Despite its placement low and outside on the “Infinity” infographic checklist, “New Avengers” #11 brings the Incursions that have been a mainstay of this title into a direct collision with the attacking Builder armada and Thanos’ invading hordes from “Infinity.” Essentially, the pot begins to boil over in this issue — although readers looking to get the entire “Infinity” experience should definitely read “Avengers” #21 beforehand.
As with all of Hickman’s work, the story in “New Avengers” #11 is thick and substantial, forwarding the multiple agendas of Thanos’ generals, the Illuminati and the extra-dimensional foes that the Illuminati have captured. The issue kicks off with a Maximus and Lockjaw sighting before the duo teleports to an undisclosed location. Later in the issue Thanos and Black Swan have a discussion that could follow one of two paths and in that scene alone, Hickman displays the depth of study he has poured in to both characters although their interchange barely fills one page of this comic. Hickman has a handful of sweetheart characters all working for page space here. It helps to expand the story of “Infinity,” but it’s likely that readers will see some of these notes repeated or reinterpreted in future “Infinity” issues or tie-ins.
Deodato’s artwork is uneven throughout “New Avengers” #11. While recent issues have played to his strengths, this issue seems to be wearing him thin. The art is brilliant in parts, but lacking in others. Deodato still uses his dynamic panel layouts and brutally angled panels that raise the tension of the story, but much of the action seems to be battling against those angles. Frank Martin’s hyper-rich colors and Joe Caramagna’s diverse letter work contribute to the alien landscape as the attacks progress, the Incursion nears and things in “New Avengers” change to attempt to adapt to the scope of the events around it.
This title has been gaining steam and relevance as “Infinity” continues on and “New Avengers” #11 is the most critically linked issue of the series yet. Revelations are made here and plots are advanced, making it must-read material for “Infinity” enthusiasts. Mired in the uncertainty of what is to come from the collision point of the various storylines, “New Avengers” #11 is tense and tight, leaving the reader staring at the “Infinity” infographic checklist, counting days until the next installment.