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Super Reads AvX: Week 6

HEADACHEThe second month of AvX begins!  WATCH as Super Reads... Avengers vs. X-Men #3!  Avengers Academy #29!  X-Men #45!  and Avengers #53!

Spoilers Ahead!



Super Reads AvX Week 6

Avengers vs. X-Men continues to roll right on down the fandom superhighway and I am here to give you the scoop on what's going down in every issue and tie-in.

Here is what I do.  I read a Marvel Event comic book (in this case, Avengers vs. X-Men) and then I write it all down, spoiling the hell out of it.  I give you a nutshell of what happened in the comic, flesh it out a little bit more with some bullet points, and then just dive right in with a far too detailed look Captain America duking it out with Wolverine.

So I read the comics and then I write about them.  It's something simple and easy that I attempt to make way too complicated.

This ain't my first rodeo.  I've been covering Marvel events since Secret Invasion, back when I was a wide-eyed young fanboy with hope for the future.  :)  You can read about it all in the massive Super Reads section on the site.

Before we get to the comics, you need to know a couple things.

Heroically murdering people to save the world.Wolverine is the best there is at what he does and what he does isn't very nice.  If your powers including healing from any injury and three retractable adamantium claws on each hand, you probably wouldn't be known for doing nice things, either.

The current version of Wolverine isn't trying very hard to suppress his murderous tendencies.  In fact, he was brought on to the New Avengers team BECAUSE he would be able to make the tough decisions on murderizing someone instead of just having them imprisoned... this is something Cap was uncomfortable with, but still allowed.

So how many people has Logan killed since joining the Avengers?  Holy damn, I don't even want to count that high.  How many people has he killed while ACTING as an Avenger?  Not counting Hand ninjas?  Or Skrulls?  I think we're looking at zero.

In Avengers vs. X-Men #2, Wolverine made his play to kill Hope Summers, the future potential host for the Phoenix Force.  Spider-Man tagged along to stop the Canucklehead but in the end it was Hope herself that burned everyone's favorite Canadian mutant to a crisp.  There's more to this scene that is shown on the page and it all stems from the moment Hope asked Logan to kill her if things ever got really, really bad.

I guess AvX #2 was Wolverine's definition of really, really bad.  We still have ten issues to go.

Scarier than he looks.  Honest.This is Sebastian Shaw.  He is one of the most dangerous mutants alive even though he usually ends up dressing like a dude who hasn't realized that the Victorian era is long over.

You can't punch Shaw.  He absorbs kinetic energy.  It just makes him stronger.  Sebastian has no higher goal than his own self-serving ambitions.  He doesn't care about mutant issues.  He only cares about lining his pockets with money and getting more power in his hands.  Shaw Industries built most of the Sentinels from the eighties and nineties.

He has survived assassination attempts and even a confrontation or two with Magneto.  He's a bad guy who just keeps coming back.

Recently, his mind was scrubbed of all memories and the villain was left to start all over again in China.  That lasted about ten minutes until Hope Summers found him in Pakistan, being used by some insane dude as a reusable human bomb.  Even though that act sounds terrible, it LOOKS like the new version of Sebastian Shaw actually has some sort of moral base.  We'll see how long that lasts...

Avengers vs. X-Men #3Avengers vs. X-Men #3
Writers: Jason Aaron, Brian Michael Bendis, Ed Brubaker, Matt Fraction, & Jonathan Hickman
Script: Ed Brubaker
Penciler: John Romita Jr.
Inker: Scott Hanna
Editor: Tom Brevoort

Click HERE for Super Reads Avengers vs. X-Men #2!

The issue in a nutshell:
The X-Men surrender but then take it back.  Hope scrambles her mutant signature, forcing the Avengers to split up and check out multiple leads.  Captain America fights Wolverine and kicks him out of a Quinjet over Antarctica.

This issue by bullet points:

• Wolverine regenerates his skin and learns that Hope has rabbited and Utopia has surrendered to the Avengers.

• While Captain America and Iron Man argue about what to do with the X-Men, Cyclops' team carries out their escape.

• Hope assembles a device that scrambles her mutant signature and runs away from her own reflection when the Phoenix shows up in the mirror.

• Rachel Grey-Summers relays some of Hope's possible locations... and then turns around that gives Cyclops' team the same intel.

• While in the air and bound for the Savage Land, Captain America chews Wolverine out for going against orders on Utopia.

• And then they start fighting.

• With Giant-Man's help, Captain America wins against the Canucklehead and then has him kicked out of the Quinjet over Antarctica.

This issue in EXTREME detail:

Last issue, Hope sparked up with Phoenix powers and burned Wolverine with cosmic flames.  In this issue, Logan regrows his skin and wakes up screaming and totally naked.  Even weirder?  Spider-Man is sitting next to him.  Watching.

Make of that what you will.

After throwing Wolverine some clothes, the Web-Slinger catches him up on current events.  Hope escaped after Wolverine lost consciousness.  Cyclops and the rest of Utopia has surrendered to the Avengers.

That last part doesn't seem right to Wolverine.  After getting dressed, he heads outside to see what is really going on.

We zip out ahead of Logan to find the X-Men all herded together with Iron Man and Captain America fighting about what to do with them.  Cap wants the X-Men incarcerated for their actions in the last two issues.  Iron Man agrees that some bad things went down but imprisoning half of the world's mutant population doesn't get them any closer to finding Hope... which they should have started doing right away.

Seeing how obsessed Steve is with this, Tony makes some connections to how he was percieved during Civil War for saying a LOT of things Steve Rogers is saying right now... and then he follows that by reminding Cap that the Star-Spangled Avenger was fighting AGAINST Stark during that event.  Nice.

During the big fight last issue, Illyana Rasputin, AKA Magik, tricked Doctor Strange, AKA the Former Sorceror Supreme, into following her into Limbo for an off-panel magic fight.  While Cap and Iron Man bicker, Dr. Strange reappears with an incapacitated Magik, assuring Cyclops that his opponent is just suffering from a "temporary holding spell."

Except that's not what's going on at all.  "Dr. Strange" is actually Illyana, having won her fight with the real Strange, she did some of that super magic to make her look like the Avenger while making Dr. Strange look like her.  The only one who can smell their way through this illusion is Wolverine.  Oh, look, that's him now, yelling and getting ready to attack the X-Men.

Of course, Captain America stops Logan because he still thinks things are under control.  They aren't.  Illyana teleports the Extinction Team (Danger, Storm, Namor, Colossus, Emma Frost, Cyclops, Magneto, and herself) away from Utopia as Logan stutters out a bad explanation on what's really going on.

This still leaves a good portion of Utopia's inhabitants in Avengers custody but puts the A-Team back in the game.  While I can't tell you what happens to most of the other adults, you can read about what happens to the kids in Avengers Academy... which is right below THIS issue!  Convenient!

As Logan fumes, we take a trip to Long Beach to watch as the Extinction Team reappears.  Emma immediately uses her telepathy to make the mutants invisible.  Now it's time to make plans.  They need to find Hope and that means getting a hold of a mutant detector.  The only one available to them (kinda) is the one at the Jean Grey School for Gifted Youngsters.  If only they had someone at the school that could feed them information.  Scott tells the others that he already has a friend at the school.

With that, Magneto uses his magnetic powers to clear a path for the team... to wherever they're going.  I'm betting Emma is working overtime on the telepathy to help make all of this invisible to the residents of Long Beach.

It's also of note that Magneto's discovery in AVX VS #1 is not even mentioned here.  In that issue, Magneto learned that the Phoenix Force was ripping planets apart on its way to Earth and threw his fight with Iron Man.  Here, he's back to being a willing participant in whatever Cyclops has planned.  Whether AVX VS #1 plays any part in this storyline remains to be seen.  It's possible that Magneto is waiting for a moment here.  It's also possible AVX VS #1 doesn't matter one bit.

I'm betting on that last one.

It seems that Hope hasn't run very far at this point.  In San Francisco, she raids an electronics store to assemble a wrist device.  This thing will help to scramble her mutant signature, making it very difficult for Cerebra (the mutant detecting device) to locate her.  With that done, the mutant messiah gets a good look in the mirror.

Mirror, mirror on the wall, who's the most dangerous potential host to a cosmic entity... of them all?

Yeah... that's ominous...

After running away from her reflection, Hope plans her next move.  It's all about getting airborne.

The Avengers have returned to Avengers Tower.  It turns out that the X-Men aren't the only ones who plan to use Cerebra to find Hope.  Captain America and Logan contact the Jean Grey School and talk to Rachel Summers who gives them five different possible Hope locations.  It looks like Hope's little signature scrambler is doing its job.

When Logan doubts Rachel's ability to use Cerebra, the former Phoenix host gets a little snippy at the school headmaster but chalks it up to getting a headache after using the mutant detector.  Wolverine doesn't think that's all there is to Rachel's attitude but before he can get into it, Cap cuts him off, thanks Rachel for her assistance, and ends the call.  We're already seeing the Wolverine/Captain America bromance start to shatter.

Back at the school, Rachel walks through the hallways, using her telepathy to contact... Scott Summers.

BOOM!  Rachel is working for her dad!  When did that happen?  Time will tell.  She's definitely got enough reasons at this point.  After giving Cyclops the same location information, Rachel warns Cyke that the Avengers will also be scrambling to those areas.  So it looks like she isn't spreading disinformation, at least.  That's very... interesting.

And speaking of scrambling Avengers, here they all are, splitting up to fly to various potential Hope targets.

Wundagore Mountain: Hawkeye, Red Hulk, and Doctor Strange.

Tabula Rasa: Luke Cage, Thing, Daredevil, and Mockingbird.

Wakanda: Black Panther and Iron Fist.

Latveria: Spider-Man and Spider-Woman.

The Savage Land: Captain America, Giant-Man, Sharon Carter, and Wolverine.

(Iron Man remains at Avengers Tower in order to work on a proper defense for the Phoenix's imminent arrival)

So Hope is in one of the many made up Marvel hotspots.  OR... she's in none of these places.  You don't invent a mutant signature scrambler that just adds more potential locations while still including yours.  You invent a mutant signature scrambler that gives a bunch of fake locations and masks the real one.

While on the way to the Savage Land, Wolverine confronts Cap on Steve's attitude towards him this issue.  Logan isn't blind.  He sees how Rogers is acting.  Captain America pulls Wolverine to the back of the Quinjet and proceeds to chew the mutant out on how Logan acted last issue.

If you need a refresher, Wolverine broke orders and tried to kill Hope.  That's not something that Cap is going to agree with.  Sure, Steve Rogers' plan is kind of moronic but that doesn't make him a murderer.  Captain America is trying to save lives, not end them.  Wolverine, of course, has his own feelings on the matter and the Dark Phoenix Saga taught him that the only way this ends is with the death of the host.  THAT part is true.  The Phoenix killed herself in order to NOT go insane.

And those that remember Logan saying that Cyclops would have an agenda in this that maybe he wouldn't even recognize as an agenda... so does Wolverine.  They both loved Jean Grey.  They both get their emotions all tied up when it comes to the Phoenix.

Seeing that Wolverine is not going to give up this killing thing, Captain America decides that the only way a peaceful compromise is to punch Logan in the face.

Yeah, that just happened.

WOLVERINE/CAPTAIN AMERICA FIGHT!  Before Logan can 'snikt' out those claws, Cap taps a button behind him, alerting a special tag-team partner of the fight that just started.  I've heard different interpretations on how this fight actually goes down.  Some people think that Wolverine makes Cap look like a chump.  Others think that Steve Rogers never lost the advantage even after Logan clawed off his shield straps.  My interpretation is that the two Avengers trade blows with neither gaining the upperhand.

Which is why Giant-Man's arrival turns the tide.  Hank Pym pounds Wolverine on the back, forcing the mutant to the ground and setting him up for this.

Cyclops tasted the shield last issue.  WHO WILL TASTE IT NEXT!?

With Wolverine struggling, Steve orders Sharon Carter to open up the floor.  Pym gives Wolverine a swift kick, sending Logan right through the hole and hurtling down to the snowy landscape below.  Since they're heading to the Savage Land, I'm guessing Logan just got dropped off somewhere in Antarctica.

Bleeding from multiple claw wounds, Steve Rogers hobbles back to the bridge with a little help from Giant-Man.  Next stop... the Savage Land.

As the Quinjet/Quincarrier flies out of sight, Wolverine regains his footing.  He hasn't been swayed from his own solution to the Hope problem.  Now, he's just not working with the Avengers.

Avengers Academy #29Avengers Academy #29
Writer: Christos Gage
Penciler: Tom Grummett
Inker: Cory Hamscher
Editor: Bill Rosemann

The issue in a nutshell:
The Avengers drop the mutant kids from Utopia off at the Avengers Academy for safe keeping.  Instead of milling about, the students decide to play games of skill.  Sebastian Shaw is incarcerated but finds his way to freedom.

The issue by bullet points:

• Hercules breaks several laws by showing the Avengers Academy student what people wore during the original Olympic Games.

• The Avengers arrive to drop off the kids from Utopia.  Chaperoning the mutants are Kavita Rao and Madison Jeffries.

• Wolverine has a little chat with X-23 about bringing this trouble on her doorstep.

• For some reason, Sebastian Shaw is also around.  They decide to lock him up after agreeing to give him some books to read.

• The Avengers and X-Men kids spend their time playing challenges with each other.

• After two games, the mutant kids get sick of this and run off to find a television so they can figure out how the battle is faring.

• X-23 and Finesse smash things in the training room.

• Sebastian Shaw hits himself in the head with his books until he's built up enough kinetic energy to escape his cell.

The issue in EXTREME detail:

Before we get to the Avengers vs. X-Men portion of this comic, we start everything out with Hercules trying his damndest to get arrested for exposing himself in front of teenagers.  He's... I guess he's giving them a visual representation of what it was like to compete in the original Olympic Games.  Y'know.  In the nude.

And he's ready to wrestle with a student.  In the nude.

Jibblyjibblyjibblyjibbly.

Let's turn away from naked Hercules and look at the current roster of students attending the fine Palos Verdes facilities of Avengers Academy.  We have, from left to right, Reptil (who can change into dinosaurs), Striker (electric powers), X-23 (the female clone of Wolverine), Lightspeed (former Power Pack member-- can fly and is pretty fast while doing so), Finesse (photographic memory fighter ala Taskmaster), White Tiger (legacy hero with super strength and reflexes), Hazmat (emits corrosion to anyone around her unless she's in her suit), and Mettle (stuck in a massive armored form).

Anyone else notice that we began both new books this week with a naked guy?  That's one strange coincidence...

When Tigra walks in to check on this Ancient History class, she gets pretty upset about what Herc is doing and forces him into some clothes.  In the middle of Tigra chewing the Greek demi-god out, something arguably more important lands on their doorstep.

The Avengers have come to Avengers Academy... and they've brought guests!  Remember all of those "prisoners" they accumulated on Utopia?  Well, it looks like at least the kids have found a temporary home.  Loa, Dust, Surge, Martha Johansen, Pixie, Prodigy, Transonic, Velocidad, Primal, Crosta, and The Stepford Cuckoos (Mindee, Celeste, and Phoebe) are now wards of the state.  Dr. Kavita Rao and Madison Jeffries have agreed to look after the kids.

This is protective custody.  No one's under arrest.  They're just staying here until the Avengers finish punching the X-Men.  After hearing how important punching the X-Men is, Tigra is ready to join the Avengers but is told that she's got the more important job of watching after all these kids.  Hercules also decides to stick around... hopefully with less lessons about Ancient Greece.

Captain America tells the Avengers Academy kids to they are to play Welcoming Committee for the mutants... but if there's trouble, they need to take the X-Kids down.

Everyone splits up to talk.  Cap tells Giant-Man that Iron Man is working on something that will require Pym's attention.  Tigra talks to her students about how this is going to work.

And Wolverine meets with his clone.  I guess X-23 is angry because of how Wolverine's "war" with Cyclops has just bubbled over into her personal space.  Logan tells her that this little bit of the battle HAD to be brought here.  He couldn't bring these kids to his school because there's too much animosity between the factions.  Here, there's a better chance at no one fighting... but only just slightly.  Laura agrees to do what she can to keep the peace.

There's just one more bit of business that the Avengers have to take care of.  Sebastian Shaw.  While there are a lot of X-Men characters unaccounted for, Shaw was one of the mutants captured at the battle on Utopia.  Even with his mind scrubbed clean, there's not a lot of trust going around, especially for a guy like Shaw.  The Stepford Cuckoos let everyone know that even if he doesn't REMEMBER his past, Hope gave Shaw his file so he HAS read up on it.  Wolverine does a little unnecessary threatening.  Shaw recalls that he has beaten Logan up in the past even though he doesn't have a personal memory of it.

Regardless, he's not looking to start trouble.  Put him in a cell, give him some books to read, and he'll not be raising any trouble.

The Avengers leave.  Hercules and Tigra welcome their guests.

It's not a prison but you still can't leave.

This goes over... well.  The mutants, while not prisoners, feel trapped and oppressed.  Because they kind of are.  Led by Surge, the X-Kids just want to hit a television to keep track of this whole Avengers vs. X-Men shebang.  Tigra would rather they get some exercise but the mutants aren't really interested until Hercules makes the games into a contest between the Avengers and the X-Men.

Let the games begin!

The first of the AvX Olympic Games is the Aerial Sprint.  Representing the Avengers is Lightspeed.  Representing the X-Men is Transonic.  Lightspeed mentioning that she's gay and dating the last girl she raced (Karolina Dean from the Runaways) gets Transonic all flustered and off to a poor start but no one really cares about the race.  It's just an excuse to have one of the X-Kids talk to X-23.

The X-Men rep is Dust.  They engage in some small talk before Dust hits Laura with the whole "do you think what the Avengers are doing is right?"  X-23 isn't picking sides just yet but it's pretty certain that Dust knows who's in the wrong here and it's not about evidence for the X-Kid.  It's about KNOWING.

And for the ten of you who wondered who would win in a race between Lightspeed and Transonic?  It's Lightspeed by a hair.  Makes you wonder who would have won if they had both started at the same time...

The next event is Surfing!  Loa is our X-Man while Finesse steps in for the Avengers.  After Finesse goes into how she's watched a lot of surfing videos to prepare (that's how her powers work), Mettle (a former surfer) tells her that surfing is more than just knowing the right moves.  It's learning the waves.  Loa finds out that Mettle is from Hawaii just like her and wonders why he isn't competing in this event.  Poor Mettle has to be reminded how he can't surf anymore because his powers make him too heavy.

Loa has an idea.  Her mutant ability basically gives her the ability to swim through solid matter.  With her "swimming" across the yard, Mettle can follow on a surfboard, riding on the waves of dirt.  It's not EXACTLY like surfing but it totally makes Mettle's day.  Hazmat, Mettle's girlfriend, walks over and gives Loa a huge hug.  Declaring the X-Men the winners, she's ready for a picnic on the beach.

Not today.  While this was a very touching moment, it doesn't mean that everything's hunkydory.  Velocidad and Surge remind everyone that they are not here of their own free will.  Wolverine is out, trying to kill Hope.  This isn't a day for partying with the Kid Avengers.  The mutants go looking for a television.

A bit later, we find X-23 beating up on some robot training droids in the Training Room.  Finesse joins her and the two bond on their similar personalities.  Basically, both of them have a certain amount of emotional disconnect.  At least they can enjoy themselves by smashing robots.

Meanwhile, Sebastian Shaw is all incarcerated and stuff.  Outside of his cell, Tigra and Madison Jeffries hear Shaw banging on things.  Jeffries isn't worried.  He designed the cell to absorb kinetic energy so Sebastian won't be able to power up by punching the walls.  If he was already powered up, they wouldn't hold but happily, the former villain isn't at all charged.  Tigra and Madison leave Shaw to hit the walls.

But it turns out that Sebastian isn't hitting walls.  He's hitting himself in the head with a book.  After doing this for eight hours straight, he's built up enough strength to punch a hole right through the wall.  When the Madison finds out what happened, he immediately realizes that Shaw was using book in a whole different way than anyone suspected.

In the sewers below the Palos Verdes Compound, Sebastian Shaw strikes a pose reminiscent of Wolverine's from the end of Uncanny X-Men #132.  Next issue ought to be fun.

The X-Men Featuring: The Senses-Shattering Cyclops #45The X-Men Featuring: The Senses-Shattering Cyclops #45
Writer: Gary Friedrich
Layouts: Don Heck
Penciler: Werner Roth
Inker: John Tartaglione
Editor: Stan Lee

The issue in a nutshell:
Cyclops escapes from Magneto and starts looking for his fellow X-Men.  This leads to a chase after Toad, a big fight with Quicksilver, and a confrontation with the Mighty Avengers!

The issue by bullet points:

• Cyclops escapes Magneto's captivity and tries to locate his fellow X-Men.

• Before he can free anyone useful (Jean Grey is apparently not good enough), Scott notices that Toad has discovered him and makes chase.  Toad gets away.

• Angel flies towards Avengers Mansion to bring help to the X-Men.

• Quicksilver discovers Cyclops and the two try to talk it out... which doesn't work.  I guess they'll fight it out instead.

• When the dust clears, Scott pulls off a victory over the mutant speedster.

• The Avengers show up!

The issue in EXTREME detail:

Here's a few things you might want to know before sinking your teeth into this walkthrough:

Magneto is back and he's reunited the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants with the exception of Mastermind.  Yep.  After serving proudly with the Avengers, Quicksilver and the Scarlet Witch are back to working for the mutant despot.  While the two are still heroic individuals, Mags has played them like a fiddle, injuring Wanda and setting the humans up as the bad guys so that Pietro will turn his back on humanity.  This leaves the Brotherhood with a powerless Scarlet Witch who is finding it hard to think after taking a grazing wound to the head from a bullet but it's left Quicksilver quite dedicated to the Brotherhood.

Even so, Pietro tries to solve fights with as little bloodshed as possible and even gets Magneto to spare the X-Men's lives when they are all captured.  Quicksilver believes that the Brotherhood is setting up a refuge for mutants, totally missing Magneto's goal of subjugating the human race.

Like I mentioned above, the X-Men have been captured.  It's just the five teenagers at this point since Professor Xavier "died" right before this storyline began.  After being incarcerated, Angel found a convenient laser flashlight laying way too close to his electric cage and used it to escape.  Instead of freeing the rest of the team, Angel was ordered by Cyclops to get away and contact the Avengers for help.  Warren spent all of last issue flying away from Magneto's fortress but still hadn't made it to Avengers Mansion by the issue's conclusion.  Instead, he had an adventure/ fight with Red Raven.

With so much time passing, Scott Summers has to conclude that Angel has failed to bring help.  That means it's up to him.  Even with the lead shield over his visor and his palm triggers disabled, Cyclops has been building up energy for a day or two now and believes he'll have enough optic charge to both lift the ruby quartz visor AND blast through his lead head cover.  And he's right!

After freeing himself, Summers starts searching out his fellow X-Men.  He finds Marvel Girl's cage but decides to leave Jean alone for now.  He suspects she's in a trance and would just slow him down.

The rest of the X-Men are no where near his location so he continues to search the labrynthine structure.  Before finding any more X-Men, Cyclops realizes he's been discovered by the Toad.  The weasely mutant leaps off to warn his master with the X-Man in hot pursuit.  A door slides down, separating the two for a moment as Scott uses his optic blasts to keep it open long enough to slide through.  After that, the X-Men's leader has to figure out which way the Toad scampered.

Sometimes the best decisions come when you decide to apply extreme concussive force.

As Scott makes a fateful decision, we slip back one hour in time to discover Angel still flying towards Avengers Mansion.  He doesn't say anything we haven't gone over but at least he's still flying towards help.

OK, back to the relative present.  Cyclops has made his choice and it's the wrong one.  Instead of running into Toad, he finds Quicksilver.  Pietro tries to talk Scott down but Cyclops isn't in the mood for talking.

While the two mutants fight, Toad reaches Magneto with news that Cyclops is free.  This causes the abusive Master of Magnetism to lash out at his lackey, blaming Toad for allowing Scott to free himself.  This leaves the poor snivelling mutant in severe pain and close to passing out.  Yeah.  Magneto was a whole different guy in the Silver Age.  Not a nice guy at all.

He turns from his anger and hits the deluxe size view screen to find out what Cyclops is doing.

It looks like Scott and Pietro have taken a brief repite to talk things out (and if you look closely at one panel or read the captions, you'll see an arrow near the ceiling that promises to mean something in the future).  Pietro explains that all the Brotherhood is doing is building a mutant refuge to live peacefully apart from humanity.  While the idea intrigues Cyclops, it all hinges on trusting Magneto.  That's something that Summers claims he'll never be able to do.

AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA.

Anyway, seeing that there will be no truce, the two mutants continue to fight it out.  The fight is a classic back-and-forth struggle but Pietro's speed is a definite advantage.  Even so, Quicksilver doesn't END the fight which gets Magneto raging.

The Scarlet Witch walks into Magneto's control room and starts watching the fight on the big monitor.  She's still having trouble thinking clearly but she's worried about her twin brother.  Magneto assures her that Quicksilver is sure to win this fight and thinks to himself that if Pietro CAN'T win against the X-Man, he'll be cast out of the Brotherhood and Magneto's future kingdom.

By this point in the fight, Cyclops is straight up on the ropes.  One of Pietro's attacks has rendered the X-Man temporarily blind so he can't get an aim with his optic blasts.  Close to his limit, Scott attempts a very random optic blast which somehow connects and knocks Quicksilver right out of the battle.

Summers gets his eyesight back and then makes sure that his blast didn't do any permanent damage to the mutant speedster.  He then tries to rouse his opponent to get some information out of Quicksilver.  Before he can wake Pietro...

The Avengers arrive!

The Avengers #53The Avengers #53
Writer: Roy Thomas
Penciler: John Buscema
Inker: George Tuska
Editor: Stan Lee

The issue in a nutshell:

Summoned to this fight by Angel, the Avengers arrive at Magneto's hidden fortress, battle Cyclops, and bicker amongst themselves.  Magneto reveals that he has mind-controlled the X-Men and sets them against the Avengers.  Angel saves the day and Toad blows up the base, betraying his master and leaving Magneto for dead.

The issue by bullet points:

• Phoenix Dreams involving the death of the Immortal City of K'un Lun happen.  They also have a red-haired girl who seems to wield the power of the Iron Fist as well as that of the Phoenix.

• After much deliberating, Master Yu Ti, finds a red headed girl matching his dreams and starts her training to become the next Iron Fist.

• In the present, Lei Kung the Thunderer is allowed to read the Phoenix Prophecy in order to get this information to current Iron Fist, Danny Rand, and save the world.

• Yeah, there's not much to this but there are a lot of pretty pictures.

The issue in EXTREME detail:

Here come the Avengers!  Earth's Mightiest Heroes walk in on Cyclops right after the X-Man has dropped their former teammate, Quicksilver.  The heroes don't know what's going on and they order Scott to stand still until they can figure this all out.

If you know Scott Summers, you know that he doesn't take demands very well.  Part of him doesn't think these are the real Avengers.  Instead, he believes they are robots made to LOOK like the Avengers by Magneto.  Heck, he doesn't even recognize Black Panther, who has joined the team while the X-Men were in Mags' captivity.  Even if they WERE the Avengers, Cyclops would still probably fight them just because that's what heroes do when they meet.

After taking on the whole Avengers team and making them look silly, Cyclops races off, looking for the rest of the X-Men.

This is as good a time as any to find out how the Avengers got here.  Let's go back an hour in the past to when Angel finally made it to Avengers Mansion.  When Warren lands on the roof, he's trapped in one of the Avengers' automatic defense systems.  This is like the only time the Avengers' defenses actually WORK and of course it captures a hero.

After Angel explains the situation, the Avengers agree to help out the X-Men in their fight against Magneto.  It's sort of personal for the team since Magneto just fought the Avengers a couple of issues back, taking Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch in the process.  The team takes off with Angel in one of their latest Quinjets.

Once they reach Magneto's hidden fortress, Goliath tries to monitor outgoing radio signals only to discover that something IN the Quinjet is transmitting.  It turns out to be a device planted in Angel's wings.  The Avengers' trust in their X-Man ally fades and they decide to tie up Warren until they can figure out what's really going on.

An auspicious begining, huh?

As they land the Quinjet in the water (the jet also functions as a boat), Hawkeye fires a video camera arrow into the building to find out what's going on inside.  What they see is Cyclops pallin' around with Quicksilver (remember the panel with an arrow from X-Men #45?  This is the pay-off).  They fear the worst, believing that the X-Men have already joined the Brotherhood.

All of this is going just according the Magneto's plan.  The transmitter hidden in Angel's wings was planted by Toad when imprisoning the winged mutant.  Magneto even set Angel up to escape just to bring the Avengers into this confrontation.  He's quite pleased with how things are turning out.

Toad is less enamored by Magneto's plan and tries to warn his master of some flaws in this elaborate scheme.  Magnus is having none of it.  Not only does he use his mutant powers against the hapless mutant, the Master of Magnetism tells Toad exactly how he feels about his lackey.  It's not a stellar opinion.

This catches us right back up to the "present" after Cyclops has attacked all of the Avengers and ran off to look for the rest of his team.  This leaves the Avengers smarting from their short-term defeat.  It also seems to have left them in a state of bickering.  Goliath, Hawkeye, and Black Panther are all sniping each other with words.

This leads right into a three-way fight that is only broken up when the Wasp shows up to cool her teammates down.

When Magneto sees how the Avengers aren't working together as a team, he knows his chance to wipe out all of his enemies is at hand.  It turns out that another arm in his master plan was the subtle breaking down of the X-Men's mental resistance so that he can turn them totally evil.  He needs only wait until all of the X-Men are freed...

By this point, Cyclops has done just that, even freeing Jean Grey.  Scott has realized that he might have just attacked the real Avengers a few pages back and is ready to go back and team-up with the heroes so that they can all take down Magneto.  That thought lasts five seconds until Magneto hits them all with his mind altering device.  The X-Men now want to kill the Avengers even though they can't figure out WHY.

No matter, it's time to listen to their inner voices.

Damn you, kids!

The Avengers fare better in this fight than they did against a solo-Cyclops but they still can't gain an advantage.  Black Panther believes this is because they are treating the X-Men with kid gloves because they still think of the mutants as fellow heroes.  It seems that the rest of the Avengers come to the same conclusion at about the same time and suddenly, the fight starts going in the Avengers' favor.

In Magneto's control room, the Master of Magnetism goes into a rage as his plans start to unravel.  Not only are the Avengers fighting better than Mags expected, his mental control over the X-Men has just ended.

That last part is courtesy of the high flying Angel who infiltrated Magneto's complex while the villain was focusing on the Avengers.  That's right, the Avengers' current actions were all a ruse for Magneto's benefit.  Warren WAS tied up but it was done loosely so that the mutant hero could escape and have free reign over the facilities.  Even the Avengers' earlier fight with each other was choreographed to build up the Master of Magnetism's confidence in victory.

Warren takes the fight straight to Magneto and follows up by tossing Toad across the room.  The Avengers break in to join Angel in the fight against Mags.  The villain uses his magnetic powers to collapse the ceiling between himself and the heroes.  He then swats at Toad, ordering his minion to blow up the rest of the complex.  This would doom the Avengers and X-Men.  Probably.

Instead, Toad finally realizes that Magneto is a terrible boss.  Instead of setting one section of the fortress to explode, Toad hits a lever that promises to detonate the entire facility in sixty seconds.  The lackey then races away.  When he finds the Scarlet Witch dragging Quicksilver back to the control room, Toad tells them to follow him to the safety of a very specially designed ship.

The X-Men and Avengers finally break through the collapsed ceiling but it's too late to capture Magneto.  The villain is already slipping through an escape hatch in the floor.  Mags races to Toad's departing ship and tries to pull himself aboard using his magnetic powers.

Unfortunately for the Master of Magnetism, this ship isn't made of metals.  Magneto made it himself of non-metallic materials as a challenge to himself.  Toad steps on his former master's grasping hand and the mutant villain falls from the ship into the rocky sea below.

The Avengers and X-Men don't have much time to take in all of this before they all escape the island in their own ship.  After the island blows up, Magneto's helmet is seen floating among the rest of the fortress debris.

Of course, this wouldn't be the actual END of Magneto but it would be quite a while before we saw the REAL Magneto again.

We have reached the end of another week of AvX action!

Until next time: Have a good week!
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About the Author - SuperginraiX


SuperginraiX is the biggest sap on The Outhousers' payroll (wait, we get paid?). He reads every issue of every crappy Marvel crossover so you don't have to. Whats worse is that he pays for his books, thus condoning Marvel's behavior. If The Outhouse cared for his well being at all, they'd try and get him into some sort of rehab center. But, alas, none of us even know how to say his name. For a good time, ask Super why Captian America jumped off the Helicarrier in Fear Itself. Super lives in the frozen wastland that is Minnesota with 15% of the state's population living under his roof: a wife he makes wear an Optimus Prime mask, two gremlins, and his mother-in-law.

 


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