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Avengers Inc #2: Review

Oct 2023
Al Ewing, Leonard Kirk

Story Name:

Case Number: 002 The ghost of Avengers Mansion

Review & Comments

4 stars

Avengers Inc #2 Review by (October 20, 2023)
Spymaster's Espionage Elite were introduced in Iron Man (vol 1) #33-35, with a crossover to Daredevil #73. He and they also tangled with IM in a tale in Marvel Super-Heroes #12. (A different Elite and different Spymaster showed up in IM v3 #8 and the IM: Bad Blood mini-series.)


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Avengers Inc #2 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
The setup:- Mayor Luke Cage hired Wasp to investigate the mysterious deaths of several super-villain prisoners in the Raft, 1 of them being her old foe/stalker Whirlwind. But then the corpses 'woke up', and Danny Cannon seemed possessed by a being calling himself Vic Shade, with powers similar but not identical to the Vision who sometimes also uses that id. This VC doesn't remember anything beyond his name. The Mayor authorised them to continue investigating the mystery and any other super-murders, and the duo call themselves Avengers Inc, based in Janet Van Dyne's Jarvis Lounge restaurant.

But in this issue they're in the old Avengers Mansion, currently owned by Human Torch and run as a theme hotel. We see a guest heading down for breakfast and apparently to check out. He makes a mysterious call on a secure phone to someone named Herter. Then he gets into an unoccupied elevator and is killed by a scythe-wielding ghost who calls him Roger Phillips.

Jan and Vic are having brunch in the restaurant. She's brought him here to see if it jogs any memories. In the background we see workmen trying to free a jammed elevator, presumably the 1 mentioned above, while staff apologise to the guests that they can't access the upper floors until the elevator system is fixed. Wasp springs a surprise meal-mate on Vic, the real Vision who accuses him of being Whirlwind running a scam to get out of prison. Jan says that the evidence rules out that option. Vizh changes tack to ask Vic what villain created him and for what purpose.

At that point the workmen get the lift door open and discover the body inside. Panic ensues apart from 1 person who calmly continues using his phone, but including a tour guide who calls the dead man Roger. Vision scans the body and announces that the man has been dead an hour and that he died of molecular disruption of his heart. He deduces that something phased through his heart and the elevator controls and then solidified to stop both, a technique often used non-fatally by himself.

But Vic spots the tour guide running away and gives chase. Jan tells Vision to keep all the witnesses here while she follows Vic in Wasp-mode. (She has to keep close to Vic to stop his ankle tag going off, and anyway she too doesn't fully trust him yet.) But before either of our duo can reach the scarperer the 'ghost' appears and calls him, naming him Farley London, and then fades away. Wasp recognises that name as belonging to Agent 3, and tells her companion to pull the guy's face off. It turns out to be a disguise.

2 more people called Samson Washington and Marya Peskyov are trying to get out of the Mansion while using a special phone to contact someone named Godfried when they too are confronted by the name-calling spectre. But Vision interferes causing the the 'ghost' to say "Error/program interruption". He takes the time to explain that this is a hard-light training hologram before causing a counter-frequency in his hand which then totally disrupts it.

Wasp flies over to accuse the 2 victims of being Agents 1 and 2 of Spymaster's 5-person Espionage Elite. They admit it but say they've gone freelance since then and no longer sport numbers and matching uniforms. She tells them what she thinks their plan was here:-

Disguise-master Farley London replaced the tour guide so that he could scout out the security measures. The other 4 of the gang were then in 1 of his tours but slipped out of it and used their skills to get into the central control room where Godfried Herter diverted the Mansion's revenue from the building's preservation fund to an outside account. What they didn't know was that he moved the money to his *own* account and then set the Mansion's old training system to kill the other 4, identifiable by the special phones he had given them.

Vic then joins them with Godfried Herter who Jan spotted earlier as the man who didn't react when the 1st body was revealed. At which point loads of cops arrive to arrest Vic because his ankle tag has gone off. Jan calls the Mayor and sorts it all out, and the surviving villains are taken away. Meanwhile Vision tells Vic that the real Whirlwind deserves to get his life back. Vic agrees but doesn't know how to accomplish it. Vision can only say that the area under the scar on Vic's forehead (which the other 'dead' cons have too) has something behind it which he can't scan. The only person he knows capable of creating such a thing is Henry Pym, but he's long dead. (But at the end of last issue we saw dead Pym working with the also-dead Black Ant and claiming responsibility for what happened then.)

In a bigger meanwhile the Valkyrie Brunnhilde has called Valkyrie Jane Foster to Valhalla to ponder the 'death' of the already-dead hero Skurge (better known to us as the villain Executioner).

Leonard Kirk
Leonard Kirk
Alex Sinclair
Daniel Acuna (Cover Penciler)
Daniel Acuna (Cover Inker)
Daniel Acuna (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Cory Petit.
Editor: Tom Brevoort. Editor-in-chief: C. B. Cebulski.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.



(Jane Foster)

(Janet Van Dyne)

Plus: Avengers Incorporated, Espionage Elite, Vic Shade.

> Avengers Inc: Book info and issue index

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