Who doesn’t like a good climax? With the exposition out of the way and the hero ready for their prize, the finale in any story brings the purest enjoyment. And so, here we are at the end of Geoff Shaw and Donny Cates’ last issue of the arc. Will the Guardians prevail? Will Thanos finally be defeated for good? Find out here!
So what’s it about?
Read our preview.
Why does this matter?
It has taken five or so issues, but Star-Lord’s team is finally his, the motley crew is on board with the mission, and some skull knocking is in order. Oh, and they need to potentially stop Thanos for good.
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
This issue should probably be accompanied with rock music (might I suggest something with a heavy beat like Seven Nation Army?) as it opens with the heroes preparing for battle, very much aware they might not all make it back. As the issue unfolds there is action aplenty, moments for each hero to do their dirty work, and plenty to cheer about. The heroes have their mojo back and won’t be stopped. Since this may be the most powerful Guardians team ever, that makes sense. There are also some nice nods to characters popping off for other adventures and a deeply satisfying conclusion. The violence doesn’t hold back either and should get you properly pumped.
As far as conclusions go, this arc has a satisfying one. Thanos plays a part with a monstrous turn, Hela does a great job as the screaming banshee that she is, and there are some satisfying bits with Gamora too. As far as her and Star-Lord’s relationship, Cates leaves it in a good place that feels natural and believable.
Shaw kills it on art with the aid of David Curiel on colors. The opening page (see above) is excellent, giving each hero that very important beat before going to war. There are plenty of panels with most of the team appearing together, but really this is a story of solo confrontations, and each are done well. Gamora may steal the show with the heart-stopping moments, but Star-Lord and his road to redemption is felt too.
It can’t be perfect, can it?
While the ride that is this book is going on you won’t think of it, but it’s kind of too easy for the heroes to win the day in hindsight. Aside from a threat or two the Guardians waltz in, do what needs to be done, and waltz right out. Outside of the fight, the high stakes do fall on Gamora and her relentless need to kill to solve her problems. The way it plays out though, there seem to be no repercussions which deflates the stakes of the moment. It may matter later on, but in this comic, she does the thing and moves on like it didn’t matter.
Is it good?
This issue and its story arc have propelled this team from a ragtag group of heroes who do amazing things, to an amazing team right up there with the Avengers. The creators haven’t forgotten it’s the heart of this team, and their unity under the face of incredible odds, that makes them so special.