I hardly recognize the Marvel Universe anymore.
I am finding it harder and harder to stick with the characters that I have loved for all these years.
|This is what Spider-Man|
should have done.
I no longer recognize the Avengers. Ever since Avengers Disassembled I haven't recognize the team. To me, the Avengers are the go-to team when the world is in danger, and around the time I dropped New Avengers (approximately #35), I really felt that the then-current line-up would have no real chance against a Skrull Invasion or the Masters of Evil. That line-up mostly remains in place today, and I cannot stand the writing of Brian Michael Bendis on the Avengers to even entertain picking up the current adjectiveless Avengers title. From what I've seen on-line it's still not "my" Avengers anyway.
Continuity is ignored, a lot. I'm not talking about contradicting a story from 20 years ago, I'm talking about contradicting a story that came out 2 months prior. As mentioned with Thor, it looked like Matt Fraction didn't even glance at the issues put out by JMS or even Gillen before he got started. Characters are free to be on multiple superteams across the country at the same time. Wolverine has long has the superpower to be in every book put out in a month, but to have him be a regular member of the X-Men, Avengers, and X-Force is a bit much, especially when the X-Men were living in San Fransisco while the Avengers are based in New York! Spider-Man is having solo exploits, running around with the Avengers, and is a member of the Future Foundation! Considering how often Marvel has their books crossover with each other, this is pretty hard to swallow.
I remember when a character crossing over to another book was special. It didn't happen every issue because the books had sub-plots, character development, and a main plot of it's own to move forward. Now it seems almost every book has to be tied-in to whatever Event-of the-Month is happening, and it really derails the other books from doing anything of note. The best books from Marvel, I feel, are the ones that can hide in their little niche corner away from the main events to tell the stories they want to tell. Daredevil, up until Shadowland, was a great example of a brilliant book that pretty much got left alone.
There is a splash page in Secret Invasion that has always stuck with me. In it, a ship full of Skrulls disguised as "classic" Marvel heroes is squaring off against the then-current Avengers, and honestly, I found it very hard to not root for the Skrulls since they looked a lot more like heroes I know and love.
I just cut out The Mighty Thor and Secret Avengers from my pull list, and I'm not sure how long my other Marvel titles are going to last. As a Marvelite for 20 years, that makes me really sad.