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New Avengers #54: Review

Jun 2009
Brian Michael Bendis, Billy Tan

Story Name:

(no title given)

Review & Comments

4 stars

New Avengers #54 Review by (August 23, 2017)
Daniel Drumm used to be Brother Voodoo but he was murdered. His brother Jericho became his replacement (Strange Tales #169-170) and Daniel's spirit merged with his.
This is the 1st place the Staff of Legba is named, but it was in the last panel of last issue. And it will keep showing up in many later issues. But it was granted to him when he became Houngan Supreme which was supposedly back in ST#170.

BV met Luke Cage when they (& Black Panther & Blade) fought vampires in New Orleans in BP(2005)#12-13.

BV is from now on known as Dr Voodoo.

Loki gave up Sif's female body in Thor #602. This is 1 of the many issues that the Marvel Chronology Project has later where Loki is still pretending to be female. She's already been in Dark Reign: Hood #2 and Mighty Av #24.
In #56 (s)he'll give Hood the Asgardian Norn Stones to repower him.

Norman Osborn is fresh from Amazing Spider-Man #595-599 where he tried to turn his son Harry into the armoured American Son.

Carol Danvers and Peter Parker have a 'date' in her #47. The team (minus Mockingbird and Ms Marvel) next help Spider-Man fight Dr Octopus at Aunt May's wedding to J Jonah Jameson's dad in ASM#600, then Spidey continues his chaotic life in #601. In a backup tale in that issue the rest of the team (minus MB and Spider-Woman) cameo when Spidey has a chat with Jessica Jones and suggests she reinstate her old Jewel identity (which she'll do in our Annual #3). Then the gang split up. Ronin goes to MAv#28-29 to investigate the activities of Scarlet Witch (really Loki), and Captain America, MsM and SpW join him in #30-31 to help fight the Inhuman ex-king the Unspoken. Meanwhile in ASM#602604 SM fights Chameleon as Mary Jane Watson returns to his life, and Luke Cage visits Iron Fist  in Immortal IF #27 and Immortal Weapons #5. Then SpW joins SWORD for the 7 issues of her 2009 series, and in #7 the whole team (even MB) joins in her fight against leftover Skrulls. Then it's time for #55.

DrV will feature in the Marvel Divas mini having a relationship with Pulsar (Monica Rambeau), and Dr Strange will be in #2 consulting over Firestar's cancer. Our #55 will mention that DrS is training DrV, and they'll both rally round in #59-60 when Luke is badly injured.

Wong won't appear next until ASM#627 and Invaders Now #4 telling people that the Dr's not in.

Daimon Hellstrom will also be in Divas as Hellcat's ex. Then he helps the Spirits of Vengeance against rogue angel Zadkiel in the Ghost Riders: Heaven's On Fire mini.

Wiccan is next with the other Young Avengers in MAv#28-31 coping with the app of 'Scarlet Witch' who he thinks is his mother (and fighting the Unspoken).

Dormammu will get confined to a small corner of his Dark Dimension by Dr's S & V in DrV: Avenger of the Supernatural #1.

Loki (still pretending to be female) will be with the rest of the Cabal in Dark Av #6, and then will have his Scarlet Witch ruse exposed in MAv#28-29

Hood will be recovered but still depowered in a tale in DR: Made Men and apps in Av: Initiative #26,28-31 where he's running the group for Osborn.

Madame Masque will link up with him after that for our #56 where Loki will repower him.

Norman Osborn will next appear in DAv#5-6 as Iron Patriot, then in a DR:MM tale, MAv#30 and Av:I#28.

The review of DrS's life covers the  main bases:- the accident that ruined his career; seeking and finding the Ancient One; Wong and Clea; fighting Dormammu. But the last image is an oddity. comicbookdb mentions Newcromancer, the DrS from Counter-Earth only seen in DrS(1988)#46-47. He fits the image which also includes chars I can link to Scarlet Witch (on comicbookdb's list), Sleepwalker and vaguely Shaman, but I can't connect the Hulking figure behind them to anybody in that story. I don't think it's the rejuvenated Dr Druid and it's certainly not Agatha Harkness.

comicbookdb again gives a more complete list for the Sorcerer Supreme candidates appearing here than Marvel Wiki. Strangely this time both say Modred the Mystic who I can't see anywhere. comicbookdb repeats Druid and Soulfire from last issue. I change Druid to Dr Druid again but Soulfire is a mystery. The only spare head is a female with pointed ears who I can only guess is Tigra from last issue.
My order of heads is:-
Left side:- Hood, Cyrus Black, Magik, Mr Rasputin, Devil-Slayer, Wiccan, Wong, Dr Druid
Right side:- Tigra, Ghost Rider (Johnny Blaze), Selene, Baron Mordo, Derwyddon, Topaz, Daimon Hellstrom, Dr Doom

Despite being potential Sorcerer Supremes Cyrus Black, Derwyddon and even Topaz haven't been seen again.
Mr Rasputin is a bit better off. In SHIELD (2015) #3 he helps defend DrS's Sanctum Sanctorum against Mys-Tech.
Baron Mordo will next feature in X-Factor #203-207 trying to cure his cancer with the energy of M.
Devil-Slayer will be part of the Defenders army summoned by DrS in Fear Itself: The Deep #4, and then 1 of Wonder Man's Revengers in the Annuals for the 2010 series of Avengers and New Avengers.
Dead Dr Druid will be part of Nightmare's army against DrV and Dr Doom in DrV:AotS#5, and will be brought back to life in the Chaos War: Dead Avengers mini.
Selene will execute the main part of her X-Necrosha plot starting with X-Force (2008) #19.
Magik will become part of the New Mutants again in their new 2009 series.
Tigra will return to the Avengers Resistance in Av:I, with a side trip to the Unspoken battle in MAv#30-31.
Ghost Rider (Johnny Blaze) will continue his full schedule with the GRs:HOF and DrV:AotS minis mentioned above.
Dr Doom's position in Osborn's Cabal will see him next in DAv#6 and a DR:MM tale.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

New Avengers #54 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
Image from New Avengers #54
We start again with a flashback leading up to the end of last issue. After a night of passion Jericho Drumm's dead brother Daniel nags at him for wasting time when he should be out doing stuff as Brother Voodoo. Then the Eye of Agamotto appears before them and the voice of the Ancient One offers BV the job of replacement Sorcerer Supreme now that Doctor Strange is unworthy. We also see a review of DrS's career and images of some of the other mystics the Eye is appearing to but not choosing.

Jericho is told that if he accepts he will inherit the Eye itself and the Cloak of Levitation plus many books of knowledge. Urged on by his brother Jericho says yes, and the Eye is in his hands. Daniel expects there to be a trial by fire and as if on cue they see Luke Cage throwing a car at a demon (Hood's large fiery demonic form last issue). And at the end of last issue we saw him join the battle in full Brother Voodoo regalia with the Eye of Agamotto hanging from a chain round his neck (and holding his own cloak together).

BV sees the demon facing Dr Strange and Daimon Hellstrom (Son of Satan) (Cage got blasted away last issue). Hood wants the Eye but Voodoo knocks him down with the Staff of Legba. And then the other New Avengers (Captain America (Bucky Barnes), Mockingbird, Ms. Marvel (Carol Danvers), Ronin (Clint Barton), Spider-Man, Spider-Woman (Jessica Drew) and Wolverine) arrive on the scene with captive Madame Masque.

Hood-demon recovers and shrugs off attacks by various NAv'ers including the returned Luke Cage who says hi to Drumm in passing. DrS and Daimon are preparing something and Stephen tells Jericho to step behind him with the Eye. He casts a spell which reveals Dormammu as possessing Hood. And the demon finds himself trapped in a mystic circle Strange and Hellstrom have drawn. The 3 mages exorcise Dormammu leaving Parker Robbins naked and unconscious and powerless. His lover Madame Masque isn't happy about that.

Stephen offers to train Jericho in his new role as Sorcerer Supreme. Hellstrom claims for some reason that the constant supercharacter fighting has weakened the walls between dimensions making it easier for things like Dormammu to get in. Clint gets somebody in the crowd to record a statement on his phone that the NAv have just taken down Hood and Madame Masque. They're going to hand them over to the police, but probably Norman Osborn will let them go free. He tells the guy to post this online.

Later female Loki appears to Hood in hospital and offers him a new source of power.

And Osborn appears on TV to remind the world that Clint Barton (as Hawkeye), Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch were criminals and terrorists before they became Avengers (in Av#16). Norman is having *his* 2nd chance too, but he thinks Clint has lost the plot.

Barton realises his attempts (here and in #50) to expose NO in the media aren't working. He tells Mockingbird they'll have to kill him.

Preview Pages
Click sample interior pages to enlarge them:

Billy Tan
Matt Banning
Justin Ponsor
Billy Tan (Cover Penciler)
Matt Banning (Cover Inker)
Justin Ponsor (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Richard Starkings.
Editor: Tom Brevoort.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Captain America
Captain America

(James "Bucky" Barnes)
Doctor Strange
Doctor Strange

(Stephen Strange)

(Loki Laufeyson)
Luke Cage
Luke Cage

(Power Man)
Ms. Marvel
Ms. Marvel

(Carol Danvers)

(Clint Barton)
Son of Satan
Son of Satan

(Daimon Hellstrom)

(Peter Parker)

(Jessica Drew)

(James Howlett)

Plus: Carol Danvers, Norman Osborn.

> New Avengers: Book info and issue index

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