Nick Spencer (Writer), Butch Guice, Rick Magyar (Artists), Matthew Wilson (Colorist)
The Story: James Rhodes gain access to an army, several agents tries to compromise A.I.M as some directorial tension sets in at S.H.I.E.L.D.
The Review: Characters can be everything for a successful comic. If you don’t have some fan-favourites on your title, it can mean an early demise as people might not be interested in the adventures of a C or D-lister. However, having an A-lister on a book can also be some kind of curse, as these characters cannot necessarily evolve in any way, mostly due to the heavy editorial handling they surely have, which can be somewhat problematic for some writers.
Secret Avengers does not seem to have that problem, despite the fact that it possesses big players like Hulk, Hawkeye and Black Widow, due to the fact that it mixes these characters with other fan-favourites like James Rhodes, Taskmaster, Mockingbird among others. With a cast as diverse as this one, Spencer manage to make the most of it by juggling with several plot and sub-plots with ease, thanks to a switching of characters in some issues, with this one more dedicated to Taskmaster, Mockingbird, Maria Hill and James Rhodes.
Right out of the gate, Spencer goes back toward a character he knows very well, using him in a way that is quite smart, yet also feels true to the character: James Rhodes, who is also known as War Machine. Here, the writer makes a smart use of the military and armor-based history of the character to propel him forward in a new role that not only suits the character, but also connect him to the story in a way that feels natural and exciting. He is perhaps one of the most interesting character of the issue, although he is not the only one.
Another character that is genuinely interesting, which always come as a surprise to me on a personal level, is Maria Hill. No doubt, many were like me in my initial dislike of the character when she first appeared in the Marvel universe, being the bossy new kid on the block who seemed like a cold-hearted women ready to do anything in order to be efficient at her job. I hated her for these characteristic, yet much to my dismay, I find myself liking her exactly because of these character traits. The reason for that is mainly due to the fact that due to the espionage and political aspect of the title, the character feels much more at home in such an environment, making use of these traits in order to serve the story, not just to set her as being the bossy woman. Serving as a connection to what happens in most of the issue, it is through the internal situation in S.H.I.E.L.D where she shines the most. There is a scene where she deals with a new addition to the agency with some troubling ideas where she shows how she actually fits in such a context. It is an uneasy, yet very tense scene that this issue shows that Maria Hill will become an even better character through this series.
Filed under: Marvel Comics, Reviews | Tagged: A.I.M., Agent Coulson, Butch Guice, James Rhodes, Maria Hill, Marvel, Matthew Wilson, Mockingbird, Nick Spencer, Rick Magyar, S.H.I.E.L.D., Secret Avengers, Secret Avengers #6, Secret Avengers #6 review, Taskmaster, War Machine | Leave a Comment »