A.X.E.: Judgment Day #1 review

It is the big day. A.X.E.A.X.E. #1 kicks off Marvel’s summer event. Valerio Schiti, Kieron Gilden and Valerio Schiti want to set Marvel on fire, and maybe even kill some heroes. The Eternals want to see the X-Men die (as seen on A.X.E.A.X.E.), and the Avengers likely won’t let that happen without a fight. They might. As Gillen has shown in Eternals, politics can be complicated, and it’s difficult to know whose side someone is on at any given time.

First and foremost A.X.E.A.X.E.#1 is a beautifully drawn book. Schiti’s art is complemented by incredible colors from Marte Gracia, and they have proven time and time again they can deliver event-caliber art. There’s a great sense of volume and light thanks to the colors with expert acting delivered by the characters. The series’ ability to capture the size of its enemies well is a further proof that it is taking big swings. Some of the best art in the book are spoilers, so it’s tough to go into detail, but the costumes on every character look great.

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This issue is a new kind of Marvel event. While melodrama, in-fighting, and complex infighting are all common, the focus is on characters. Gillen has created a powder-keg of angry and fearful characters. The politics between these characters — including the Avengers, who have a scene talking things over — take up much of the narrative here. It gives this issue an opening intro feel rather than a splashy start killing major characters or spiking interest through matchups, as we’ve seen in the past.

Druig is ultimately the mastermind behind all the villains. But he has weapons and may have some help from other villains. Other than Druig, dialogue is provided for many characters. It’s quite something how creators can juggle so many comic characters these days. It’s hard to believe how many characters are appearing here.

A.X.E.: Judgment Day #1

This scene is just one of many.
Credit: Marvel

One action scene on Krakoa could have folks talking, although it isn’t given a splash page and it feels rather short-lived. This series isn’t about fighting yet, though – this issue is mostly set up for the conflicts coming. That reduces the first issue’s big event and “must-read” feel. It’s certainly not bad or boring, but it doesn’t have a lot of splashy moments. The one big splash near the end that threatens our heroes looks cool, but you’ll still be waiting for the confrontation as it’s only a reveal.

If you’re interested in the Shakespearean angle on Marvel heroes, meaning the complex interconnected relationships, you’ll love A.X.E.: Judgment Day #1. It packs so many characters into one issue, reminding readers that event comics are about moments in time where every character may be changed forever.

'A.X.E.: Judgment Day' #1 sets up confrontations

‘A.X.E.: Judgment Day’ #1 sets up confrontations

A.X.E.: Judgment Day #1

You will love Shakespearean perspectives on Marvel heroes. A.X.E.A.X.E. #1. #1.

The art is amazing. No notes. It captures everything it wants to.

One issue contains a lot characters

It is important to clearly define the purpose of this book and the conflicts that are going to be addressed.

We lack memorable and extended action scenes, and impactful moments

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