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Age of Ultron #8: Review

May 2013
Brian Michael Bendis, Brandon Peterson

Story Name:

(no title given)

Review & Comments

Rating:
4.5 stars

Age of Ultron #8 Review by (May 19, 2013)
Last week's tie-in Avengers Assemble #15AU is set back in the Age of Ultron timeline that was destroyed in #6. The sword Excalibur is keeping the British Museum safe from the Ultron drones that have overrun the rest of Britain. Captain Britain is there with the Black Knight, the super-heroine Excalibur and Captain Marvel, who was visiting. The issue positions itself in non-AoU continuity by having CM avoiding flying, which would aggravate the brain lesion she's suffering in her own title. A suicide mission succeeds in cutting the drones in London off from Ultron's commands, providing a chance to contact Otherworld for help. The story also features Computer Graham and Magic Boots Mel, characters reminiscent of the weekly British comics of the 60's and 70's.

Wolverine & X-Men #27AU established that SHIELD had the whole super-hero community under surveillance in the shared past of these timelines. Henry Pym was killed in the equivalent of Avengers (1963) #41. The Avengers break-up presumably occurs between this and the Kree-Skrull War in Av#89-97, as suggested last issue. My guess would be around Av#51 where in our timeline the Avengers were reduced to Goliath (Hank Pym), Hawkeye and Wasp (Hank's girlfriend). Morgana le Fey (usually called Morgan le Fey by Marvel) is an Arthurian character who appeared in the 1950's Black Knight comics. She entered the Marvel Age as a foe of Spider-Woman. She has long been associated with Dr Doom, from medieval times in Iron Man #150 and Mighty Avengers #9-11 to modern times during Dark Reign. The Latveria/Asgard War could possibly be a weak analogue of events in Dark Reign and Siege. But she's also tried taking over the world without Dr Doom at other times. Dr Strange proves himself an dynamic leader here, casting battle spells left, right and centre. And there's more ill-feeling between Iron Man and Colonel America.



 

Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Age of Ultron #8 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
In #6 Wolverine and Invisible Woman went back in time to kill Henry Pym before he could invent Ultron, thereby preventing the Age of Ultron which destroyed the world in their own timeline. Last issue they returned to the future to find of course a totally different timeline. Here the main hero group is the Defenders rather then the Avengers, including this timeline's Wolverine. This timeline also has it's own Susan Richards, who is off in space with husband Reed. But Thing is a member of the Defenders. The Defenders reluctantly handed over the captured duo to Iron Man, who apparently runs this version of the US.

Tony Stark, with the help of Charles Xavier, Emma Frost and the JARVIS AI, has extracted and compared the memories of Logan and Sue. He can't bring himself to believe in the world they describe, despite the assurances of the psychics that the memories aren't fakes. And despite the fact that old SHIELD surveillance tapes show Wolverine killing Pym while Invisible Woman watched. (Previously this had been blamed on Skrull imposters.)

Last issue the Defenders suspected this Logan and Sue of being Skrulls. This issue the spotlight is more on them possibly being plants by Morgana le Fey. Stark explains to Logan how the Avengers broke up soon after Pym's death. And later there was a war between Latveria and Asgard, with Morgana le Fey on the side of Latveria, which seems to have ended with le Fey ruling all of Europe. Thor went back to Asgard after that, and Asgard withdrew from the affairs of Earth. And during the battle Morgana ripped Iron Man in half, so he is now a cyborg.

Stark can't believe there wasn't something else they could have done back in time to prevent Ultron without killing Pym. Logan rehashes the discussion he had with his version of Tony Stark. The current Tony comes up with the idea of a computer virus programmed to kill Ultron just as he was about to start Age of Ultron, thus preserving most of the timeline. But Wolvie points out that the other Tony didn't think of it. And neither did Reed Richards, who was unfortunately dead by then.

While Stark is interrogating Wolverine, Invisible Woman is left alone in another cell. But she uses her force field to break out of her hi-tech handcuffs.

Meanwhile the Defenders (Cable [Scott Summers], Captain Marvel [Janet van Dyne], Colonel America [Steve Rogers], Dr Strange, Hulk, Star-Lord, Thing and Wolverine) refuse to leave the Starkguard helicarrier. Strange sends Frost and Xavier to sleep. Thing and Wolverine go to find Sue and Logan, with Cable as backup. They force their way into Susan's cell, but can't find her. Belatedly they realise she's just slipped past them invisible.

The JARVIS AI announces that the helicarrier is in lockdown. Emma Frost recovers just in time to witness with the remaining Defenders as Morgana and her forces (who look like copies of Dr Doom with horns growing out of their helmets) arrive through a white hole. Invisible Woman has reached Wolverine's cell, and now Iron Man is more-than-ever convinced that they are spies sent by le Fey to open the way for her somehow.

The Defenders on the deck of the helicarrier launch into defence, and the 3 inside the carrier try to break out to join them. Iron Man leaves off attacking our Logan and Sue, and joins the battle with his Alpha Drones, the robots we saw him with at the end of last issue. But Morgana cause one of Stark's helicarriers guarding New York to crash into the one where the preceding action was set. Throwing our duo out into the air, before the 2 helicarriers plunge down onto the city.


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Brandon Peterson
Brandon Peterson
Paul Mounts
Brandon Peterson (Cover Penciler)
Brandon Peterson (Cover Inker)
Letterer: Cory Petit.
Editor: Lauren Sankovitch.

Characters

Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)
Doctor Strange
Doctor Strange

(Stephen Strange)
Hulk
Hulk

(Bruce Banner)
Invisible Woman
Invisible Woman

(Sue Storm)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)
Professor X
Professor X

(Charles Xavier)
Thing
Thing

(Ben Grimm)
Thor
Thor

(Odinson)
Wasp
Wasp

(Janet Van Dyne)
Wolverine
Wolverine

(James Howlett)

Plus: Cable, Defenders, Emma Frost, Morgana Le Fey.