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Avengers #48: Review

Sep 2021
Jason Aaron, Javier Garron

Story Name:

World War She-Hulk part 3: Power in the blood

Review & Comments

4 stars

Avengers #48 Review by (September 4, 2021)
The island nation of Bagalia run by criminals featured in Secret Avengers and then Avengers Undercover. Since then it's become a staple background feature of the Marvel Universe.

Blade claims to have tangled with many products of the Red Room while he was working with MI-13 (in the Captain Britain And MI-13 series) but I don't recall such an entanglement.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Avengers #48 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
The Winter Guard abducted She-Hulk from Avengers Mountain and took her to a Red Room facility where they brainwashed her into becoming a red-skinned version called Winter Hulk. The Avengers had eventually discovered where she was and broke in to rescue her, just as Winter Hulk broke out of the place and went rampaging off. But the real plan had always been to send her off on an already-programmed assassination mission.

Avengers' Security Chief Gorilla-Man had facilitated the abduction and now he's on the run. We find him in a bar in the super-villain nation Bagalia telling his story to whoever will listen. The mercenary sought out the legendary previous Gorilla-Man and killed him thus inheriting his form and immortality. Now he's come to this bar full of killers hoping 1 of them will succeed in killing *him*. But Winter Hulk smashes her way in and gets rid of all the opposition with a blast of radiation breath.

As she drags GM away he urges the Jennifer Walters inside her not to kill him for revenge because he doesn't want *her* to inherit his curse. And Hulk weakens a bit as she remembers lots of vampires biting her. Ken Hale sees some of the puncture wounds and realises that the Winter Guard got their ally Dracula to lend them some vamps to help weaken her for the brainwashing. And in return Drac got her blood for his use.

We get confirmation as we see Blade, UN-appointed Sheriff of the Vampire Nation in Chernobyl, surveying a scene of carnage. Apparently Winter Hulk and Gorilla-Man were here slaughtering vamps and smashing the vials of her blood. Eric Brooks reports back to Black Panther and mentions that Dracula recently tried to get hold of Wolverine's blood (in his recent #11) supposedly to turn his vamps into Daywalkers like Blade. He claims that Hulk killed all the vamps (but we see him finishing 1 off himself). T'Challa in turn mentions that Gorilla-Man infected the Avengers Mountain with something that is spreading necrosis through the tissues of its dead Celestial body. Brooks thinks it's weaponised Dracula blood which might turn the Celestial into a vampire, and offers his help in that case.

In the North Pole HQ BP tells Echo that there's no time for her regular test schedule today. Maya Lopez is still concerned about the Phoenix power she was recently given. She meets Thor and tries to talk to him about the Phoenix Force's claim to be his mother, but he doesn't want to discuss it.

Our next scene is the mid-Atlantic. Gorilla-Man is ferrying Winter Hulk in a small rowboat in the Atlantean Zone above Atlantis. The Atlanteans destroy any ship that ventures in there, but he figures this is where she's been programmed to go. She dives into the water just before Atlantean warriors rise up out of the water to attack Ken. Jen returns to save him by battering the Atlanteans, but not before 1 of them stabs him, seemingly fatally. He tries again to persuade Jennifer not to follow her programming, but she heads back down to Atlantis and Sub-Mariner.

Meanwhile the Winter Guard's leader Red Widow swims there too with a cadre of soldiers and a big bomb. We learn as she reports back to her unrevealed boss that Winter Hulk will assassinate Namor. But she's really just a distraction while Widow's team plant a nuclear bomb to destroy Atlantis. And if all else fails she's got a vial of something as a fail-safe option.

Meanwhile again up above Gorilla-Man has bandanged himself up from a handy 1st-aid box and donned equally handy scuba gear and now dives down to join the fray.

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


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Black Panther
Black Panther


(Eric Brooks)

(Jennifer Walters)


Plus: Gorilla-Man (Ken Hale), Phoenix (Maya Lopez), Red Widow.

> Avengers: Book info and issue index

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