Sunday, February 15, 2009

Avengers: The Initiative #21

Overall- So, Christos Gage is going to be given the task of ending this series... I've enjoyed Christos work, so hopefully he'll manage to give this comic a proper send-off... And hopefully he won't kill everyone off! Anyway, here's the review.

Thank you Christos, so far, so good. Basically, the clone of Thor that was created by Skrull Pym, Tony Stark and Reed Richards during Civil War had been programmed to return to life if the Secret Invasion was to fail and Skrull Pym was killed. Fake Thor, who I'll call Ragnarok for the remainder of this review, emerges from it's holding tank in the basement of Camp Hammond. Baron Von Blitzschlag is the only one who sees Ragnarok wake up and being a low-life ex-Nazi decides to attempt to control Ragnarok. After failing to reason with Ragnarok, the Baron decides to use an over-ride code to shut Ragnarok down. Unfortunately for my favorite ex-Nazi turned government scientist, Skrull Pym had changed all of the over-ride codes before his death. Ragnarok doesn't take kindly to the Baron calling it a clone of Thor(Ragnarok obviously believes that it is the real God of Thunder), and Ragnarok destroys the lab in an explosion of lightning.

Thor Girl, who had been replaced during the Skrull invasion and was at Camp Hammond for counseling, confronts the faux-Thor, and the two battle, with Thor Girl being defeated. Before Ragnarok can deliver the death blow though, Gauntlet comes to her rescue and sends Ragnarok through a wall. Trauma then uses his powers to become the greatest fear of Ragnarok, which is the real Thor. Ragnarok tries to electrocute Trauma/Thor, but can't and begins to believe that maybe it is a clone... Until Ragnarok realizes that Trauma/Thor can't throw his hammer(since the hammer is just a part of Trauma's body, if that makes any sense...). Ragnarok overcomes his fear and hammers Trauma through the wall of the Camp, and into the street. Before Ragnarok can kill Trauma, who reverted back to his true form after Ragnarok overcame it's fear, Gorilla Girl(yes, I know, dumb name)makes the save, but is trounced by Ragnarok. Once more Ragnarok prepares to deliver the death blow, this time to Gorilla Girl, but is halted by the arrival of Justice and the New Warriors. The REAL New Warriors(or close to it), not that horrible farce that had been calling themselves the New Warriors in the recently cancelled "New Warriors" series.

Besides the main story, much of this issue dealt with the re-organization of the leadership of Camp Hammond(it seems that Gauntlet is now in charge), as well as Komodo and the Shadow Initiative arriving in Madripoor in an attempt to capture/kill(?)former Initiative member(and Komodo's ex-boyfriend)Hardball, who is currently leading one of the many branches of Hydra. I'm still hoping that Hardball decides to reform, he was one of my favorites out of the original Initiative team.

Anyway, in case you couldn't tell, I've loved this comic from it's inception, and I continue to love it. Dan Slott did such a great job creating the Initiative and these characters. To be honest with you, I'd go so far to say that Avengers: The Initiative was the ONLY good thing to come out of the unmitigated disaster that was Civil War. It seems pretty obvious that this comic is going to get the axe and soon(4 Avengers titles is a bit much), but hopefully someone at Marvel will have the foresight to give Christos Gage a series spinning out of this one... A New Warriors comic penned by Christos would be nice. For a score, I'll give this comic a 8 1/2 out of 10. I really liked this comic, and I'm really looking forward to seeing where Christos goes with this comic and these characters. Oh, and hopefully we haven't seen the end of Baron Von Blitzschlag. For an ex-Nazi, that guy was hilarious!

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