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Review of Marvel Adventures: Free Comic Book Day 2008 (3 stars) May 6, 2008

Posted by lotrking in Comic Book Reviews.
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Overall rating: 3 out of 5 stars

I won’t lie; I was entertained by this book. When I picked it up on Saturday, I knew full well that it was a “kids comic,” but I figured “eh, it’s Marvel, why not?” Having only read one issue of a “Marvel Adventures” comic before (the MA:FF that premiered MA Silver Surfer), I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect. Yes, it was a little cheesy at parts, but it never took itself too seriously, so all cheesiness was purposeful, and usually somewhat funny.

So what happened to make it so entertaining? Well, the story starts in Peru with a team up of Iron Man, Spider-Man, Hulk, and Ant-Man (an interesting team up in and of itself, just swap Spidey for Thor and you almost have the original Avengers) who are facing the Mandarin who has ten magic rings. (I’m not a huge Iron Man/Mandarin history buff, so I’m assuming these rings are the “Ten Rings” referred to recently in the Iron Man movie?) Anyway, these four fight against Mandarin, and Ant-Man is eventually able to get his ants to steal three rings before Mandarin teleports away and accidentally takes the ants with him. Ant-Man’s equipment is damaged, so Spidey, Hulk, and Iron Man are left to track down the Mandarin and eventually come to an ancient Incan temple with giant ants (It’s them! IT’S THEM! Sorry, really old school horror movie moment.) who confuse these Avengers for friends of Mandarin. Iron Man, using Ant-Man’s technology and looking purposefully utterly ridiculous, is able to convince these ants that they are enemies of Mandarin (and Hulk starts playing with one like a giant puppy, ROFL!) before Mandarin invades trying to steal the immortality-granting statue that the ants were guarding. Eventually the three heroes are able to defeat him, and recover all ten rings.

So, the story itself wasn’t too spectacular, but it seemed exactly like the plot of a Silver Age Marvel comic, right down to the jesting amongst the characters (not to mention the adjective-filled title page, we Marvelites love us some adjectives!) So, while neither mature nor exactly gripping and suspenseful storytelling, this issue was just a piece of (somewhat childish) fun. Would I have paid for this issue had it not been free? Probably not. But am I glad I picked it up? Of course, free entertainment is the best kind. 😉




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