Title: Agents of Atlas #8
Writer: Jeff Parker
Art: Carlo Pagulayan and Jason Paz w/Noah Salonga
Cover: Leinel Yu
If you haven’t been reading Agents of Atlas chances are good that you are missing out on what is easily one of the best superhero books in the industry today. Ya, I know that’s quite a bold statement but it happens to be true. Jeff Parker has brought together a group of forgotten heroes and made them completely relevant in today‘s Marvel Universe. More relevant than the so called “New Avengers” team with Brian Bendis at the helm. In fact, the best New Avengers comic this year was when the team crossed paths with the Agents of Atlas in AOA #5 which was written by Parker.
This title strikes a perfect balance between story, action, humor, espionage, romance, dragons, Martians, robots, Atlantean Queens, kung fu and gorilla-men. More so than any other comic book in history. It also has the best recap page going. Issue #8’s recap page is meant to be read/sung to the theme of The Brady Bunch. I will repeat that: Issue #8’s recap page is meant to be sung along to the theme of The Brady Bunch. How the hell does Parker come up with this stuff? It’s quite brilliant.
So let’s get to the review of the issue shall we? As we all know The Atlas Foundation have many business fronts all over the world in order to fund themselves. One of their more shady outfits, a biological study base posing as a museum located in Nevada, is kidnapping drifters and hitchhikers to use them for their own diabolical experiments. Well, that is until they kidnap a drifter by the name of Bruce Banner. Oops. I think you can guess what happens next. The AOA get a distress communication from their “museum” and the team is sent out to investigate.
What follows next is all out action as the Agents of Atlas come face to face with the Hulk and the biological study base’s escaped experiments (try saying that five times fast). The only way they will be able to calm and subdue the Green Goliath is by using teamwork. And that right there is one of the greatest strengths of this book. The AOA are a fully functioning TEAM. Every character on it has their role to play and they all mesh together perfectly unlike, say , the New Avengers. Sorry, had to get that last dig in there.
If you are interested in seeing what this series is about you may want to ponder picking up the Agents of Atlas TP that collects Jeff Parker’s initial mini-series before getting into the monthly. Though not essential, it will help you enjoy the monthly a lot more.
In summation, Agents of Atlas is what every comic should strive to be: smart, imaginative and full of wonderment. It comes with my highest recommendation.