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Avengers #30: Review

Sep 2012
Brian Michael Bendis, Walt Simonson

Story Name:

(no title given)

Review & Comments

3.5 stars

Avengers #30 Review by (September 22, 2012)
Despite what it says here, Hawkeye and Scarlet Witch's 'relationship' has always been one-sided. In the early Avengers he was smitten with her. (But in those days Stan Lee always had his heroes falling for the nearest available woman.) In #109 he quit because he was jealous of her and Vision. The only time she responded was when he found her in New Avengers (2004) #26 after House of M. And at that time she had amnesia. Or may have been a Doombot, as shown in Avengers: Children's Crusade. But Beast and Jessica Jones heard about Hawkeye's sexual encounter with the possible Doombot during that series, and I'd have guessed the story spread through the Avengers before now. Spider-Woman was duped or brainwashed into being an agent of Hydra in her earliest appearances. Later Madame Hydra (Viper) claimed to be her mother. Her career as a SHIELD agent seems a well-established myth. Hawkeye presumably refers to these separate periods when he says she belonged to both organisations. Her time as a SHIELD/Hydra double-agent in New Avengers was actually her Skrull replacement. Hawkeye also mentions Jessica being screwed up by her father (as Wanda was by Magneto). This refers to the origin of her power. But both versions of her origin are more benign than her statement here that "he did experiment on me in the womb". In Spider-Woman (1978) #1 he injected her with experimental spider-serum when she was a young girl to save her life from accidental radiation poisoning. In Spider-Woman: Origin she was accidentally hit in her mother's womb by a laser carrying spider DNA. Hawkeye fails to note another connection between Jessica and Wanda:- Both their origins involve Wundagore Mountain and the High Evolutionary.

I don't think Walt Simonson's art is as suitable for the acrobatic action scenes here as it is for brute power battles like the double-page opener. But his exultant Madame Hydra at the end is quite good. The opening scene from Avengers vs X-Men #11 doesn't show Hawkeye and Spider-Woman. If this is supposed to indicate that the duo start on this adventure while the other Avengers are at the main fight, then it misfires because they're both in AvsX#11, and Hawkeye is one of the few characters who actually *does* something there. The scene of the Big 3 relaxing suggests this issue follows the not-yet-published AvsX#12. So this is really an epilogue to the AvsX event, as probably is last week's New Avengers #30. Mr Negative has been a super-powered crime boss since the beginning of Spider-Man's Brand New Day. His Inner Demons followers seem to have supernatural resilience.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Avengers #30 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
This issue starts with an opening spread of the battle in Avengers vs X-Men #10 between Cyclops and Emma Frost, the last holders of the Phoenix Force, and a collection of Avengers and X-Men. In the foreground is Hulk, Red Hulk and Thor vs Cyclops, and Iron Man vs Emma Frost. Captain America and Prof X look on, with Beast, Giant-Man, Luke Cage, Magneto, Ms Marvel, Scarlet Witch, Spider-Man and Storm in the background. But that's the last we'll see of that.

Instead we watch Mr Negative and his Inner Demons break into a lightly-guarded SHIELD warehouse, killing the guards. The warehouse contains weapons used in the invasion (during Fear Itself) by Sin, the female Red Skull. Mr Negative heard that Hydra was going after this cache, and decided to beat them to it. And now's the time to do it, while the Avengers are busy with AvsX.

But at least 2 Avengers aren't too busy, as Hawkeye and Spider-Woman drop in. What follows is 10 pages of fighting while the couple bicker. Clint can't figure out why Jessica is mad at him. Eventually she tells him that Scarlet Witch confided in her on the way home (presumably from AvX#12) in a quinjet. (Not knowing that Jessica and Clint are now an item) Wanda told her that she and Hawkeye used to have a thing, and she wondered what would happen now she was back with the Avengers.

When all the baddies are down, Clint points out that it happened before Jessica came along. Jessica apologises for being jealous. They agree that being superheroes, and with their complicated pasts, makes having a relationship difficult. But then Mr Negative causes all his men to spring back into the fray as good as new.

Cap, Iron Man and Thor are relaxing in Avengers Tower as Jarvis serves them food and drink, when they are notified about the SHIELD warehouse break-in. But when they get there Hawkeye and Spider-Woman have defeated all the villains again.

Spider-Woman reveals she got a tip from Madame Hydra. Jessica used to be a Hydra agent, and Madame Hydra claims to still have a soft spot for her. It turns out that Madame Hydra deliberately set up Mr Negative to draw the attention of any spare Avengers, while Hydra actually raids another SHIELD store. This holds, as well as weapons, some Skrulls in stasis.

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Walt Simonson
Scott Hanna
Jason Keith
Leinil Francis Yu (Cover Penciler)
Leinil Francis Yu (Cover Inker)
Sunny Gho (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Cory Petit.
Editor: Tom Brevoort.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.


(Hank McCoy)
Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)

(Clint Barton)

(Bruce Banner)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)
Luke Cage
Luke Cage

(Power Man)
Ms. Marvel
Ms. Marvel

(Carol Danvers)
Professor X
Professor X

(Charles Xavier)
Red Hulk
Red Hulk

(Thunderbolt Ross)
Scarlet Witch
Scarlet Witch

(Wanda Maximoff)

(Peter Parker)

(Jessica Drew)


Plus: Emma Frost, Giant-Man (Scott Lang), Inner Demons, Jarvis (Edwin Jarvis), Mr Negative, Phoenix Force.