New Avengers (Vol. 1) #1

 Posted: 2004
 Staff: Frank Man (E-Mail)


Licking both their emotional and physical wounds, the Avengers have ended their worst day, in which they lost four teammates, their base of operations and the backing of the United Nations. Also, without the funding of Stark Enterprises, the Avengers were forced to disband their team. Apparently, that was six months ago.

Story Details

  New Avengers (Vol. 1) #1
Summary: Spider-Man & Spider-Woman Appear
Arc: Part 1 of 'Breakout!' (1-2-3-4-5-6)
Editor: Tom Brevoort
Writer: Brian Michael Bendis
Pencils: David Finch
Inker: Danny Miki
Cover Art: David Finch
Articles: Electro

The issue begins with Max Dillon working out the details of a job he is about to pull with a mysterious silhouette. Whatever the job is, the silhouette has faith that Electro can do it. Dillon asks whether he can wear his costume or not and is given the choice. He chooses...costume.

A helicopter carrying Matt Murdock, Luke Cage and Foggy Nelson lands on the Raft, a "maximum-maximum" security installation of the Riker's Island Penitentiary. Greeted by Jessica Drew, the first Spider-Woman, Matt Murdock and Luke Cage make introductions. Matt would have introduced Foggy, but he was being a sissy wuss and hiding in the helicopter.

This place is heavily guarded, and it should be, since it is home to some of the most deadly of villains. Carnage, Crossbones, Jigsaw, Mister Hyde, and Purple Man to name a few. Jessica Drew also mentions the U-Foes briefly adding "whoever they (are)..." (Note: I actually liked the U-Foes. They were like the villain version of the Fantastic Four and even were created with the same cosmic rays. Too bad they're kind of lame now. They had potential. Had.)

Jessica Drew mentions her disdain for the press outing Murdock as the Daredevil. Murdock denies it. They take an elevator to a lower level when the powers goes out. In fact, the power in New York City goes out where a certain wall-crawler is trying to get out of watching a "romantic" Hugh Grant movie with a certain red-headed wife. They spot a blast of electricity hit Riker's Island. Spider-Man immediatly swings into action (literally). He hitches a ride with a helicopter going toward the island, but his trip is cut short as the chopper is struck, and explodes.

With a loudly buzzing Spider-sense and numb feet, Spider-Man wearily swims toward Riker's Island where he is greeted by Captain America. "What's happening here?" asks Captain America.

"I give up, what's happening here?" answers Spider-Man.

"We don't have time for smartass," replies Captain America.

Inside the prison there is a ball of electricity with Electro in the center of it. With a "Crakoom" and a couple of "boom"s, he releases all the prisoners except for one...

The man Matt Murdock came to see is a man named Robert Reynolds, and "according to Reed Richards, (he's) the most powerful super hero on the Planet Earth." He's a blonde Thor-ish looking guy with a penitent look about him, in jail for the murder of his wife.

General Comments

What this issue lacks in action it makes up for with great characterization. Well, Luke Cage barely talks and Sentry doesn't say a word in his two panels, but Captain America uses the word "ass." That's got to mean something for the evolution of his character.

In regards to Spider-Man, he seems to fit right in in these pages. He puts humor into a story that only he can: his nervous comments, his way of constantly making jokes to himself, and his trying to get out of watching a chick flick with M.J. Though I'd like to think that he'd have stayed home if they were watching anything but a Hugh Grant flick.

Overall Rating

Four webs.

The good stuff: A couple excellent Spider-Man and Captain America poses, an intriguing opening storyline, and good chemistry between Murdock and Drew.

The bad stuff: No action, and not nearly enough panels of a hot rendering of M.J.

 Posted: 2004
 Staff: Frank Man (E-Mail)