Savage Avengers Hits the Ground Epic In its First Three Issues

author img
BY July 5, 2019

With Conan the Barbarian now part of the Marvel Universe, we’ll get to see him interact with some of our favorite heroes. In fact, the savage fighter has already teamed up with the Avengers, only to find himself stranded in the Savage Land. Good thing that’s where he can be most in his element. And don’t worry, he won’t be without friends for long. Some of Marvel’s most ruthless hunters are about to join him.

Savage Avengers

Writer: Gerry Duggan
Artist: Mike Deodato Jr.

Issue #1

Savage Avengers Issue #1
(Marvel Comics)

We start with a very Conan-esque story. A cult wants to summon a demon alien from another planet, so they’re filling a giant “bowl” with the blood and bodies of the smartest and most talented people in the world. But they want hunters, so they’re luring in characters like Conan, Wolverine, and the Punisher. It’s such a sword and sorcery story, and for most of the issue, it focuses on that aspect. When we meet Conan, he’s fighting Hand ninjas. I repeat: Conan fighting ninjas! When Wolverine shows up, tracking the same ninjas, they launch into a duel.

How else were these two going to meet? The battle feels sudden, but this book is called Savage for a reason. What two better characters to start with, and what better way? By the time this issue ends, Dugan introduces four of the six members: Doctor Voodoo and Punisher are also drawn into the cult’s plan to bring the big evil to Earth.

Savage Art

Duggan’s writing is fun, but what makes this series so good is Mike Deodato Jr.’s art. Deodato is one of the best artists in the industry, living or dead, and his unique style lends perfectly to Savage Avengers. His first full-page image with Conan fighting Hand ninjas (I still love that that’s even in a sentence) is brutal, vicious, and absolutely gorgeous. Duggan’s writing might entice us, but it’s Deodato’s art that makes us want to continue the series.

Grade: A-

Issue #2

Savage Avenger 2
(Marvel Comics)

BATTLES! Crazy battles. The Hand keeps trying to kill Wolverine, but, well, he’s Wolverine. He has a healing factor and an unbreakable skeleton. Meanwhile, Conan takes on the big bad for a minute, trying to steal an amulet right off the guy as he sleeps. And during their fight, Conan breaks open a jar containing our 5th Savage Avenger, Venom. Now the question is, who will be wearing the symbiote?

Wolverine’s battle with the Hand feels like a classic Logan battle. Maybe that’s because he’s in his brown and rusted orange costume again. Maybe it’s because while the Ninjas are exhausted, he stands there with arrows and swords sticking out all over ready for more. But really? It’s Deodato’s art. You can feel the anger from the art. Wolvie also does something really weird…when the Hand kills Doctor Voodoo in front of him, Logan cuts his own wrist, opens Voodoo’s heart, and bleeds directly into it. It seems to have worked, but there is definitely something else going on.

Needs More Frank

The only complaint I have is that there wasn’t enough Punisher in issue #2, considering that the Hand and this cult stole the bodies of Frank Castle’s dead family to lure him to the Savage Land. Once he gets there, the scene is worth every panel. Now the story and the art makes us want to pick up Savage Avengers #3 right away.

Grade: A-

Issue #3

Savage Avengers 3
(Marvel Comics)

You know why I like graphic novels more than single issues? You get the entire story instead of having to wait a month for another 20 pages at a time. It’s especially frustrating when the series is so damn fun. Duggan knows how to craft a cliffhanger. And Deodato’s final page in this issue makes it that much more annoying to wait. (Also, graphic novels end up being cheaper per issue).

The battle that started in Savage Avengers #2 gets even bigger here. We finally get our last member—Electra, who turned out to be there the entire time, disguised as a regular Hand ninja. Punisher rips through Ninjas like they’re made of paper. This series pushes the boundaries. There’s a reason it says “Parental Advisory” on the cover. Just a little more, and Savage Avengers would be a MAX title instead.

Unkillable doesn’t mean Unbreakable

But the heroes ble3d to. Well, one hero does. To fill his “Bowl of Blood,” the cult leader Kulan Gath, a wizard who seems to be immortal, stretches Wolverine’s body over the pit, tied at each limb, and cuts him open. And Wolverine never stops bleeding.

From there, we’ll stop, but the next two-thirds of the issue is fantastic, and there’s one scene in particular that will have you cheering (especially if you’re a Venom fan).

Grade: A

What’s Next?

So, things get infinitely worse for theSavage Avengers in issue #3, as they tend to do in any story. The team is all present, or mostly, 5.5/6 you could say. Now we need to see them become the team. And with all of Marvel’s most viscous anti-heroes on one team, their dynamic should make for a lot of crazy stories in the future.

In the meantime, we still have more Conan to look forward to this month.

COMICSMarvel

Roman Colombo finished his MFA in 2010 and now teaches writing and graphic novel literature at various Philadelphia colleges. His first novel, Trading Saints for Sinners, was published in 2014. He's currently working on his next novel and hoping to find an agent soon.

Leave a comment

Related

DCTV Shows
Stephen Amell Says Arrow’s Eighth Season Will Be ‘A Different Show’

It’s finally spoiler season for the fall lineup of network and cable television shows, including Arrow’s eighth season which will be its last. Originally a grounded(-ish) action series with no superpowers and no magic, the show introduced both very early on. Arrow spawned three spin-off series and holds an annual crossover event the hearkens back […]

BY Joshua M. Patton July 17, 2019
COMICS
How to Get Fingerprints off Comic Books

Comic book fans and collectors love keeping things neat and tidy. When it comes to comics, any blemish can diminish the value of the book. An annoying habit to keep up, pristine condition is vital to collectors. Nevertheless, there are many ways to make sure comic books stay clean. Unfortunately, one of the trickier marks […]

BY Taylor Bauer July 11, 2019
Marvel
Great News Marvel® Fans: CGC Comics Announces Special Marvel Labels

Marvel Entertainment, LLC the owners of Marvel Comics®, recently licensed Certified Guaranty Company® (CGC®) with rights to create certification labels that will feature some of the most iconic characters of Marvel. Marvel legend characters that will feature in this initial series include Spider-Man, Iron Man, Captain Marvel as well as Captain America. The contract signed […]

BY Randy Brooks March 12, 2019
Fortnite Chapter 2 Trailer Intros New Map

Quite possibly the biggest game around right now, Fortnite is looking to keep players interested and invested with some major changes. If you didn’t catch the Fortnite chapter 2 trailer, here’s everything you need to know about the new map and things Epic Games is introducing. Fortnite Chapter 2 Trailer Shows Off New Digs There […]

BY Taylor Bauer October 15, 2019
Fortnite Season 11 Darkness Sends Fans into Uproar

Ahead of Fortnite’s newest season, which is the game’s 11th if you’re keeping score at home, Epic Games raised the stakes. Rather than hype players up with a crazy loot drop, or new in-game features, the Fortnite map we all know and love disappeared. Literally, as there is currently no map to play Fortnite on. […]

BY Taylor Bauer October 14, 2019
Google Stadia Broadband Caps Cause Major Concern

There are a lot of changes coming to the video game industry. For starters, the major home console makers are setting the stage for a new generation. We’re expected to see the new PS5 and Microsoft’s Xbox Scarlett (name pending) next year for the holidays. Plus, the Switch Lite is now on shelves, providing a […]

BY Taylor Bauer October 14, 2019
Fortnite Profits Drop Steeply – Is the Fad Waning?

Flash back to the 2018 holiday season. Fortnite, a free to play multiplayer titan, seemed unstoppable. Like anything in pop culture, however, nothing lasts at its peak forever. Recent news that Fortnite profits drop steeply when you look at 2019 Q2 trends points to some positives and negatives for Epic Games moving forward. Why did […]

BY Taylor Bauer October 10, 2019

Trending

Kevin Feige Promoted to Chief Creative Officer at Marvel Studios, Overseeing, Well, Everything

That a seismic shake-up was underway at Marvel was apparent. The Sony and Disney standoff over Spider-Man, rumors that Marvel Studios would take over Marvel Television, and an ambitious MCU Phase 4 line-up. However, what that shake-up was remained a mystery until now. Kevin Feige, president of Marvel Studios, was promoted to Chief Creative Officer, […]

BY Joshua M. Patton October 15, 2019
Fortnite Chapter 2 Trailer Intros New Map

Quite possibly the biggest game around right now, Fortnite is looking to keep players interested and invested with some major changes. If you didn’t catch the Fortnite chapter 2 trailer, here’s everything you need to know about the new map and things Epic Games is introducing. Fortnite Chapter 2 Trailer Shows Off New Digs There […]

BY Taylor Bauer October 15, 2019
Doctor Doom #1 Shows He Loves Latveria More than Doom

Doctor Victor Von Doom, the ruler of the fictional country Latveria, might have the biggest ego in comics. It’s a toss-up between him and Lex Luthor, really. And as one of the biggest villains in Marvel Comics, Doom has caused mayhem and death all over the universe. So, how is it possible that he not […]

BY Roman Colombo October 15, 2019
Zoe Kravitz Will Be The Batman’s Catwoman

After a series of screen tests with various actresses, it is now official. Zoe Kravitz will play Catwoman, opposite Robert Pattinson, in Matt Reeves’s The Batman. Here are the details we know so far about her role, including, perhaps, the most surprising part of her casting. What Role Will Catwoman Play in the Upcoming Movie? […]

BY Salomé Gonstad October 15, 2019