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Mighty Avengers, The #7: Review

Jan 2008
Brian Michael Bendis, Mark Bagley

Story Name:

Venom bomb part 1

Review & Comments

4 stars

Mighty Avengers, The #7 Review by (March 25, 2015)
This issue is bannered as part of Secret Invasion: Infiltration. Logically it follows on from New Avengers #31 where the dead Elektra is revealed as a Skrull, and the trail of Spider-Woman bringing her body to Tony Stark through NAv#32 and last issue. These preceding issues didn't sport the banner, but 2 other earlier-than-this-1 issues did. However The Marvel Continuity Project places NAv: Illuminati #5 chronologically last in the Infiltration series, and the 5th story in Avengers: Initiative Annual #1 has an indeterminate timestamp. Between here and NAv:Ill#5 will lie the bannered issues NAv#38-39, Ms Marvel #25-27 and Captain Marvel #4-5, all after World War Hulk. This title missed several months before #6&7. If not for that this issue would have appeared a couple of months before NAv:Ill#5 and Av:I An#1. Those missing months also play havoc with the interweaving stories in this title and New Avengers. #6 came out Dec07, #7 Jan08, but NAv#32 was Jul07. NAv#34 Sep07 will have the same scene at the end as this issue, and the succeeding issues of each title will overlap although published months apart. Mark Bagley takes over from Frank Cho as penciller for this story arc (#7-11). Cho maintains some continuity by providing the cover for this issue.

Tony Stark says it's a week after the Ultron affair in #1-6. But both that story arc and this 1 overlap with NAv#32-37 which the Marvel Calendar puts in 3 consecutive days. Unfortunately we are wading in the shallow end of the Calendar which peters out round here and doesn't include the current issue. But the MCP of which it is a part, and the Official Index which covers Iron Man but not this title, agree by not having the team members appearing anywhere else between last issue and this. Wolverine knows whereof he speaks. He was once replaced by a Skrull from Uncanny X-Men #371 to X-Men #95 including #140-144 of his own series, and nobody noticed. Actually Iron Man isn't a Skrull but Henry Pym is, and he contributed to planning the Registration side of Civil War. Spider-Woman says Elektra-Skrull also fooled Daredevil (in DD(1998)#77-80). The MCP says this is true, but I don't know how Jessica Drew is supposed to know this. (The Skrull Queen Veranke impersonating SW *of course* knows it.) So when paranoid Tony Stark wonders who present is a Skrull, there *are* Skrulls in the room:- Spider-Woman and also Jarvis. Trying to figure out Veranke's detailed motives here is difficult. In #12 we'll see the meeting between SW and Nick Fury that she refers to here. NF had already discovered that his lover and SHIELD agent Val de Fontaine had been replaced by a Skrull, and now he told Jessica that he suspected there were more Skrulls in SHIELD.

NF helped the Resistance early in CW, but he went out of touch before SW joined them. Thus it is reasonable that the above meeting was the last contact she had with him. Later Ms Marvel told SW that Captain America was alive in CW: Initiative. Jessica told the New Avengers which led them into a trap in NAv#28-29. It says here that Carol deliberately tricked her. But in CW:I it seemed like Iron Man was angry at MsM for letting SW go - not congratulating her on baiting their trap. Wonder Man's original Jack Kirby uniform in original Avengers #9 was a red W on green. The red safari jacket outfit was introduced by George Perez in Av#167. Bob Hall swapped that for a red W on dark blue in Av#253. Most of WM's gear has been variations on the Kirby or Hall looks, with the dark blue sometimes being black. I think he only readopted the safari jacket for the Mighty Avengers gig, but his new costume this issue is a red on blue variant. Carnage and Venom symbiotes are long-time foes of Spider-Man. And their prime exemplars have even had their own comic titles.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Mighty Avengers, The #7 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
Tony Stark is recovering in a SHIELD helicarrier hospital bed from being taken over by Ultron in the last arc. But Spider-Woman has broken into his room carrying the body of a Skrull dressed like Elektra.

Stark's built-in Extremis armour scans them and verifies who they are. Then Jessica Drew asks him to switch his armour off to prove that he isn't a Skrull. He claims to do so, but secretly keeps it recording the conversation.

Jessica then gives a rundown of the New Avengers' latest adventure in Japan (in their #27-31) where they rescued Echo/Ronin (Maya Lopez) from Elektra and the Hand. Echo killed Elektra, who turned out to be a Skrull.

Then in NAv#32 they tried to figure out what it meant. Wolverine believed it was the tip of an invasion by infiltration - anybody could have been replaced by a Skrull. Luke Cage has long had a conspiracy theory about things that have happened since Avengers Disassembled, and now he thinks he knows who's behind it. They think Iron Man is probably a Skrull who caused the superhero Civil War.

Tony tells her about his body being taken over by Ultron in #1-6. He suggests his Skrullness would have been exposed by that. Jessica isn't so sure - Elektra-Skrull fooled Spider-Man and Wolverine's special senses so they're obviously an improved breed. But Spider-Woman says she doesn't think Stark's a Skrull. In NAv#32 she proposed bringing the body to Tony - if he's a Skrull he'd try to kill her. The team didn't agree with the plan, so SW took the body anyway and turned up at the end of last issue.

Stark thinks Logan's theory about an invasion is right. He asks Drew where her secret boss Nick Fury is, because only he can deal with a threat this wide. But Jessica doesn't know - she hasn't heard from him since the start of the Civil War, when he said he'd found something out - which she now thinks was the Skrull invasion.

Tony figures the Skrulls will know Elektra has been exposed, and they'll have to accelerate their plan. He asks Jessica to join the Mighty Avengers. She refuses to Register, but Stark says this situation is beyond all that. He's hoping SW's presence will flush out any Skrulls on his team, and will distract them while he examines Elektra-Skrull's corpse to find a way of detecting the undetectable shapeshifters.

Stark holds a gathering of the Mighty Avengers in Avengers Tower:- Ares, Black Widow, Ms Marvel, Sentry (and his wide Lindy, who live in their Watchtower above), Wasp and Wonder Man, catered for as usual by butler Jarvis. Tony has to endure a lot of joshing about having been female in the last story. Lindy is consoling Bob Reynolds (probably) about her having temporarily died during that episode before he restored her to life. (She should be the 1 needing support, but he is emotionally fragile.) Wonder Man's drunken toast to friends makes them all uncomfortably aware of what happened to Captain America.

Then Tony drops the bombshell of introducing Spider-Woman to the ranks. No-one likes or understands it, even her good friend Carol Danvers. And then she refuses to tell Natasha Romanoff where the other renegade New Avengers are. Team leader Ms Marvel is understandably upset about not even being consulted. Jessica hits back by reminding Carol how she tricked her into thinking Cap was still alive (Civil War: Initiative), thus leading the NAv into a trap (flashbacks in NAv#28-29).

Wasp defuses the situation by bringing in a bunch of male models wearing suggestions for a new costume for Simon Williams to replace his safari jacket look. (It turns out she offered the same costumes to Luke Cage before the Civil War put them on opposite sides.)

Meanwhile up in orbit astronauts are clearing up the fragments of the Stark satellites that Sentry and Wonder Man destroyed in #4. But 1 bit gets away from them and dislodges a black globe from a different satellite. This plunges to earth in New York (of course) and breaks open. Suddenly a baby in a pram turns into a Venom, and its mother becomes a Carnage. Everyone around them transmutes as well.

Back at the party Wonder Man has donned a new costume, but he's ignored Jan's suggestions and gone for a variation on many of his old uniforms. Tony Stark is convinced that someone in the room is a Skrull out to kill him. His musing is interrupted by Lindy Reynolds who warns him to find a way to depower or even kill her husband Sentry before he kills them all. Tony's shock is disrupted by a call from Maria Hill of SHIELD about the Carnage/Venom symbiote outbreak, and the team dash off to the battle.

Mark Bagley
Danny Miki
Justin Ponsor
Frank Cho (Cover Penciler)
Frank Cho (Cover Inker)
Justin Ponsor (Cover Colorist)


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Black Widow
Black Widow

(Natasha Romanoff)
Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)

(Peter Parker)

(James Howlett)

> Mighty Avengers, The: Book info and issue index

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