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Mighty Avengers, The #14: Review

May 2008
Brian Michael Bendis, Khoi Pham

Story Name:

(no title given)

Review & Comments

Rating:
4 stars

Mighty Avengers, The #14 Review by (July 25, 2016)
Sentry was supposedly a major hero in the early Marvel Age. But when he discovered that the Void was the dark side of his own super-personality Bob Reynolds erased the memory of the Sentry from himself and the rest of the world in order to keep Void locked away. This included deleting all his comics titles and guest appearances from our world!
The 1st comics we *do* have of Sentry is his 2000 mini-series + 1-shots where he and Void resurface. But then he gets Dr Strange and Mr Fantastic to help him perform the erasure again.
Until he's brought back again in New Avengers #1-10.

The involvement of Mastermind is somewhat problematical. NAv#9 reveals that Sentry's arch-enemy The General hired Mastermind to make Reynolds create the Void and believe that it is his own dark side, and to plant the idea that he should commit mental suicide. NAv#10 suggests that this knowledge enables Sentry to get rid of Void.
There are 2 problems with this. The 1st is that the Void is reinstated as Bob's dark half in the 2nd Sentry mini-series.
The other is deciding when Mastermind did all this. The Marvel Chronology Project puts it between the 1st mini and NAv. I feel that it should pre-date the 1st app of Void, which is somewhere within his 1st super-career. (Void is seen in the flashback in the Sentry/Hulk 1-shot which is described as happening in a forgotten continuation of the short 1st Hulk series, and hence before the Avengers. The MCP sensibly has this as the 1st of Void's recorded apps.)

The events in the 1st section here are a variant on the story Sentry is reading from 1 of his own comics in NAv#8.

Jarvis says the Skrulls had 2 previous chances to eliminate Sentry. 1 of them is presumably the encounter described here. I would guess that the other is when the NAv found Sentry in NAv#1-10 but before they restored his powers. Skrull-Jarvis and Veranke-Spider-Woman were in place then.

As stated the Jarvis section takes place in and after NAv#15. It's after House of M where Scarlet Witch removed 1 threat by vanishing and helpfully Decimated the mutants as well. The Hulk situation is the uproar over his rampage in Vegas in FF#533-535, which has ignited the beginnings of the Registration Bill to create the Registration Act. The Hulk situation will lead to the Illuminati colluding with SHIELD to banish Hulk into space (and Planet Hulk). The Registration situation will lead to the superhero Civil War. And the exposing of the Hulk stuff in World War Hulk will fracture the superhero community even more. And Jarvis' prediction for Dr Strange comes true too as WWH maims his hands and he maims his soul by merging with Zom.

Also as stated the last section takes place in and after SI#2. Marvel Wiki suggests the Super-Skrull that attacks Lindy Reynolds has the powers of the Defenders. His costume does have elements of Dr Strange and Nighthawk.

Sentry returns to Earth near at the beginning of SI#4, and is seen in the final battle in SI: Front Line #5. But no mention is made of the Void and Lindy. In Dark Avengers #3 we'll see that Lindy is now afraid of Bob/Sentry.

The last issue I wrote up was #11. The MAv (and NAv) issues since then have been SI tie-ins exploring secrets behind the Invasion.

The covers of these SI issues all feature Skrullised versions of classic Avengers ones.
#12 copied Av#4, the return of Captain America. Inside it followed disgraced Nick Fury as he uncovered the Skrull infiltration.
#13 did Av#16, the big team change. The contents were Nick Fury recruiting his Secret Warriors.
This issue's cover of course redoes Av#57, the coming of the Vision.

A lot has happened between #11 and SI, including WWH. In #11 I mapped out what the team members (except Iron Man whose activities I describe in more detail in his own title) would be doing up to and including WWH, ending with their directly post-WWH involvement with Damage Control and the Incredible Hercules. Now I'll pick up the story from there (again skimping on Shellhead although he appears in many of the issues anyway).

Ms Marvel leads the way initially. She joins IM inaugurating the Junior Guardsmen as counter-propaganda to the New Warriors in their #7. Then MAv except Sentry and Spider-Woman join them in Initiative #11-12 for the end and fallout of the Killed In Action story. MsM then refrains from arresting the NAv after the Hood's gang attacks them in their Annual #2. The team except Iron Man, Sentry and Wasp are on hand in NAv#38 when Jessica Jones comes to Avengers Tower for sanctuary for her baby.

Black Widow then takes point (with Tony Stark) in Captain America #29-33 as she tracks down her old partner Winter Soldier, which ends with Bucky becoming the new Cap. And the whole team apart from IM are on hand (along with many others) for the last 2 issues of Cable & Deadpool as Venom-symbiote-infected Savage Land dinosaurs invade New York. That's just a diversion for BW as she rejoins TS for CA#34-36 partnering Bucky-Cap on his 1st mission - and they find Steve Rogers' body. Then in #41-42 she teams with Falcon to rescue Sharon Carter from Red Skull.

MsM retakes the spotlight in he annual as he attempts to arrest Spider-Man but instead they fight a load of robots. She leads her Operation: Lightning Storm SHIELD task force in her #18-24, fighting mind-controlled superheroines in the 1st 3, and joined by Wonder Man for the last 4 against the Brood on Monster Island.

Now we move into stuff that leads up to SI. Everyone but SpW is on hand when (the Skrull) Captain Marvel starts his brief heroic career in his #1. IM and MsM continue into #2-3 as they try to suss him out. In MsM#25 TS thinks she's a Skrull, but there turns out to be a Skrull duplicate running around. This takes us through #26 and half of #27. Then she and IM are back in CM#4-5 as CM realises he's a Skrull but still wants to be the heroic Kree Mar-Vell.

Then we have a little run of Wasp. She, IM, BW and MsM cameo in Marvel Apes #1 as Gibbon is propelled into a world of apes. In Last Defenders #4 Sentry, Wasp and WM break up Nighthawk's latest version of the team (and TS tells him he can't be a superhero anymore). She has a business lunch with She-Hulk and Sue Richards in Fantastic Four #554. Then joins the whole team (and everyone else) fighting the CAP robot in FF#556-557. She's there with Shulk again for another meeting with Sue in #558. Then it's another crowd scene in #562 for the funeral of the future Invisible Woman.

Various members of the team appear in various issues of Avengers/Invaders. And then everybody except SpW and Wasp are in Hulk Smash Avengers #5, which leads into IM and Ares confronting Red Hulk in Hulk #5-6. Then Black Widow and Spider-Woman join the Lady Liberators against Rulk in the backup stories in #8-9, while Ms Marvel and Sentry tackle Bruce Banner as the grey and then green Hulk in the main stories in #7-9.

The team without BW, Sentry and SpW have a cameo at the end of Marvel Apes #4. The team minus SpW are defeated by the Anti-Man in Legend of Blue Marvel #1, and then also minus BW they return for the finale in #5. Then in the 2nd half of MsM#27 she starts a relationship with WM just before the Skrull ship arrives that signals the start of the SI series.




 

Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Mighty Avengers, The #14 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
This issue centres around The Sentry (and Skrulls).

Years ago in his 1st active period (the 1 we've all forgotten) Sentry once again faces his nemesis The Void, who is actually his own dark side. But at this point Sentry doesn't know that. In fact it seems he believes he'd killed Void some time before, but Void continues to maintain that's impossible (because he knows they are the same person).

Their fight is interrupted by the sight of an alien spaceship trying to ram the top floors of the Baxter Building. Sentry stops it from killing the Fantastic Four, and drags it back into space. Inside he finds green aliens with pointy ears and corrugated chins. Commending themselves to their god they self-destruct their craft.

Bob Reynolds wakes up in the medical care of his pals the FF. They tell him that he's just encountered Skrulls, who hate them for various reasons. The reappearance of the Void has affected Sentry deeply.

Skip forward to a few months ago in Avengers Tower (with Sentry's Watchtower on top). Edwin Jarvis (who's really a Skrull replacement) is serving refreshments to the New Avengers (in NAv#15) before they publicly announce their team. Sentry is there with Captain America, Iron Man, Luke Cage, Spider-Man, Spider-Woman (also secretly a Skrull - Queen Veranke) and Wolverine. Ms Marvel drops in (for a blueberry muffin if nothing else).

Jarvis asks Tony Stark if he can review the files on Sentry. After the recent breakdown of Scarlet Witch (Avengers Disassembled and House of M) he's worried about something similar happening to Bob Reynolds. Tony assures him that Wanda's problems weren't his fault or responsibility. But he gives him full access to all Avengers files - because there's no-one he trusts more. (I would have thought Jarvis had such access anyway.)

Jarvis hungrily devours the information and takes it to a meeting with Veranke plus the Skrull replacements of Elektra, Henry Pym, Val de Fontaine and sundry Hydra and SHIELD Agents. Sentry is the most powerful current Avenger, but they can't replace him because they can't duplicate his powers - because no-one knows exactly what they are. Jarvis thinks it's too dangerous to plant an agent close to him by replacing say his therapist because he may detect him and reveal the Invasion.

But in his opinion they don't have to worry about Sentry. He's insane. He created the Void to do as much evil as he does good. Having his memory wiped and being erased from the world's memory made the situation worse. And then Mastermind tampered with his mind. With his mental problems they just have to wait for him to self-destruct. And if he doesn't do that of his own accord they just have to imitate the Void and suggest that the whole Invasion has been masterminded by his other self.

They also discuss other things that are going their way. The Hulk situation and the Registration Act will tear the superhero community apart. Thor is gone, and so is Scarlet Witch. Jarvis also believes that Dr Strange will fall too.

Now to current events. The New and Mighty Avengers are in the Savage Land where they've met a group of heroes, some of them their duplicates, who claim to have been captives of the Skrulls for years. Both sides maintain that they are human and the others are Skrulls. Inevitably they are fighting (as seen in Secret Invasion #2).

(We will of course discover that the 'captured' heroes are really the Skrulls. But NAv#43 will explain that, unlike replacements such as Jarvis, these have been conditioned to believe that they are the real human heroes. This is a ploy to enhance the distrust and confusion that already has the Avengers at odds with each other.)

We now get a replay form SI#2 of Sentry fighting the Vision (currently destroyed as of Avengers Disassembled). He at least seems to know he's a Skrull because he uses the very ploy of pretending to be the Void and saying that Reynolds engineered the Skrull Invasion as revenge for the heroes forgetting him.

This issue now shows us that Sentry panics and flies to Saturn and goes into a foetal trance.

Later in Times Square (between SI#2 and #3) the Young Avengers, including the new Vision Jonas, are fighting the new breed of Super-Skrulls. In the Watchtower the AI CLOC wakes up Bob Reynolds' wife Lindy. She's attacked by a Super-Skrull but the Void saves her, his dark form now in the shape of Sentry. He says Bob isn't in a position to help her now, but he'll take care of her. Lindy is more terrified of him than of the Skrull.



Khoi Pham
Danny Miki
Dean White
Marko Djurdjevic (Cover Penciler)
Marko Djurdjevic (Cover Inker)
Marko Djurdjevic (Cover Colorist)


Characters

Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)
Doctor Strange
Doctor Strange

(Stephen Strange)
Hulk
Hulk

(Bruce Banner)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)
Scarlet Witch
Scarlet Witch

(Wanda Maximoff)
Spider-Man
Spider-Man

(Peter Parker)
Thor
Thor

(Odinson)
Wolverine
Wolverine

(James Howlett)



> Mighty Avengers, The: Book info and issue index

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