AGENTS OF ATLAS #5 / Writer: Greg Pak / Artist: Nico Leon / Colorist: Rachelle Rosenberg / Publisher: Marvel Comics / Publish date: December 18, 2019
Agents of Atlas Culmination
In this culmination of Agents of Atlas, reader finally find out how Pan and its portals are staying open and why dragons have been attacking people. The answer is not humane, but with refugees being taken in by Pan, how will Amadeus choose who will suffer and who will remain happy? Why did Jimmy not tell the team he knew what was powering Pan? And why did new “hero” Isaac Ikeda think it was a good idea to capture a creature from such a hostile place?
Fascinating and Complicated
Greg Pak yet again creates a fascinating story with twists and turns you don’t see coming. His last installment of Agents of Atlas leads you right into the next story, leaving readers chomping at the bit for more. His character development skills are also very beneficial for Amadeus Cho. The character’s self-doubt and ability have often been at odds, but Pak, through Silk, has allowed the character to think around his issues and use not only his strength, but his brain to figure out solutions. The choice Amadeus must make is not black and white. What will he do?
Pak has also created complicated anti-villains in Mike Nguyen and Isaac. Neither seems all bad, but their reasoning is flawed. Although, is Mike doing this for money or to actually give the world something better? When you think you know who is a problem, Pak turns the story on its head and gives you a new big bad. Or in this case, a very angry, godlike villain who just wants to defend his creatures. Pak makes his readers think on all sides, just like he makes Amadeus look at all angles. More comics should challenge their readers like this.
Light in the Darkness
Nico Leon’s art fully supports the story, particularly when it comes to emotions and dragons. The panel introducing Mr. Lao to Shang-Chi and Dan Bi creates mystery in its poise and grandeur. Who is this talking dragon, upright and majestic, and why is he working with Jimmy? On the next page we see a dragon in distress, discovered by Silk, creating a juxtaposition between their situations and a contrast of the men that work beside them. The last panel is also very strong in creating the depth of crisis yet to come.
Rachelle Rosenberg’s colors are dark in this book, as in previous issues. This is due to the fact the setting is evening, but also sets the dark tone for the book’s twists. The brighter green of Amadeus against these dark tones pops him out as the star of this issue. The shading done on Mr. Lao also works with Leon’s art to make this character mysterious and daunting. The pink color of the other dragon adds to its distress and anger against the monotone colors of the lab. All this color combines to culminate the end two panels with lighting and flash of a different sort.
Overall, More Awesome Characters
Overall, this book and series are fantastic. Although, I will say that I wish there was more of the other characters. I realize Amadeus is the lead character of this team, but the others are interesting too. I’m glad they got solo books so I could read more about them. It must be hard giving so many characters a spot in the story, but one panel of Pearl and Aero is not enough, never mind that Luna Snow is missing completely. With the new storyline, it seems the old Agents will be added to the new. I hope Pak can showcase all these characters without forgetting some of them. Regardless, Pak and the Agents are great together, and I look forward to what comes next.
Verdict: 4 out of 5