By Brian Michael Bendis (Writer), Billy Tan, Matt Banning, and Justin Ponsor & Chris Bachalo, Tim Townsend, and Antonio Fabela (Art Teams)

Some Thoughts Before The Review: New Avengers #51 actually managed to get me interested in the situation surrounding the title of Sorcerer Supreme. I never thought that to be possible. Now it’s time to find out whether Brian Michael Bendis and his art teams can manage to hold that interest.

The Story: Dr. Strange goes to the New Avengers team in order to find some relief following his face off with The Hood. The team offers to help Strange with his search for the Sorcerer Supreme and soon the group is off to New Orleans. Meanwhile, The Hood tries to maintain his grip on reality as he fights to keep control of his power…

What’s Good and What’s Not So Good: The highlight of the latest issue of New Avengers is Chris Bachalo’s handling of the scenes featuring The Hood. Action-packed at the start and downright creepy later on, they are almost worth the cover price alone. In fact, I would go as far as to say that they end up carrying nearly all of the weight in an issue that turns out to be fairly lackluster half of the time.

While Brian Michael Bendis does a good job handling the witty, story-related dialogue and Billy Tan puts forth some decent visuals, everything feels rather dull when The Hood isn’t around. Superheroes sitting around exchanging banter and nailing out plot points just isn’t all that compelling when compared to the explosive opening scene or the disturbing breakdown that comes later in the issue. Things do pick up toward the end though, so consider me still hooked on the whole Sorcerer Supreme thing.

Conclusion: I wish I could say more, but not a whole lot really happens in New Avengers #52. It definitely has some great moments, but as a whole it feels like a series of starts and stops. As a result, it is frustratingly inconsistent.

Grade: C+

-Kyle Posluszny