The Defenders: I doubt there’s ever been a superhero team that’s had more ups and downs, both story-wise and industry-wise. Even so, I count myself in the camp of those who like them a lot. Which is why when I saw Fearless Defenders announced, I knew I’d pick it up – even though the link with the original Defenders is pretty tenuous.
The team in full is going to be revealed over time – the first issue reveals Valkyrie and Misty Knight, with the very mortal Dr Annabelle Riggs along for the ride. As you’d expect, this is pretty much a scene setting issue, but even so there’s enough here to maintain interest as a standalone book.
Will Sliney’s art is top notch – it’s always great to get to an end of issue and not have a jarring experience of poorly rendered anatomy. Cullen Bunn’s writing is solid and balances the humour between the team very nicely and there’s even some sexual tension thrown in for good measure. Veronica Gandini’s colours are interesting as well – there’s a real emphasis on greens/aquas throughout, but it works well in the context of the issue.
Previous Defenders books have heavily relied on the concept of outsiders thrown together reluctantly and Fearless Defenders is very much shaping up the same way. Bunn’s interview with Marvel.com makes it clear we’re in for a long story arc and I for one will be continuing to follow it for at least a few more issues to come.