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All-Out Avengers #3: Review

Nov 2022
Derek Landy, Greg Land

Story Name:

(no title given)

Review & Comments

4 stars

All-Out Avengers #3 Review by (November 26, 2022)
This Red Skull was killed in Captain America Reborn #6. A backup clone took his place from Uncanny Avengers (2012) #1 until he was killed in Captain America: Steve Rogers #15 (ironically the Nazi SR of Hydra's Secret Empire). The original RS was resurrected by Selene in CA(2018)#5.

Arnim Zola is behind the scenes here. He's been supplying Red Skull with spare bodies since WWII. He was last seen in CA(2022)#0.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

All-Out Avengers #3 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
As usual we start in the middle of the action with 2 Red Skulls taunting Captain America (Steve Rogers) by destroying the key that was supposed to stop their plans. They claim that the world has welcomed the reign of their army of Skulls. But that doesn't stop Cap fighting back against the pair who now accuse him of trying to distract them so they don't notice Avengers coming to his rescue ...

... but other Red Skulls are out there keeping Captain America (Sam Wilson), Black Panther, She-Hulk, Black Widow and Blade busy. We learn that these Skulls are all LMDs created by Arnim Zola and they seem endless. And the action is taking place in a relay station. Widow calls in Thor to clear a path through the foe, and he swoops in and beats up some of them before calling down a lightning strike which destroys part of the structure they are fighting in.

Meanwhile the usual voiceover of whoever's behind the events of this series reminds us that he's preparing the Avengers to face a future mega-threat, which seems to be even more of a threat to *him*. He lets us know that Zola made these Super-Skulls from improved LMDs to be super-strong and durable, and cheap to mass-produce. He also slightly improved their AI's decision-making speed which inadvertently makes it possible to turn them into a self-oscillating defence-shield. And he needs Tony Stark or T'Challa to realise this and create such a thing before the threat arrives.

We turn now to an orbiting space station where more RS LMDs have taken the captive real Red Skull, Johann Shmidt, who is apparently fighting them because the LMDs were supposed to be just backup bodies for *his* mind and they shouldn't have gained sentience for themselves. Suddenly Iron Man zooms in to rescue him. Shmidt grabs a gun off 1 of the LMDs and between them they dispose of the lot.

Stark starts examining an LMD head and the voiceover expects him to make the necessary deduction. But instead Tony is concerned once again about his memory. As in the 1st 2 issues he 'knows' how they got here and what they're supposed to do, but he can't 'remember' how this team-up all happened. Johann tries to dismiss this as impossible, but then begins to realise that he's in the same situation. He posits that the LMDs must have psychically affected them, but Tony says it's happened several times before, and his armour's recordings have also been corrupted. (He says it's happened 7 times before that he's aware of, not just the 2 we know about.) Red Skull now accepts that they are all being manipulated and intends to do something about it. But when he pushes a button he gets electrocuted. And it seems that's caused by the voiceover, who's angry that Stark has been diverted from the required discovery.

Back in the relay station the LMDs detect the intruders in the orbital station. Cap(SR) is disappointed that it didn't take them longer to notice. He and the other Avengers have just been a diversion to keep them distracted, but now he can stop pretending to lose to them and he efficiently disposes of the LMDs with him. Outside Cap(SW) gets shot down and the other Avengers rally to his aid. Panther contacts IM and suggests that they've got as many of the LMDs in 1 place as they're likely to and that he suggests initiating the pulse now. Cap(SR) tells a still-aware LMD that Zola built in a fail-safe that could be triggered from the satellite. He left them vulnerable to the real Skull's flaws. And Iron Man sends down a pulse of overwhelming weaponised neuroses which cause the LMDs to seize up. And then a code which drops them as inert bodies ready to be piled up and disposed of.

Sam Wilson with his arm in a sling wonders if the LMDs' parts will be recycled in mobile phones. And they're all astonished when Blade says he doesn't use a phone. Thor too has detected memory glitches. He'd normally blame Loki but he doesn't sense his hand in this. Stark points out that they're not the only ones affected. There are news reports of them fighting the LMDs earlier in the day before their memories exist. Tony also reports that the real Red Skull escaped. BP and Cap(RS) have also detected the memory gaps. Tony wonders if someone is concealing events from them. T'Challa feels it's more like they're being put through a series of 'teachable moments'. The voiceover feels like his control is slipping away, which means they're all going to die.

Greg Land
Jay Leisten
Frank D'Armata
Greg Land (Cover Penciler)
Greg Land (Cover Inker)
Frank D'Armata (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Cory Petit.
Editor: Tom Brevoort. Editor-in-chief: C. B. Cebulski.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Black Panther
Black Panther

Black Widow
Black Widow

(Natasha Romanoff)

(Eric Brooks)
Captain America
Captain America

(Sam Wilson)
Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)
Red Skull
Red Skull

(Johann Shmidt)

(Jennifer Walters)


> All-Out Avengers: Book info and issue index

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