Here’s the second catch-up review of the day. By the end of the weekend, “Avengers: The Initiative Annual #1” will be reviewed, and the list of relevant issues will get a massive update.

General Information

Title: Mighty Avengers #7

Author: Brian Michael Bendis

Illustrator(s): Mark Bagley (pencils), Victor Olazaba, Allen Martinez and Danny Miki (inks) and Justin Ponsor (colours)

Original Publication Date: Cover dated March 2008

Cover Price: $2.99 US

Detailed coverage of all applicable issues of all Secret Invasion related titles can be found at this address.

Premise

Immediately following New Avengers #32, Spider-Woman brings the Skrull corpse to Tony Stark. She is invited to join his Avengers to weed out any Skrull presence.

High Point

Ares’ response to Jessica’s rant is great entertainment.

Low Point

From a publication timeline perspective, coming out so many months after New Avengers #32 is a major problem. (The art team on the first six slowed publication down on the first six issues. Bagley’s first three issues got them back on schedule. No wonder DC snagged him to do 12 pages a week for “Trinity.”)
From a story standpoint, virtually all thought balloons but Ares’ (which could easily have been spoken aloud) were irritating. The main interest I have in the thought balloons is in guessing who among the team are Skrulls. (Wonder Man and Black Widow have each had limited use of thought balloons.)

The Scores

There’s not much new or original here. By the time this came out, we’d seen pretty much everything of importance in New Avengers. It’s a paranoid conversation followed by the appearance of a new threat. I give it 3 out of 6.

The artwork can be summed up in two words: Bagley’s back. He’s not the best artist out there, but I’d say he’s the most dependable: his style is distinct, his quality is good, and he seems to set personal deadlines for work completion that are days or weeks ahead of those set by the publisher. I give it 5 out of 6.

The story reveals individual reactions to the Skrull threat and Spider-Woman’s inclusion on the team, but makes little new progress. I give it 4 out of 6.

The characterization is mostly accomplished through the irritatingly overwhelming thought balloons. They are so overpowering that I’m convinced they exist merely to plant clues to who are and are not Skrulls. That aspect leaves a clear trail, but it’s still lacking in any and all subtlety. I give it 4 out of 6.

The emotional response is stronger than one might think, as it drops many little clues (undoubtedly along with a few red herrings) that add spice to future plans, if not the current setup. I give it 5 out of 6.

The flow is well done. Bagley carries us visually through the linear narrative very easily. I give it 5 out of 6.

Overall, despite some predictability, it’s a highly entertaining issue. I give it 5 out of 6.

In total, Mighty Avengers #7 receives 31 out of 42.