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Avengers #11: Review

Dec 2018
Jason Aaron, Ed McGuinness

Story Name:

The strength and conviction of Phillip Coulson

Review & Comments

4 stars

Avengers #11 Review by (December 22, 2018)
Cory Smith shared the pencilling with Ed McGuinness. I'm guessing he did Black Panther's meeting. I'm not going to try to separate the inking/finishing of Mark Morales, Scott Hanna and Karl Kessel.

We don't know who Coulson's prisoner is. But he gets shot in the the chest just like Coulson was. And Coulson is back a changed man. So maybe the same thing will happen to the prisoner?

Despite Sunfire's talk of Black Panther's secret agents and Coulson's claim that his telepaths have exposed the prisoner as 1, I'm not convinced that it's correct. BP's secret agents mentioned here could also be his Agents Of Wakanda. Gorilla Man and Wasp (Janet Van Dyne) are 2 we met last issue, and next issue promises to add Ka-Zar, Odin(?!), Okoye and Zabu to the mix.

I, like other sites, am reserving judgement as to whether this Hyperion (and his Squadron Supreme Of America teammates last issue) is the same as any previous version. (Marvel Wiki lists them as new characters.)


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Avengers #11 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
The opening page has Phil Coulson ranting at someone he holds prisoner. He used to look up to superheroes but his view has changed since Deadpool killed him (DP(2016)#31 during Secret Empire). The somehow revived (did he go to Tahiti?) ex-SHIELD Agent is now ruthlessly committed to protecting the USA. Including being prepared to kill his captive.

In Avengers Mountain HQ Ghost Rider (Robbie Reyes) is studying Avengers files and hoping for a crisis to get him out of it. Then he comes across the entry for Mephisto which his subconscious signals is important. Captain Marvel (Carol Danvers) is studying his magic Hell Charger car while she explains where everyone else is. Black Panther is holding an important meeting. Blade is in the infirmary (after being rescued from Dracula's castle last issue). Captain America and Iron Man are doing their own things. She avoids telling him that She-Hulk and Thor are on a date. Meanwhile she herself has got to go take an intergalactic conference call.

About that date. Thor has taken Jennifer Walters to the Savage Land for a picnic of turkey legs and mead. Ka-Zar has rounded up some dinosaurs for their amusement. But Jen is *not* amused.

About that meeting. Amid the lush vegetation of the Eden Room Avengers' Chairman T'Challa has called together some representative international heroes to foster global cooperation against menaces like Sub-Mariner's simmering war against the surface world. Old Iron Man armours have been recruited to fill the role of waiters at the feast. He starts the negotiations by offering all his resources to those who join the alliance.

Sunfire of Japan is pleased at the offer of Wakandan vibranium, Celestial tech from Avengers Mountain (the body of a dead Celestial) and the fruits of Panther's network of 'secret' agents that it seems everyone knows about. But he wonders what prospective allies will have to do in return. Panther responds that international superhero cooperation is needed now that SHIELD has been dismantled (as a result of Secret Empire). Captain Britain endorses the idea. Arabian Knight and Israel's Sabra surprise everyone by agreeing with each other and CB.

But the spectre at the feast is Russia's representative Ursa Major who loudly and drunkenly declares that the Winter Guard will never participate in this alliance. T'Challa points out that it was antagonism between the Guard and the Avengers that made a mess of the Hydropolis situation (last issue). And he says that there has been another Atlantean incident 3 days ago in Alaska. Major Ursus immediately assumes that Panther has really called them here to find out what they know about that.

Ignoring Shaman of Canada's attempts to calm him down the Russian asks why there is no-one from the USA here? Could it be because the Avengers and Captain America have fallen out of favour with the US Government? And he hints at a big problem there that the Avengers will need help with. (Sounds like he knows something about the creation of the Squadron Supreme Of America team - again last issue.)

Things aren't going well on the date and an awkward silence has built up. Jennifer says she's going home (by teleport).

Coulson is still talking, claiming that his prisoner is an agent of Black Panther sent to infiltrate his organisation. The other claims to be innocent, another ex-SHIELD Agent who Phil has known for ages, who like him was recruited by General Ross. He admits he's sceptical of some of the things Ross accuses Captain America and the Avengers of, but he denies being a spy.

Back at the conference Ursa Major is getting angrier. This time it's the turn of China's Collective Man to stop him, but he launches an attack at Black Panther across the table. But Panther just tells the Iron Man waiters to teleport him to Siberia.

Captain Britain suggests that Major Ursus wasn't really drunk, he was deliberately trying to provoke a fight. T'Challa says he'd hoped then Winter guard would send their leader Crimson Dynamo who would have been more agreeable. Collective Man thinks the real head of the Winter Guard is Red Widow, the latest product of the Red Room (which gave us the various Black Widow's). Sabra brings up the vampire troubles in Romania (connected to Blade and Dracula).

CB thinks they should concentrate on the Atlantean problem. Sunfire asks what *did* happen in Alaska? BP tells them that Namor's forces attacked another Roxxon facility but were beaten off by an unknown agency that wasn't the Winter Guard or anyone else he knows about. But he suspects it has something to do with secret meetings in Washington DC.

Back to the Savage Land where Thor is trying to salvage the date. Jen suggests he really wanted a date with She-Hulk but Thor assures her that it was the human inside the super-being that he wanted to get to know. His rare eloquence wins her over. But she turns into She-Hulk to kiss him.

Phil Coulson shoots his victim in the leg to get him to confess. But he also says that he has telepaths on staff who have already told him the truth - that the spy wants to know what happened in Alaska. He says it was the 1st test run of the Squadron Supreme Of America (we see Hyperion defeating Orka, so presumably the opposition were the Defenders Of The Deep).

The wounded guy tries to appeal to the old Phil he knew. Coulson says his victim worked for SHIELD International Review (whatever that is) and so knows exactly what he is (what he's always been or since his resurrection?). He suspects the other guy is stalling for time while he gets free of his bonds. The other guy replies that he did that 10 minutes ago and has been avoiding having to kill his old friend.

Coulson tells the lights to go out. There's a fight in the dark and some shots. The lights come back on and Phil stands over a body with a gunshot hole in its chest.

Ed McGuinness
Mark Morales
Erick Arciniega
Ed McGuinness (Cover Penciler)
Ed McGuinness (Cover Inker)
Marte Gracia (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Cory Petit.
Editor: Tom Brevoort. Editor-in-chief: C. B. Cebulski.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Black Panther
Black Panther

Captain Marvel
Captain Marvel

(Carol Danvers)
Phil Coulson
Phil Coulson


(Jennifer Walters)

Ursa Major
Ursa Major

(Mikhail Uriokovitch Ursus)

Plus: Arabian Knight, Captain Britain (Brian Braddock), Collective Man, Ghost Rider (Robbie Reyes), Orka, Sabra, Shaman, Sunfire.

> Avengers: Book info and issue index

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