Looking at this discombobulated roster, you’d think this new West Coast gang wouldn’t really work out that well. And yet, somehow, they just keep on trucking in WEST COAST AVENGERS #2. This is the oddest team book I’ve read in a long while, and I’m already very much in love.

On the surface, it does already feel like WEST COAST AVENGERS is probably going to be another Hawkeye-centric book, but frankly, I’m not opposed to that. If we get to experience this colorful cast of characters along the way, as well as get a solid Hawkeye story, I’m game.

WEST COAST AVENGERS #2 dives deeper into the mystery of B.R.O.D.O.K., the surprisingly handsome and boisterously charming young man who approached the WCA at the end of #1. None of the team members trust him, as they shouldn’t, so Clint and Kate do some digging to try to learn about him, while the rest of the team has some quality bonding time.

Writer Kelly Thompson is clearly having loads of fun with this book. The writing is smart and witty and full of character. Stefano Caselli, one of my all-time favorite artists, seems to be at his best in this series, pumping page after page of pure eye candy.

Who is B.R.O.D.O.K.?

For the record, I absolutely hate typing out acronyms like this one.

As WEST COAST AVENGERS #2 picks up, the team is still dealing with the giant, rampaging Tigra. This is where B.R.O.D.O.K. comes in. And before you ask, no, I’m not typing out what the acronym stands for. Too long. I’ll leave an image below with it spelled out.

WEST COAST AVENGERS #2
WEST COAST AVENGERS #2 page 7. Courtesy of Marvel Entertainment.

As Kid Omega points out, B.R.O.D.O.K. shares similar brain patterns with Tigra. As if the team wasn’t already suspicious of the handsome newcomer, they now have even more reason to suspect him of wrongdoing. That, and, you know, he’s definitely just M.O.D.O.K. in disguise. It’s so obvious, as the author would very much like you to believe.

The team brings BRODOK (I’m skipping the periods from now on) back to their base/apartment, where he regales them with what is likely a false tale of how he came to arrive in California. Hoping to dig up some dirt on him, Clint and Kate venture out to a new AIM facility that BRODOK hinted at. The rest of the team is left to babysit.

The results are fairly wild.

While Clint and Kate are out, Kate gets a bit of a pep talk, as she doubts her abilities as a leader. Clint reassures her of her skills and talents and says she shouldn’t worry. Meanwhile, Gwenpool and Kid Omega are arguing about the thematic complexities, or lack thereof, in “Weekend at Bernie’s 2.” This, then, leads to them making out.

WEST COAST AVENGERS #2
WEST COAST AVENGERS #2 page 20. Courtesy of Marvel Entertainment.

Like I said, wild results.

In the end, BRODOK discovers the deceits of his “teammates” and vows some semblance of revenge.

Chemistry Where None Should Exist in WEST COAST AVENGERS #2

Okay, seriously, this is the weirdest team of heroes Marvel’s put together in some time. Nothing about this group should work, in reality. And yet, Thompson somehow finds a way to give these characters a believable and fun dynamic.

Right off the bat, I really wasn’t happy to hear Gwenpool was in this book. I’m of the mind that she shouldn’t exist. Needless to say, this book is somehow swaying me in the character’s favor. I’m still figuring out whether or not that’s a good thing. She just bounces off the rest of the team so well and isn’t nearly as bothersome as I thought she’d be. She winds up being a welcome surprise.

The new guy, Fuse, is also pretty fun. New as he may be, I really enjoy watching him and Kate work off of each other. They seem like a genuine couple, and he’s just a really funny guy to watch in action. His inexperience offers a modicum of humor.

WEST COAST AVENGERS #2
WEST COAST AVENGERS #2 page 17. Courtesy of Marvel Entertainment.

Kid Omega is another pleasant surprise. I didn’t know who he was until he showed up in Jason Aaron’s MIGHTY THOR. He certainly comes off as grandiose and egotistical, but that’s the point of the character. Frankly, every Avengers team needs at least one guy like that. Whether it’s Iron Man or Spider-Man or Thor or whoever, an egotistical nut is central to any good Avengers team.

Basically, Kelly Thompson continues to prove why she’s such a great author in WEST COAST AVENGERS #2. She’s integrating a fantastic amount of character into this series by bringing together such an odd cast and somehow making them a team. I look forward to seeing what else she does with these guys.

I Really Missed Stefano Caselli

Is it just me, or has Stefano Caselli been out of the Marvel scene for a while? I feel like the last time I saw him on a Marvel book was before SECRET WARS (2015). It’s probably just me. But goddamn, I really love Caselli’s art! Ever since I saw his pages way back in AMAZING SPIDER-MAN, I knew he was an artist to follow.

Caselli’s art is similar to guys like David Marquez and Sara Pichelli. The art has a sensational amount of realism to it. At the same time, it also pops off the page and is full of color. That, of course, is thanks to colorist Triona Farrell. The combination of her colors and Caselli’s pages are a perfect fit for WEST COAST AVENGERS #2.

WEST COAST AVENGERS #2
WEST COAST AVENGERS #2 page 4. Courtesy of Marvel Entertainment.

The early pages of this book are balanced very well by the latter pages. Early on, the team is facing Tigra on the beach, with a pleasant sunset in the background. The setting is pleasant, with some bombastic action in the foreground. Later on, when things get quieter and sneakier, the artists work with more subtle character movements and softer colors. There’s a great range of work in WEST COAST AVENGERS #2.

I’m not sure what the plans are for this series down the line in terms of artists. I’m hoping that this team stays on. We can always use more Stefano Caselli art, I say.

B.R.O.D.O.K. Seems Pissed

I know, I used the periods again, but it’s for the subheading. It should look more official, you know?

WEST COAST AVENGERS #2 continues to show why the team of Thompson, Caselli, and Farrell are one to welcome with arms wide open. This is a fun story with tons of heart and character at its core. Marvel should be looking at this title as an example and keep trying to make more like it.

We don’t get many specific answers by the end of WEST COAST AVENGERS #2, but we do know that BRODOK (see, no periods now) is pissed with the team for lying to him. So, ideally, next up will be some sort of fight. I’m not really sure what will come of said fight, though. I’m just hoping for more specific character moments because Thompson absolutely excels at delivering those.

At the very least, it’ll likely be a super colorful and energetic fight, thanks to Caselli and Farrell’s artwork. These two have been a roll thus far, and I don’t see them slowing down anytime soon.

So, here’s hoping this story keeps on rolling for a long while. It’s been an absolute blast thus far.

WEST COAST AVENGERS #2 by Kelly Thompson, Stefano Caselli, and Triona Farrell
Art
Characterization
Plot
Summary
WEST COAST AVENGERS #2 continues to prove why truly strange and undeniably fun series just work. The creativity of Thompson, Caselli, and Farrell continues to shine.
93 %
Tons of Fun

One Comment

  1. […] COAST AVENGERS #3 picks up essentially where WEST COAST AVENGERS #2 left off. As the team is trying to sleep in the early hours of the day, BRODOK sends his giant […]

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *