Written by Chris Gage
Art by Humberto Ramos
Gage is settling in quite well on his Avengers: The Initiative run and this marks two very solid issues in a row for the title. As I had been quite iffy about continuing with the title post-Secret Invasion, I'm pleased to see the turn around of late. Also, Ramos is a perfect fit for this title in the absence of Casselli, who's moved on to Secret Warriors.
Picking up where the Clor fight ended last month, we're treated to an excellent fight between the New Warriors and Clor that doesn't seem to undersell the power of the Thor clone/cyborg, but still manages to treat the New Warriors and remaining Iniative members as cdredible threats.
However, the fight didn't come without casualties either. Yet another MVP clone bites the dust here, leaving only one of the Scarlet Spiders alive. I actually liked the dynamic of the trio turned duo and this death only served to dilute their uniqueness when I believe the intended effect was to strengthen the character's appeal.
One thing I liked about this, though, was that Vance steps up and liberates the real body of the deceased MVP, who had been experimented and had his death covered up way back at the start of the series. It was nice to see that skeleton in the closet addressed and it'll be interesting to see where the Initiative goes from here.
Oh, and the whole Clor fight? It wrapped up rather uncermoniously when the good doctor, Baron von Blitzschlag, convinced him he was a real clone and Clor just flies off. I believe he was off to find the real Thor, so maybe we'll see him again in JMS's title.
Verdict - Check It. This title appears to be back on track, but still lacks a real purpose, especially with the destruction of most of Camp Hammond here and the fallout of Secret Invasion's Skrull infestation. Gage just needs to show me he has something long term planned for the title or a new direction of some kind and I'll be sold on sticking with this title for the long haul again.