Avengers #19 Comic Review
Writer: Jason Aaron
Artist: Ed McGuinness
Colorists: Justin Ponsor & Erick Arciniega
Inker: Mark Morales
Letterer: VC’s Cory Petit
Cover: Ed McGuinness & Val Staples
Variant Covers: Maxx Lim; Nick Bradshaw & John Rauch
The Man in the Mountain
“Gorilla of Fortune”
What You Need to Know
With Midgard caught in the War of The Realms, Earth’s Mightiest Heroes were able to save the citizens of New York thanks to Doctor Strange. This rescue came with a price, however, as the Valkyries died in battle as the last line of defense against Malekith’s forces. Now, all that’s left are the heroes licking their wounds in Avengers Mountain. Luckily, Black Panther has his Agents of Wakanda prepared for war. What Black Panther does not realize, however, is that in regards to war and espionage, you never truly know whose side anyone is on.
What Just Happened
The issue is narrated by Avengers Mountain Head of Security, Gorilla-Man. The issue begins with Gorilla-Man meeting with Ursa Major of the Winter Guard in Transia. What these two discuss will have lasting ramifications for the Avengers and the Winter Guard. Ka-Zar alerts Gorilla-Man to issues with communications being a concern and the two return to Avengers Mountain where Black Panther updates Gorilla-Man on the War of the Realms. Gorilla-Man is tasked with activating Avengers Mountain’s defense systems. Other Agents of Wakanda, Agent Solomon, and Man-Wolf are investigating where the Roxxon hackers are located so they can restore communications with the rest of the world.
Unfortunately, Malekith’s forces have found Avengers Mountain and begin their assault on the Avengers’ headquarters. Before Gorilla-Man can activate the defense systems for the mountain, Malekith’s forces teleport into the mountain using the Black Bifrost. Gorilla-Man has to fight off dark elves in order to activate the defense system and almost dies in the process.
When Gorilla-Man regains consciousness, he reveals that the Celestial who has now become the headquarters for the Avengers told him important information that can help turn the tide of this war. As Gorilla-Man processes this information, it is revealed that he is withholding information that has the potential to destroy the Avengers from within.
Jason Aaron ties in his Avengers book with the War of The Realms event he is also writing. I’m happy to share that this is not your typical tie-in book. Aaron is able to tell a story that connects to all of the story threads that Aaron has been weaving since the beginning of the book while still connecting to the War of The Realms event. I also appreciate that this story is being told from the point of view of Gorilla-Man. Gorilla-Man is a sorely underutilized character and with a new Agents of Atlas team debuting as a part of this event, it is good to see him get his moment to shine. Gorilla-Man’s history as a member of an espionage team is key to this issue as he covertly acts on behalf of T’Challa’s Agents of Wakanda. The meetings Gorilla-Man has in this issue seem like they will shape the future of this book with potentially devastating consequences.
I also appreciated the tone of Gorilla-Man’s narration of this issue. Jason Aaron does a great job showing how Gorilla Man feels insignificant next to the Avengers even though he is a hero in his own right. Gorilla-Man has a sense of self-loathing due to his affliction of being a man trapped in a Gorilla’s body, and due to some secrets, he is harboring from his fellow heroes. Will Gorilla-Man’s near-death experience fighting Malekith’s forces inspire him to reveal his secret to Black Panther and the rest of the Avengers? I hope this is a plot thread that is followed up on sooner than later once the War of The Realms event ends.
Aaron briefly summarizes events that have taken place in the War of The Realms book and other tie-in books in this issue, which feels slightly unnecessary but I guess he chose to do this to catch people up on the event. Otherwise, this is another engaging issue of his Avengers run. Ed McGuinness continues to show how his art is perfectly suited for a giant-sized event like War of The Realms. McGuinness also excels at muscle-bound characters such as Gorilla-Man. I hope the next issue is able to follow up on Gorilla-Man’s story as well as how the Avengers defend their headquarters from Malekith’s forces.