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New Avengers #45: Review

Sep 2008
Brian Michael Bendis, Jim Cheung

Story Name:

Secret Invasion (part 6)

Review & Comments

4 stars

New Avengers #45 Review by (July 6, 2024)
John Dell and Jay Leisten share the inking. Richard Starkings and Albert Deschesne share the lettering.

This issue's cover is an homage to House Of M #1, and the issue tells us what the Skrulls were doing during the event.

It makes it seem like Veranke is aware of who she really is from the very start of the event, but she has to make Henry Pym realise that he is Criti Noll. However the Marvel Chronology Project follows the lead of the Marvel Indexes in having some HOM tie-ins happen before V's awakening, especially Wolverine (2003) #33-35 and the Spider-Man: House Of M mini-series where their heroes are still unaware that reality changed.

In particular it means that Veranke was seen as Red Guard member Jessica Drew in a flashback in Wo#35 and she also saw Logan awaken in HOM#2 between the initiation of the HOM reality and her awakening here.

The Pym/McCoy scene is a replay of HOM#2(15-17) where McCoy told Pym that it was politically impossible for Stark to authorise his research into the mutant gene. The Criti Noll memories and running out feeling sick are new. As of course is his meeting with Veranke where she swears to kill Scarlet Witch.

But in the meantime she and the other Red Guard go hunting Wolverine in HOM#3&5. In #5 she pretends to be awakened with the rest of the Guard. And in #6-7 she joins in the invasion of Genosha.

Where in this issue she tries to kill Wanda Maximoff but fails.

And then the HOM reality ends and V appears as Spider-Woman in the Avengers in HOM#8, where only some of the heroes remember what happened. (I think V pretends not to although I believe all the Skrulls do.)

And then the Skrulls have their meeting where the Annihaltion Wave is announced.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

New Avengers #45 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
The white light at the end of House Of M #1 initiates the HOM reality.

Red Guard Jessica Drew becomes aware that she is the Skrull Queen Veranke who doesn't know what's going on. She's in a strange uniform in the SHIELD helicarrier staffed by others in similar uniforms, and outside there are giant different-looking Sentinels flying alongside airforce jets. And everything has an M symbol. Forge seems to be in charge and he tells her to go find Squad Leader Logan. She rushes out but only to be sick in a toilet bowl.

In Chicago Dr Pym tries to convince Dr McCoy that their boss Tony Stark will approve of his efforts to isolate the mutant gene. But he tunes out McCoy's reply because he starts getting flashes of Criti Noll's memories. He tunes back in to hear mutant McCoy commiserate with him about being one of the being-replaced humans. When MCoy asks him to lunch he rushes out also feeling ill.

Outside he runs through the streets until flying Veranke swoops down and carries him off to a rooftop where she announces her identity and convinces him that he is a Skrull too. She gets him to remember how he was going (as Yellowjacket) with the Avengers and X-Men to Genosha to confront Scarlet Witch (in HOM#1). Our #42 revealed that he called V to tell her and agreed to use the opportunity to kill the Witch. But the white light happened before they got to her. V says that Wanda Maximoff did this, and her power is why they *have* to get rid of her before the Skrull invasion can happen. There are also so many more mutants here than in 'reality' which would also scupper their plans.

Most humans and mutants (and Skrulls) don't realise what's happened, and they are mostly happy in this new situation. But she saw Wolverine (in HOM#2) and he had obviously seen through the 'illusion'. Now they 2 have as well. And there are bound to be others. The 'illusion' will fall apart and the world will be angry. Then the secret Skrulls can let the world know that mutants were responsible and they'll be decimated. Also the way that humanity 'went along' with all this shows that they'll accept Skrull rule just as easily.

But now Veranke will make it her job to get to the Witch in Genosha and kill her. Criti must stay out of it to take over if she doesn't make it back.

Then we have a double-page battle scene which corresponds to the opening double-page spread of HOM#7 during the invasion of Genosha.

V leaves the battle and heads to the Magneto family's private quarters where she sees Wanda with her 2 very young sons. She sees through a window Dr Strange's astral form there (for most of HOM#7) including when Hawkeye turns up and tries to kill Wanda. But the Witch disassembles him. V aims to take her shot through the window but 1 of the boys notices her and she gets disassembled too.

Then we get the end of HOM#7 where SW confronts Magneto, says "No more mutants" and ends the HOM reality.

Afterwards the Skrulls gather in their usual warehouse meeting place. As well as Jessica Drew and Henry Pym the usual known Skrulls are included:- Edwin Jarvis, Elektra and Val de Fontaine. They are relieved that the mutant population has gone into reverse, from many more in the HOM reality to many less than before in the 616 reality. They see it as the work of their god smoothing the way. But Veranke has bad news because the Annihilation Wave has wiped out a billion of their species. But that too is also good news because it was included in the same prophecy as their taking of the Earth, and so it confirms their course of action.

Jim Cheung
Justin Ponsor
Aleksi Briclot (Cover Penciler)
Aleksi Briclot (Cover Inker)
Aleksi Briclot (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: ?.
Editor: Tom Brevoort. Editor-in-chief: Joe Quesada.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Doctor Strange
Doctor Strange

(Stephen Strange)

(Clint Barton)
Scarlet Witch
Scarlet Witch

(Wanda Maximoff)


Plus: Forge, Yellowjacket (Criti Noll).

> New Avengers: Book info and issue index

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