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Avengers Forever #1: Review

Dec 1998
Kurt Busiek, Carlos Pacheco

Story Name:

Destiny made manifest

Review & Comments

3 stars

Avengers Forever #1 Review by (May 5, 2010)
Kurt Busiek has more goals in this series than just telling a story. One aim is to prepare the ground for Peter David's Captain Marvel series. He also wants to sort out the confusing histories of Immortus, Kang and the Vision, and to a lesser extent that of the Time-Keepers. The story itself changes the status of Kang and Immortus, and simplifies things for future stories. In Avengers #97 I believe the WWII heroes Rick Jones manifested were not the real people. But this time the Avengers he calls upon are actually plucked from time. Hulk only appears here in flashbacks. The notes in #4 say that the present-day events of this issue fit between Avengers vol 3 #9 and #10. It has to be before #10 because Giant-Man changes his costume then. It can't be much before this because Justice and Firestar haven't been Avengers for many issues. Beta Centauri IV is the home of Yondu of the original Guardians of the Galaxy. The Time-Keepers are beings from the end of time, first seen as the Time-Twisters in Thor #243. More on these later.

The Blue Area of the Moon is the ruins of an arena created by the Skrulls 100,000 years ago to house a contest between the Kree and the Cotati. Uatu the Watcher lives there. It is sometimes the home of the Inhumans, but not at this time. The Kree Supremor was captured in the Live Kree or Die crossover terminating in Avengers vol 3 #7. It was hinted that he had arranged for the Kree to lose that encounter, resulting in his capture in the Blue Area. It is unclear whether Supremor could foresee how the conclusion in #12 will benefit his plans. The Supremor has often done seemingly bad things to his own race, to force them to evolve out of their stagnation. Triggering Rick's Human Evolutionary Potential to end the Kree-Skrull War was one of them. The monk will be revealed next issue to be Libra. Limbo is a place outside of time, and independent of alternate timelines, ruled by Immortus. It is also the place Rom banished Dire Wraiths to. It isn't the place ruled by the X-Men's foe Belasco. Tempus is a servant of Immortus created from the fabric of Limbo. He was first seen in Giant-Size Fantastic Four #2. As we will see later, he can't be killed this easily.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Avengers Forever #1 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
This issue opens in a possible 26th century on the planet Beta Centauri IV where a rebellion by the natives is put down by their human overlords. By Jonz Rickard (looking like Rick Jones), relative of Emperor Rickard, Commander of Galactic Avenger Battalion Theta-4. A battalion consisting of Hammer-Troopers with their ionic Thunderhammers, Iron Man-like Repulsor-Troopers, Shieldsmen with their shields and blades, and the Ant-Man-like Micro-Swarm. The three Time-Keepers aren't happy.

Next we see the Avengers in the present (Captain America, Firestar, Iron Man, Justice and Scarlet Witch from the then-current team plus Giant-Man) bringing a comatose Rick Jones to a SHIELD base in the Blue Area of the Moon. This follows directly from Hulk #470, where Rick collapsed and the Avengers picked him up. We are given a potted history of Rick, of which the most relevant part is that he ended the Kree-Skrull War in Avengers #97 when the Kree Supreme Intelligence unlocked what he now calls Rick's Human Evolutionary Potential. A side-effect of this was that Rick called forth various Timely WWII heroes.

Avengers have brought Rick here because Iron Man, Giant-Man and Beast have diagnosed Rick's condition as connected to the power he showed in the Kree-Skrull War. They want the help of the Supreme Intelligence, held captive in the SHIELD base. They reluctantly leave Rick there for the Supremor to study for 24 hours.

The Supremor discusses the situation with a mysterious monk that SHIELD can't detect. They claim to have manipulated Rick and the Avengers to get Rick here at this time, for their individual reasons. This is a pivotal point in human history, with Rick a pivotal player, deciding between a future of expansion or stagnation. The Supremor has been trying to kick-start the Kree race out of stagnation for a long time. He claims now to be interested in observing how the human race manages it. The monk leaves to alert Kang.

Immortus is watching from Limbo. He stops time in the SHIELD base, and sends Tempus to kill Rick. But Kang also turns up, restarting time within a bubble. Immortus wants to preserve some vital timeline. Kang wants to change it, which involves keeping Rick alive.

Kang shatters Tempus, but the pieces generate a horde of warriors from history. Kang counters by pulling advanced weaponry from his trans-temporal armoury. Immortus sends even more warriors, even as he shrinks Kang's bubble of time.

Rick wakes up, and the Supremor restarts his Human Evolutionary Potential. The monk returns, and triggers Rick into summoning 7 Avengers out of the past and the future (Captain America, Captain Marvel (Genis-Vell), Giant-Man, Hawkeye, Songbird, Wasp and Yellowjacket).

Carlos Pacheco
Jesus Merino
Steve Oliff
Carlos Pacheco (Cover Penciler)
George Perez (Cover Inker)
Steve Oliff (Cover Colorist)


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)

(Clint Barton)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)

(Kang the Conqueror)
Scarlet Witch
Scarlet Witch

(Wanda Maximoff)

Plus: Immortus.

> Avengers Forever: Book info and issue index

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