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Savage Avengers #1: Review

May 2022
David Pepose, Carlos Magno

Story Name:

Streets of rage

Review & Comments

4 stars

Savage Avengers #1 Review by (May 20, 2022)
The cover labels this series The All-New, All-Different Savage Avengers, but inside and elsewhere it just gets referred to as Savage Avengers (vol 2).
Black Knight and Elektra were in the 1st series. Black Knight and Anti-Venom have both been Avengers, which sort-of justifies part of the name.

In the last issue of the 1st series Kang left Conan back in the Hyborian Age to continue his life path to becoming King of Aquilonia. But then at the end of that issue Kang brought him back to the future again, suggesting that it is the much older Conan in this volume 2.

This Deathlok appears to be part of the multiversal Deathlok Army working for Avenger Prime, based in Avengers Tower in the God Quarry at Infinity's End. They are charged with protecting the timelines of the multiverse, especially the multiple Earths, against Mephisto and the Multiversal Masters Of Evil. But I suppose this could also encompass protecting timelines against time-travellers.
But isn't that the job of the Time Variance Authority, who still seem to exist in the post-Secret Wars universe (eg most recently in Fantastic Four: Reckoning War Alpha)?

Flash Thompson is of course a Spider-Man cast member dating back to Amazing Fantasy #15. He became the 5th Venom from Amazing SM #654 to Civil War II. During that period he served with the Secret Avengers. Almost immediately after quitting as Venom he became the 2nd Anti-Venom (after Eddie Brock) in ASM: Venom Inc Alpha

Liz Allan also dates back to AF#15. Her complicated relationship with the Osborn family eventually led to her becoming CEO of the Alchemax company which included Oscorp.

Elektra of course has a long history starting from Daredevil #168. She was in many issues of our previous series, beginning as Elektra but ending as Daredevil. She took over the role from Matt Murdock in DD(2019)#25, between our #15 and #23.

The Madbomb was a Jack Kirby creation in Captain America #193. It/they have appeared sporadically since then, most significantly in several issues of the 2011 CA series and most recently in Black Widow (2019) #1.

Weapon H is 1 of the many products of the Weapon X project. This 1 is different because he combines Hulk traits with the usual Wolverine stuff. He was introduced in a crossover of Totally Awesome Hulk #21/Weapon X (2017) #6/TAH#22 and he continued on in the WX series until moving on to his own WH series and then as part of the Hulkverines mini-series. 3 more individual apps bring him here, hiding in the anonymity of the big city and trying to keep his wife and children safe.

Black Knight debuted in original Avengers #47 and has often been a member of the main team. Since our last series he had his own Curse Of The Ebony Blade mini-series where he discovered that he had a daughter Jacks Chopra who now shares the BK role with him, including in the Death Of Dr Strange: X-Men/BK 1-shot.

Cloak and Dagger 1st apped in Spectacular SM #64. They've occasionally had their own series. They mention recent individual unsuccessful relationships with Brandon and Vi in their digital Negative Exposure mini-series. Since then they've mostly got caught up in whatever Event is going on, lastly having their own tale in King In Black: Planet Of The Symbiotes #3.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Savage Avengers #1 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
This issue opens with 1 of the Deathloks from the Tower at the Edge Of Eternity (see recent issues of Avengers and the new Avengers Forever series) hunting for someone in present day New York.

We see that his quarry is Conan, back in the present from his Hyborian Age. He's watching a cult of worshippers of Set. Conan is familiar with such, and with serpent-men, from his own time. The priest of Set declares that they are going to spill the blood of the city tonight so their god can be reborn in this time. But Conan attacks and his sword spills *their* blood.

Meanwhile Anti-Venom (Flash Thompson) has discovered an Alchemax lab with its scientists killed by snake venom. He says he was called in to investigate by its CEO Liz Allan who told him that her company, like many others, was working on anti-psychic tech since the rise of the mutant nation Krakoa. The lab is in Hell's Kitchen so Flash roped in the resident hero Daredevil, currently Elektra. And now we learn that the villains stole a Madbonb ...

... and we see that the snake-worshippers have got it. And as Conan lays waste to the cultists the leader dashes for the bomb. But then the Deathlok arrives intent on erasing the Cimmerian for 'crimes against the timestream' and blasts him with a plasma cannon.

Meanwhile again Clayton Cortez is returning from a supermarket with a bag of food when a knife-wielding mugger demands his wallet and phone. So Cortez lets himself turn into Weapon H. In a bar across the street Dane Whitman is drowning his sorrows (after the Black Knight: Curse Of The Ebony Blade mini-series) when he sees the altercation. He rushes out in armour to deal with the knife-mugger but then finds him self facing the cross between the Grey Hulk and Wolverine.

Back in the snake den Conan hurls a serrated metal disc which chops Deathlok's gun-arm off. But nanotech builds him a new arm in seconds and the battle resumes. Conan uses DL's dropped big gun against him but the cyborg's other arm sprouts an adamantium blade to cut the *gun* in 2. Then it's blade against sword.

Meanwhile for a 3rd time Cloak and Dagger have just dealt with a drug-dealing gang. Tyrone Johnson is summoning up the courage to confess his love to Tandy Bowen. He mentions their failed past relationships with Vi and Brandon respectively but she misunderstands his point.

And then the dying cultist switches on the Madbomb which rips through the minds of the citizens including the 3 pairs of superchars in the meanwhile sections. In the general populace it unleashes their basest desires, but the 6 heroes had already confronted and wrestled with their demons so they head for the epicentre of the blast where Conan and Deathlok are fighting on unaffected.

Black Knight and Elektra recognise Conan (from the previous series) and the newcomers attack the cyborg. BK also recognises the Madbomb from the Avengers database and presumably succeeds in shutting it down. Deathlok detects Weapon H's gamma enhancement and turns him back to human. Then he breaks the Knight's sword (not his mystic Ebony Blade). Elektra draws 1st blood by jamming a sai into the cyborg's shoulder. Anti-Venom claims to be an Avenger but he's not in DL's history files so the cyborg electrocutes him. However Cloak and Dagger's Darkforce and Light Knives seem to do better. Then Elektra points out that her sai is preventing their foe's arm from healing. So they all pile on the 'weakened' enemy, including Cortez who still has his adamantium claws. Deathlok throws his opponents off but Conan strikes the vulnerable shoulder with his sword, damaging the cyborg's time-travel circuits.

The Deathlok vanishes in a blinding light. But all the heroes are sucked into a time warp. Ant-Venom, Conan and Dagger end up together in what the Barbarian recognises as his home time, the Hyborian Age. But we see that the Deathlok is there too.

Carlos Magno
Carlos Magno
Espen Grundetjern
Leinil Francis Yu (Cover Penciler)
Leinil Francis Yu (Cover Inker)
Sunny Gho (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Travis Lanham.
Editor: Tom Brevoort. Editor-in-chief: C. B. Cebulski.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Black Knight
Black Knight

(Dane Whitman)

Plus: Anti-Venom (Flash Thompson), Cloak, Dagger, Deathloks.

> Savage Avengers: Book info and issue index

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