Writer: Kieron Gillen
Artist: Guiu Vilanova
Color Artist: Matthew Wilson
Cover Artist: Esad Ribic
Publisher: Marvel Comics
The Eternals have a new leader – Thanos! The Mad Titan is the Prime Eteranl and has used his new perks to his own dark ends. After recent escalations, the main group of Eternals desire answers to the secrets of Thanos’ conception and aim to find them in Avengers Mountain. Now, Eternals #11 shows the Eternals’ ruse start to give way as they face the Earth’s Mightiest Heroes.
This reviewer has made his criticisms of this series clear on multiple reviews, and the more recurring issues from before still bear true here. However, this issue has been better than the others before it. The comic has a good mixture of action, drama, plot development, and a sense of escalation. So, it feels fitting to delve into the positives then the negatives of this comic issue.
The comic does deliver on the cover of seeing Kingo in action and the premise of this part of the storyline: the Eternals versus the Avengers. Well, at least some of them anyway. The comic has both teams of Eternals doing their parts, showing some occupy certain Avengers while the rest do their part to distract them while Ajak communes with the Progenitor Celestial – the dead Celestial that makes up Avengers Mountain. Kingo is a treat here as the comic shows his attempts to stall the Avengers and it’s a little fun. The comic also follows up on Ikaris, Thena, and later Gilgamesh helping save the town Thanos tried to blow up. This group’s method of saving the team makes good use of their characterizations, assets, and abilities in a fun and competent manner.
The comic also shows the other stars of the storyline, Thanos and Druig doing their villainous thing. The comic doesn’t show them doing too much of anything compared to previous issues, which is a disappointment. However, it does show their progress in achieving Thanos’ true goal in this storyline at a steady pace. It even sets up an interesting concept & journey for the duo that sadly doesn’t play out in this comic. As far as the overall story goes, there’s not too much progress made only an escalation of conflicts between the Avengers and Eternals.
As readers will see, the art has changed again for this entire comic as Guiu Vilanova takes over interior art for Esad Ribic. Vilanova brings in their talent from the previous issue with Thanos attacking Lemuria here once again for the entire issue. Vilanova succeeds in illustrating cool action scenes, clear facial expressions, dynamic moments, and definitely handles establishing a sense of scale in the comic as far as locations go. The colors provided by Matthew Wilson also help keep the characters, locations, and tones distinguished and vibrant from panel to panel and page to page.
Now, onto the bad. As expected, the Eternals’ reasoning for fighting the Avengers to begin with is still contrived as ever. This issue just has them willfully making it harder on themselves. Like I said in previous reviews, had the Eternals just come clean and talked to the Avengers then they could’ve smoothed things out. They wouldn’t need to sneak into Avengers Mountain, they wouldn’t need to ‘distract’ or fight them. But they let Ajak of all people talk them into it, and now here they are, needlessly fighting the Avengers because they want to handle Thanos, saying he’s “their problem.” Well, good luck to them, and it’s only going to get worse with the upcoming Judgement Day event.
Speaking of Ajak, the comic continues her descent into villainy, at least I expect that’s what it is. If it wasn’t clear before, Ajak has been depicted in a very villainous light, which is the only thing about her right now that’s rooted in the original character from recent years. Admittedly, there is a compelling story with Ajak about a religious person who wants approval from their gods, their very makers, but only gets silence despite being a loyal believer and wants answers no matter the cost. However, this series has been showing Ajak become more unhinged in the last few issues and this one continues to seal the deal. If Kieron Gillen doesn’t make Ajak a full-fledged villain by the end of this story arc, than it will be one of his biggest mistakes in this series.
Eternals #11 follows through on having the Eternals face off against the Avengers, or at least some of them. The reasons for the fight are still a little ridiculous, but they work for the story the comic’s telling which leads to some solid action scenes. The art change with Guiu Vilanova is a surprise, but the artwork is still good and makes the comic a fun book to read.