Writer: Jason Aaron
Artists: Javier Garron, Aaron Kuder, Dexter Vines, Ivan Fiorelli, Jim Towe & Alex Sinclair
Cover Artists: Aaron Kuder & Alex Sinclair
Publisher: Marvel Comics
It all comes together. The Avengers, The Avengers of B.C., Avengers Prime, the Omni-Avengers, and the last of The Multiversal Masters of Evil. It has all built up to this: a grand battle at the God Quarry. Now, that Mephisto, the orchestrator of all of this madness has unleashed the great and terrible power that was contained within the cosmic formation, all of existence is in peril. Read the grand finale of Jason Aaron’s Avengers run in Avengers Assemble Omega #1 to see how it all ends.
If you’re interested in this comic, series, related trades, or any of the others mentioned, then simply click on the title/link to snag a copy through Amazon as you read the Avengers Assemble Omega #1 Review.
Oh, and what a grand finale it is. Jason Aaron really ends his run, his entire storyline for the Avengers series in the way in almost the same way it started: big, bloated, crazy, and underwhelming. This finale tries to tie up every loose end possible, give every major character a specific send-off, and end everything in a big and “epic” fashion so that it feels that way. This review will have two halves to it: one will be a review for this issue and the second will be a quick review of the entire series. There will also be SPOILERS in the entire review for this comic and the series as a whole.
The comic picks up with the Avengers and armies of Doom Supreme getting caught in a literal flood of entropic energy that drowns everyone and everything caught in it. The Avengers are all assembling to do what they can to hold this cosmic flood and think of a way to push it back before all is destroyed. Meanwhile, the main villain Mephisto recovers from his action and there is a brief confrontation and conclusion to his story as well as that of his Multiversal Masters of Evil, or what’s left of them, Doom Supreme and Mystique the Dark Phoenix.
There’s plenty of bad, but I will start with the good to even things out a little. Firstly, I will give Jason Aaron this, he tries to find a way to give the characters he clearly invested much focus into as much of a satisfying conclusion to their stories as possible. He really tries to make their endings and conclusions as passionate and meaningful as he can. Not only that, Aaron also gives all the various artists in this book a chance to show their stuff in one way or another. Admittedly, some get more time than others, but they all get some page time in this issue, that’s for sure. And to top it off, Aaron’s send-off letter pays a lot of respect to the artists he’s worked with and those who passed away while working with him and it was nice that he gave them recognition and praise.
On to the bad. There’s plenty of things that are underwhelming in this comic, so much that it would end up becoming a list of nitpicks. So, I’ll touch on the more pressing ones. First off, there are no satisfying conclusions with the villains. By that I mean, Aaron just wraps up the villains’ end too quickly and without much creative effort put into them just so he can move on to the Avengers fighting the Cosmic Flood. Doom Supreme is randomly beaten by the Tony Stark Ant-Man variant, Mystique the Dark Phoenix is just bested by Echo and Aaron’s Prehistoric Phoenix in just three pages. Then there’s Mephisto, the big bad of this entire storyline. We finally learn his motivation for doing all of this, and what his endgame truly is, and it’s just like Doom Supreme said, “Pathetic.” I will explain more on this in the series review.
Then there’s the sheer craziness of how Aaron resolves the Cosmic Flood problem. He just boils it down to the Avengers needing to plug up the hole that Mephisto made in the God Quarry with everything they have. This lead to him writing the Avengers literally throwing everything that have at it. Hammers, Phoenix powers, and just blasting it with random energy blasts. It’s supposed to be “cool” and “epic” and “fun” but it comes off as directionless, chaotic, and literally throwing every crazy thing at the problem instead of coming up with a workable solution. At the end of the day, this comic just felt like a send-off not for the Avengers but for Jason Aaron’s creations not the heroes themselves.
I want to be clear, I have not been the biggest fan of this run of the Avengers for years now. Not from the get-go, I had reservations but it seemed fun at first with the Dark Celestial story, or the Final Host. I wanted to give it a fair shot. Unfortunately, the series would continue to disappoint me and even disgust me most of the time with Aaron’s ideas and how he wrote plenty of the characters. But I still gave each new story arc a fair shot to change my mind. If I had to describe this series, I would compare it to Scott Snyder’s Justice League run that first started in 2018 too, if I’m not mistaken. Jason Aaron’s Avengers run is basically Scott Snyder’s Justice League run on steroids with all its worst elements cranked up to the ninth degree and then some.
Mind you, Jason Aaron had a lot of wild and crazy ideas as Scott Snyder did, and they both had some good ideas that aren’t bad on paper (though he had more bad ideas, like the World War She-Hulk story arc). It felt like everything Aaron was doing with the Avengers mirrored much of what Snyder did for his Justice League Justice-Doom War story arc and the Dark Nights: Metal and Dark Nights: Death Metal events. He wanted to make his stories fun, wild, adventurous, and feel big and “epic”. But like Scott Snyder, most of the ideas were not developed enough, were superimposed over existing concepts, character histories, and characterization, and just had subpar execution.
What’s more, Aaron kept dipping his toe in trying to be “topical” every now and then in his Avengers run, making things excessively controversial at times, coming up with goofy ideas that just don’t fly like T’Challa having a grill laced with vibranium on his teeth, and writing characters poorly overall even in the final story arc. Look no further for the best example of all of these flaws than in how he wrote Mephisto.
Just as how he set up Malekith the Accursed as the ultimate Thor villain leading up to War of the Realms, Jason Aaron built up Mephisto as the diabolical mastermind behind many of the big events that occur in his run. And he was constantly teasing that there was something big that Mephisto had in store for the Avengers and all of reality. But in this issue we finally learn his motives and goal for unleashing the energy of the God Quarry: to commit suicide. You heard that right.
Apparently, Mephisto just got tired of existing, of being a lord of Hell damning souls and just wanted to kill himself and take everything down with him. Not only does this fly in the face of his core personality, history, and place in the Marvel cosmos, but this is the most underwhelming motive and goal that Aaron could give to Mephisto of all characters. A bad idea with a terrible execution. What’s more, Mephisto’s fate is rather goofy as he’s just back ruling in Hell, but now he’s got the Orb (another character Aaron likes writing) sitting beside him and he just won’t shut up. It’s supposed to be funny, but it’s not.
Aaron says in his send-off letter that he intended for this series to just be “fun” and to always aim to be “epic” with every story told, comparing the characters to “toys”. The irony is that the comic felt like it was trying waaay too hard to be all of those things. What’s more is that he says he wanted to double down on “making a comic where we could all come together and smile for a moment.” but after rereading this comic from the start to prep for the finale, it was clearly anything but that. In fact, this run had far more melancholic, dour, self-deprecating, and incendiary content than expected with few moments for pleasant enjoyment than he describes here.
Avengers Assemble Omega #1 finally concludes not only this storyline but Jason Aaron’s entire Avengers run. Unfortunately, it’s pretty underwhelming in most of the writing, particularly with Mephisto’s motives and goal, along with how abruptly the villains are defeated so the Avengers could all basically fight a cosmic flood which feels aimless until the solution finally shows up. The only good things are the art as always from all the various artists in this issue. And the more heartfelt send-offs that Jason Aaron gives to some of the characters and especially the artists he worked with as he tries to end the story on a respectful note.