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Secret Avengers #2 - Mission 002: Bagalia Review

4

Nick Fury Jr. wants to add Taskmaster to the roster, but the mercenary is being held in the super villain nation of Bagalia.

The Good

Well, would you look at that... an interesting story where A.I.M. doesn't feel campy and actually comes off as formidable! Nick Spencer is doing an awesome job setting up the book's first big plot. The first issue put the spotlight on Hawkeye and Black Widow (well, more so Hawkeye). Now, we get a key focus on the organization of evil scientists and what they have in store for our heroes (was that Gorgon?!). The result definitely has my interest piqued and there's a very strong cliffhanger on the final page. Spencer also does a fine job with the dialogue. A few out of character moments aside, it's widely amusing and the pace never really falters.

I'm really digging the dynamic visuals by Luke Ross and Matthew Wilson. I particularly love the use of blurring as a specific character wakes up from being knocked out. There's a seriously intense use of colors here, too. High tech A.I.M facilities are lit up by glowing equipment, and there's some rich use of red when Fury visits Taskmaster and Crossfire. It's impressive how many villains eventually fill the panels, but the overabundant number of characters takes a toll on the coloring, too. Many mesh together with similar colors, but I suppose that's to be expected when there's so many bodies filling the space.

The Bad

Unfortunately, Taskmaster feels out-of-character. He's incredibly lighthearted and reads like a less zany version of Deadpool. This of course isn't a terribly bad thing, but it is jarring if you've been following the villain. Additionally, Constrictor said he couldn't wait to hurt him, yet -- if my memory serves me right -- they were very close friends when they parted ways back in AVENGERS: THE INITIATIVE. It was odd seeing Frank have such a strong desire to harm him, especially after they were buddies. If it's because of the events in the last SECRET AVENGERS title, then I'm not sure why he'd hold a grudge seeing as it was ultimately Max Fury who duped him.

I love obscure villains, but there's a massive action sequence that was a bit too silly for my taste. We're talking about a huge variety of villains (some lame, some rather powerful) being held off by Fury using a basic firearm. They had him completely surrounded, so I find it a little difficult to suspend my disbelief in moments like that. Not to mention he was using his arm just fine after having a bullet rip into his shoulder, but hey, Punisher has pulled off more ridiculous things, right?

The Verdict

Nick Spencer's SECRET AVENGERS is off to a very solid start. While I'm not the biggest fan of seeing a very different take on Taskmater, I'm just happy to see the character is getting some focus. He's bringing a more lighthearted tone to the table, and with the seemingly bleak things to come in this title, that can absolutely be a good thing. Also, with the way Spencer writers Clint Barton, I really, really, reaaaally hope there's some strong interactions between these two down the road. Give this book an honest shot and I think it'll definitely clench your attention.

10 Comments
Posted by andrew2696

So is this like the Taskmaster from Taskmaster: Unthinkable? I like that Taskmaster.

Also the Taskmaster who likes watching Chuck.

Posted by GothamRed

To be fair, Taskmaster was like this in the previous secret avengers series too, so if you read the first arc of that series after Hawkeye took over as leader it's not too jarring here. I guess it's just how they're doing Taskmaster now.

Edited by Cap10nate

I'm really happy with the story and art so far. I think the dialogue has been funny and well done. It is a lot like the Marvel movies where there is a good mixture of comedy and a serious story. Big fan so far and Winter Soldier, Iron Patriot, and Hulk haven't even been introduced yet.

I'm also happy with how much story is packed into the issue. I read my comics digitally using the guided view and it felt like I read a 30+ plage story with how packed it was.

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Posted by Owie

I didn't pick it up but paged through it...I liked seeing all the random obscure bad guys.  If this keeps up, I'll pick it up in the future.

Posted by TheReaper111

i like this version of tm, its the cocky smart ass from his latest mini and its the first time hes been in a book without deadpool in awhile so maybe hes just not grumpy :P but yeah that was a little weird about constrictor...

Posted by blackkitty

Well, a few thoughts. I have no idea of the accuracy but, it's hard to be friends with someone who loses their memory after a few days. Taskmaster should honestly have no idea who Constrictor is. Also, Constrictor could be blaming Taskmaster for putting his ex-girlfriend Diamondback in danger while in the Initiative. Again, just a few thoughts. I don't follow Secret Avengers so, things could have happened I'm unaware of.

Posted by Teerack

Does this mean Taskmaster is an Avenger?! :O

Posted by longbowhunter

I love Taskmaster and Crossfire.

Posted by silentecko711

Taskmaster One of my fav Marvel Characters hope they use him a lot in this book! (although I really like his other costume wish they would use it)

Posted by Teerack

Awesome! It's funny I was just posting last week about how they bring back Yelena Belova after they never finished the story line with Osborn having her in a stasis pod. Although the leader of A.I.M. called her an Adaptoid and if she's anything like the Adaptoid they turned Osborn into her real body should be in a pod somewhere still :\