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Avengers #18: Review

Aug 2013
Jonathan Hickman, Leinil Francis Yu

Story Name:

Avengers universe 1

Review & Comments

4 stars

Avengers #18 Review by (August 25, 2013)
Apart from Gladiator and Smasher, the other Imperial Guard members given prominent roles are Mentor and Oracle. Quincruisers are presumably quinjets upgraded for space, probably as being built in #2, maybe using tech Rocket Raccoon gave the Avengers in Avengers Assemble #5. The cast list says Cannonball, Nightmask, Starbrand and Sunspot are part of the quincruiser #2 crew. But they aren't shown there here, or in Avengers Assemble #18 also out this week. Maybe Captain Marvel #15 next week will include them. Moreover, although Cannonball and Sunspot are prominent in the Council meeting scene, I don't see Nightmask and Starbrand anywhere in this issue outside the previously page. Maybe it's significant that the cast list page has Cheung pictures of their faces, unlike the Yu faces of the other Avengers. Annihilus' Annihilation Wave forces are mentioned as part of the Council army. Comic Book Database lists them as being in this issue, but I can't see them. However I do see what might be Acanti space-whales. Though I don't know whether they're free beings or Brood space vessels. Avengers Assemble #18-19 and Captain Marvel #15-16 will be directly related to this battle. AA#18 describes more of it from Spider-Woman's point of view. In CM #15 CM and Hawkeye will be captured by the Builders (though I don't know what happens to Abyss and whoever else is in quincruiser #2). AA#19 and CM#16 will feature SW and Black Widow helping CM and H escape.

Leinil Yu moves in from the covers to take over the interior art as well. Meanwhile the previously page has actual Jim Cheung panels from Infinity #1 without crediting him. The Avengers and New Avengers series are integral to Infinity. Avengers will follow Captain America, Hulk, Thor and the other Avengers in the space battle. New Avengers stays on Earth with Iron Man and the rest of the Illuminati to face Thanos. They aren't mentioned here, but Spider-Man and Wolverine also remain on Earth. (And Captain Universe is currently in a coma.) This Galactic Council is the one we've seen in Guardians of the Galaxy, and probably the one mentioned in the 1st arc of Avengers Assemble. I see no Badoon here. They were probably kicked out after their actions in GoG. Also Freyja of Asgard isn't present, but she stalked off in GoG#2. Kl'rt and 2 more Skrull warlords are the cover stars this issue. Kl'rt is the Super-Skrull. But I don't think he's ever been portrayed as a warlord before. Indeed in his last appearance he was a prisoner in the Raft in Thunderbolts #156. Spider-Woman has issues with the Skrulls because she was one of their earliest prisoners before Secret Invasion, replaced by Veranke before the start of the original New Avengers.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Avengers #18 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
The previously page shows events from Infinity #1. It has become clear that a Builder fleet is cutting a swathe through the nearby galactic empires, heading for Earth. Captain America leads most of the Avengers into space to join the defence forces of the Galactic Council. Iron Man stays on Earth to organise a last-ditch defence.

The Council meets on neutral planet Nomad. A bunch of Skrull warlords led by Kl'rt come to offer their forces and ask for a seat on the Council. Gladiator of the Shi'ar points out that the former Skrull empire is now a group of squabbling factions. He asks how much of the Skrull race does Kl'rt represent.

A flashback to 2 days ago reveals Kl'rt getting the warlords of the vying factions to meet, in the face of the Builder attack. Kl'rt proposed they bury their differences and go to join forces with the Galactic Council. Most of the other proud Skrulls would prefer to go down fighting without asking for help. But Kl'rt persuaded them with news that the Builder fleet they see is but the advance guard of a much bigger one.

However 1 warlord, a general of the old empire named Dm'yr, offered to use his forces in a holding action while the others go to the council. Dm'yr led the Builders into a trap by luring them near a sun, which he then detonated into a nova whch destroyed Builders and Skrulls alike.

So now when asked if all the Skrull warlords are with him, Kl'rt replies "All but one".

J-son of Spartax accepts the Skrulls into the Council, which includes the Kree Supreme Intelligence (along with Ronan the Accuser), Annihilus and a Brood queen. However many other races have sent representatives, and Earth has the Avengers. (Avenger Smasher is currently sitting with her fellows in the Shi'ar Imperial Guard.) (Spider-Woman is uneasy about allying with Skrulls.)

Kl'rt describes Dm'yr's successful trap which destroyed the Builders' advance fleet. J-son wants to set another trap for the following fleet. The Kree Intelligence remembers the Konn-Dar Encounter from an earlier Kree/Shi'ar war, which Gladiator knows as 'The Corridor'. And the Builders are due to pass through it.

3 days later the Council forces are hidden in the debris belt circling a black hole. The plan is to trap the Builders between themselves and the singularity. The Avengers are in 2 space-quincruisers. Captain America leading Black Widow, Bruce Banner, Manifold, Shang-Chi and Spider-Woman in #1. Captain Marvel leading Abyss and Hawkeye in #2. Ex Nihilo, space-armoured Falcon, Hyperion, Smasher and Thor are in open space.

The battle rages until the Council decides which is the Builder command vessel. Most of our forces converge on that target and destroy it. Then they turn to mopping up the individual Builder craft.

But victory quickly turns to defeat. The 'command vessel' was a decoy, and this was only a small portion of the Builder fleet. The rest has been cloaked. These now reveal themselves and fall on the scattered Council forces. A 3rd of the Council fleet are destroyed, and the rest are ordered to retreat.

Quincruiser #1 is badly damaged, and Captain America is going to get Manifold to teleport the whole vessel to safety. Quincruiser #2 is near the black hole when a Shi'ar craft explodes next to them, leaving them unconscious and adrift.

Preview Pages
Click sample interior pages to enlarge them:

Leinil Francis Yu
Gerry Alanguilan
Sunny Gho
Leinil Francis Yu (Cover Penciler)
Leinil Francis Yu (Cover Inker)
Laura Martin (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Cory Petit.
Editor: Tom Brevoort.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Black Widow
Black Widow

(Natasha Romanoff)
Captain America
Captain America

(Steve Rogers)
Captain Marvel
Captain Marvel

(Carol Danvers)

(Sam Wilson)

(Clint Barton)

(Bruce Banner)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)

(Jessica Drew)


Plus: Abyss 3, Brood, Builders, Cannonball, Ex Nihila, Ex Nihilo, Gladiator (Kallark), Hyperion, Jason of Spartax (J'son), Manifold (Eden Fesi), Mentor (A'Lars), Oracle, Ronan (Ronan the Accuser), Smasher (Izzy Kane), Super-Skrull.

> Avengers: Book info and issue index

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