ADVANCED REVIEW: ‘The Death of Doctor Strange: Avengers,’ Issue #1

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Doctor Strange: Avengers #1

The Death of Doctor Strange: Avengers #1 is written by Alex Paknadel, illustrated by Ryan Bodenheim, colored by Rachelle Rosenberg, and lettered by VC’s Cory Petit.  It is published by Marvel Comics. After their battle with the Three Mothers in The Death of Doctor Strange #2, the Avengers spring into action when creatures resembling the Juggernaut emerge from the Nexus of All Realities. As Captain America, Captain Marvel, and Thor battle the Juggernauts, Iron Man discovers the secret behind the Juggernauts’ invasion while wrestling with the mental effects of the battle with the Three Mothers.

The main Death of Doctor Strange series has taken an emphasis to show how Strange had a major impact on multiple characters in the Marvel Universe, and Paknadel’s script continues that line of thinking by exploring the relationship between Iron Man and Strange. Friction between magic-based characters and technology-based based-characters is nothing new, but Iron Man explains that his distrust of Strange lies in the fact that magic is an unknown variable. It’s not something that can be easily explained; in Iron Man’s own words, it represents “a world without rules.” And in the present, the world of magic continues to have a negative effect on Tony Stark, as he’s shown to be still haunted by the Crawling invading his armor.

The first page in the present sets the stage for the rest of the one-shot, as Bodenheim illustrates Tony furiously scrubbing at his skin in the shower. Even when his onboard computer B.O.S.S. confirms that there are no traces of the Crawling outside, he asks for another scan. And as Tony showers, there is one thing on his mind: “Drink.” Petit depicts this as a series of thought bubbles surrounding Tony’s head, growing louder and bigger as he continues to scrub. It’s a clever visual of depicting Tony’s struggles to stay sober. With the solo Iron Man series also exploring this aspect of his character, I appreciate that writers acknowledge this character flaw without falling back on the “Demon in a Bottle” storyline.

Bodenheim and Rosenberg also bring their A-game to the Avengers’ fight with the Juggernaut clones. The Juggernauts themselves seem to be woven out of pure muscles and sport the same crimson armor as their namesake. The Avengers’ powers are also put on full display. When Captain Marvel uses her energy powers, she becomes a golden comet that rockets through one of the Juggernauts. When Thor summons lightning, it’s less of a neat line and more cascading bluish-white tentacles of energy. And the image of Captain America holding back one of the Juggernauts’ punches with nothing but his shield is pure comic book goodness.

The Death of Doctor Strange: Avengers #1 continues to explore the effect the Sorcerer Supreme’s passing has had on the Marvel Universe, this time centering Earth’s Mightiest Heroes. With a hint that the worst is only yet to come for Earth, the Avengers and the rest of the Marvel heroes are in for one of the biggest fights of their lives.

The Death of Doctor Strange: Avengers #1 will be available wherever comics are sold on November 3, 2021.

 


The Death of Doctor Strange: Avengers #1
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TL;DR

The Death of Doctor Strange: Avengers #1 continues to explore the effect the Sorcerer Supreme’s passing has had on the Marvel Universe, this time centering Earth’s Mightiest Heroes. With a hint that the worst is only yet to come for Earth, the Avengers and the rest of the Marvel heroes are in for one of the biggest fights of their lives.