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New Avengers #5: Review

Jan 2016
Al Ewing, Gerardo Sandoval

Story Name:

Don't they know it's the end of the world

Review & Comments

4 stars

New Avengers #5 Review by (January 28, 2016)
As a maths nerd I have a problem with 20XX being XX years in the future. And does it mean the year can only be 2099 or 2088 or 2077 or .....?

Danielle Cage is of course the grown-up child of Luke Cage and Jessica Jones. We've seen her before as a future Captain America in the Ultron Forever trilogy, where her era was also called 20XX. That 'series' was also written by Al Ewing. In its last issue Uncanny Avengers: Ultron Forever there was also a cameo by the other Avengers 20XX, then unidentified. Even then Teddy Altman was depicted without Billy Kaplan. (Cap, Collapsar, Iron Mariner and Namorina also appear in a flashforward to this issue in Avengers #0.)

King Hulk and Demiurge are obviously the older Hulkling and Wiccan. Note that Hulking was never actually connected to the Hulk. He's a half-Skrull shapeshifter who just likes a Hulk-based appearance. But as King Hulk he's certainly Hulked-up. Wiccan was prophesied to become Demiurge in Young Avengers (2013), and tried to take on those powers to defeat the parasite called Mother.

Thor Odinson and Vision are presumably the characters we know and love, and Madame Natasha is an old Black Widow.
Marvel Woman is Marlene Brashear, presumably a descendant of Adam Brashear, Blue Marvel.
Similary Namorina, Dorma McKenzie princess of Atlantis, is probably Namor's daughter.
Iron Mariner, Jako Krangsen, has the torso of a man and the tail of a fish all encased in Iron Man armour. He is presumably also Atlantean, but mutated?
Collapsar (Manu Chauhan) is a size-changing member of the Nova Corps.

(I'm including this appearance of King Hulk in the Hulk Library as an honorary Hulk. And in the Captain America and Iron Man sites because of Danielle Cage and Iron Mariner. And Thor's 1st-page death gets it in the Thor Lib too.)

When the AVENGERS Initiative is mentioned the word AVENGERS is an acronym, but we don't know what for.

An editorial voiceover says Maker comes in slices. This is probably a reference to Secret Wars #9 which finally came out the week before this 1. There Molecule Man sliced up Maker, and maybe he's still in that state inside his suit. I do wonder why Molecule Man and Mr Fantastic decided to save/recreate *him* (or whatever it is they did in SW#9) and not all the other Ultimate Universe characters.
OMNITRONICUS doesn't know why Maker calls him City. Maker built City as his home on Ultimate Earth (possibly in 2 iterations), and now OMNITRONICUS is based on that model.

Power Man's abilities have been enhanced. He draws chi energy from nearby people, but in Mighty Avengers (2013) it seems he gets energy from all his surroundings, and in #7 it was speculated that the more he knew about the history of a place the more he could draw on. AIM have now given him tech to download local knowledge from the Internet into his brain.
Vic's local history based power sounds to me much like Mulholland Black (deceased) from the Order.
We learn that Victor Alvarez has ended his relationship with Ava Ayala. (Both the romantic 1 and the power-sharing 1?).

Roberto da Costa acquired the evil science group Advanced Idea Mechanics in the pre-SW Avengers, and disaffected Avengers flocked to his banner. But his aim to use money and science to solve the end-of-the-multiverse problem didn't fare any better than any others.

POD (Planetary Operating Defence System) was the creation of 1 of Ex Nihilo's origin bombs in the pre-SW Av#15. But it wasn't until Av#38 that we learned that the Norwegian girl Aikku Jokinen is inside the android.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

New Avengers #5 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
It's the year 20XX and Billy Kaplan is now the megavillain Demiurge, and he's just decapitated Thor Odinson. The rest of Avengers 20XX (Collapsar, Iron Mariner, King Hulk, Marvel Woman, Namorina and Vision) aren't happy about it, but they're kept out by a magical forcefield. Except Vision who can pass through it at his minimum density. Except that Demiurge reduces that density even further causing the hero to dissipate to nothing. This makes Namorina even more unhappy, so Demiurge sends her to join him.

King Hulk (Billy's boyfriend Teddy Altman) tries to get through to the hero he loved. But the villain Moridun who's taken Billy over says he 'laid his eggs' in Billy's soul years ago. He's eaten Billy from the inside, and now he's going to eat the world (as tentacles spew out of his mouth).

The team get a call from Captain America (Danielle Cage) to come home through a portal she's creating for them. Madame Natasha (Director of AVENGERS Initiative) has found a link through the time firewall enclosing their present to Avengers Island in 2016. They get ready to leap back in time as Moridun starts to break their world.

It's the year 2016 and last issue Sunspot's Avengers defeated Moridun, who had been called from a much older universe, the 5th Cosmos, by the Maker, Ultimate Reed Richards who had survived the death of his reality via Secret Wars. Roberto Da Costa's team are part of Avengers Idea Mechanics, formed when he bought the villainous AIM and transformed it. They are based on Avengers (ex-AIM) Island. Unfortunately they don't know that Wiccan (Billy Kaplan) was infected by Moridun before he was banished.

1 of the New Avengers Hawkeye is foiling the theft of some tech stuff in Tokyo by Maker's gang WHISPER. The bad boss is watching from his hideout within(?) the automaton called OMNITRONICUS (Organo-Mechanic Nexus-Iterated Techno-Radical Organizational Networked Intelligent Computer Unity System). Trapped in this reality different from his own, Maker is continuing the exploration of other realities that led to his encounter with Moridun. And we learn his goal is unification.

Maker sees Hulkling (Teddy Altman) deal with 1 of the WHISPER Agents. And we see that Power Man, Songbird and White Tiger are on the case too. Vic Alvarez draws power from his surroundings to smash WHISPER agents on their skycycles. Ava Ayala leaps on 1 of the sleds and her ferocious Tiger God personality makes the bad guy surrender. Melissa Gold doesn't use her sonic powers in battle this time, just keeps Sunspot up-to-date.

The last 2 WHISPERs are chased by Hulkling and Wiccan, who took the name Demiurge at the end of last issue. Billy makes their skycycles disappear. He doesn't care that they'll fall to their deaths, showing that Moridun is already taking him over. So the shape-shifting Hulkling has to save the baddies by doing a Mr Fantastic stretch.

On Avengers Island Roberto is more interested in the time machine his head of engineering Toni Ho is overseeing the building of, with help from POD, Squirrel Girl and her squirrel Tippy-Toe. As he throws the switch for the 1st test Doreen Green belatedly suggests they check Tippy-Toe's wiring because squirrels are colour-blind.

Too late, but the time machine does work. And Avengers 20XX appear.

And in Tokyo young Demiurge advises Hulkling that Avengers Island is under attack. He'll create a spacewarp to take them to its defence. (Moridun doesn't want his plans interfered with.)

Gerardo Sandoval
Gerardo Sandoval
Dono Sanchez Almara
Oscar Jimenez Garrido (Cover Penciler)
Oscar Jimenez Garrido (Cover Inker)
Oscar Jimenez Garrido (Cover Colorist)


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)

(Clint Barton)
Mr. Fantastic
Mr. Fantastic

(Reed Richards)

(Billy Kaplan)

Plus: White Tiger (Ava Ayala).

> New Avengers: Book info and issue index

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