Spider-Man, The Hulk, Iron Man. Three of the biggest heroes in the Marvel Universe, or, at least the three biggest stars of the Marvel Universe who have had blockbuster films (in the past couple of years — no disrespect to the X-Men). Hence it is no wonder that Marvel would choose to team these three heroes up to headline a brand new comic that is targeted for kids that are the potential audience for the upcoming films.
Interestingly enough, even though these three characters regularly appear alongside each other in Marvel Adventures Avengers, they never actually refer to themselves as Avengers in this title. Here they are just three pals hanging out, and having a good time (as odd as that may sound).
This series was launched early in 2008 on Free Comic Book Day with a special Marvel Adventures Superheroes comic.
As we begin this episode in "My Wacky Friends & Me" we have Iron Man coaching Spidey on the art of, oddly-enough, bronco busting, only as it turns out, it isn't an actual equestrian bronco that Spidey is about to ride, but some sort of extraterrestrial Rhinoceros-type of beast on an alien world, in front of a coliseum of, well aliens.
Seems that all Spidey has to do is hang onto the ponderous beast for a full eight seconds (then the explosive device in the saddle goes off). It Is Iron Man who is the official timekeeper, and The Hulk that will (hopefully) Catch Spidey when he leaps from his massive ride. Thankfully, all goes well, and the Jade Giant catches our web-headed hero as he leaps off the rhino a split second prior to the blast.
Unfortunately, a stray piece of shrapnel beans May Parker's beloved nephew knocking him unconscious. A short time later, he groggily comes to, in the infirmary, with his heroic partners looking down on him. There the alien Dr. asks how the three humans wound up on Albernathea (the planet where the alien rodeo was being held). As it turns out, the exploding Rhino leaves behind several eggs, one of which Hulk keeps.
Whereupon, Iron Man explains that how a couple of weeks back, the three Avengers set out in one of the Avengers deep-space Quinjets to stop a group of rogue meteors that were on a collision course with Earth. Only the meteors weren't actual meteors, but Meteor Men. This group of intergalactic thrill-seekers had intended to smash themselves into Earth just for the fun of it all.
In an effort to prevent them from harming the green hills of their mother planet (and after a brief scuffle) the heroes cut a deal with the Meteor Men to participate in a series of extreme sports, so that the aliens would lay off Earth. It is at this point that the Meteor Men have shown up at the hospital to scoop up the semi-conscious Spidey and hustle our heroes off to Kree Karaoke.
Apparently, the thing about Kree Karaoke that makes it extreme, is if the judges don't like you, they dump you into a pit of cut, fuzzy kitties, who meow incessantly, deafening you; or in this case; Iron Man. In the days that follow, the extreme sporters involve themselves with asteroid drag racing, Mebbleian mystery door, and black hole bungee jumping.
It is this last event (and the unfortunate loss of one of the Meteor Men into the hole that finally pushes the Earth heroes the edge. They finally put their collective feet down, and said that this was the end of the line. This results in a slug-fest between the heroes and the Meteor Men, which sends (courtesy of the Hulk) several of them careening beyond the event horizon into the black hole with their friends.
The rather abrupt departure of their friends calms down the remaining Meteor Men, to the point where they agree to leave Earth alone. The deal struck the Heroes climb aboard the Quinjet to return home. Spidey engages the main drive just in time to the hatching of Hulk's Rhino eggs.
Okay, this story is silly beyond belief. In fact, it is so silly it is hard to align it with the Marvel Adventure tales from the other titles. Still, in spite of all this (or, perhaps because of it) the story is phenomenally entertaining. No, really. It is more fun than it has any right to be, and thus makes this intensely readable.
The byplay between Spidey, Iron Man (and yes) even the Hulk is priceless. Everyone remains in character all throughout the story (even if that characterization is rather two-dimensional it is still fun, because these are the characters as anyone can recognize them. Spidey as the wise-cracking teen hero, Stark as the authoritarian billionaire inventor, and Hulk at the child-like green-hued bi-polar monster.
Yep, this stuff is wicked-fun.
Fun, entertaining, silly, what else could you want in a story? These are really fun tales, and if you are not reading them, you only have yourself to blame.
There is a new one-page of Chris Giarrusso mini-marvel story at the end of this tale. It doesn't have Spidey, but offers up a look into the Secret Invasion through the eyes of Chris' Mini Marvels. Here, a quartet of Skrulls land in Manhattan, and immediately disguise themselves as the Fantastic Four. Needless to say, it is hysterical.
As always there is more Chris Giarrusso that can be found at his Target="blank">website.