Avengers Assemble Alpha #1 is published by Marvel, written by Jason Aaron, pencils by Bryan Hitch, inks by Andrew Currie, colours by Alex Sinclair, and letters by Cory Petit. Combining the prehistoric Avengers, Avengers Forever, and the main team for the finale of Jason Aaron’s run, the teams come together in a battle of the ages.
The plot of this is not easy to latch on to for newcomers to Jason Aaron’s Avengers story. There are many years of build-up, which is absolutely not a bad thing. Aaron is leading to the conclusion of a run, using three different teams to converge into one. The opening of this epic is carnage, throwing everyone against each other in an unbelievable battle. For those that have followed this large-scale series from the very first issue of the Avengers run, the callbacks and ramifications are huge.
Aaron’s primary intention comes down to being awesome, and that is what this book is. It’s a mass brawl between teams separated through time. They don’t know each other but have been progressing through this story alongside one another. It’s a sprawling mass of bodies, but it can be followed as the clusters of Avengers are contained. But some elements are yet to come to fruition, kept quiet and held until later in the exciting series.
Avengers Assemble Alpha #1 contains a massive cast of characters, but the story doesn’t feel centred on one figure in particular. It is the team as a collective entity, as Aaron has constructed over his full run. Like with the plot in general, the dialogue is steeped in history and can lead to confusion. But the personalities of those involved, even if they aren’t the main timeline version of that character, can be gravitated towards by anyone familiar. Characters like Mephisto, Odin, and Doctor Doom are impossible to look away from, whilst Captain America, All-Rider, and others may be pivotal to the overall plot. The dialogue matches the grandiosity and chaos that these books have contained for so long.
The art contains work from one of the finest artists of a generation. Hitch is superb and has been for decades. His ability to depict huge crowds and massive battles remains unmatched from personal consideration. There are so many characters in this opening issue, and each of them looks impeccable. This is backed up by Currie’s inking, ensuring the details can be set apart and not merged. Hitch brings personality to his designs. That smarmy, untouchable arrogance of Mephisto makes it so easy to hate him, but he should still be feared.
The battle itself is intense and carries with it the shockwaves of some of the Marvel Universe’s most powerful individuals. There is also the highly mysterious Avenger Prime. His design is simple yet so effective and obscures the true identity of the character. Perhaps the location and the landscape could o with more of an identity, but it is entirely understandable why the artist would not want to venture into more details being added with how much is already there. As the book ends, there are many fun and perhaps ridiculous creations that are both fantastic and fun.
The colours are stunning. The background is primarily a white, snowy mountainside, allowing the brilliant vibrancy of those in the foreground. This is most prevalent with those containing red in their costume or skin colour, and there are a lot of those examples. The lettering uses many established custom fonts and word balloons, which are terrific in general.
Avengers Assemble: Alpha #1 is the beginning of the end. The comic carries a huge weight with it, containing years of exposition. From that perspective, this is not a good jumping-on point because it could contain unfamiliar characters if you have not been following the Avengers series. But those loyal fans may appreciate the combination of the series, joining three groups and multiple series into one epic. This propels Aaron’s storytelling towards a conclusion of his own power, illustrated by one of the best in the business.
Avengers Assemble Alpha #1 is available where comics are sold.
Avengers Assemble Alpha #1
Avengers Assemble: Alpha #1 is the beginning of the end. The comic carries a huge weight with it, containing years of exposition… loyal fans may appreciate the combination of the series, joining three groups and multiple series into one epic. This propels Aaron’s storytelling towards a conclusion of his own power, illustrated by one of the best in the business.