Not even kidding, but this may be one of the best event tie-ins I’ve ever read. Rick Remender (and co-writer Gerry Duggan) uses this issue not only to explore the world of Age Of Ultron in greater depth, but also to continue his own storylines. It works really well, and has me very excited to see what the ultimate endgame is here. This issue is a flashback to the childhoods of Uriel and Eimin, the Apocalypse Twins, and how they were trained and manipulated by Kang. Given that he is a time-traveller, Kang is used to all sorts of messed-up time-streams, and so he sends the Twins into the new Age Of Ultron timeline to kill Captain, sorry, Colonel America and prove their mettle.
I thought it was very cool that Remender kept the focus of this issue on his regular characters, we see not only Colonel America, but also the AU versions of Havok and Rogue. They are married and the leaders of the Morlocks, which is a very cool idea, we also find out that Colonel America was married to Scarlet Witch before she died, which could play into the future of this title, their romance has been subtly hinted. It’s interesting to see that a lot of the philosophical debates that are a part of this book in the ‘real’ time-line are still there. AU-Havok is still at odds with his brother in this universe, but here, Havok is the one who is separated from the Human race, he’s living underground. There’s no ‘call me Alex’ here, he has cast aside that name and is only known as Havok. This alternate reality is a dark mirror the to the actual Uncanny Avengers and even though it’s a side-step, it’s very illuminating about the characters.
Of course, even more illuminating is what we see of the Apocalypse Twins in their attack on the Morlocks. I find it interesting that Remender has flipped things somewhat and made the male twin the weaker one, the one who’s more reticent about killing. But they do kill Havok and Rogue, and it’s pretty shocking, alternate reality or not. The artwork for this issue comes from the legendary Adam Kubert, and he’s just as good as ever, I really like how his style lately has started to reflect his even-more-legendary father. Overall, this was a very good issue, I’m a sucker for alternate-universes as I’ve repeatedly said in my reviews of the main Age Of Ultron series, so I was glad to get a more in-depth look into this world, and it was also great how Remender made this tie-in really work for his own on-going story. If you’ve been reading this book but didn’t pick up this because you hate Age Of Ultron, you really need to go back and get this one.