Guardians of the Galaxy #11 Review

by Nick Devonald on February 17, 2021

Writer: Al Ewing
Artist: Juann Cabal
Colours: Federico Blee
Letters: VC’s Cory Petit

The last couple of issues of Guardians have teased something big coming, with a LIFTOFF countdown on each issue. We’ve now reached the penultimate issue of that countdown, and if you’ve been following along with any of the coverage on social media you’ll know that with issue #13 Al Ewing is teasing a new line up of Guardians along with a new mission. Before we get to that milestone (which coincidentally is the milestone #175 issue of Guardians of the Galaxy) Al Ewing needs to finish moulding the guardians into his take on the team. The next issue is the conclusion of a number of storylines he’s set in motion, including the Gods of Olympus storyline he introduced way back in the first issue. There have been a lot of emotional moments recently and no time to stop for a second and take stock. This issue remedies that, with an issue focusing heavily on our heroes and how they’re feeling, their relationships to one another, and just earning a well deserved breather.

Star-Lord may have returned in the previous issue but Knulls presence meant any reunion was brushed over as our heroes dealt with the immediate threat. Then of course Heather and Moon Dragons relationship is in a very strange place after the two Heathers recent choice. It’s great to have some real focus on the character development after recent events, and it also lets the reader know how the team feel about each other before upcoming events threaten to change up the status quo even further.

One of the real strengths of this issue, and the larger series, is the focus on the characters history. This issue looks back at the events of the Annihilation War. Not only is it a great throwback but it lets us see how the Guardians have changed and evolved in the intervening years. Ewings take on the Guardians feels like a natural continuation of Dan Abnett and Andy Lannings stellar work on Marvels cosmic storylines, in a way that no other writer has been able to capture since.

Continuing that theme the cover also deserves a mention. Rafael Albuquerque & Marcelo Maiolo have created a cover which is an excellent throwback to the classic Guardians of the Galaxy. In the foreground is Nova, Star-Lord and Gamora while in the background is their Annihilation era looks, it’s incredibly effective and a great demonstration of one of the greatest strengths of Ewings run.

Juanna Cabal’s art has been excellent throughout the series, watching the characters as they’ve changed and evolved over the course of the series has been a treat, and he gets to go a step further with this issue as we have a flashback to the Annihilation event, one of the most influential cosmic events in Marvels history. The characters all look great, and as a slower, less action focused issue its nice being able to see the characters emotions clearly writ on their faces. Then we have Federico Blee’s colours which really make the most of the cosmic setting and wide number of alien races on display. A fantastic art team that do a fantastic job of putting their own stamp on the Guardians of the Galaxy team.

An important character focused story setting up events for the future of the guardians. Some brilliant throwbacks to the Annihilation event are sure to delight long-time fans. Watching Al Ewing, with his clear reverence for the characters histories, mould the team into a new and exciting shape is a real delight. The art is stunning and a real highlight of the issue. Guardians of the Galaxy fans owe it to themselves to pick this comic up.

Our Score:


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