Not With a Bang, but With a Throwback: ANAD Avengers Finale Review

ANAD Avengers finishes off with an issue that has very little to do with the titular team, but is a bit of fun anyway.

Spoilers beyond this point.

The Civil War II tie-ins for the series have been pretty odd so far, focusing very little on either the Avengers as a team or the conundrum of whether to utilize visions of the future or not. Fortunately, this issue puts the spotlight right back on those two elements. Just… not the ones you were expecting.

If you’ve been paying attention, you’ll have noticed that the last few issues have been showing how the members of the team who don’t have tie-ins in their solo series respond to the ongoing Civil War. I personally feel this is a bit of a let down; it would be much more interesting to see how the divided loyalties affect the team as whole. Using the last few issues of the comic as a vehicle to fill in some gaps, rather than a big finish that launches Champions and Avengers is a pretty big disappointment, and shows that Marvel doesn’t particularly care for this team any more.

That’s especially evident in this issue, which appears to be about Thor based on the cover and synopsis, but the majority of it is taken up by an extended flashback to an adventure with the classic Avengers lineup: the original iterations of Captain America, Iron Man, Giant-Man, Wasp and Thor.

 Now, I’m going to stop complaining about not expecting what we got, and review it instead. Because, despite everything, it’s a pretty fun throwback.

I love the way Hank Pym feels the need to be giant even in casual situations.
The premise for it is pretty simple: Present day Thor decides to ask her good friend Heimdall for advice on what to do about all the predictive justice business, because Asgardians are known for their intricate understanding of human policies. In response, Heimdall decides to tell her the story of the time the Avengers came to him for advice on whether to intervene in the Latverian invasion of a neighbouring country.  He’s reluctant at first, but when pressed he uses his future vision to tell them that they may win the battle, but Doom will still triumph. Naturally, they go off to fight him anyway.

With all this Infamous Iron Man business going on, I've really missed classic Doctor Doom
They win, as predicted, but Doom activates one of his many contingencies, which destroys the invaded country’s natural resources, forcing them to join Latveria to survive (not sure what Doom will do with them since he destroyed their economy, but sure).

So the moral of Heimdall’s story is… I’m not entirely sure? I would say it’s to not trust visions of the future, but the Avengers didn’t trust his vision fully, otherwise they would’ve known Doom would win.

Fine, the moral is "Never underestimate Doom". Happy?
Other than that, the writing is pretty strong in this issue. The adventure feels like it could’ve been lifted right out of one of the classic Avengers comics, and the art and coloring reflect the same.

So while it’s a bit disappointing that we didn’t get one last round with the team that could’ve been amazing, but wasn’t, going back to the classics was at least a fun way to end of the series.

We may not have got much of Jane in the issue, but what we did get was priceless

Now, will I miss the All New All Different Avengers? That seems like an easy question at first, look at any of my reviews and it’s pretty clear that I felt the whole thing reeked of wasted potential, from the mischaracterization to the ineffectual villains to the mediocre art to the weak dialogue. But all the same, it’s a team of characters whom I absolutely love, and it makes me a bit sad that we’ll not get to see the greatness they might’ve achieved together.

And that’s not to say it didn’t have its moments. It brought together Kamala Khan, Miles Morales and Sam Alexander, the three of whom are shaping to be one of my favorite trios of all time, and who are now starring in the far better Champions.

Well, it had to start somewhere.
We also got a romance between Jane Foster and Sam Wilson, and with it our delight at how outraged certain people got over a black Captain America kissing a female Thor.

And the cover art for the whole series, done by Alex Ross, has been glorious
And we got this panel here, which I will always treasure.

Live the dream, Kamala.
So, while I’m glad it’s over, and splitting into two hopefully better series, I’d be lying if I said I won’t miss it just a little bit. Farewell, ANAD Avengers. You may have mildly entertained me for almost a year, but we all have a time to go.

Avengers, disassemble.
Aranwe Quirke is a totally real, definitely not made up name. No, you may not see the birth certificate.