Jeff Parker’s comedic take on superheroes, as featured in Marvel Adventures: Avengers, creates an interesting dynamic for the title. Marvel seems to be attempting to do a Julie Schwartz-esque rotation of writers on the Marvel Adventures titles, but Parker’s work is so unique that it is next-to-impossible for another writer to match his tone, so Tony Bedard really had a thankless assignment the last four issues of Marvel Adventures: Avengers, following up Parker’s initial four. In any event, with this issue, Parker returns to the title with yet another delightfully mirthful tale, this time involving the Avengers being turned into MODOCs!!!
First off…Mental Organism Designed Only for Conquest is not as cool as Mental Organism Designed Only for Killing, but
A. It is an All-Ages title
B. The Conquest part is a big part of the gag in the issue, so I won’t complain, but I think it is important to note, because I’m sure some folks out there are confused by the C instead of the usual K.
Anyhow, the issue is based around the high concept of the Avengers being captured by AIM and turned into MODOCs, but the process didn’t fully complete, so the Avengers maintain their superhero tendancies – just with a bent towards conquering. To wit, when the Avengers are notified of an Atlantean invasion, Iron Man (or rather, Irondoc) retorts, “What! Who dares? They have made the fatal calculation invading our domain!”
The other centerpiece of the issue is the hapless AIM henchman named Karl, whose incompetence is a major (and amusing) factor in the issue.
The penciller Juan Santacruz (and his inker, Raul Fernandez) do a great job of visualizing the M.O.D.Avengers, especially the amusing bit where we get a roll call of the M.O.D.Avengers along the side of the page. He also keeps the art similar to original series artist, Manuel Garcia, giving the book a sense of continuity.
The star of the comic, though, is Parker’s script, which is based on a clever, humorous premise, and is packed with amusing dialogue, like when the M.O.D.Avengers go to capture the Leader, and as they do so, they mock his puny head (he can barely compute the value of pi with that tiny brain!), leading to Leader’s compatriot Abomination trying to defend his comrade by exclaiming, “He does too have a big head!”
Goofy fun, but well-written goofy fun, with good art.
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