Superhero fistfights 2!Posted: 09/29/2013
I love dramatic character development and beautifully executed suspense as much as the next reader, but let’s be fair — if superheroes talked out their problems instead of punching them, we’d be far less inclined to read. Look, I want Hulk to be happy, but I also want him to rip a moon in half. Today, you get just the violence — none of that pesky plot nonsense. We’ll get back to stories that touch our hearts and souls on Wednesday. In AVX: Versus #4, written and drawn by Kaare Andrews, as well as AVX: Versus #5, written by Jason Aaron and drawn by Tom Raney, let’s not waste any of your precious time.
Same deal as last time. Avengers fought the X-Men over the Phoenix Force. Avengers win, X-Men lose, readers buy all the issues.
Round 1: Thor vs. Emma Frost
Thor, the Superman-with-a-hammer, faces Emma Frost wielding that neato Phoenix Force. Y’see, the benefit of having God powers is that the writer can really make Emma Frost do whatever the writer wants to, because her enhanced powers haven’t been established like Thor’s have. Plus, her outfit is even more revealing than her normal revealing outfit. Really, the battle here lies between their egos.
I don’t know what she sees in Thor’s mind — it’s never revealed. But it has to be dirty. And while Emma Frost has traversed the minds of perverts the world over, she has never searched one god’s three thousand years of perversion. Thor drinks heavily. Either way, the battle starts off strong for our Avenger protagonist.
Emma Frost makes a terrible mistake next. She attempts to emasculate the most masculine character in the Marvel universe. I admire her for speaking that way to a man whose values are so old fashioned that he still uses “thee” and “thou,” and more importantly, I gain new respect towards Cyclops, for dating a woman who must verbally and emotionally crush his balls on a weekly basis. Words can hurt far more than hammers sometimes, though Thor responds appropriately:
At this point in a normal fight, Thor raises his barrel of mead in victory. Good job, buddy. But remember what I mentioned earlier about Emma Frost’s God powers? Her only limitations lie in the imagination of the writer, which is horribly bad news for our thunder god.
Whenever Thor lies defeated, it always serves an important story role — mainly to tell the reader and other Avengers that this foe possesses the strength to bench press small skyscrapers. And now you know that of Phoenix Force Emma Frost. Girl power and whatnot.
If you love Thor (who still has way prettier hair than Emma Frost), at least take comfort that the Phoenix Force broke up her relationship with Cyclops. Apparently attacking your significant other and brutally taking her power against her will can cause a rift between lovers. And speaking of a rift between lovers, commence battle two.
Round 2: Storm vs. Black Panther
If you remember their last fight (which I’ll shamelessly plug), the King of Wakanda got destroyed by his dear wife. But T’Challa also has that whole genius-level intelligence that graces so many of our superheroes. Remember, they’re not only better than you physically, but mentally as well.
If you didn’t read Avengers vs. X-Men, Black Panther ended their marriage halfway through the event. I’ll cover it soon. So, you can imagine that while lightning strikes and right hooks certainly cause pain, that emotional scarring remains fresh and bleeding. The two can parry jabs and kicks, but they can’t dodge the kung fu chops to their hearts. Yet justifying their break up could certainly add some delayed armor before the inevitable tearful breakdown/rebound sex with Wolverine. Storm, not Black Panther.
I know the previous page only happens in fiction. I’ve seen enough episodes of Cops to know what happens when a (former) husband and wife brawl. But let us dream, for only in fiction do we have the inevitable poetic feel we so desperately crave and refuse to believe.
We all understand that as fierce and valiant our heroes fight, they’ll never defeat that status quo. Both bounce back from their heartbreak. Storm becomes headmistress of Wolverine’s X-Men school. Black Panther engages in a bloody and violent war against Atlantis. And it’s unfortunate, because if they could set aside their differences, there’d be no better power couple in Marvel today than T’Challa and Namor.