Posted by: Byron Brewer

Review: New Avengers Annual #1

Frank J. Barbiere
Marco Rudy
VC's Joe Caramanga
Marco Rudy
Marvel Comics
Release Date: 
June 25, 2014


All these many decades, the one character trait that had Doctor Strange standing apart from other characters was the tremendous restraint, the personal control he maintained over his awesome powers. He often suffered for this, especially in his relationships with the fairer sex, and his angst was part of his charm.

No more.

In this unique solo Stephen Strange story in New Avengers Annual #1, it’s no holds barred for the Sorcerer Supreme as he displays the new power he has sacrificed for so much in New Avengers. And it is quite a different Doctor we see in writer Frank Barbiere’s wonderful take on this character.

Strange’s origin is one of the best and most prophetic in early Marvel history, and during this 75th anniversary of the House of Ideas it seems especially timely to take it out of moth balls and add to its brilliance. This Barbiere does in this issue, using it as a framing sequence to give personal meaning and depth to the character in the world of “Now.”

Believe me, if you are a new reader and do not know Doctor Strange, you will be well introduced – to the character we have known, to the new iteration of Marvel NOW – in this spectacular Annual.

Not only is the script mesmerizing and the penalty for such power as Doc has poignant, but the issue is visually stunning under the wonderfully mystic and wacky artwork of Marco Rudy. The swirling panel arrangements reminds this old timer of the creative use of same by Colan & Palmer in the late 1960s, a treat which still withstands the test of time if you ever read those Doc tales. It is hard to do in and out of time sequences without captions, and a dangerous thing, but the artwork of Rudy guides the reader through this tale of urgency and, let’s face it, like Colan this artist does great people!

And that shot of Doc performing the Blood Magic? Spectacular!

I give this annual my highest recommendation, and hereby call for more solo Doc tales by the same team.


More From Cosmic Book News:

Peter Capaldi talks Comic-Con, monsters, Missy, Clara and more.
Norman Reedus, Steven Yeun and Lauren Cohan.
The DC Justice League Trinity featured and Jesse Eisenberg as Luthor.
Stars Sylvester Stallone and Michael B. Jordan.
Stars Gerard Butler, Morgan Freeman and Aaron Eckhart.
The Marvel TV Panel is happening Friday, July 10th.
Henry Cavill, Ben Affleck, Gal Gadot, Jesse Eisenberg and more.
Ash returns to take on the Deadites after 22 years.
Henry Cavill Superman, Ben Affleck Batman, Gal Gadot Wonder Woman, Batmobile and more.
Keaton is on a new comic book movie; Simmons back on Spidey?
Here is your list of comics and more on sale for this week.
Updates on Cap 3, Doctor Strange, Guardians of the Galaxy 2, Thor 3, rumors and more.