Guardians of the Galaxy Infinite #1
Published by Marvel Comics for the Digital App
Written by Brian Michael Bendis
Art by Michael Avon Oeming
Release date: March 6, 2013
Marvel announced a new type of digital comic called Infinite last year with a few books that didn’t release on a regular basis. They were sold separately in the Marvel Comics App or came packaged with other digital books. They were promoted as the future of digital comics and in execution the format truly took advantage of reading a comic book on a tablet or similar device. The feel was cinematic but the core experience was still that of a comic book. Also, when reading these books you weren’t constantly flipping the tablet or phone from portrait to horizontal depending on the panel. Those original stories were just teasers to regular comics, but they did show a glimmer of something that could be cool. Then, there was nothing.
Finally now we get a new Infinite book featuring The Guardians of the Galaxy called Guardians of the Galaxy Infinite.
Marvel has relaunched this franchise with a new ongoing book, probably in anticipation of the film as a way to get the heroes into the zeitgeist. So, if you’ve read Guardians of the Galaxy #1 either on old school paper or in digital form this Infinite book is a partner to that series. With that said, there just really isn’t any story here at all. Guardians of the Galaxy Infinite #1 introduces one of the Guardians and at the very end hints at what might be happening in the main book. This Infinite book is free so it’s probably a little unfair to expect too deep a story, but there’s literally nothing here and what is here is poorly written. Drax the warrior is introduced and his critical stats are delivered by a challenger. Literally this person appears before him and spends a panel or two telling him who he is. It comes off pretty amateur especially considering the story is written by Brian Michael Bendis. The writer’s heart definitely wasn’t in this one.
So following the introductions there’s action, which I wasn’t invested in at all because there was literally no story development. The cool factor of the Infinite execution was also crushed by some pretty base artwork with a few panels even being tough to figure out. Michael Avon Oeming’s vague style can often come off confusing instead of cool when applied to the Infinite comic presentation. Overall, the whole affair just feels slapped together and basic. If you’re reading the new Guardians of the Galaxy, it’s worth a look mainly because it’s free and if you don’t know these characters, you’ll at least come out of this knowing one of them.
Putting together these Infinite books is obviously a massive undertaking and still in the experimental stage, but to get people excited about it, Marvel really needs to put their best foot forward and here they just didn’t. The standout Infinite book for me is the first Nova book. The art was dynamic and it really helped sell the Infinite presentation. This one is just plain ugly, but at least it’s free.