by Nick Walden, CMRO Contributing Writer
Written by Matt Fraction, Art by Jamie McKelvie
Published: September 2012
This book is a true love hate relationship for me. To start, I usually love Matt Fractions work. This series is no different. But (there is always a but) I really do not like this cast of characters assembled as the Defenders. Doctor Strange is awesome and the main reason I read this series. I feel his powers are very unique and adaptable to so many situations that you can toss him into so many plots. Iron Fist is cool too as he is often not developed enough. However the Silver Surfer is cosmically too much, Namor is annoying, and the Red She-Hulk is…I don’t know what to think about her.
So enough of the complaining, let’s get to this great story that Fraction has crafted. It is intricate, it is solid, and it has a nice twist of the unexpected. There is an interesting team dynamic, good humor spots, a Black Cat, and a buff bad guy. What more do you need? When given free reign he creates such a great story that can incorporate so many things, including references to much older issues and instances of storylines. Fraction is truly at the peak of his powers for this issue. Some of the characters might annoy me but he brings them together well and the entire story was very interesting to me. Aman was a great character and the way the plot rolled around was classic Fraction.
The art was a solid effort by Jamie McKelvie and I vote that he keeps the regular gig. It is stylistically appropriate to the cast and he does the scenes nicely. Really I need to see more of his work to get an idea of his range, but for now everything flowed well together.
Overall this is a very nice 8 out of 10. The Defenders is a bit of an oddball series with the strange mix of characters and very ‘out there’ stories but I have really liked it. It is a little something different from the norm and you need that every once and awhile.