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Avengers Assemble #4: Review

Jun 2012
Brian Michael Bendis, Mark Bagley

Story Name:

(no title given)

Review & Comments

4 stars

Avengers Assemble #4 Review by (October 8, 2013)
Mr Fantastic will have an Ultimate Nullifier in #8, so probably that's where Black Widow took it. Unless it's a different one (see Comments on #2). The other device stolen in #1 will turn out to be a Cosmic Cube (sort-of). We never find out what the other device stolen in #2 was. Or anything else on Thanos' list. The Guardians of the Galaxy at this point are Bug, Drax the Destroyer, Gamora, Rocket Raccoon and Star-Lord. As I mentioned last issue Star-Lord was trapped in the Cancerverse in Thanos Imperative #6. But Drax was actually killed in #4. As with Star-Lord we won't get an explanation as to how he got here. Since then Gamora and Rocket Raccoon have been part of the Annihilators, along with some other Guardians. The Guardians have always had a fluid membership. Bug was left behind at their Knowhere base, along with some others, in TI#1. In the meantime he rejoined his fellow Micronauts in the Incredible Hulks: Enigma Force: Dark Sun limited series.

Hulk doesn't actually wield Mjolnir here (and the later Indestructible Hulk #6-7 will confirm that he isn't worthy). He forces Thor to hit himself with his own hammer. Although I refer to it as *the* Helicarrier there have been several different ones in the past, and getting destroyed is an occupational hazard. I suspect SHIELD usually has a replacement ready to go, and I believe they sometimes have more than 1 in action at the same time. Cancer was last seen free in #2, and we don't know how he was captured. Cap's dialogue suggests the rest have been rounded up too. They won't be seen again. John King is Parker Robbins' cousin and became his right-hand man when Robbins became the Hood. He's followed him from Civil War to Dark Reign. He was imprisoned in New Avengers Finale, escaped with Hood in Avengers Academy #8, but wasn't involved with him in the Infinity Gems story in Avengers #7-12.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Avengers Assemble #4 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
The Avengers and SHIELD have stopped Zodiac from getting the Ultimate Nullifier. But now their boss Thanos has turned up on the SHIELD helicarrier.

Thanos is a cosmic-level threat, and so Tony Stark contacts the White House to inform them what's going on. And the Nullifier is so dangerous that he suggests that the President authorise the destruction of the carrier.

Thanos takes over Hulk's mind and gets him to knock Thor out with his own hammer. As Hulk faces the other Avengers, Maria Hill and Black Widow fly off with the Nullifier in Nick Fury's flying car. But Thanos restores the powers of the 5 Zodiac members present and sends them chasing after.

Maria Hill gets the Presidential order. She arranges for the skeleton crew to evacuate the carrier, then triggers it to explode. Somehow the Avengers survive and find themselves on the ground. (The visuals possibly suggest Thanos arranged it.) Hulk is no longer being controlled.

The next scene is Captain America interrogating the captive Cancer. We learn that he is John King, Hood's old associate. It transpires that the other Zodiac members were low-level agents in criminal gangs like Hydra. Cap wants to know where Thanos is. King won't talk. But then Widow replaces Cap and threatens him with torture implements. Something in her eyes makes him tell all he knows.

Thanos had come to him as a disembodied voice with a list of names for him to recruit as Zodiac. Thanos gave them powers which he said they could keep after they got hold of a list of powerful items for him. What the Avengers can't understand is this - Thanos knew where the items were, so why didn't he get them himself?

Natasha says the Nullifier is in safe hands. (But Zodiac got hold of 2 other things that we know of.) The Avengers wish they knew what was going on. And the Guardians of the Galaxy arrive to tell them.

Preview Pages
Click sample interior pages to enlarge them:

Mark Bagley
Danny Miki
Paul Mounts
Mark Bagley (Cover Penciler)
Danny Miki (Cover Inker)
Paul Mounts (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Clayton Cowles.
Editor: Tom Brevoort.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Black Widow
Black Widow

(Natasha Romanoff)
Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)

(Drax the Destroyer)

(Clint Barton)

(Bruce Banner)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)

(Peter Quill)


Plus: Bug, John King, Zodiac.

> Avengers Assemble: Book info and issue index

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