Monday, September 15, 2014

Secret Avengers v3: To Maim a Mockingbird TPB

So… this was basically nonsense, right? Nick Spencer comes back to try and put a bow on his volume of Secret Avengers, but I leave this title a very confused man.

I’m not sure if I’m supposed to believe that Mockingbird/Bobbi Morse was actually a sleeper agent for AIM or not. So she was, and she turned good? Or she was always a SHIELD agent and AIM tried to trick her? I’m just not getting it. What was Mockingbird hoping to accomplish when she ditched her teammates?

More questions. What exactly happened to Taskmaster? I guess Mockingbird shot him in the head in a way that he would be able to survive? Isn’t that a bit preposterous? Why did Mentallo turn into a pile of worms from Slither and then swim into the ocean? Who in the world thought that was a good idea?

Even more questions: What was the purpose of putting all those villains in charge of AIM’s high council? Most of them never did anything! Why were there so many pages spent setting up MODOK’s eventual betrayal of the team if we don’t see the outcome?

I believe the answer to a lot of these questions is: Buy the next incarnation of Secret Avengers. I can promise one thing, I will not be buying the next incarnation of Secret Avengers. This book was horribly confusing, out of sequence, and full of poor choices about the Marvel Universe in general. The use of the killer team of Avengers muddies the heroic waters for characters like Hawkeye and Spider-Woman, and I fear there may be lasting damage done to characters like Mockingbird, Taskmaster, and Mentallo.

Butch Guice and Luke Ross are both solid artists. I’ve enjoyed their work for years, so it isn’t a surprise that the art is one of the strongest parts of the title. I wish the artistic identity could have been a bit more clearly defined. Sometimes this felt like a spy book, sometimes a super-hero title, and it never really decided what it wanted to be. The artists do such great work in low-powered titles; I think that might have been the way to go (especially Guice in street-level titles).

This POOR book is a mess. This is the type of book where the best thing we can do is just pretend it never happened. Let’s move along, shall we?

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