Covering Issues #1-6
Another story written by Hickman, this series is a good complement to the current main Avengers title that has been going on for a while. The issues are very well written, with a lot of thought and input being put into the series, and it doesn’t even seem close to coming to a conclusion of the first arc. Hickman does a great job of laying everything out, baiting the reader with a lot of clues and background, and bringing in elements of the Avengers title that requires at least some knowledge to comprehend some of the characters. I think it is good that he puts some of the lesser characters, like Smasher and Hyperion, in some of the more prominent interactions, and it shows that he doesn’t focus on just the big names; truly, I believe Hickman was a great choice to pen this book.
A good point that Bruce Banner makes in an issue is that the Avengers—official ones, anyways—don’t have a magic user on the roster at this point. There have been several heroes in the past who have been part of the occult, be they Sorcerer Supreme or Mystical Monster Hunter, who have been a member of some version of the Avengers, and given that there have been many encounters with villains of supernatural origins, it really is surprising that there isn’t a permanent mystical presence on the team. It does bring to mind the question I have had the past 18 months: “What happened to the previous New Avengers comic title?” Doctor Strange was a member of the Avengers in that series, under the direction of Luke Cage, and while Cage might have decided to stop being an Avenger (for the time being, that is), why did the team stop assembling? Surely, there was still a need for heroes, but there has never been an explanation as to what happened.
For the future, I hope to see a bit more background as to exactly how A.I.M. will play a central role in things, especially given how much of a joke they have become in recent years in terms of personality and tenacity. It is rather refreshing to see the “beekeepers” acting more intelligent in terms of long-term planning and tactical solutions, even if it means giving the Avengers and S.H.I.E.L.D. a enemy who actually thinks. The Scientist Supreme has mentioned building an empire to combat the Avengers and their world, and that is exactly what he plans on doing. Now, we will, hopefully, get to see exactly what he and his council have planned.