Guardians of the Galaxy #1
Written By: Brian Michael Bendis
Art By: Valerio Schiti
Release Date: October 14, 2015
Guardians of the Galaxy is my favorite comic series and is actually what got me into comics long ago. I picked up with the famous 2008 run by Dan Anett and Andy Lanning and was thrilled to see the comic return when Bendis began this series back in 2013. I’ve been reading this run of Guardians since it was released and have had some mixed feelings on where the story has gone. This new start has things in a very peculiar place and I’m curious to see how this run plays out.
The new Guardians run is starting off with a completely different look. The team is now led by Rocket and Kitty Pryde has taken up the look and title of Star-Lord while the true Star-Lord, Peter Quill, is off being the King of Spartax. Other usual members Drax and Groot are still around as well as Flash Thompson a.k.a. Agent Venom, who became a part of the team a little while back and ended up sticking around. Then lastly, there is the newest addition to the team, The Thing. I actually need to read the last five issues of Guardians before the ANAD start, so I don’t know where Gamora is. Regarldess, the team is looking a little different so far.
In this first issue you can definitely notice the team is different and it feels like they just need more time to mesh. Rocket is Rocket, which I love, but he also didn’t seem like a complete or natural leader here. Kitty Pryde is great as Star-Lord and while I miss Peter, I just think Kitty was a natural fit for the team and has a similar personality to Peter. While Kitty didn’t really do much, we did get to see her phase a little bit at least. My biggest problem was probably with The Thing. I feel like Ben is the most out of place here and the writing really brings that to the forefront. It felt like Bendis tried to give him that sarcasm and wit that most of the other characters have but not as smooth. I’m hoping they eventually find a good groove for the character but in this issue I just really didn’t feel like it fit.
The story is definitely interesting and has me curious for what will come next. The Guardians steal an artifact from the Chitauri but are afraid to open it in case it’s dangerous and they also don’t have any x-ray technology to check. This forces them to go call upon Peter, despite not necessarily wanting to. Peter clearly hates his new position as king, so I’m curious to see how he escapes his duties and eventually ends up back with the Guardians, because it’s where he should be.
It was cool to see Annihilus pop up, and I’m assuming they are going to make him a big foe during this run. I was a little disappointed that they teased us and didn’t really expand what happened in the quick scene, but apparently he is going to rule most of the galaxy? This definitely has me curious but I want to know more because it was such a small glimpse that I don’t really understand what Annihilus is going to do.
The art in this book felt pretty traditional to me. Although it didn’t blow me away with its style, it also was very well-done with some great looking panels. Schiti seems to give us great amounts of detail on any close ups of characters but keeps it simple for some bigger scenes. It’s definitely not my favorite style of art, but it’s a style that won’t let you down.
This first issue was definitely unlike any other start to a Guardians run that I’ve read. The team is in a really weird spot, and while I’m confident they will be back to normal soon, it’s still feels unnatural to read. I thought the issue came across a little choppy and gives us an idea of where the story is heading but didn’t flesh anything out enough to have me really pumped up for the next issue. The easiest way to sum up Guardians of the Galaxy #1 would be wanting more. I want more from this story. It felt relatively bland and was a weird jumping off point. Personally, if I was going to recommend where new readers start, it would be the 2008 Abnett & Lanning run because I believe it represented the characters and their personalities perfectly while also having an amazing story. Even if someone just wanted whatever the most modern story was, I would tell them to start with Issue #1 from 2013 because it has the traditional team and grows properly. If you’re interested in Guardians of the Galaxy or a regular series reader, I would say proceed with caution. I’ll definitely keep reading but I hope things get a little more lively and fun.
- Gamora returned at the end as well, apologizing to Peter for something. I’m not sure where she went, but it’s good to see the full team still all in the first issue. I feel like they will all be back together for good soon.
- Hopefully we discover what the artifact is or what is inside of it. That’s something I would rather just know up front.
- Hala arrives at the end, which is a really interesting cliffhanger.
- “The Negative Zone. If you know anyone from here you’ve made a huge life mistake somewhere.” hah.