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Avengers #53: Review

Jun 1968
Roy Thomas, John Buscema

Story Name:

In battle joined

Review & Comments

4 stars

Avengers #53 Review by (June 3, 2022)
Scarlet Witch revisits this issue by mental time-travel in Domination Factor: Avengers #2.4.

In this issue the X-Men wear the dissimilar outfits they've had since their #39.

The Avengers continue on to next issue and the X-Men similarly go to their #46 where they battle Juggernaut (again) and (with Prof X supposedly dead) get split up by the government.

Quicksilver will solo in Amazing Spider-Man #71 then will reappear with Scarlet Witch and Toad in XM#59-60 when all mutants are captured by the Sentinels. After that all 3 will go to our #75-76 where the twins will rejoin the Avengers.

Magneto will be missing until he shows up in the Savage Land in XM#62-63.

The island will be resurrected by Magneto in Uncanny X-Men #147-161.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Avengers #53 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
In our #49 Magneto tricked Quicksilver into joining him and Toad in a revived Brotherhood Of Evil Mutants by making a security guard's bullet graze Scarlet Witch's head. In X-Men #43 we learned that Wanda had lost her hex power and that Magneto's promised to cure her. But he's really building a mind-control machine. The X-Men attacked Magneto's fortress island and were captured. In XM#44 Angel escaped and flew to get help from the Avengers. But he got side-tracked by Red Raven. In XM#45 Cyclops also broke free but had to fight Quicksilver, interrupted by a philosophical discussion. Cyclops won (the fight, not the argument) but then the Avengers arrived to find him standing over the body of their erstwhile teammate. Now read on.

This issue begins where XM#45 left off as the Avengers (Black Panther, Goliath, Hawkeye and Wasp) tell Cyclops to stand away from Pietro. Scott Summers doesn't recognise Panther and suspects that these are more robot minions of Magneto. So he holds them off with his eye-beams and tries to escape to free the other X-Men.

Meanwhile we travel by flashback to see how our team got here. A skydiver is amazed to see the winged Angel fly past him and land on Avengers Mansion roof, triggering an alarm and a laser cage. The Avengers free him and he explains the Magneto situation. They fly to Maggy's island but on the way detect a signal being transmitted by a bug in 1 of Angel's wings. So they truss him up and leave him in the aero-car while Hawkeye sends a spy-arrow inside the rocky island where they see Cyclops talking to Quicksilver and assume that the X-Men have joined joined Magneto's Brotherhood. And that's where we came in.

Now we learn that it was indeed the Master Of Magnetism's plan that the monitor bug would set the hero teams at each other's throats. As usual Magneto despises Toad, whether he does his tasks badly or well, and consistently hits him. Wanda takes pity on the little guy and wishes she had her hex power back to strike back at the villain.

In the absence of Captain America (he quit some issues ago and sent BP as his replacement) Hawkeye and Goliath keep feuding about who should be leader. When T'Challa tries to intercede Hank Pym turns on *him*. It's up to Wasp to calm things down.

Scarlet Witch goes off to find her brother Pietro. Magneto tells Toad his real plan. His machines have been weakening the X-Men's mental resistance (except Angel who left too soon) and now his mental-control machine will make them attack and kill the Avengers. Indeed Cyclops has freed Beast, Iceman and Marvel Girl just in time for Magneto to take over their minds.

They attack the other team, which of course confirms *their* guess that the mutants are on the villain's side. So the battle is no holds barred, although Panther senses something isn't right. It's him vs Beast as Cyclops brings the ceiling down on Goliath, and Iceman's ice-shield deflects Hawkeye's arrow. But Pym shrugs off the rubble and grabs Cyke with a large hand over his optic visor as Wasp dodges Marvel Girl's telekinesis. Then the tide turns as BP hurls Beast into a wall knocking him out, Goliath's grip on Summers' skull starts to make him black out and Hawkeye gums up Iceman.

Magneto realises the Avengers are winning because someone cut the power to his mind-control machine. That someone is Angel who now attacks M and his toadie Toad. Followed by the Goliath and Panther who explain that they actually figured out Angels' bug was a plant and deliberately bound him loosely, and Wasp whispered to him to follow them. They only pretended to quarrel to lure Maggy into launching his attack prematurely (before the X-Men were fully brainwashed?).

But the master villain uses the very metal walls against his opponents and orders Toad to switch on an explosive detonation of that part of the island fortress. However Toad is fed up of being abused and underappreciated so he elects to initiate the destruction of the whole island instead. Then he bounds off and meets Wanda helping weakened Pietro. He leads them down some stairs to a special waiting aircraft. Magneto follows to use the same escape route. But this special ship is made completely out of non-metals (which Maggy built just to prove he could). So when the villain leaps for the rising craft his magnetism can get no hold on it and he falls into the ocean. As the Avengers and X-Men make their own escape as the island blows up.

John Buscema
George Tuska
John Buscema (Cover Penciler)
George Tuska (Cover Inker)
? (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Art Simek.
Editor: Stan Lee.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.


(Warren Worthington III)

(Hank McCoy)
Black Panther
Black Panther


(Scott Summers)

(Clint Barton)
Marvel Girl
Marvel Girl

(Jean Grey)

(Pietro Maximoff)
Scarlet Witch
Scarlet Witch

(Wanda Maximoff)

(Janet Van Dyne)

Plus: Goliath (Hank Pym), Toad (Mortimer Toynbee).

> Avengers: Book info and issue index

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