Book Review – Age of Ultron by Brian Michael Bendis

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With the film of the same name to be released soon, I’m sure that Age of Ultron will receive a lot of attention. I’m also sure that a lot of people will refuse to read it based on the assumption that it would spoil things from the movie. Well, put those fears aside for there is no way this story will be adapted in this movie. There’s just no way it’s going to happen. The world has been taken over by Ultron and the heroes are on the run, when they discover the true nature of Ultron’s plan. This leads to a difference of opinion and the group of remaining heroes becomes splintered, with two groups going after Ultron by different means. But can either team succeed?

For a book called Age of Ultron there’s a severe lack of Ultron in the story. He’s an absent presence, almost like a prison warden who is never seen yet is feared by all. There’s no time for a set-up to the story either as Bendis drops us straight into this hellish wasteland, then takes us on a little tour of the Marvel universe. I enjoyed how different aspects of Marvel history were highlighted, and squealed a little when Ka-Zar appeared as he has always been one of my favourite characters.

The action is cinematic and the artwork backs this up with some incredible splash pages. There are some cool effects as well that I loved, like when there’s a deafening noise ringing out and the panels are blurred, depicting the world shaking. I have no complaints with the artwork. I generally liked the story but these modern crossover events often strike me as missing something, like a bit of soul or heart. Obviously the lack of Ultron struck me as a big hole in the story as it made the threat a phantom but there’s more than that. I think it might have been better had I been able to see the prelude to this age and how Ultron dismantled the world.

It ultimately ends with anti-climax, and one that is quite predictable so I didn’t feel the story had tension rising throughout it. By the end it felt more like it was going through the motions and it didn’t wow me. So I think it’s worth reading but it’s not something I feel is particularly ground-breaking.

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4 thoughts on “Book Review – Age of Ultron by Brian Michael Bendis

  1. Interesting read, thanks for sharing your thoughts! I’ve been considering getting back to some Marvel events like this, though I think I might pass up on this one until at least I’ve seen the movie. A resounding “hm!”, I think, for now!

      • I think I gave up with Civil War after a couple of issues – that was right around the time I stopped buying comics actually. I really enjoyed House of M, the single, 8-issue(?) book, but the way it was dragged out really started to turn me off comics like this. Shame, really! Recently decided to investigate DC, though, so that’ll be interesting to see how the two publishers compare!

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