Everyone wants a piece of the Avengers. Now, thanks to Nick Spencer, S.H.I.E.L.D. has their own slice of Earth’s Mightiest Heroes. Led by Maria Hill, Phil Coulson, and Nick Fury, the Secret Avengers are a team that is so secret that even the members of the team don’t know that they exist. And now, in the most recent issue, a few more familiar faces join the ranks.

As we saw in the first issue, Hawkeye and Black Widow were the first to join the ranks of the Secret Avengers. As Agent Coulson was briefing them for their first mission, they were injected with memory implants that would wipe the mission clean from their memories once the mission is complete. Basically, the members of this team remember what S.H.I.E.L.D. wants them to remember, exposing some of the truly shady practices of this organization that is meant to keep the world safe. Naturally, one thing that they made sure Hawkeye doesn’t remember is Agent Fury shooting him in the chest to initiate a field test for these new implants.

In the new issue, Fury goes recruiting in Bagalia, a sovereign nation run by the some of the seediest criminals in the world, in order to search for a certain someone that had a run in with the Secret Avengers before: The Taskmaster. When their attempt at the easy way doesn’t exactly work out, Hawkeye, Black Widow, Agent Coulson, and Mockingbird swoop in for the extraction so that the team can move on to fry the bigger fish in this whole situation, the Advanced Idea Mechanics, the organization known as A.I.M., who is assembling a counsel to prepare for war.

As the team adds more and more members, I become more intrigued by what could come in the future. But as I think of the future, I’m a bit disinterested in what’s happening in the present. I vastly enjoy Agent Coulson and his briefings, but besides that aspect of these past two issues, there haven’t been too many earth-shattering developments that scream out to me to get me interested. But what does keep me interested is that these heroes are essentially being held captive by S.H.I.E.L.D. through these memory implants. This organization is controlling what stays in the minds of these very dangerous people. At some point, one of them is going to get wise to what’s going on and a mutiny of some sort could happen, especially when more people like Winter Soldier and Hulk join the party. I’m waiting for all of this to blow up in Maria Hill’s smug face, and that’s largely why I’m sticking around.

Although, whatever is going on right now before that explosion happens isn’t too bad. Right now it’s mostly team building and exposition, so I think that things will pick up more in an issue or two. I had this same problem with ‘Thunderbolts’. I like the characters that are being brought together, but I’m just not latching onto the events that are playing out. However, Danny Way’s book is much more along than ‘Secret Avengers’, so there’s still a chance that Spencer can throw in some more things to hook me. I mean, it’s already got a bit of an edge because of this new memory implant protocol, but I’m not 100% on board yet. The stage is still in the process of being set, so once the curtain fully opens in an issue or so, I think I’ll have a better idea of how I like this series. But for now, I’ll just say that it’s interesting enough to check out so far.

Final Score:




Written by Nick Spencer

Art by Luke Ross & Matthew Wilson

Cover by Tomm Coker & Daniel Freedman