New Avengers 5: Civil War

new avengers volume 5 civil war cover trade paperback tpb
6.0 Overall Score
Story: 6/10
Art: 6/10

So-so individual stories

Episodic and can be skipped

Comic Info

Comic Name: New Avengers (Volume 1)

Publisher: Marvel Comics

Writer: Brian Michael Bendis

Artist: Howard Chaykin/Leinil Yu/Olivier Coipel/Pasqual Ferry/Jim Cheung

# of Issues: 5

Release Date: 2007

new avengers #21 cover captain america civil war

New Avengers (1) #21

Reprints New Avengers (1) #21-25 (August 2006-December 2006).  With the initiation of the Superhero Registration Act following the destruction in Stamford, Connecticut, the Avengers must choose sides.  While Captain America takes a stand against the Superhero Registration Act, Iron Man supports the cause.  Captain America, Luke Cage, Spider-Woman, Falcon, and others find themselves on the run while heroes like the Sentry must decides where loyalties lie.

Written by Brian Michael Bendis, New Avengers Volume 5:  Civil War is a superhero tie in book with the massive Civil War event series.  Following New Avengers Volume 4:  The Collective, the series features art by Howard Chaykin, Leinil Yu, Olivier Coipel, Pasqual Ferry, and Jim Cheung.  Issues in this collection were also collected in New Avengers by Brian Michael Bendis:  The Complete Collection—Volume 2 and Luke Cage:  Avenger.

This is really where Marvel kind of went off the rails in my opinion.  I didn’t love some of the series before (like House of M), but Civil War really screwed things up and took a lot of fun out of the series.  This collection also demonstrates the problem with big event stories and took a lot of momentum out of New Avengers.

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New Avengers (1) #23

The series is essentially a bunch of short stories.  In the past, many event series (but not all) were happening in the background of continuing series and propelling the events in the comics.  At this point on, it feels like the event series were the primary story and the comics were secondary.  The issues in this collection read like long back-up stories, and the collection as a whole doesn’t have much cohesion issue to issue and doesn’t really build up the event series.  I have always believed that the comics should make you want to read the event series…and not the event series should make you want to read the comics (especially if it is an already established comic and storyline).

The Civil War storyline itself is problematic.  While the realism of the story is legitimate, I sometimes feel that comics are escapism.  Realism wouldn’t have people running around dressed like birds etc.  Creating the Civil War storyline was like creating the Authority…it warped comics’ core ideas in many ways.  How would you expect superheroes to protect the world if they really existed, and is that idea fun and fun to read?  Plus, you could argue much of the basic concept of a registration is just regurgitated Mutant Registration Act from the 1980s and 1990s which X-Men handled much better.

You could literally skip New Avengers 5:  Civil War and just read Civil War without missing much.  That is a problem.  If you are trying to build readership, it seems smart to have stand-alone stories that really feel connected (which these feel secondary), but also aren’t necessary for enjoying the event series…you should want to read both, but you shouldn’t have to while enjoying each title.  New Avengers 5:  Civil War isn’t very enjoyable as a solo comic…a trend that continues as more and more event series rise.  New Avengers 5:  Civil War is followed by New Avengers 6:  Revolution.

Related Links:

New Avengers 1:  Breakout

New Avengers 2:  Sentry

New Avengers 4:  The Collective

New Avengers 6:  Revolution

New Avengers 11:  Search for the Sorcerer Supreme

Civil War

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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