Posted - November 3, 2015

Previous: Avengers 35 & 36

Avengers 37 & 38

The last two issues of the Avengers devoted the bulk of its pages to the New Avengers and the Multiversal Avengers. These next two issues is split neatly in half between the two teams.

First, let's take a look at the cat and mouse action between the S.H.I.E.L.D. Avengers and their elusive prey the Illumninati. A great place to start is with this wonderful panel showing the S.H.I.E.L.D. high command or the S.H.I.E.L.D. Avengers as the case may be.

S.H.I.E.L.D. Avengers: Susan Storm, Captain America,
	Steve Rogers, Maria Hill

Let's see Susan Storm. Captain America, Steve Rogers and Maria Hill. I'll admit that when I first saw this panel Maria Hill was the definite "center" of the piece for me. I don't care if Steve is the technical middle. Speaking of Steve. The last time we saw him in Avengers he was young, strong, and pretty much giving all three Kangs the runaround at the end of time. Today the youth is gone, replaced, as we'll see later, by a seething anger.

The S.H.I.E.L.D. Avengers are on the hunt for the Illuminati and we join them now as they follow a lead. Hawkeye is on the ground and he is calling for everybody else to meet him there because he found something.

What he found is amazing.

A Hologram of the Beast and the Hulk playing chess

A solid light hologram of the Beast and the Hulk playing chess. I have a number of things to say about this hologram. First of all, I love that the Beast is nearly the Hulk's size. I'm happy that Hank seems to have become stronger in his latest iteration. Second, these two "monsters" are two of the most intelligent Marvel characters of all time. if we put Stark and Richards as tier 1 these two are definitely Tier 2, just one rung below - should be a challenging chess match for both. Third, I'm biased, but what are the chances we actually see Marvel showing its characters playing Magic: The Gathering instead of chess and poker? I mean, DC shows the Legion of Super-Heroes playing Dungeons & Dragons. Fourth, S.H.I.E.L.D. is hunting the Hulk! Are they crazy!?

This hologram gets better. It "activates".

Steve Rogers activates the Beast-Hulk hologram

What comes next is pretty embarassing. Specially for a Team Captain America fan like me. Look at Steve's face.

Steve Rogers is angry

Then this.

Steve Rogers smashing the Beast-Hulk Hologram

What the heck? What is all this anger? Maybe because the Illuminati are threatening worlds and it's too high a crime for old-fashioned Cap? Maybe it's something more personal I'm not aware of. My reaction is: This is over the top. (Maybe Steve is just pissed off that he's suddenly old - that Super Soldier Serum can really spoil a guy).

Whoo! It's time to relax with a relaxing panel.

Carol Danvers giving a briefing

Did I say 'relaxing'? I meant exciting - in a relaxing way.

Oh yeah, here's something totally weird.

Terrax addresses the United Nations

Terrax the Tamer speaking at the U.N.. Now I've seen everything.

We'll be sitting in on a New Avengers meeting later but I'm jumping the gun on that because a point was made in that meeting (by the Black Widow I think?) that is relevant now. Point being: Captain America assumes that the Illuminati are smarter than his team, therefore Steve - did I call Steve 'Captain America'? - is counting on overwhelming force to win the day for S.H.I.E.L.D.

This next panel will show just how smart the Illuminati are.

Susan and Reed Richards hugging

I can't resist this suggestion. If ever Susan gets caught she can say: "Of course, I'm sleeping with the enemy. He's my husband".

I almost forgot. From last issue S.H.I.E.L.D. was able to capture Amadeus Cho. Well, Amadeus Cho managed to escape between that issue and this one, obviously the escape story was not tackled in the pages of The Avengers.

Ok, let's get off the Helicarrier and sit down to a nice meeting with Bobby DaCosta and his New Avengers (Damn! Bobby is leading The Avengers not the X-Men - a bit surprising).

Closeups of Natasha Romanoff and Jessica Drew

Oh I'm sorry, I meant to show Bobby in front of the meeting room but I must have accidentally picked another panel. It's still a meeting shot though, both Natasha and Jessica were in the meeting and they're a lot easier on the eyes than Bobby.

Interesting points from the meeting:

  • The Illuminati have sent someone to the multiverse to investigate. I wonder who this is?
  • The New Avengers have sent their own team. This we saw last issue.
  • The Illuminati have a truce plan with S.H.I.E.L.D..
  • The Illuminati have a plan to destroy the Cabal. Of course they have plans for all these - it's Reed Richards, Hank McCoy and Bruce Banner! Wow.
  • Beyond the Multiversal Avengers, the New Avengers have further plans that include this

The multiplication of Shang-Chi

I like Shang-Chi but 10,000 Kung-Fu fighters against the end of the world? This is NOT a good plan.

And so as a new incursion threatens at any moment we leave all the Avenger Teams. Bobby's team is the best in my opinion. Their assault team in under way and they've got a second front in the back burner. The Illuminati come in second, but so far they only have big plans. S.H.I.E.L.D. comes in last because Steve is becoming unhinged.

Whew! Time is running out, I hope these guys get it together before an Incursion happens.

Next: Avengers 39 & 40