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Avengers: The Children's Crusade #6: Review

Jun 2011
Allan Heinberg, Jim Cheung

Story Name:

(no title given)

Review & Comments

Rating:
4.5 stars

Avengers: The Children's Crusade #6 Review by (November 14, 2012)
X-Factor were originally the original 5 X-Men after Jean Grey was found in suspended animation post-Phoenix. #71 introduced a new team which included Madrox and Strong Guy. These 2 carried over into X-Factor Investigations in the 2005 relaunch of the series after House of M. Jessica claims here to have known X-Factor since they set up as rival PI's. I don't remember them ever actually meeting in any comic. And Jessica had switched from PI in Alias to journalist in The Pulse before X-Factor Investigations started up. Rictor debuted in the original X-Factor #17, but was mainly a member of New Mutants and X-Force. He was one of the mutants de-powered by Scarlet Witch after House of M, and was one of the most desperate to get his power back. Quicksilver joined the team and Rictor helped him with a plan to re-power ex-mutants, including himself. However the effect didn't last, and also some of the subjects died. Shatterstar was a fellow X-Force member, and there were hints of a gay relationship then. In the new X-Factor Rictor had a heterosexual affair with Wolfsbane. But Shatterstar joined in #43 and an openly gay relationship ensued. Cerebra is an updated version (since New X-Men #114) of the X-Men's mutant-detecting device Cerebro. The X-team here is a bit of a mixture of characters regularly appearing in X-Men, Uncanny X-Men and X-Men Legacy. But since they're all living on Utopia Island pre-Schism there's nothing wrong with that.

The trio of Avengers at the Mansion, the home of New Avengers, is a bit odd, but probably chosen for plot purposes. Jessica Jones is OK because she lives there with her husband Luke Cage, and often skips missions with the New Avengers. Beast is a member of Secret Avengers, not based there. This is not the first time I've commented that the Secret Avengers don't seem very secret. Hawkeye is interesting. He *was* initially a member of New Avengers as well as Avengers, but he quit in NAv(2010)#5. Which doesn't fit with my contention that this series is after Stature's cameo in NAv#7. Maybe he's just visiting, even though (ex-)wife/partner/whatever Mockingbird seems to be out. Hawkeye's assignation with Wanda was in NAv(2005)#26, not long after he was resurrected. Beast found Wanda at the end of his series of backup tales called Endangered Species in various X-titles. During the series he consulted various experts and tried various things to reverse Scarlet Witch's ban on mutants, but failed. Of course the Wanda in Transia may not have been a Doombot when Hawkeye and then Beast visited her. Clint Barton gave Kate Bishop his blessing to be the new Hawkeye in Young Avengers Presents #6 while he was using the identity Ronin. When he became Hawkeye again, he allowed her to keep the name too in I Am An Avenger #1. The 3rd Ant-Man Eric O'Grady debuted in The Irredeemable Ant-Man mini-series. At this point he's in the Secret Avengers. Jessica Jones dated Scott Lang when she was a PI in her Alias series.



 

Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Avengers: The Children's Crusade #6 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
The Young Avengers have just returned from a time trip. Iron Lad's technology took them and Wanda Maximoff to the scene of Avengers Disassembled, and the returned memories and power of Scarlet Witch brought them back. And with them is Stature's father Ant-Man, who was one of the fatal casualties of that event. But no-one knows if they've also restored the Witch's insanity.

They're still out front of Avengers Mansion, and Wanda is hovering in the air, explaining how she had blamed the Avengers for losing her young twin sons. She had confronted them with others of their 'mistakes' such as:- Kree warships seeking revenge for the Kree-Skrull War. Ultron robots (descended from Hank Pym's original creation). And she has conjured those 2 elements here again.

The only occupants of the Mansion appear to be Beast, Hawkeye (Clint Barton) and Jessica Jones. Beast and Hawkeye both admit to having separately located amnesiac Wanda in Transia earlier. Beast says he had tea with her. Hawkeye says he did that too. But the way he says it makes Jessica realise that he had sex with Wanda.

Hawkeye is saved from embarrassment by the joyful meeting between Jessica Jones and Scott Lang. And Scott and Clint joke that they're both back from dying in Avengers Disassembled.

Wiccan tells the Avengers that they found the amnesiac Wanda in Latveria, where she was about to marry Dr Doom. The Wanda in Transia was a Doombot. Jessica is tickled by the idea that Hawkeye made love to a robot!

While all this chat has been going on, no-one has attacked the Mansion. Instead the Kree and Ultrons seem to be attacking Scarlet Witch. It occurs to Jessica that Wanda may be using them to punish herself, commit suicide. The YA and Avengers set out to disrupt that plan.

The 2 Hawkeyes (or Hawkeye and Hawkette as Speed calls Kate Bishop) fire explosive arrows at the Kree warships. (And talk about how to tell Scott that there's a new Ant-Man too.)

Stature grows to giant-size (and it is only now that Scott realises his daughter has taken on Hank Pym's size-changing potions). She lifts the de-powered (by Dr Doom in #4) Wiccan to talk to his levitating 'mother'. Billy thinks she's possessed. (He still believes that must be the explanation for all the bad things she's supposed to have done.)

Wanda warns him off, saying she is responsible for the deaths of Avengers, husband and children, and she doesn't want any more casualties. Billy counters that Hawkeye and Ant-Man are now alive, and there's a new version of Vision (who she has already met in the YA). And now he finally gets to tell her (without interruption) that he thinks he and Tommy (Speed) are reincarnations of her boys William and Thomas.

The Witch somehow uses her magic to investigate Wiccan's claim. And she hugs him, saying that it's true.

Speed isn't so impressed. He's willing to believe Wanda's his mother. But now he's only going to lose her as soon as he's found her, because she's a criminal hunted by the Avengers (and the X-Men).

Talking of whom, Captain America, Iron Man, Magneto, Quicksilver, Wolverine and Wonder Man (and presumably Luke Cage, Ms Marvel and Spider-Man) are flying back from Latveria. Clint lets them know what's happening, but they won't be there for a while. Wanda is willing to pay for what she's done. But Beast suggests maybe she can undo it.

The deaths in Avengers Disassembled have already been reversed. But Beast is talking about reversing the spell which de-powered most mutants at the end of House of M. He long ago found that only she can do that. The ex-mutants should each be given the individual choice of course. But first they need a test case.

Jessica Jones calls in X-Factor. Their leader Jamie Madrox and Strong Guy are suspicious. Quicksilver restored some mutants' powers using the Inhumans' Terrigen Crystals, but the subjects eventually exploded. But Rictor is desperate enough to try. Despite the pleas of his boyfriend Shatterstar.

The process looks very painful for Rictor, but it works, as his restored earthquake power almost brings the building down.

Rictor is delighted, but this still doesn't mollify Madrox. Wanda's next problem is how to contact all the other ex-mutants (and as Jamie put it earlier, get them to listen to her offer before they kill her). Strong Guy says sarcastically that maybe the X-Men will let her use Cerebra, as Colossus, Cyclops, Emma Frost, Gambit, Iceman, Rogue and Storm have arrived outside Avengers Mansion.


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> Avengers: The Children's Crusade: Book info and issue index

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Jim Cheung
Dave Meikis
Justin Ponsor
Jim Cheung (Cover Penciler)
Jim Cheung (Cover Inker)
Justin Ponsor (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Cory Petit.
Editor: Tom Brevoort.

Characters

Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Beast
Beast

(Hank McCoy)
Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)
Hawkeye
Hawkeye

(Clint Barton)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)
Scarlet Witch
Scarlet Witch

(Wanda Maximoff)
Spider-Man
Spider-Man

(Peter Parker)
Wolverine
Wolverine

(James Howlett)

Plus: Ant-Man (Scott Lang), Colossus (Piotr Rasputin), Emma Frost, Hawkeye (Kate Bishop), Iron Lad, Jamie Madrox (Multiple Man), Patriot (Elijah Bradley), Rictor, Shatterstar, Speed, Stature, Strong Guy, Vision (Jonas), Wiccan, X-Factor.