Reviews (Marvel)

The Avengers Annual #10

Editor’s note: This review was originally published on Jun. 16, 2009.

(Cover by Al Milgrom)
Published and © by Marvel, 1981
[Buy from Mile High]

“By Friends — Betrayed!”

Synopsis: The Brotherhood of Evil Mutants goes on the attack, first targeting Ms. Marvel, then the entire Avengers team.

Writer: Chris Claremont
Penciler: Michael Golden
Inker: Armando Gil

Review: As Bronze Age classics go, Avengers Annual #10 has it all: The introduction of an important new character (Rogue); the return and repositioning of another (Ms. Marvel); great guest stars (Spider-Woman, and a brief appearance by the X-Men); and powerful teams of heroes (The Avengers, of course) and villains (the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants) going toe-to-toe in an extended, well-choreographed battle. More importantly, it’s got A-game work from two of the era’s top creative talents: Chris Claremont’s script is thick with strong characterization and his signature soap-opera drama, all captured brilliantly by penciler/colorist Michael Golden. An outstanding superhero comic.

Grade: A+

Second opinion: Recommended by The Slings & Arrows Comic Guide (second edition).

Cool factor: In the days before Previews and advanced solicitations on the Web, this one took a lot of young fans by surprise. Just imagine walking into a mom-and-pop grocery and finding this one on the spinner rack.

Not-so-cool factor: The Al Milgrom cover. It’s not horrible, but, come on, Michael Golden is one of the best cover artists of his generation.

Notable: First appearance of Rogue. … The Overstreet Comic Book Price Guide also lists this as the first appearance of Madelyne Pryor, though this fact has been largely debunked. It’s interesting to note that The Official Marvel Wiki also lists Avengers Annual #10 as the character’s first appearance, at least as a child.

Character quotable: “I’m Maddy Pryor. I been sick. But I’m better now.” — A little girl in the background of a hospital scene, setting off years of fan debate about whether she’s that Madelyne Pryor.

Collected in:
Marvel Visionaries: Chris Claremont HC [Buy from Mile High]
Essential Ms. Marvel Vol. 1 [Buy from Mile High]

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6 comments to The Avengers Annual #10

  • Just found your web site. Love the reviews on the X-men related books. Keep ‘em comin!

  • David:

    Thanks for stopping by. The Claremont/Byrne (and Cockrum, Austin and Paul Smith) X-Men were the gateway drug that got me hooked on comics. I need to review more of those books, but it’s hard not to gush. More than any others, those are the comics that make me feel 10 all over again!


  • starfoxxx

    I always loved this cover. I wish they still did covers like this, seems like you’re getting more bang for your buck. Plus, what a line-up in that corner box (I miss those too).


  • kcekada

    It was a cool concept for a cover, it’s just that Milgrom was never a very strong artist. It’s odd that they didn’t have Michael Golden draw his own cover. Maybe they did, but he didn’t want to use Milgrom’s idea?

    This annual came about after Jim Shooter had completely wrecked the regular title by going “back to the basics” and turning Yellowjacket into a wife beater. This would be the last really good Avenges story until Roger Stern took over the team.

  • Dave B

    This was a great issue. Claremont shows his strength in writing battle scenes (and tries to clean up the mess that was Avengers #200) and Michaelc Golden’s art was very good.

  • Stephen White

    I feel like no review of this issue should be complete without at least referencing (without giving away)its mind-blowing twist ending, which forces the reader to view the events of Avengers #200 in a completely different light and really makes you feel sad for Carol Danvers. I remember this being one of the few times I was ever completely stunned reading a comic book (the Avengers did that to me twice, the conclusion of the Michael Sage being the other). Of course, Claremont was setting up the transition of Carol into another one of his cosmic-powered female heroes over in Uncanny X-Men.

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