Avengers #1 is the token number one issue to tie-in with the latest film from the Marvel Cinematic Universe. This is one of the pros and cons of how big the MCU has become.
Writer Jason Aaron has teamed up with artist Ed McGuinness to introduce a new lineup of the Avengers; Thor, Captain America, Iron Man, Captain Marvel, Black Panther, Ghost Rider (Robbie Reyes), Hulk (Jennifer Walters) and Doctor Strange.
The most significant problem for Avengers #1 is a severe pacing issue. The book tries to include all plot lines, and instead of feeling epic, the first issue felt watered down.
If the first issue was just Thor, Captain America, and Iron Man sitting at the bar discussing what it means to be an Avenger, and then they pay their bar tab and walk outside to find a Celestial, that would have been something tangle-able and focused. Instead, the reader gets the B.C. Avengers and Odin’s creepy advances on the Phoneix. Then the book gives you one page of Jennifer Walters and a couple of pages of Robbie Reyes that cut up the flow of the book in a negative way. The Hulk and Ghost Rider stories feel forced compared to the Doctor Strange / Black Panther storyline, and how Captain Marvel meets up with Thor, Captain America, and Iron Man.
For a new reader, I would be lost. To get the complete story, you need to read LEGACY, Thor, and possibly Iron Man. The point of the book is to give readers an easy entry point to comics after Avengers: Infinity War and this book misses the mark.
As far as the McGuinness’ artwork, it’s a personal preference whether or not you like his style. The colors have potential, and if I were David Curiel I would see how crazy Tom Breevort would let me go and try to give the book a 70s Jack Kirby feel. With so many options for our attention, playing it safe doesn’t work anymore.
With all the negatives, I have faith in Aaron and his ability to find the story. The same can’t be said for McGuinness; his style will be polarizing as long as he’s working on the book, that is why it is up to Curiel to be colorfully crazy. He needs to find a color palette that brings the writing and art together.