God Complex collects a four issue miniseries written by Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning with pencils by Scot Eaton. Though this story immediately follows the Siege crossover, it can be enjoyed with no particular knowledge of those events. This book is short, light, and well suited to younger teen readers who are familiar with Thor and Iron Man from their movies or TV shows.
The plot seems like it could sustain a dense and hefty science fiction tome, but plays out pretty simply when all’s said and done. The High Evolutionary, who’s always trying to force the development of something or other, has decided that humanity won’t be able to reach its full potential without a deity better suited to the 21st century. He intends to construct this deity himself by combining mystical powers with state-of-the-art technology and has signed up Crimson Dynamo, Ulik the Troll, and Diablo to help him gather the necessary materials. Given the villain roster, it’s no surprise that Iron Man and Thor get pulled into the action.
High Evolutionary’s plot to combine magic and tech is a great premise for bringing these two heroes together, and Abnett and Lanning do a good job with it. Starting off, Iron Man and Thor fight Dynamo and Ulik, respectively, and then Iron Man gets to talk science with the High Evolutionary while Thor mucks about with magical artifacts. Once the two heroes are united they get down to some more straightforward brawling, briefly complicated by a few minor plot twists. Nobody worries too much about the specifics of how this techno-magic stuff works; instead the focus is on keeping things moving at an entertainingly brisk pace.
As with most big name superhero books, the art sticks pretty close to the established house style. Eaton doesn’t break much new ground with the look of his characters and settings, but that’s not what’s expected of an artist on this sort of book. What’s important is that he does a good job of helping to tell the story. He handles the technological and magical elements with equal aplomb, giving each a distinctive style and then merging the two believably. Eaton stages fight scenes quite well, with a clear narrative to the action. His panels’ framing and layout impart a great kinetic energy.
As for bonus materials, this collection includes Thor Spotlight, a scant collection of Thor miscellany originally published to promote the Thor movie. It’s worth reading, but not memorable, which sums up the rest of the book as well. These comics aren’t going to knock anyone’s socks off, but they’re sure to please readers clamoring for more stories about Thor and Iron Man beating up bad guys.