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Uncanny Avengers #22: Review

Jul 2014
Rick Remender, Daniel Acuna

Story Name:

Avenge the Earth conclusion

Review & Comments

Rating:
4 stars

Uncanny Avengers #22 Review by (August 10, 2014)
The end result of this storyline (apart from the change of status of some characters) seems to be as indicated above that Kang has succeeded in replacing 7 timelines with 1. He has been deprived of the full power of the Celestial, but I'd guess he's still got some of it. I'm not sure whether the timeline he's got is the 1 he wanted. The Apocalypse Twins were especially determined to avoid Ahab's future where Red Skull becomes Red Onslaught and sets up concentration camps for mutants. There have been contradictory statements as to whether that future lead to the Kang Dynasty. Presumably the beginning of all that will happen in the upcoming Axis event, but equally presumably the heroes will prevent it from succeeding.

Immortus' Infinity Watch was briefly seen in #16. Given that Captain Marvel appears to be the real deal maybe the others are also, because Immortus too could have plucked them out of time. Vision is confirmed to have the Phoenix Force here. I also recognised Martinex, Starhawk and Yondu of the original Guardians of the Galaxy (a weak plug here for the film). I thought they were accompanied by fellow GotG'er Vance Astro in his protective bodysuit - but I failed to notice the surfboard, and he now appears as an obvious Silver Surfer. The guy whose costume reminded me of Hawkeye now seems more like the Molecule Man (maybe). And they've added an alien member of the Nova Corps. Note that, despite all the build-up for Immortus in this storyline, his Infinity Watch only has an inconclusive fight with Kang's gang, and Immortus himself doesn't find Kang and doesn't do anything else.

Kang's allies were recruited in #14 from disintegrating alternate futures. These futures were negated by the actions in this storyline. It would seem to be suggested that it was the 'rapture' of the mutants away from Earth in #14 which initiated the timeline destruction. But it would make more sense for it to be the destruction of Earth by Exitar the Celestial Executioner later that made the other futures impossible. However both of these events were prevented by the returning Avengers last issue. In fact if timelines can be destroyed then the prime cause would be Kang causing Thor to create the Celestial-killing axe Jarnbjorn in Medieval times as seen in #6. I will restrain myself from my usual rant that Marvel timelines don't get destroyed, just new ones get created. But I will admit that Immortus found a way to destroy timelines, and make changes that replaced a timeline instead of splitting it (see Avengers Forever). So maybe Kang has this tech now. The timeline that Marvel comics follow is known as Earth-616, just 1 of many alternate universes. But Rick Remender subscribes to the theory that this timeline is the 'prime' 1, more important than all the others. In #9 he had Immortus says that this prime timeline had been split into 7 equally-prime ones, but Kang was going to wipe them all out and replace them with 1 that he ruled. In #14 Kang recruited his Corps from 7 disappearing timelines. (Stryfe was killed in #20 and we saw the body of the Abomination Deathlok at the beginning of this issue. 5 members are left - 4 seen fighting plus Ahab.) I presumed that these were the 7 prime realities. I think that, despite Kang's defeat at the end, the replacing of 7 realities by 1 has still happened. This still ignores all the other parallel realities out there, many of which are also being destroyed in New Avengers.

Part of the blurb for this issue says it's the 'final chapter of the story that began in Dimension Z'. I think that was accidentally copied over from the blurb for Captain America #22. On the other hand the Dimension Z storyline will lead into the Axis event, which seems have this title and Cap's in central positions. The White Hot Room has evolved in the X-Men mythos as the place where we go when we die, but significantly as where cosmic beings like the Phoenix go between incarnations. Other heroes seen briefly throughout include Captain Britain, Captain Marvel (Carol Danvers), Dr Strange, Falcon, Hyperion, Iron Fist, Iron Patriot, Spider-Man (probably the Doc Ock 1), Storm, Sub-Mariner, Vision



 

Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Uncanny Avengers #22 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
Several of the Avengers Unity Squad have sent their minds back in time to occupy their current bodies, and they have stopped the Apocalypse Twins from creating a future where Earth is destroyed by a Celestial and only mutants survive to populate a new planet. But the destruction of the Twins' Tachyon Dam allowed Kang and his time-lost gang to invade, and Kang started to absorb the power of the Celestial - the power to conquer the universe.

Now various current characters are being defeated by by Kang's gang, who consider their options now that their future timelines no longer exist. As Iron Man 2020 (Arno Stark, but not the 1 in the current IM issues) faces Iron Man (Tony Stark) he blames Kang for his vanished home, but believes everyone has no choice but to obey him now. Our Dr Doom refuses to be anyone's servant, but Dr Doom 2099 believes that Kang has outsmarted them all. And the Earth X Venom (May Parker) reminds us that Kang's centuries-long plot has resulted in only 1 future timeline remaining, that of the Kang Dynasty.

In space Thor reappears from the coruscating energies of the dead Celestial Exitar, shrugging off the body of the Abomination Deathlok that had dragged him there. He attacks Kang with the axe Jarnbjorn (that he'd used to mortally wound the Celestial), but the Conqueror's new power enables him to hold the Thunder God at bay, and then throw him away.

We last saw Havok and Sunfire on the Apocalypse Ark destroying the Tachyon Dam, but now they are here to stop Kang drinking in more Celestial energy. Havok uses his own remaining energy to hit Kang with a cosmic blast. Then the duo dive into the bleeding wound to absorb the Celestial energy themselves, expecting it to kill them.

But Kang follows them and manifests an energy blade to stab Sunfire through the heart. Shiro Yoshida disintegrates, and the blast destroys Alex Summer's space helmet, scarring the left side of his face. (He can still breathe because the planet-sized Celestial has its own atmosphere.)

Iron Man 2020 is still fighting Iron Man. He makes the contradictory claim that if he serves Kang faithfully his future timeline will survive. Arno claims that Tony would do the same. Captain America disagrees, until Magistrate Braddock hits him with a psychic knife to the head. But Cap sees help arriving.

It's Immortus and his Infinity Watch, 1 of whom turns out to be the original Captain Marvel. Immortus leaves the Watch to fight Kang's Corps, while he himself goes after the Conqueror.

Kang asks Havok to submit to him, or he'll never see his (and Wasp's) (future) daughter Katie again - Kang has her secreted outside of time and space. But Alex knows he can't trust the villain, and he tells himself the only chance to get Katie back is to defeat Kang. So he uses the Celestial energy he has absorbed against him - but Kang has eaten even more of it.

But now Shiro  reappears as Sunfire the Atomic Knight, his body apparently composed completely of Celestial energy. His 1st act is to blast Kang, and then the Apocalypse Twins' Ark, which explodes (we see Wolverine escaping in an escape pod).

Now Alex Summers uses his stolen energy to beat Kang up! Demanding his daughter back or he'll kill him. The villain does the 'how dare you lay hands on Kang' bit and then vanishes. On Earth the Infinity Watch are duelling with the Kang Corps when their opponents vanish away too. As Kang leaves he contacts his agent Ahab, the only Corpsman from this time period, leaving things up to him. (Presumably Ahab will be involved with Red Skull's upcoming Axis Event.)

Sentry and Wasp are also up near the giant Celestial. Sentry detects that Exitar is dead, his energy gone to the White Hot Room to await rebirth. He leaves the Solar System, taking the body far far away, but leaving behind the prediction that the other Celestials won't be happy. (The reborn Horseman of Apocalypse was somewhat unhinged, and has convinced himself he is the 'cosmic protector of humanity'.)

Jan returns to Earth to rejoin her fellow heroes and Immortus and the Infinity Watch. Suddenly Rogue falls to Earth, her head filled with the voices of all the heroes whose powers she borrowed last issue to fight Exitar with. Scarlet Witch makes the powers return to their owners. But Rogue had absorbed the whole of Wonder Man - he's composed completely of ionic energy. Now Wondie doesn't return, and Rogue still hears him in her head.

The new Sunfire flies down with disfigured Havok. Who has to tell Jan that their daughter is gone.

And part of the Ark has crashed in the Sahara Desert. 2 more Horsemen Daken and Grim Reaper emerge carrying the limp forms of Eimin and Uriel.


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> Uncanny Avengers: Book info and issue index

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Daniel Acuna
Daniel Acuna
Daniel Acuna
Daniel Acuna (Cover Penciler)
Daniel Acuna (Cover Inker)
Daniel Acuna (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Clayton Cowles.
Editor: Tom Brevoort.

Characters

Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)
Doctor Doom
Doctor Doom

(Victor Von Doom)
Doctor Strange
Doctor Strange

(Stephen Strange)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)
Kang
Kang

(Kang the Conqueror)
Scarlet Witch
Scarlet Witch

(Wanda Maximoff)
Thor
Thor

(Odinson)
Wasp
Wasp

(Janet Van Dyne)
Wolverine
Wolverine

(James Howlett)

Plus: Ahab, Apocalypse Twins, Deathlok (Abomination), Doctor Doom 2099, Grim Reaper, Havok, Immortus, Infinity Watch (of Immortus), Iron Man 2020, Magistrate Braddock, Sunfire, Venom (Earth X).