The Avengers are one of Marvel Comics' premier super teams, and to many comic fans and creators, the definitive members of the team are Captain America, Thor, and Iron Man. It's been almost six years since these three heroes fought together though, and a lot has happened in that time.
First, Thor and his fellow Asgardian Gods temporarily went into oblivion when the fabled mythic cycle of Ragnarok occurred. Then, Iron Man and Captain America had a bitter ideological fall out that ignited a superhero "Civil War." In the aftermath of that battle, a staged assassination attempt led the world to believe that Captain America, AKA Steve Rogers, was dead. Shortly after that, Thor returned from the void that he was consigned to at the end of Ragnarok. As the Thunder God reacquainted himself with the Marvel U, he noticed a number of the controversial decisions that Tony Stark, in his role as the leader of S.H.I.E.L.D., had made in the name of the "greater good," and he was furious. Most recently, a number of Steve Rogers' friends and allies discovered that he was still alive and helped free him from the clutches of the fiendish Red Skull.
So now all three of the Avengers "Trinity" are alive once more, and back in the Marvel Universe at the same time. In the current event miniseries, "Siege," they will be forced to temporarily put aside their differences and work together to stop the villainous Norman Osborn and his ally Loki from gaining ultimate power. But what happens after that? Can their differences be put aside for good, or have the roots of anger and disagreement grown too deep? Writer Brian Michael Bendis and artist Alan Davis will answer those questions and more in "Avengers Prime: Siege Aftermath," a five issue miniseries that begins in June. CBR News spoke with editor Tom Brevoort about the project.
CBR News: Tom, as we understand it "Avengers Prime" takes place in the days following "Siege," but before May's new "Avengers" series launches.Â So, is "Avengers Prime" strictly about the triumvirate of Thor, Tony Stark and Steve Rogers, or are there other main characters as well? What can you tell us about the supporting cast of the story?
This is about Thor, Iron Man and Steve Rogers being pulled into a crazy adventure, and during that adventure, working out some lasting issues and reaffirming the bonds between them. There will be some cameos by other Avengers, and some major players from elsewhere in the Marvel Universe, but this is Tony, Steve and Thor's story."
How would you describe the dynamic between Steve, Tony, and Thor when "Avengers Prime" begins? Did fighting alongside each other in "Siege" heal most of the major the rifts between these characters, or is there still much more healing to do?
There's still plenty of healing to be done between these three guys, and the fact that they happened to have found themselves in a string of situations where they had to fight shoulder-to-shoulder doesn't change all of the stuff that came before. And that's precisely what the "Avengers Prime" series is all about.
Is there anything else you can tell us about the plot and themes of "Avengers Prime?"
In terms of the plot, not too much right at the moment. I can say that, in the aftermath of "Siege," Thor, Steve and Iron Man all find themselves pulled into an adventure that places them down in some unfamiliar territory and forces them to rely on each other as they get to the bottom of things.
Tonewise this sounds like a story that's rather intimate and emotional, but also a large scale action adventure worthy of the Avengers trinity. Is that correct?
It sounds like a dichotomy, but yes. It's going to combine the best of what Brian does with the best of what Alan does. So it's going to be a sprawling adventure story, but with strong characterization and killer emotional moments at its heart.
Avengers Prime marks the first time Brian Bendis and Alan Davis have collaborated on a project. What made you want to bring these two creators together? And what does Alan bring to this story specifically?
Brian is a huge Alan Davis fan, and has been asking for the opportunity to work with him several times over the years, typically at points where Alan's plate has been full with other things. But in this case, the stars just aligned perfectly, and we were able to get the two of them together. What Alan brings, first and foremost, as you'd expect, is his tremendous drawing ability. He can draw any character or any situation and make it look slick and compelling and inherently Marvel. On top of that, he's an extremely sensitive artist when it comes to depicting emotion. His characters act.
How important a book is "Avengers Prime: Siege Aftermath" with regards to the Avengers line? Does it set the stage for books like "Avengers," "Secret Avengers" and "New Avengers?"
It's a key series for re-establishing the relationships between Steve, Tony and Thor, but because it's coming out over five months, during which the other Avengers titles are still going to be running, it doesn't so much set up any of the physical pieces so much as calibrate the emotional underpinnings of the characters and their relationships. And it's an exciting, surprising, epic adventure all on its own.