Liefeld Week Book Report – Heroes Reborn
Hey There True Believers
So, I’ve been a comics fan for my entire life but there was one point where I kinda gave it up cold turkey. It was 1996 and I can recall that I just finally was fed up with it. I was sick of chromium covers, or books that looked really cool on the cover but were shit on the inside, and in general the hype that comics had back then. The last book that I read was Onslaught: Marvel Universe and although I when I think back the story had a lot of promise, it was milked completely across the entire Marvel U and I bought into the “Gotta Catch Them All!” aspect of crossovers back then, way before Pokemon ever became a thing.
With that said, I missed out on a key piece of Comics History known as Heroes Reborn; a time when Marvel was hurting so damn much that they literally farmed their characters out to another studio with hopes that they could do something with them. The characters that I’m talking about were none other than the Avengers! Yeah the same ones you’re thinking of, Hulk, Iron Man, Cap, Thor and the rest. Also along for the ride were the Fantastic Four because to stop Onslaught in the 616 Universe, all the non-mutant heroes gave up their lives and sacrificed themselves only to be “reborn” in a pocket universe…On one hand it sounds kinda corny, but on another hand there is so much potential there. Anyway, Marvel sent the work to Jim Lee and Rob Liefeld’s studios. Jim got FF and Iron Man while Rob took over Captain America and the Avengers. I remember at the time that FF was doing okay at Marvel, just nowhere near X-Men numbers, but that the Avengers were basically a bunch’a Moon Knights so to say. At the time I never read the books and only glanced at them once when I saw them in a spinner rack at a book store and even then I thought they looked ridiculous and that I made a good choice with the comic book cold turkey.
Lucky for me, I still had that subscription to Wizard and about 5 years later was right back into the thick of the superhero goodness that we all know and love and have been loyal ever since. One of the books that got me back was in fact Ultimates, which as you know is a take on the Avengers. From there I started reading Cap and regular Avengers right about when Bendis got ahold of them and I was hooked. I’ve since found myself going back to old Avengers issues and realizing that Cap and his team had some great stories, but I never found myself wanting to visit the pocket universe, that is until now…All thanks the Liefeld Week.
Good intro, right? Well it goes downhill from here!
OK, so I dug around some bins and found Heroes Reborn! I think, great! 13 issues each, I can have that done in two/three days at most, right? WRONG!!! All I can say is this; I read a lot of books, sometimes 10 a night so with all the good you know there is a lot of bad, but I eat through the pain with the hopes of finding the diamond in the rough, plus I always have top finish a story, it’s just the kinda reader I am. Well, that has changed, because after reading Issue #1 of both Captain America and the Avengers I wanted to puke and I was time warped back to all that rage that I had when I quit the first time. They were so bad that it seriously took me 4 days to read these 2 issues so let’s get right into it…
OK, so we can all agree that the art on Captain America just looks stupid and honestly I can get by that. I’m a designer by trade so I’m used to looking at all sorts of weird styles, so art doesn’t make or break a book for me, rather it’s the story and this one is a hot stinking pile of garbage!!! And we owe that one to Mr. Liefeld as he makes it know that he is credited with not only art duties, but story, and editor!!! Wha? Yup, it’s true. Jeph Loeb is credited as Script, which I realize that he’s the writer, but I’d put money down that this was all Marvel Method and that splash page after splash page told this awful story.
So the first issue of a book should get you pumped right? All I can say is that it’s sloooowwww and gets you to a point where you say, yeah it’s over! Steve Rogers is a total tool and has the worst hair that I’ve ever seen. He’s a man who has lost his way and an old friend gives him his shield and all the sudden he remembers. In all honesty, it reads like a very bad indie comic and the artwork doesn’t push it to where it has to be. You get it all, giant thighs, mis-proportioned feet, lack of facial features, and more! I’m not gonna beat a dead horse here, but it’s ridiculous so do yourself a favor and run! Just not to this next book…
I can’t believe I’m gonna say it, but this one was worse! Liefeld is still responsible for the story but half of the art chores go to Chap Yaep; who prior to this I was completely unfamiliar with, but after a little research appeared to be one of rob’s disciples in Extreme Studios and might possibly be worse at drawing in my opinion. It’s like he takes all of Liefelds bad practices and then adds another 40,000 crosshatched lines to make your eyes bleed. Oh and he gives Azrael Batman hands/talons to Loki, which really bugged the shit outta me!
Anyway, story-wise this is all about the new team of Avengers and how they find Thor. While I managed to get through this faster than Cap, it was still very hard because the story was just so all over the place. Also, I always thought that Rob knew how to draw a couple people; he can do what I refer to as “The Cable,” “The Deadpool,” “The Barbie,” and I just realized that he can also do “The Animal Lady!” This one stars Hellcat, who looks identical to Feral from X-Force and I swear to god, they forget to draw her nose half the time! Again, not gonna beat a dead horse, so please STAY AWAY!!!
Okay, so then I felt like a dick. Maybe I went in with pre-determined ideas of the awfulness… hey it could happen!!!! So I read Iron Man and FF, to see what I thought about them. Well, Iron Man was kinda like “Meh,” but I certainly didn’t hate it and wanted to move onto issue 2, plus it characterized Stark and Banner as well, Stark and Banner. So then I read FF, and simply enjoyed that one. So I guess that I can understand why Rob’s studio lost Cap and the Avengers books after 6 issues, because I really have no intention to pick up the second issues of those books and I can only believe that there were tons of fans like me.
So what lesson have we learned here boys and girls? Stay away from the reboots of Captain America and Avengers in Heroes Reborn…you don’t wanna go down that path!
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Posted on July 25, 2014, in COMICS!, Evil Geek Book Report, Reviews and tagged 90s, Avengers, Captain America, COMICS!, Heroes Reborn, Liefeld Week, Marvel, Rob Liefeld. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.