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Avengers #8: Review

Dec 2023
Jed MacKay, Carlos Villa

Story Name:

Twilight dreaming part 2

Review & Comments

Rating:
4 stars

Avengers #8 Review by (December 22, 2023)
Myrddin appeared to come with his Twilight Court at the end of last issue but he's not with them this issue.

They appeared before in the Timeless 1-shot published at the end of 2022. There we learned that Myrddin created the warriors of the Twilight Court to oppose Kang. But his motive didn't seem to be that Kang is a bad guy as the Courtiers say here, but rather that they were rivals seeking the same thing - the Missing Moment.

In this issue the Court are given epithets that correspond to those given the Avengers in this series:- Artur & Black Panther (the King), Bedivere & Iron Man (the Engineer), Bercilak & Vision (the Construct), Galehaut & Thor (the God), Lancelot & Captain Marvel (the Star), Mordred & Scarlet Witch (the Witch) and Parsifal & Captain America (the Icon). The Avengers were given these titles in #1 but only by the writer - they don't refer to themselves that way. So it is only a writer-determined 'coincidence' that their foes openly have those tags.

The foes also of course have links to the Arthurian mythos. Myrddin is the original Welsh name for Merlin. Artur is obviously Arthur. Lancelot and Bedivere are straight carryovers. Bercilak was the name of the Green Knight. Galehaut was a late and lesser known addition to the Lancelot story, but he's not Lancelot's son Galahad. Parsifal is Wagner's version of Perceval, or Peredur in the original Welsh tales. Mordred is more confusing. That name belonged to Arthur's incestuous bastard son whose mother was Arthur's half-sister Morgause. However much later versions have conflated Morgause with her sister Morgan whose magic and gender this Mordred seems to have been given.
The Glasshouse may similarly be related to Ynys Wydryn (isle of glass) which was the Welsh name for Glastonbury Tor which has Arthurian connections. I vaguely recall a Glass Castle in the legends somewhere but I may have imagined it.

Nightmare mentions being disrespected by Jean Grey and General Strange. The JG event was in X-Men (2021) #4 (but he tried to get revenge in #19-21). The GS event was in Nightmare's most recent app in Dr Strange (2023) #2.
General Strange was a spirit comprised of DrS's excised memories of his time in the War Of The 7 Spheres.





 

Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Avengers #8 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
The issue opens in space with a view of the Glasshouse, a large spacecraft with what resembles a huge sword & scabbard pushed through it. This is the home of Myrddin and his Twilight Court.

Inside bright Lancelot (the Star) spars with merry Galehaut (the God) watched by Bedivere (the Engineer) and Bercilak (the Construct) (who doesn't speak but is still understood). Bedivere comments that Galehaut always lets Lance win, but she'll never let her know that. Galehaut suggests she and Lance go sample some of Bedivere's hidden brew, but the Star only has eyes for Artur (the King). However he, whose frail body is trapped in soul-cursed armour of Chthon, pines only for Parsifal (the Icon) the perfect knight training alone, but he daren't admit his feelings. The commentators are joined by Mordred (the Witch). Bedivere compares his ability to see how things fit together with her ability to see how they come apart. She tells them that Myddin is sending them against the Avengers.

Now we pick after the end of last issue where we saw the 7 members of the Court arrive in the orbiting Impossible City to confront only Scarlet Witch and Vision. Vision had been standing alone against them (off-panel) before Wanda Maximoff joined him. Now Artur suggests they fight no more and the Avenger duo just hand over Kang The Conqueror. Scarlet Witch casts a spell at them but it dissolves before it reaches them because Mordred disassembles it. Vision sends a blast at her from the solar jewel on his brow but Bercilak diverts it with a space warp. The King suggests surrender again - there is no dishonour when 2 face 7 and the man they defend is a villain. The synthezoid says that the Avengers currently have need of Kang so they will not give him up. Wanda reminds him that the other Avengers are trapped by Nightmare. However she adds that she has a plan to rescue them but it will take time to work, so they must stall the foes.

The Avengers' nightmare is that the Earth, the universe and reality are all unravelling and they can't stop it. Thor sees Asgard die, Iron Man Manhattan, Black Panther Wakanda, Captain Marvel the Impossible City and Captain America (Sam Wilson) Washington DC. But Nightmare detects SW mentally contacting the Thunder God and telling him he's in a dream created by Nightmare. He is angry because while the others are mortals who are always at the mercy of their dreams, he as a God is 1 of the dreams that they are at the mercy of. He calls down the lightning and shouts "Avengers assemble" to wake them up.

In mid battle Wanda tells Vizh that her plan is working. She is casting spells so quickly that Mordred can't dispel them all. So Lancelot attacks her with her twin blades but SW conjures up a flaming axe to counter them. Until Galehaut fells her with a mighty punch. Meanwhile Vision fights Bedivere, alternating between diamond hard and intangible, and eventually breaks his sword and smashes him down. Mordred asks Parsifal why he doesn't join in, but his sense of justice prevents him from getting involved in such an uneven contest.

The other 5 Avengers now know that they are in Nightmare's Realm. Their captor confronts them and claims they can't escape unless he lets them go. He claims to have been disrespected by Jean Grey and General Strange, and as a Fear Lord he deserves respect. So he'll let them go if the admit that he's beaten them and surrender. Panther, Marvel and Iron Man declare that Avengers never surrender. But Thor laughs and says that his obligation to help Vision and Wanda is greater than his pride - so he surrenders on behalf of the others.

Vizh and Wanda are severely beaten and Artur asks them again to hand over Kang. But then the other 5 Avengers appear to stand between them. And Parsifal smiles because now the scales are balanced.



Carlos Villa
Carlos Villa
Federico Blee
Stuart Immonen (Cover Penciler)
Stuart Immonen (Cover Inker)
Stuart Immonen (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Cory Petit.
Editor: Tom Brevoort. Editor-in-chief: C. B. Cebulski.

Characters

Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Black Panther
Black Panther

(T'Challa)
Captain America
Captain America

(Sam Wilson)
Captain Marvel
Captain Marvel

(Carol Danvers)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)
Scarlet Witch
Scarlet Witch

(Wanda Maximoff)
Thor
Thor

(Odinson)

Plus: Twilight Court.

> Avengers: Book info and issue index

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