New Avengers #22

Background

The Superhuman Registraion Act has been passed. At midnight the act becomes law, any superhumans must register or become a criminal.

Story Details

  New Avengers #22
Summary: No Spider-Man
Arc: Part 2 of 'New Avengers: Disassembled' (1-2-3-4-5)
Editor: Tom Brevoort
Writer: Brian Michael Bendis
Artist: Leinil Yu
Cover Art: Leinil Yu

The issue starts earlier on day the act is due to become law. Luke Cage is sitting in his apartment, Iron Man asks him if he's listening? Cage tells him he heard him. Iron Man tells Cage that at midnight tonight the act becomes law, The Avengers will be a sanctioned team with benefits and asks him to join them. Iron Man needs to know as they can clear Cages' past from any records. Jessica Jones asks what about her as she has powers but doesn't use them. Iron Man tells her they will sign her on and work something out, she has a new born baby they're not going to ask her to fight. Cage tells Iron Man the world is not a nice place, they wouldn't be heroes if it was. Iron Man asks Cage again if he will sign on. Cage tells him he'll know at midnight. Iron Man warns him they will come for him if he doesn't register. Cage asks if it's Mississippi in the 1950's. Iron Man tells him to stop. Cage tells him that getting pulled out of your bed in the night is the same now as it was then. Iron Man tells him its about breaking the law. Cage says Slavery used to be a law. Iron Man tells him he's twisting things, and he wont listen. Cage tells him to listen, he's perverting what they stand for. Once this is all done the ideals wont stand for anything, he'll stand for anything they tell him to. Iron Man tells him if he joins he can make sure that wont happen, and he knows Cage wont sign. Cage tells him he will raise his child right. Iron Man asks what that means? Cage tells him it's too bad he doesn't know. Iron Man and Ms. Marvel leave. Jessica tells Cage she has to leave to keep their child safe, Canada needs heroes too they could leave together. Cage tells her this is home he's not going anywhere. He's not going to let his kid grow up knowing her dad sold out. He tells Jessica he can handle anything they throw at him.

Later Jessica is about to leave, Cage is holding his daughter. She looks at him and he tells her not to take $%#@ of anyone. Cage finds it hard to hand the baby over he asks her to say, Jessica tells him she can't. They kiss and Jessica and the baby leave. Cage is walking back to his place when he's asked by a kid if he's signing up? Cage says nope, the kid asks "because its crap?" Cage tells him damn straight. When asked what he's going to do Cage replys with, "I'm going to go inside and sit in my home, and not bother anyone. We're supposed to be allowed to do that, right?". The kid replys with yes sir.

Later the clock counts down to midnight. Just after there's a knock at the door, its a S.H.I.E.L.D team. They ask if they can speak to him. Cage tells them he's busy and for them to come back another time. They tell him they can't do that, Cage tells them to hold on as crashes through the wall. The agents take Cage down and inform him he's under arrest and they start to read him his rights. Cage jumps up and tells them he remembers it from the last time he was falsely arrested. Cage puts up a great fight but the numbers overwhelm him and he's hit with a genetic paralyzer. One of Cages' neighbours shoots at the Capekillers with a shotgun, other residents join in throwing anything they can find. Then from nowhere a red billy club hits a Capekiller in the face, followed by Captain Americas' shield. Cap, The Falcon and Daredevil take out some of the Capekillers. Cage gets back on his feet and joins in. Daredevil suggests they do something to tick them off, they all drive off in a S.H.E.I.L.D vehicle. Maria Hill is on the radio she tells them they can track them in that vehicle. Cage tells her he figured that but he wanted them to know the revolution is coming.

In Toronto Jessica is picking up some supplies when she sees the news. They are covering the Luke Cage situation, he escaped with the others. Jessica is happy and says "now we're talking".

General Comments

Another solid issue. I've heard that Cage is one of Bendis' favourite characters and it shows in this issue. To be honest I've never liked Cage but ever since he joined the New Avengers he has grown on me. This issue really cements him to me as a great character.

Again Bendis turns in a great story, the whole Civil War/1950's comparison was a great way of showing this story with Cages' point of view. The art by Yu is great and convayes Cages' anger and frustration with the registration act. Plus with Yu taking over the New Avengers' pencilling duties you better get use to it!

Overall Rating

Again another five webs - I don't think Cage will be a major player in the core Civil War book, but here he has time to shine and he does. If I wasn't against registration before reading this book, I am now. Imagine living in a world where someone can arrest you for having powers even if you don't use them. This issue shows a man give up being with his family to fight for what's right. Top stuff.