-IT'S JUST A THAW - SPOILS ISN'T OVER UNTIL EASTER-
Written by Jonathan Hickman
Drawn by Various
It's 8 Months Later and the begin of the end of Hickman's run on Avengers. In both Avengers and New Avengers, we jump 8 months forward to a changed Marvel landscape as the rest of the Marvel U slowly makes it's way there, showing us how it all happened. Here are the highlight in stories and changes we get:
Ex Nihilo and Abyss tell us the end is coming (a theme Hickman has had for a long while now), that Earth is the center and they plan on trying to stop it.
Over to Cannonball, we get Sunspot and Manifold teleporting in to Sam's home as we find that he is living in Shi'ar space now that Cannonball has a child with Smasher (herself part of the Royal Guard last we saw). While getting re-acquainted, we come to find that Sunspot has actually bought AIM and seemingly turned it into a better organization, which is funny and strange.
Most importantly, we find out that SHIELD is running the Avengers and has taken Avengers Tower as their new Station: Golgotha. We find that Amadeus Cho is trying to infiltrate their files now that Tony Stark is gone (missing, I assume not dead). Once they lock in security, SHIELD sends in some Avengers to apprehend him, Hawkeye, War Machine and Captain Marvel (all now wearing suits colored black and gray ala SHIELD colors) During chase, we see that War Machine may not be Rhodes as we knew him as their are multiple drones that look alike. As they trap Cho, we get the masked, female lead confronting Cho herself, demanding to know where the Illuminati are: Along with Cho, the members seem to be Stark, Banner, Strange, Beast, Panther and Bolt along with newbies Hank Pym and Captain Britain (though Beast, Panther and Bolt could possibly be wanted for previous dealing as the Illuminati and not necessarily current members). Cho tells her he has no idea where Stark is missing to while refusing comment on the others. As the leader begins to unmask herself, she asks about the last member of the Illuminati, her husband Reed Richards. Sue Storm is apparently leading the Avengers on the hunt for the Illuminati.
I love Hickman's long game plans and jumping into the future only opens the doors wider. Marvel has said that this is the future of Marvel. Everything leads to this direction and we will get answers throughout. Superior Iron Man looks to be playing big as Stark seems to be wanted man #1, which surprises me because the book itself didn't look too interesting to me. Best of all, though who can say at this point, is that I don't feel like their are spoilers for such upcoming books as Axis. Marvel is taking a big risk with jumping forward, both story-wise and because DC has Futures End going already. but this first issue was a very promising start. Hopefully the clues play out in smart fashions and the story doesn't kill itself as it unfolds.