Shockingly, I wasn’t completely bowled over by the first issue of this series. Then the Free Comic Day comic made me hate myself for ever doubting. Then the third issue made me need to know more about Gamora. And now, the fourth issue, back to the main story and picking up where issue #2 left off. Delightful…
Writer: Gerry Duggan
Artist: Aaron Kuder
Publisher: Marvel Comics
So what’s it about?
Why does this book matter?
It’s the year of the Guardians…again, because of the film, but also because this series reboots the team since they were grounded on Earth for god knows how long. That means a team that’s similar to the movies, but with some clever twists on each character. The reader is instantly transported into a new adventure while the characters shift ever so slightly so we’re dying to know how they got here. Good storytelling.
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
This is a series that should be balls to the wall fun. Luckily, this issue brings those balls to the wall and smashes them right through it. Opening with The Collector very peeved at the team, this Cosmic Elder is mulling over how to kill these idiots, and then gets his head blown off by Rocket. Don’t worry, he’s an elder, which sets off a chase sequence that takes up much of the issue, but is filled with surprises. That includes an escape, a trip to The Collector’s cloning area and a lot more. Writer Gerry Duggan does a good job keeping the pace up and changing scenes and Aaron Kuder follows suit with strong art all the way through.
Details about Gamora leak through in this issue, which helps support the reveals of the last Gamora focused issue. It seems this team cannot get out of their own way as they stick together but also screw each other over, which makes for fun storytelling. That includes Groot doing some harm and then Duggan revealing a very scary situation for the character. I wouldn’t be surprised if Groot’s story comes full circle around Halloween as there are some truly freaky visuals Kuder drops in this issue involving the tail end developments.
Speaking of Kuder, the art continues to be sharp and highly detailed. The opening page, for instance, has the whole team standing around listening to The Collector and in this single panel there are plenty of collectibles on the walls and displayed all about (see above). There’s also a cool cosmic thing hanging over the Guardians’ heads. There’s so much in this single panel to look over, and that’s just the start of the book! Rocket ends up being a hilarious highlight of the issue, with some splashes of chaos and his hysterical glee popping up throughout. The Collector also ends up feeling more fleshed out and interesting due to the well-drawn faces and body language. Tip top stuff.
It can’t be perfect can it?
One could argue the final few pages–devoted to the mysterious character planting Groots–is starting to wear a tad thin. Really the whole issue progresses slowly (I blame double shipping) and it’s the type of comic that’s a ton of fun, but when you think back there wasn’t a whole lot to it. It’s basically one long escape sequence with a slow reveal of what’s been going on in the Groot plantation.
Is It Good?
Bring your hat and galoshes, because the fun in this book is going to splash everywhere. Duggan and Kuder are putting on a show and you’ll need to muster enough of your own energy to match the glee this comic induces.