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Avengers #682 review: The end game approaches

Can the creative team maintain their momentum from the previous issue?

Al Ewing, Mark Waid, Jim Zub and Sean Izaakse
Price: Check on Amazon

In Avengers #682, Red Wolf has arrived at the scene of the extraterrestrial, superhuman combat. Yay? What could he possibly contribute? Is it good?

The Skinny

Yes, a time-displaced Indian and a guy who shoots arrows — these two will surely turn the tide against the otherworldly monsters! No, really. When lasers and people fly through the air, the best weapon might just be a little observation.

At last, Beast has identified the origin of Jarvis’ condition! Just in time for the hospital to find itself at the center of the race for the last Pyramoid!

Now that it’s time to pull out all the stops, the Challenger reveals his final player. You’ve seen him stirring in the previous two issues. He’s mad and he can’t be killed. Checkmate?

The Lowdown

The POV character of “No Surrender” switches yet again in Avengers #682, and it’s to one of the Occupy guys you were beginning to think the writing team of Al Ewing, Jim Zub and Mark Waid had forgotten about. Through a flashback to his original timeline, Red Wolf describes the most important weapon in battle, which he uses to figure out what everyone else should have known issues ago. It’s a good device that both highlights this lesser known character and pushes the plot forward.

I wonder which of the three did the dialogue for this issue, because it’s spot on for every character. Each one only gets to say a few words, but you could take the images out and still immediately know who was speaking. Even little personality traits like Wonder Man’s pacifism come through with laconic efficiency. And Beast says, “Pierce my ears and call me drafty.” Worth the $3.99 on its own?

Artist Sean Isaakse is a smooth transition from the aesthetic provided by Kim Jacinto in the previous issues of “No Surrender.” His facial expressions might even be a little more descriptive, with the big set pieces not moving quite as much, but colorist David Curiel is back to tie it all together and make the art of this weekly story consistent, for all of you who gripe about style changes.

The Upshot

Avengers #682 is another winner, making for back-to-back successes after a lackluster start. It no longer feels like the creative team is just filling space, and the mysteries introduced in each issue to keep you coming back are actually captivating and not just annoying. Maybe it’s a sunk cost fallacy, and investing so much time and money makes you want to like it so it seems worth it, but either way, everything seems to be clicking now, with anticipation after each issue for what happens next — not a buyer’s remorse over your dearly departed dollars.

Avengers #682
Is it good?
It's fine comics, with great looks at characters, action and suspense. Can the creative team keep this up for the remaining duration of "No Surrender"?
Red Wolf shows what a real superpower is
Genuine suspense over newly introduced mysteries and the fate of characters
Artistic consistency, even with a new penciller
With so many moving parts, it's still impossible to cram each important character into the same issue

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