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Avengers #46: Review

Jul 2021
Jason Aaron, Javier Garron

Story Name:

World War She-Hulk part 1: The taking & breaking of Jennifer Walters

Review & Comments

4 stars

Avengers #46 Review by (July 9, 2021)
The arc title World War She-Hulk is obviously a call back to 2007's World War Hulk (and 2010's World War Hulks).

Ken Hale killed an earlier Gorilla Man but in doing so took on the GM curse. He would live forever as a gorilla with the mind of a man until someone killed him and took over the curse. And he wasn't allowed to kill himself. In #19 we learned that Ken Hale made a deal with Dracula to be given death in exchange for things like arranging for Drac's vampires to be given sanctuary in Chernobyl. But of course we know that in such deals the promise is never kept because there's always 1 more task you must do 1st.

It was in the same #19 that we learned that Ursa Major was spying on the Winter Guard for the Avengers and Gorilla Man was his contact.

Dracula and the Winter Guard were drawn into an alliance by Mephisto in #32.

The Red Room is the Russian facility that trains Black Widows (and others). I think this is the 1st time that we've seen that it has a room that is literally red.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Avengers #46 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
We open with She-Hulk chained up in a red room under a psychological barrage that has caused her to forget who she is and why she is there. Then we flashback to how she got there.

The body of the dead Celestial at the North Pole which serves as Avengers Mountain HQ is suffering a system failure. Tony Stark is investigating and asks Head Of Security Gorilla-Man for help. But Ken Hale just bounds past on his way to the Teleportation Room where he orders the security system to go into lockdown. Then he allows the Russian Winter Guard to port in. He tells their leader Red Widow that he's temporarily compromised the Mountain's systems, and that Ghost Rider and Thor are absent. The other 5 regular Avengers are here along with the new Phoenix and Starbrand child.

Captain Marvel is putting She-Hulk through strength tests. Her strength and gamma powers were augmented in the Emypre event (as explained in the Immortal She-Hulk 1-shot). But Jennifer Walters has also been training to keep control of the savage She-Hulk (since the Enter The Phoenix arc). However the session is interrupted by Crimson Dynamo and Darkstar. Laynia Petrovna's Darkforce engulfs Carol Danvers while the huge armour of Dimitri Bukharin batters Shulk. Then his normal-size armoured form slips out of the large outer Hulkbuster armour which wraps around the target and jets off with her. Darkstar and Dynamo follow as Marvel breaks free of her Darkforce cocoon.

In the Med Lab Black Panther and Captain America are subjecting Phoenix and the Starkid to more tests. Cap is worried about letting these newbies be field agents but T'Challa reminds him that they just had a baptism of fire in the Reborn world (need I say the Heroes Reborn event). Maya Lopez adds that it was she and Brandi who managed to restore reality then (the Heroes Return 1-shot). Steve Rogers is cognisant of Maya's previous time as an Avenger (as Echo/Ronin in New Avengers vol 1) but now she has the Phoenix Force (since Enter The Phoenix) which he considers too dangerous to be on Earth. And Brandi Selby was only recently born with the Starbrand (#30) but she grew up to be, say, 8 while in the Heroes Reborn reality and has a rebellious attitude. However BP remarks as he has before that they need the ancient powers (of the 1M BC Avengers) to meet the forces currently arrayed against them. Then Brandi senses the Darkforce which she declares a threat to Earth and flies off to deal with it.

Gorilla-Man returns to where he saw Iron Man. Stark thinks he's come back to help him but Hale knocks him out.

The Hulkbuster armour delivers She-Hulk to Red Guardian (Nikolai Krylenko) and Ursa Major, but she busts out as she lands. The opposing pair entangle her with carbonadium tasers. Then Red Widow shoots a sonic bazooka at her. But Shulk is still on the rampage until the android Vostok sends liquid metal tendrils to invade her brain.

Captain Marvel is trying to break through a security door which the Mountain's system won't open. Then Brandi Starkid just smashes through it without pausing in her flight.

The Winter Guard carry She-Hulk to the teleporter to be met by Gorilla-Man ready to send them on their way and then erase their destination coordinates. Ursa Major has a whispered conversation with him, asking why the Avengers weren't ready for them as Ken had promised him. But then Red Widow runs her sword through UM's throat, declaring him a traitor. Ken Hale complains that she was supposed to kill *him*, that was the deal. Widow counters that his deal was with Dracula. Ken says Dracula promised he would be killed if he did what they wanted (because the curse that gave him his gorilla body won't let him kill himself). But RW just pretends to shoot him with her finger and then they leave him to his fate.

Now we return to the Red Room where it is Red Widow who is brainwashing She-Hulk. RW reminds her of the (secret) trial she was given and found guilty (of trashing Moscow in a Phoenix-powered fight with Sub-Mariner during the Enter The Phoenix contest for the Phoenix Power). And they seem to have now convinced She-Hulk that she is to blame for her own incarceration.

Javier Garron
Javier Garron
David Curiel
Javier Garron (Cover Penciler)
Javier Garron (Cover Inker)
David Curiel (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Cory Petit.
Editor: Tom Brevoort. Editor-in-chief: C. B. Cebulski.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Black Panther
Black Panther

Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)
Captain Marvel
Captain Marvel

(Carol Danvers)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)

(Jennifer Walters)
Ursa Major
Ursa Major

(Mikhail Uriokovitch Ursus)

Plus: Crimson Dynamo (Dmitri Bukharin), Gorilla-Man (Ken Hale), Phoenix (Maya Lopez), Red Guardian (Nikolai Krylenko), Red Widow, Starbrand (Brandy Selby), Vostok, Winter Guard.

> Avengers: Book info and issue index

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