Every story needs a moment of calm before the storm. For Guardians of the Galaxy, it’s a very different sort of set-up and transition issue.
It’s hard to believe that this Guardians’ run hasn’t hit twelve issues yet (though it’s definitely been more than a year thanks to the pandemic). The run has been full of densely packed plots and character spotlights. However, with this issue, we see the creative team slow it down before things explode. It comes to us from Al Ewing, Juann Cabal, Federico Blee, and Cory Petit.
First of all, I really, truly hope that Cabal has another project lined up (hopefully with Ewing) the moment this arc ends. That’s the only thing that would take the sting of losing him after the past year of absolutely stunning work on this title. Over the past three, we’ve seen the stunning things he can do, and in this issue he draws classic soap operatic superhero comics, and it rules.
In this issue, the Guardians circle the wagons, preparing for the new Olympians to return to this universe. Ewing makes it deeply emotionally affecting and pays off multiple character threads- Quill and Nova have a heart to heart, Phyla Vell confronts Moondragon, and Gamora gets catharsis. Since there’s no action here, the story is entirely these payoffs, and it works. It’s exactly the sort of low-stakes story a title needs before changing up the status quo as much as are aware is happening in April.
I’m going to miss Cabal’s work, but this title is just absolutely firing on all cylinders. I can’t wait to see where it goes next.
Guardians of the Galaxy #11 is available now from Marvel Comics.
Before we get the action-packed payoff, the creative team gives readers a year’s worth of emotional payoff.