Title: New Avengers #60
Writer: Brian Bendis
Art: Stuart Immonen and Wade von Grawbadger
The Gist: Luke Cage had a heart attack. Norman Osborn and Doctor Harrow make him better but not before they attach a homing beacon/bomb onto Luke’s heart. The New Avengers come and save Luke (just like Norman predicted…of course) and take him to an undisclosed location. While at this undisclosed location Dr. Strange with the help of Hank Pym take a Fantastic Voyage into Cage’s body to remove said homing beacon/bomb before Osborn can locate there whereabouts/blow them up.
The Good: Stuart Immonen’s art is amazing as always. I am sure he is making some nice cheddar by working on this book but his talents are completely wasted on this monthly. Nothing but talking heads with sporadic action is what a Bendis book consists of (and you‘re lucky if you ever get ANY action). Immonen should be working on comics like Fantastic Four, Agents of Atlas and Incredible Herc instead of continuously being tied to Bendis dreck.
The Bad: Well, it’s a Bendis book. Is that not enough?
Ok, fine. So, this issue is all about Strange and Pym trying to find the bomb inside of Cage while at the same time Norman and his Dark Avengers are following the homing beacon to where the New Avengers are hiding. That’s the whole story. The only way this story works is if the writer can build some tension throughout the book and I am quite sorry to say that Bendis fails at that (if he was even attempting to build tension, that is). To be fair, if I was a mindless Marvel fanboy who loved nothing more than licking the taint of the company (i.e. buying and enjoying Bendis books) and knew absolutely nothing about good writing, then I may in fact think this comic was wrought with tension…but luckily I am not. You know why, to me, there is absolutely no tension? Because I unfortunately have read too many Bendis comics in the last year and know that he loves having the chance to tease a confrontation between the New Avengers and Dark Avengers but never, ever delivers it to the Marvel Zombies so they can masturbate to it. Bendis’ writing on New Avengers is the comic book equivalent of blue balls.
The Ugly: I can’t get into exactly how Strange and Pym were successfully able to remove the bomb from Cage’s heart (I seriously can’t get into it. It was never explained in the book. It just sorta happened) but what I can tell you is that we do get to finally find out where this undisclosed location is as we watch it explode thanks to the bomb detonating (unfortunately, like I just mentioned, not while still inside Luke Cage T_T). It turns out that the New Avengers were hiding out is Norman Osborn’s summer home. Yes, you read that correctly, Norman Osborn’s fucking summer home.
Now, you may ask yourself: “ Wouldn’t Osborn have security measures in place to not allow intruders into a home of his?
You would think that, right? He’s the Green Goblin AND is now heading up HAMMER. Osborn probably has some dangerous, secret shit hidden in his place not to mention a pretty brutal porn stash I‘m sure. If there was any security in place it is never dealt with. And this isn’t just one lone intruder. By the end of the book there are at LEAST fourteen superheroes walking around in there. Kinda ridiculous but definitely a symptom of lazy ass writing.
And you may ask yourself: “So, why would the New Avengers hideout there?”
That is never explained. If I was a Bendis
zealot fan I would probably defend him by saying that, in theory, that may be the last place Osborn would look for the New Avengers. And I would almost buy that if any of the characters in the book mentioned that is why they were there but none of them do. So that simplest of explanations is not why the New Avengers were there.
And you may tell yourself: “But there has to be a reason for this.”
For the Avengers to be is Norman’s home? Ya, there is a reason and here it is: It’s so Brian Bendis could have a punch line to a joke that is not even funny to begin with. That’s it. It was all so we could see Osborn’s crinkly angry face when he tells the Dark Avengers that it was his home that the Avengers were hiding in and then subsequently got blowed up by the bomb that he himself had put inside of Luke Cage.
And you may tell yourself: “So, that’s the reason? Fucking hell.”
Fucking hell indeed. In the story there was absolutely no need for the Avengers to be in there. None. Unless, and I think I may be onto something here, Bendis really thinks that all of these little meaningless moments are all a part of an overall “ brilliant chess game” between the New and Dark Avengers. Follow me here: Clint Barton goes to kill Osborn, Osborn counters by instead capturing Barton, Osborn finds out where the New Avengers Secret HQ is so he goes over there to destroy it, while Osborn is destroying it the New Avengers break Barton out of prison, Luke Cage has a heart attack so Osborn captures him and implants a bomb in him, the New Avengers attack a HAMMER compound half was across the country and when Osborn goes to check on that the rest of the New Avengers break Cage out, and etc, etc, etc. God damn, I almost just bored myself to fucking death explaining all of these “chess like” moves. In the end though it really doesn’t seem like this chess game scenario is being written by a genius comic writer but instead by someone who is a mediocre hack who truly believes that they are writing something genius.