Norman Osborn is back, free and more of a threat than ever. This is a man that will go to any means to get what he wants. He may have been revealed to the world as being a bad guy but even being incarcerated couldn't stop him.
After the Secret Invasion started by the Skrulls, Osborn came out on top and was seen as a hero. This gave him the opportunity to create his own team of [Dark] Avengers. With each member evil member taking on a heroic identity, Osborn's scheme allowed him to fool the world for a period.
It turned out controlling the villains he selected wasn't as easy as he thought and his empire soon came crashing around him. With his newfound freedom, Norman is falling back into familiar territory. He's made the decision to create yet another version of the Dark Avengers, but will he make wise choices in who he recruits to stand against the heroes?
(There will be some spoilers for New Avengers #18 so be sure you read that first).== TEASER ==
Following the same tactic as before, Osborn is seeking out those that have a grudge against members of the Avengers. Norman realizes what makes the Avengers work. He has spent time thinking about the team dynamic and how the different powers compliment each other and brings success to them. In an attempt to mirror that dynamic, he is selecting those that have a similar counterpart in the Avengers. He knows the psychological effect of who represents who could give him an edge when facing the actual Avengers.
The Power House
Norman's secret weapon in terms of strength before was Sentry. The problem was, Sentry proved a little difficult to control/manipulate due to his mental instability.
As the son of Hulk, Skaar has some major daddy issues. His goal upon arriving on Earth was to kill his father. Despite the hatred inside, there was still some good that prevented him from completing this task. With anger still inside, his strength and skills will prove to be an asset to Norman's team.
There's also the fact that Skaar isn't exactly up to date on all the superhuman activities. He doesn't know how bad of a guy Osborn is and that makes him easier to manipulate.
Hawkeye has always brought some heart to the team. His skills with a bow and arrow make him perfect for taking out enemies from a distance. Norman went with Bullseye the last time around due to his amazing skills with projectiles. The problem was Bullseye was too evil, as well as a bit crazy. Norman was able to use him but had to do some serious cleaning up when Bullseye killed innocents in public.
There is also some bad history between Norman and Clint so it makes sense that Norman would want to make this personal. Clint recently discovered that his brother, Barney, was actually alive. Barney surfaced with a deep hatred for his brother. Having similar skills to Clint will give the team a sniper while also giving a way to throw Clint off his game should the two teams clash.
Spider-Man has been a recent addition to the team in terms of the overall history. He was quickly proven to be an asset in terms of having the skills and abilities needed to overcome the villains.
Choosing Mac Gargan (who possessed the Venom symbiote) was a mistake simply because Gargan is a failure. He has been defeated time and time again by Spider-Man with ease. The Venom suit did give him a slight advantage but it wasn't nearly enough when fighting Spider-Man.
And Norman Osborn hates Spider-Man with a passion. Trying to find a personal spider-counterpart could add to the satisfaction but there really isn't anyone he could turn to (especially since Kaine is turning over a new leaf). While imprisoned in a secret facility, Norman met Apaec, the Decapitator. With the nature of his powers and his disturbing appearance, he's bound to prove to be a match for Spider-Man.
The Berserker Mutant
Wolverine is another newer addition to the Avengers. Norman's mistake in choosing Daken to be Wolverine's counterpart was Daken isn't truly evil. He does bad things but they are to suit his needs. He does what he feels best benefit what he wants. Daken hated Wolverine, his father, but there was still some good inside that made it hard for Norman to fully control him.
Enter Gorgon. He is a deadly guy that 'almost assassinated Nick Fury.' He went toe-to-toe with Wolverine and nearly defeated him as well. With telepathy that allows him to see into a person's soul along with enhanced reflexes, strength, a healing factor and several different fighting techniques, it's no surprise he'd want to pose as Wolverine, especially since he caused him to 'die.'
The Chaotic One
When the Avengers had Scarlet Witch on the team, she added a wild card factor. With Dr. June Covington, aka Toxic Doxie, he has that unpredictable (and crazy) factor. June has the ability to manipulate her bones and joints but more importantly, she has a a neurotoxin in her blood that can kill a person in ten seconds.
This is where Norman's plan starts to veer off a little. There really isn't a firm connection betwen Toxic Doxie and Scarlet Witch. June also doesn't have a grudge against her or the Avengers. She's just doing it due to her romantic (ugh) ties to Norman.
While not fully seen, there are a couple more members to Norman's Dark Avengers. Superia had a recent run-in with the New Avengers. After her defeat, she was incarcerated but a note with the Goblin symbol was slipped under her door. She definitely has a hatred for the team since they cost her getting the Infinity Formula. She will be taking the guise of Ms. Marvel.
Superia also brings another gift. She, along with AIM, managed to gain possession of Ragnarok, the clone of Thor that killed Bill Foster during Civil War. Once they get him fixed, it's going to add to their firepower.
And with that, we now have the NEW Dark Avengers.
He has less wild cards this time around. There are still a couple unknown factors but these members are ones he can trust a little more. They (mostly) have their heads in the game. Will Norman's new team be a match for the Avengers and New Avengers? If he's smart, he'll take them on one team at a time. Things are about to get ugly for the Avengers.