Waiting For The Trade – Agents of Atlas: Turf Wars HC

Writer: Jeff Parker

Pencillers: Gabriel Hardman, Carlo Pagulayan, Dan Panosian, Paul Rivoche

Inkers: Gabriel Hardman, Jason Paz, Noah Salonga, Dan Panosian, Paul Rivoche

Colourists: Jana Schirmer, Elizabeth Dismang & Sotocolor

Letterers: Nate Piekos & Tom Orzechowski

Collects: Agents of Atlas #6-11

There’s a school of thought that says a collected edition of 6 issues which has 5 inkers, 4 pencillers, 3 colourists and 2 letterers is either a failed Christmas carol or is going to be a bit patchy. In this instance the latter is the case. Since their first appearance as a team I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the Agents of Atlas books, the mini series by Parker & Kirk is quite frankly bloody awesome…I wish I could say the same here.

This hardcover contains 3 story arcs. A 2-part Atlantis story with Namora getting to know her cousin, a one and done Hulk story and then finally a 3-part story dealing with a splinter group from the Atlas foundation as well as giving us a smattering of backstory throughout.

Nothing is truly bad here, it just seems directionless and inconsistent. The issues with Gabriel Hardman art are certainly the pick of the bunch visually as his style fits with the tone of the book. For me the Dan Panosian art is by far the weakest and the final two issues have two pencillers each and it flits back and forth page-by-page as to which artist you’re getting…and while the styles don’t clash as such there’s nothing that annoys me more than this in a book. Given this is the end of the Agents of Atlas series I can’t help but feel they knew the end was coming and just pushed it out without really worrying too much about quality.

It’s a shame though as the plot gives us some nice character development for a bunch of the team as well as fleshing out some of the antagonists and in fact leaves things in an intriguing position. I just wish it had more of a cohesive sense of direction and a consistent art team throughout.

Ultimately though it hasn’t managed to put me off AoA and I’ll be back to try the next volume when they relaunch the series.

Reviewer: Dave Williams

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