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Steed and Mrs Peel, Volume 1: A Very Civil Armageddon by Mark Waid

6/10 Very fast paced and sometimes intriguing.

John Steed and Emma Peel are right back to work, and the threats are bigger than ever. After the shocking return of the Hellfire Club, our swinging super spies realize their mortal foes have infiltrated all aspects of British society, and Steed and Peel cannot trust anyone - except one another.

This graphic novel is based on the 1960’s TV series “The Avengers” which followed the relationship of Mr Steed and Mrs Peel; unfortunately I am unable to comment on the comparison between the TV show and the graphic novel, although I may have seen the updated film at some point.

From what I gathered reading the graphic novel, Mr Steed is a government agent who is partnered with Mrs Peel who claims to be a civilian, who is highly skilled in a martial art and is highly intelligent. The character of Mr Steed is not so clear although they are both upper class English, but whereas Mr Steed seems old establishment down to the umbrella and bowler hat, Mrs Peel dresses as part of the swinging sixties.

Mr Steed and Mrs Peel’s main adversaries seem to be The Hellfire Club, which the future Hellfire Club in the Marvel X-Men Graphic Novel seems to be based upon. The graphic novel itself is very fast paced, quickly establishing who are the heroes and villains of this story. Although most of the secondary characters were not as well fleshed out as Mrs Peel and Mr Steed.

The Hellfire Club seems set on bringing the British Government to its knees and this is where Mr Steed and Mrs Peel come in to make sure they do not attain their goals. The graphic novel does hit the tone of sixties TV shows where men and women were not always seen as equal, which can be infuriating at times when reading the story. The story as a start of a comic series or graphic novel is intriguing as it did make me want to know more about the main characters and their back story. I wonder whether this story can be seen as being set in the middle of their partnership and how long and why they became a team. Although I found this story interesting I did think that it may be easier to get into the ideas if you knew more about the original TV show.

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