Avengers Annual #1: Review

Jan 2012
Brian Michael Bendis, Gabriele Dell'Otto

Story Name:

(no title given)

Review & Comments

Rating:
4.5 stars

Avengers Annual #1 Review by (December 4, 2012)
Wonder Man will return in #31, where he will exhibit a split-personality, and at least part of him will repent of his actions here. Some of the Revengers get out of jail pretty quick:- Eddie Brock will stop being Anti-Venom in the Spider-Island event, but that won't stop his career. Atlas returns to the Thunderbolts. D-Man will become the latest Scourge of the Underworld, but will be killed in CA#14. But nothing more has been heard yet of Captain Ultra, Century, Devil-Slayer, Ethan Edwards and Goliath.

Having Hawkeye in the quincarrier is possibly a mistake because he didn't join Secret Avengers until after Fear Itself, possibly not-coincidentally in the same month as this issue was actually published. Protector and Red Hulk are missing from the Avengers lineup. We don't see Mockingbird and Victoria Hand alive here in Avengers Mansion, but they must be because they continue to feature in New Avengers. We don't see who throws Cap's shield. Steve Rogers at this time in his career is not carrying it. So maybe Bucky Barnes is here as Captain America, as he is in #12.1, in between his escape from the gulag in Captain America #619 and his faked death in Fear Itself.

The Revengers are a mixed bag:- Anti-Venom is Eddie Brock, the original Venom, given this new identity in Amazing Spider-Man #568. He has no reason to be against the Avengers, apart from Spider-Man. Atlas is Erik Josten who has fought the Avengers under many names. For a long while he was a hero in Thunderbolts. He claims here to be embittered because the Avengers turned him down for membership, presumably referring to his being rejected by the 50-State Intiative. Captain Ultra is a would-be super-hero (with actual powers). Here he blames his lack of success on being excluded by the in crowd. But in fact he *was* accepted by the Avengers Initiative, and even became a team leader. Century is an alien who has only been seen before as a member of Force Works. He joined the Revengers because he blames himself for Wonder Man's death in that series. Devil-Slayer (Eric Simon Payne) is a mystical warrior who first appeared in Defenders. His reason for being in the Revengers seems to be connected to his mental instability. D(emolition)-Man is Dennis Dunphy, another would-be superhero (with artificially augmented strength). He's mainly been a character in Captain America. Brain damage during fights has left him mentally fragile. Here he repeats the claim that the Grandmaster told him to retrieve the Infinity Gems from the Avengers, which he said once before in The Pulse. Ethan Edwards is a Skrull who was brought up by humans, and tried being the superhero Virtue in Marvel Knights Spider-Man #13-18. He's here for revenge for the Skrulls killed in Secret Invasion. Goliath (Tom Foster) is one of the many who have used that name (including Erik Josten). He is angry at how his uncle Bill (also Goliath) was killed in Civil War.

This is a continuation from New Avengers Annnual #1. I reckon this story occurs after Avengers: Children's Crusade because of Wonder Man's statements there. That also explains how Wonder Man knew in NAv An#1 that Scarlet Witch is alive. This story also says it happens before Fear Itself, even though it was published several months afterwards, which explains why Steve Rogers is still not Captain America. Also Avengers Tower will get destroyed in Fear Itself. In NAv An#1 WM's complaints against the Avengers were specifically:- They (actually Hank Pym) created Ultron. They allowed Scarlet Witch to go mad. Civil War was their fault. They never dealt with Hulk. They allowed Norman Osborn to replace them with Dark Avengers (during Dark Reign). And they allowed him to gain control of Sentry, and then killed Sentry (during Siege).



 

Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Avengers Annual #1 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
Wonder Man has been complaining that the Avengers cause bad things to happen, and asking them to disband, since Avengers (2010) #1 (or possibly since New Avengers (2005) #51). In New Avengers Annual #1 he gathered together a group of heroes that he called the Revengers (Anti-Venom, Atlas, Captain Ultra, Century, Devil-Slayer, D-Man, Ethan Edwards and Goliath). They attacked Avengers Mansion, thoroughly trouncing the New Avengers, and doing a lot of damage to the building. But Victoria Hand managed to get out a call, presumably to Steve Rogers.

Steve and Sharon Carter are in the quincarrier, HQ of the Secret Avengers. They immediately fly to the Mansion, and put out the call for the other Avengers to assemble. Ant-Man, Beast, Hawkeye and Moon Knight are also in the carrier. They are quickly joined at the site of the devastation by Maria Hill, Iron Man and Thor.

Thing and Wolverine are still ambulatory. Spider-Man and Ms Marvel are fished out and revived. Wong is OK, but finds an unconscious Dr Strange. Luke Cage gets back from the Bronx, where Atlas threw him, as his wife Jessica Jones crawls out of the rubble. They are relieved to see nanny Squirrel Girl with their baby Danielle. (Wonder Man had made sure those 2 were out of the building before the attack.)

They now notice an extra-large Atlas doing a King Kong on Avengers Tower. They rush there but find the building deserted. That's because Wonder Man and the Revengers are holding a press conference elsewhere. The Avengers try to disrupt it, but Simon Williams continues his rant. He claims that, despite all the good they have done, the Avengers are hiding the fact that they are responsible  for bad things like Ultron and the actions of Scarlet Witch. Steve Rogers tries to arrest him, but Simon claims he's trying to cover up the truth.

Then Iron Man employs a device he prepared earlier, which sucks Wonder Man's ionic energy into a container.

Thor tells the other Revengers to surrender. But Atlas urges them not to. So Thor transports them to a football stadium, and the Avengers follow for a fight.

Thor takes down Atlas. Luke Cage deals with Goliath. Thing chokes Anti-Venom. Captain Anerica's shield takes out D-Man. Ms Marvel blasts Devil-Slayer. A recovered Dr Strange handles Ethan Edwards. While Spider-Woman has joined Hawkeye in dancing around with Century.

The Revengers are taken into custody, and each gives his justification for helping Wonder Man. Meanwhile Beast visits his old friend Simon Williams. Simon repeats his claim that the Avengers are out of control. He asks Hank to keep an eye on them. But he also wonders if he is really Simon, or just a creation of Scarlet Witch when she 'resurrected' him in Avengers (1998).

The media are full of questions about Wonder Man's accusations. They are also suspicious about the way he has been 'disappeared'. Hearing this, Simon is content. He has achieved his aim. And his ionic form vanishes from his containment globe.


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> Avengers Annual: Book info and issue index

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Gabriele Dell'Otto
Gabriele Dell'Otto
Ive Svorcina
Gabriele Dell'Otto (Cover Penciler)
Gabriele Dell'Otto (Cover Inker)
Letterer: Cory Petit.
Editor: Tom Brevoort.

Characters

Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Beast
Beast

(Hank McCoy)
Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)
Doctor Strange
Doctor Strange

(Stephen Strange)
Hawkeye
Hawkeye

(Clint Barton)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)
Luke Cage
Luke Cage

(Power Man)
Ms. Marvel
Ms. Marvel

(Carol Danvers)
Scarlet Witch
Scarlet Witch

(Wanda Maximoff)
Spider-Man
Spider-Man

(Peter Parker)
Spider-Woman
Spider-Woman

(Jessica Drew)
Thing
Thing

(Ben Grimm)
Thor
Thor

(Odinson)
Wolverine
Wolverine

(James Howlett)

Plus: Ant-Man (Eric O'Grady), Anti-Venom, Atlas, Captain Ultra, Century, D-Man (Demolition Man), Danielle Cage, Devil-Slayer, Ethan Edwards, Goliath (Tom Foster), Squirrel Girl, Victoria Hand.