Dark Avengers #6

Background

During a live interview to defuse the negative publicity generated by Hawkeye, Norman Osborn receives word that Los Angeles is under attack. He contacts Victoria Hand to assemble the Avengers.

One minor complication to note. Moonstone has slept with Noh-Varr. She later revealed that they are all in fact wanted criminals. This fact did not sit well with him.

Story Details

  Dark Avengers #6
Summary: Spider-Man (Venom/Scorpion) appears

Osborn contacts The Cabal (Loki, Dr. Doom, The Hood, Emma Frost, and Namor) to meet him secretly at Avengers' Tower. Osborn then explains that he has called them together to discuss the attack on Los Angeles. Their intel shows that an Atlantean terrorist cell is responsible. He absolves Namor of any involvement since the fall of Atlantis.

At Namor's request, he show the group footage of the attack. He explains that this footage was commandeered from Google Earth ™. He requests that Namor go on television and publicly denounce these activities to distance himself. He then instructs Namor to locate the cell and exterminate every member except one. This one will be the face of the attack. Although not explicitly states, Osborn intends to use the last Atlantean as propaganda for H.A.M.M.E.R and his Avengers.

Namor refuses to comply asking what could possibly motivate him to do such a thing. Osborn is livid at his response and screams at him "Because I told you to!!". The other members of the Cabal are surprised at Osborn's reaction but remain silent. He quickly regains his composure and repeats his answer in a lower tone. Namor is not impressed with his theatrics and tells Osborn that he does not follow anyone's orders. He reminds Osborn that the surface dwellers destroyed Atlantis and they are fortunate he chooses not to retaliate with a tidal wave.

Osborn leaves his meeting and returns to his Avengers. Noh-Varr is AWOL. Ares has not yet arrived as he lives in the Bronx. Bullseye is trying to provoke Moonstone with his knowledge of her tryst with Noh. Once Sentry arrives, he explains his plan. Osborn intends for Sentry and himself to be the first wave of attack on the Atlanteans as they can get there the fastest. The rest will follow in the quinjet.

Victoria Hand pulls Osborn aside and convinces him to just let Sentry handle this. She reminds him that he hasn't slept in a long time and he's starting to crack. He has to start delegating or he will fail in this job. Osborn reluctantly agrees. Just before Sentry leaves, Osborn pulls him aside and instructs him to unleash the Void on the terrorists. He is to kill all but one of them and bring that one back. Sentry is confused as Osborn has been trying to convince him for a while that there is no "Void".

Osborn's order is carried out by The Void who quickly arrives in California, locates the Atlanteans, and slaughters all but one. Upon his return, the explanation is given to the press that the other terrorists died due to a suicide bomb. He will be taken in for questioning about future attacks. In reality he is taken to a bunker where he is devoured by Venom.

The President calls to congratulate Osborn on a job well done. After he gets off the phone, he confronts Moonstone about the missing Noh-Varr. He becomes increasingly agitated and almost strikes her before he turns and walks away.

He retreats to his underground lab where he tries to force back his alternate identity: the Green Goblin. Despite his insistence that he (Osborn) is in control, the Goblin reminds Osborn that he's never far away.

General Comments

Ok, this is getting good. Osborn is starting to crack under the pressure of leading a world peace-keeping organization, controlling a motley crew of villains posing as the premiere team of Avengers, holding clandestine meetings with high-ranking villains, and apparently not sleeping.

After several issues of telling Sentry "There is no Void", he now tells him to actually use his other personality to hunt down and kill terrorists. It will be interesting to see how the Sentry will respond to Osborn next issue.

Noh-Varr has left the Avengers for the time being. Osborn has his suspicions about Moonstones involvement but does not know exactly what has happened. It will be interesting to see what happens when Osborn learns of her betrayal.

Overall Rating

4 webs. After six issues, Bendis still has me looking forward to the next issue. With so many sub-plots going on, I am constantly wondering what will be explored next and how it will affect the other story elements.

This series is climbing to the top of my "must read" list. Despite my initial misgivings, this has proven to be a very entertaining title.