I not only have the DC comics app, but I got the MARVEL UNLIMITED one as well, so I am reviewing their comics as well.
Lockjaw and the Pet Avengers
4 Issues mini-series
Written by Virtual Calligr
Pencils by Ig Guara (Except Issue 1, which gives Colleen Coover credit as well)
(Taken from the Marvel Unlimited app, linked above)
And there came a day, a day unlike any other, when Earth’s mightiest heroes were unaware of a threat greater than all of them could handle. And on that day, a teleporting puppy scoured the world to assemble a team of animals to fight the foes no single beast could withstand! Strap on your collar and hop on-board the adventures of LOCKJAW, LOCKHEED, REDWING, HAIRBALL, and an all-new FROG THOR!
When I got Marvel Unlimited, I spent a lot of time just going through what I could read, instead of reading. Then when I finally decided what I wanted to read first, I started with a few issues of Red She-Hulk. I realized though for this, I did not want to start with that. I wanted to start with something that showcased my love of quirky and weird characters. Characters that are not necessarily “bigger” characters. When I saw the title “Lockjaw and the Pet Avengers” I immediately knew that this was a title for me. It didn’t disappoint either. I laughed, I cried during one scene, and I quickly recovered with elation when something magical happened. I truly was enamored with this series.
I am not familiar with Calligr or any of his other works. I will say though that he definitely understood the dynamics of this particular team and who each of these characters are. A comic book about a group of pets coming together to gather the infinity gems (yes THOSE infinity gems) could have really been slapstick or so over the top that it wasn’t enjoyable, but that doesn’t happen. The action and the humor are mixed together nicely. I found myself forgetting that these were not your typical superheroes and instead were animals doing the hunting of the gems. It takes a strong writer to be able to suspend disbelief. My favorite interactions are between Hairball and another character not shown on the covers of any of the issues, but equally an important part of the “Pet Avengers”. I don’t want to spoil who that is though because they were my FAVORITE CHARACTER in the entire thing! They were hysterical and added so much to the overall story. Also if you like Thanos, he appears. Won’t say when, where, or how, but he appears.
The artwork was superb. Again there has to be a certain type of artwork when a story could be taken as slapstick or so over-the-top. This could have been that with lesser artwork, but Guara (and Coover in the first issue) does an excellent job of creating this world of pet heroes. I was worried when human characters appeared because I was not sure that they would appear correctly, but I need not worry. He did a great job with them as well. I loved that there was an inclusion of a backstory for the silly Frog Thor character. It made it even more real for me. Those panels were done so well because it was a flashback sequence and it still kept me in story. I often disconnect when we are forced in a flashback within a comic book because of the ways that they have to go about it (weird wavy lines, foggy borders, etc.) but here it didn’t take away anything. It was just understood he was sharing part of how he came to be. Again, I applaud Guara (and Coover) for being able to do this.
When I did a search for Pet Avengers, I discovered there are several other series (such as the one I mention below in the other section). I want to read them all because this first volume is very strong and enjoyable. I can’t wait to get to all of them and hope the quality continues throughout them.
These characters were utilized again in a few other things, which one was another mini-series! It is on the Marvel Unlimited app and I intend to read it as well!