People (and I include myself in this) complain about there being too many Avengers titles, but I actually really don’t think they should. Just because comics share a name, doesn’t mean they are that similar. I read 2 comics with the A-word in the title this week, and they were very, very different. The first was a sci-fi epic where the planet was actually destroyed, and the second, this issue of Mighty, was a street-level title where the heroes went up against real-life issues and legality. They really couldn’t be more different, and that’s awesome. It’s more important to have diversity inside the cover, than on it. If this book was called ‘Heroes For Hire’, it wouldn’t have much chance of success, so I don’t mind the title one bit.
With this issue, Al Ewing narrows down the focus to White Tiger, who, after hearing that Gideon Mace, the man who killed her parents is out of prison gives in to the White Tiger spirit inside of herself, and goes on the hunt. Falcon overhears this on the comm-link, and so the rest of the Mighty Avengers head out to try and stop her from killing Mace and doing something she’ll regret for the rest of her life. But they don’t have much luck, as she basically kicks their ass. With the White Tiger spirit in control, she is able to easily out-fight both Power Man and Iron Fist. When you can beat Iron Fist in a kung-fu fight, you’re one bad-ass spirit.
Meanwhile, Luke, Falcon and She-Hulk (in her Jen Walters form, which surprised me, from her solo title, it looked like she was all-green, all the time these days) are in Mace’s headquarters (the former Josie’s Bar, which is a nice touch, I guess with Daredevil moving to San Francisco, another book is entitled to use it) which has some suspiciously Nordic imagery on the walls. But unfortunately for the Avengers, it’s all legal (the evidence of one of Falcon’s bird friends is not admissible, what, is Ewing bird-phobic or something? This is an out-rage!), and if White Tiger does attack, she’ll be the one at fault, and if she kills Mace, it could be the end of this fledgling team.
Of course, it’s not long before she arrives, smashing right through the window, which is just kind of proof that this building is cursed. Even though it’s no longer a bar and Daredevil is gone, the window is still getting broken. White Tiger continues to prove what a total bad-ass the spirit is, by easily dispatching her fellow Avengers, and even managing to scratch Luke Cage’s unbreakable skin. But she’s not too smart it seems, as she dives head-first at Mace… only it isn’t Mace, it’s a trick of the light from Spectrum, who zaps her, full force. So it looks like our heroes have won, sort of, even if they did so by protecting a villainous, racist creep. But there’s one more sting in the tail, as just as soon as White Tiger is knocked out, the Cops arrive, with guns pointed right at the Avengers, and to be honest, they are liable to quite a bit of property damage. The last page was very interesting indeed, as we see the real Mace and his lawyer upstairs, laughing at how they tricked the Avengers, and also revealing that they are being backed by Cortex Inc, the very same company that was after the Inhuman tech in the last story arc. Al Ewing has not just forgotten about that plot, oh no, it looks like it’s set to run and run.
This was just another great issue of a really good series, Ewing’s sense of humour meshes wonderfully with Valerio Schiti’s art style, but when they want to, they can cut loose with some great action. The way White Tiger took out Power Man and Iron Fist was real hard-hitting, and Schiti’s pacing and kineticism made that work. Ewing has a large cast, so this issue does see the likes of Blue Marvel and Ronin absent, but that doesn’t matter at all, as here White Tiger gets a ton of development and spotlight, and already I care more about her than I ever did before. Ewing is doing a great job at building a team of lesser-known characters here.