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Avengers #80: Review

May 2004
Chuck Austen, Olivier Coipel

Story Name:

Lionheart of Avalon (part 4)

Review & Comments

4 stars

Avengers #80 Review by (May 28, 2021)
Brian Braddock became the original Captain Britain in UK's CB#1. There he chose the Amulet Of Right rather than the Sword. His adventures eventually took him into US comics. Meanwhile he learned about the mystic pocket dimension Otherworld which connects with England, and later the Captain Britain Corps from multiple timelines. And he met and married the faery hybrid Meggan. Recently (2001 Excalibur mini-series) they took over the rule of Otherworld and left the Earthly realm.
Brian and Meggan Braddock were seen since then collecting Betsy Braddock (Psaylocke)'s body in X-Treme X-Men #3.

Despite this story arc being titled Lionheart Of Avalon, Kelsey Leigh will be called Captain Britain in this series. It won't be until the New Excalibur series when Braddock returns to be CB again that she'll take the codename Lionheart. In fact, as it happens, it is Braddock who is referred to as Lionheart Of Avalon (as well as CB) next issue.

It looks here as though the Thunderball was actually the knight in mystical disguise. But according to Lionheart's Handbook profile TB was actually possessed byu the knight's spirit.

Next issue we'll learn that the 'Master' is in fact a female, as Wrecker let slip last issue. And it's Morgan Le Fay.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Avengers #80 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
Single-mom Kelsey Leigh gave up her life to protect unconscious Captain America from being killed by Thunderball when the Avengers fought the Wrecking Crew in England. Now the Avengers have her kids Martin and Jenny to look after, but last issue ended with a mystery visitor from Avalon looking at Kelsey's body.

Now she awakens apparently at Stonehenge with 2 spectral figures looming over the site. They introduce themselves as Brian Braddock (not looking like Captain Britain) and his wife Meggan, protectors of England. They tell her that her courage has earned her a 2nd chance at life for the sake of the Realm. But she must choose between 2 items, the Sword and the Amulet. They can't tell her which to choose, but they increase the stakes by saying that 1 choice might mean she never sees her family again.

Kelsey calmly reasons that a 50/50 chance is better than dying and *definitely* losing her children. And that the Sword would be better to protect the Realm with than an Amulet. So she draws the Sword from the stone ... and a blinding light clothes her in a costume (looking rather like Captain Britain's original garb). But then they tell her that choosing the Sword Of Might over the Amulet Of Right was the wrong 1 from her POV. She must never reveal she is alive to her children or they will die horribly. And the pair fade away after calling her Captain Britain.

Another thing that happened last issue was that Hawkeye took the powerful Arrows Of Thor to exact revenge on the Wrecking Crew, but only allowed them to escape and beat him up. Wasp is staring out of a window of Tony Stark's English mansion when she sees them carrying his slumped body to the quinjet on the lawn. She bursts giant-size out of the room with Tony and Scarlet Witch dragged in her wake. Stark just manages to grab a boot of his armour and uses it to fly the 2 of them into the air to see what's occurring.

In the quinjet Thunderball has assumed control of the Crew and orders their normal leader Wrecker to bring Hawkeye's body to the cockpit. The rest of the Crew had begun to suspect that this wasn't exactly the Thunderball they knew, and now they're going to get evidence that they're right. He calls on his 'Master' for assistance, and a glow from his eyes contacts Hawkeye's and 'downloads' Clint Barton's pilot skills - and he can now fly the Avengers' quinjet.

Except that Wasp begins to tear it open. TB starts it up anyway and sends craft and giant skidding across the ground through trees. Wrecker had wisely got out with Bulldozer and Piledriver so Tony drops Wanda Maximoff off to deal with them while he goes to shut the quinjet down. The Asgardian-powered trio scoff at the Witch's chances of harming them. But a hex makes germs in their system multiply until they're on the ground vomiting.

Tony and his boot jet manage to catch up with the quinjet and get him inside the wreck. But his attempts at taking control just make it fly into the air, luckily right over a nearby town to crash (nearly) beyond it. Thunderball is thrown free and is confronted with a figure materialising out of flame. He thinks it's his 'Master' and says he's got the arrows. But it's costumed Kelsey come for revenge with the big sword which she rams through his chest.

Then from a different kind of light steps a cloaked figure. It is Thunderball's Master and TB himself transforms into an armoured knight. The figure claims to have retrieved him from death once before and will save him from death now if he hands over the arrows. Kelsey also has Captain Britain's quarterstaff (with a different look) and she hits the fallen knight with it to keep him moving. Scarlet Witch runs up and begs her to stop beating the fallen foe. But then there's a bright flash and all 4 are gone.

Olivier Coipel
Andy Lanning
Chris Sotomayor
David Finch (Cover Penciler)
Art Thibert (Cover Inker)
Frank D'Armata (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Richard Starkings.
Editor: Tom Brevoort. Editor-in-chief: Joe Quesada.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.


(Clint Barton)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)
Scarlet Witch
Scarlet Witch

(Wanda Maximoff)

(Janet Van Dyne)

Plus: Captain Britain (Kelsey Leigh), Captain Britain (Brian Braddock), Meggan, Morgana Le Fey (Morgan Le Fay).

> Avengers: Book info and issue index

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