful that it would bring a German geneticist to tears. For the Scarlet Witch, however, it's anything but beautiful. It's fucking horrific because she understands that if the public knew that a mutant high on evolution did this, then mutants would be fucked and Richard Dawkins would be tarred and feathered. It's a brilliant mind-fuck on the part of the Apocalypse Twins, but it's not done out of pure pwnage. They are not in a flame war on a message board. They actually do have a plan that they want to accomplish and they need the Scarlett Witch to succeed.
There's a lot of talking that follows, but it's not the kind of talking you hear in an economics lecture by Ben Stein. Usually comics that have a fuckton of dialog tend to get boring very easily, but not Uncanny Avengers #11. The Apocalypse Twins don't just give Wanda this long winded speech about how mutants are fucked and how peace with humans is less likely than Ozzy Osborne becoming a Mormon. They actually go over all the different philosophies of major X-men over the years. They talk about Magneto's old ideology about making humanity the bitch of mutant kind, they talk about Charles Xavier's desire for peace, and they even talk about Apocalypse who just thought survival of the fittest would sort all this shit out. It's not just a nice refresher course for readers not versed in Wikipedia. It makes a valid point.
One thing that all these ideologies have in common is how spectacularly they failed. The twins have a painfully valid point. In the long run, they're all fucked. And they reveal that because of this failure, Kang saw mutants as an obstacle to his conquest in the future. So like any rebellious adopted children, the Apocalypse Twins gave Kang the finger and came up with their own plan to save the mutant race. To do that, they propose that they create their own world. It may reek of the old Asteroid M plot that Magneto tried, but unlike old buckethead, the Apocalypse Twins aren't looking to slaughter the human race. They just want to live in peace separately. They could have just given the old Hans Gruber speech about how they're so evil and badass that the Uncanny Avengers have no hopes of stopping them. But they're not stupid enough to spit in the face of John McClane or the Scarlet Witch. They actually try to convince her that what they're doing is best for both mutants and humans.
And to add even more incentive to the Scarlett Witch, they give her a brief peak into the future as to just how fucked mutants will be if they stayed. Rick Remender pulls off another beautiful act of synergy here when he brings up the Red Skull, who is currently armed with Charles Xavier's brain. At the end of the first arc, there was a quick teaser about him turning into a Red Skull version of Onslaught. Mixing the Red Skull with Onslaught is like mixing Nazis with the aliens in Independence Day. It's overkill to the billionth degree. And with the revelation about what happened to Tucker Creek, the public would be more than willing to listen to the ravings of a Nazi. They're just that fucked.
The Apocalypse Twins show the Scarlett Witch how Onslaught slaughter's all the heroes on Earth. They even throw in that he uses her to succeed, ensuring that she'll be fucked worse than a Bangkok transvestite hooker on New Years no matter what she does. The only way for her to escape it is to help the Apocalypse Twins effectively rapture all the mutants off the planet with her powers. It's not "no more mutants" as much as it is "fuck this, I'm out of here." It's a method makes a painful amount of sense and she knows it. The Apocalypse Twins don't even force her. They say it's her choice, claiming they already have a power source for her to tap in casting the spell. They don't mention that this power source is Wonder Man, who is being detained and tormented by the Grim Reaper, but I guess they have to have some sort of dick move in the mix. They just wouldn't be apocalyptic enough if they weren't. I guess the question remains is saving the mutant race more important than Wonder Man, a character that the Scarlett Witch used to have the hots for? It's the ultimate conflict between saving the future and saving the guy who once made her panties wet. I imagine it's still a touch choice.
The Apocalypse Twins do most of the talking at first, but they're not the only ones to carry on. Rogue and Sunfire have an extended conversation as well. It's not nearly as insightful or as engaging as the speech the Apocalypse Twins gave the Scarlet Witch. But it does have its place. It offers a nice moment of character interaction between these two and they sort of need it. Anyone who killed too many brain cells between now and 2005 may forget that Rogue had absorbed Sunfire for quite some time. He was stuck in her head and he lost his fucking legs the last time he dealt with Apocalypse. And he's trying to basically not be a pussy anymore after being MIA for so long. It's a nice little moment where Rogue essentially boosts his confidence before they head off into battle to join the others. But a woman as beautiful as Rogue doesn't need to say much. She could have just as easily shown Sunfire her tits and that probably would have psyched him up enough to take on the Apocalypse Twins. I guess it works just as well to have a meaningful conversation, but it still doesn't have quite the same impact as the Apocalypse Twins or Rogue's tits.
The conversation between Wolverine and Daken is a lot more engaging and for someone like Daken, that can have some pretty fucked up implications. There's not as much talking in their encounter as there is stabbing. But I guess for Wolverine, that's the same as a father playing video games with his son. There's some nice inner lamenting here where Wolverine tries to convince himself that this isn't his son. It's just some corpse that the Apocalypse Twins reanimated, making it easier for him to justify drowning it again. But that doesn't stop Daken from taunting his old man like a recovering anorexic at an all you can eat buffet.
And like the Apocalypse Twins, his words are pretty damn effective. He reminds Wolverine at how he murdered his own son. He conveniently left out how he still condemns Cyclops as a murderer, but I guess that's besides the point. He just taunts him by saying how he believed that his father would try to save him and try to reform him so that he's not some unapologetic douche-bag who will fuck anything with a pulse. It clearly gets to him because Daken is able to stab and wound his ass without much effort. Well, maybe that's a poor choice of words, but Daken still makes his point. He makes Wolverine feel like shit in that he failed as a father and he even stabs him in the face for good measure. Again, probably a poor choice of words, but I'm sure slash fanfiction writers can fill in the blanks.
All these battles are very personal, but there's still room in Uncanny Avengers for good old fashioned demigod style brawls. There really doesn't have to be that much talking in a fight between Thor and Sentry. These are two supremely powerful men who could split the moon in have just by humping the ground with a hard-on. Sentry hit Thor so hard in the previous issue that he landed on an alien planet light years away. Yet that still wasn't enough to subdue Thor. He's probably split a few moons with his dick in the past as well. He was the one that beat Sentry before during Siege. But kicking a man's ass the second time is like giving a supermodel multiple orgasms a second time. It takes a bit more effort and the other party is more prepared.
Sentry was never much of a talker when he was alive so it's somewhat fitting that he does his share of taunting as well. And like Daken, his is effective in that it's mixed with some pretty hard-hitting pwnage. He talks about how Thor knocked his ass into the sun where he was disintegrated on a molecular level. But then the Apocalypse Twins brought him back and freed him from the endless cycle of mind-fucking that he endured in real life with the Void. Now he's both free from his mind-fuck and able to kick ass without giving a fuck. He even does a Scorpion-style face rip to show that the Apocalypse Twins have done more than upgrade him from the feeble yet overpowered guy he once was. They turned him into a walking incarnation of death. With that power, he's able to down Thor before he can throw him into another sun or give multiple orgasms to another supermodel. It's the perfect act of revenge pwnage.
The Uncanny Avengers are getting their asses kicked and their minds fucked over at every turn. It's not looking good for them in the slightest and the Apocalypse Twins aren't about to let this victory boner fade. Havok, Wasp, and Captain America are still at large and Cap just happens to be armed with some future knowledge courtesy of Kang. The Apocalypse Twins may have given him the finger for wanting to get mutants out of the way, but like any vindictive parent, Kang is prepared to teach them a harsh lesson about respecting parental authority. That lesson will have to come soon because before the remaining Avengers can do anything, the Apocalypse Twins make the same pitch to the world that they made to the Scarlett Witch. They announce that they're ready to separate mutants and humans completely. They don't threaten global genocide or destruction. They don't even threaten to rob a bank. They just want to save their kind while leaving the rest of humanity the fuck alone with their spray cheese in a can and reality TV.
In addition to the world, this message is heard by other factions of the X-men and the Avengers. They don't say anything, but their mere appearance helps give the story a more epic feel. It seems as though Marvel doesn't get the other teams involved unless it's part of some big, overhyped event that they can use to make 50 variant covers on. Well this is just another arc and it feels every bit as epic without Joe Quesada and Axel Alonso having to tattoo release dates on their asses. Given how burned out a lot of fans are from all these overhyped events, I'm sure many will find it refreshing.
The sheer scale of the Apocalypse Twins and their plan is nicely summed up towards the end. Rick Remender really made his run on Uncanny X-Force awesome by utilizing a perfect blend of convergence, character moments, and bloody action that probably gives the douche-bags at the FCC nightmares. It has taken a while for that sort of awesome to emerge in the pages of Uncanny Avengers. He actually has made the Apocalypse Twins look both competent and pragmatic in their approach. In the end it seems they actually manage to convince the Scarlett Witch to help them. But given how she has a tendency to fuck up anyone who tries to manipulate her power, I think it's safe to assume that this will not end well for them.
I confess I honestly didn't think that Uncanny Avengers could get more epic than it already was. I mean how the fuck do you step it up in a comic that has Thor fighting Sentry while Wolverine gets his ass kicked by his omnisexual bastard son? Well Rick Remender found a way and I'm still wiping the tears of joy from my eyes. This issue didn't just move the plot with the Apocalypse Twins forward. It made it feel like a major event that encompassed the entire Marvel universe. And this time Marvel didn't even have to make a variant cover with Emma Frost in a bikini on it. That's awesome on a level that has few equals. That's why I give Uncanny Avengers #11 a 9 out of 10. If your panties aren't soaked or your briefs aren't encrusted with semen after reading this book, then check into the nearest hospital because you're partially comatose. Yes, it's THAT awesome. Nuff said!