Ho-lee shit, Uncanny Avengers #9.
Sorry to drop that right at the top, but, damn, what a huge issue. And this is a huge issue in a week of major Avengers issues: Age of Ultron #10, Avengers #14, New Avengers #7, and Uncanny Avengers #9 all had universal implications. But Uncanny Avengers, especially when viewed in the aftermath of Age of Ultron (we’ll get to that in a minute), was a god damned masterpiece. Just a heads up before we begin: I normally try to avoid spoilers in my reviews, but this article is going to be jam packed with them. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED!
Rick Remender is fast becoming one of my favorite writers, if not my number one favorite writer! He has shown a strong grasp of the many characters weaving in and out of Uncanny Avengers, and it is because of this that each story beat in the issue hits like a ton of bricks. The heaviest of these was when Wolverine finally confessed to the killing (murder?) of the young Apocalypse child and of Warren Worthington back in Uncanny X-Force. Needless to say, Cap loses his shit. Years of pent up tension between the two is finally stripped bare and Wolverine and Cap finally have the argument we’ve all been waiting for. I nearly shat a brick when Cap told Wolverine that he was always just a killer and never should have been an Avenger in the first place. The Uncanny Avengers are divided: mutant and human are destined to never agree, and that spells doom for our world. I love Rick Remender.
That was a huge moment, but that wasn’t the “oh, shit!” moment of the issue. No, that distinction is reserved for the reveal of the Apocalypse Twins’ Four Horsemen. I admit, I never saw this coming. The Twins have been slaying Celestials and harvesting their seeds so that they can create multiple Apocalypse heirs. So instead of having the usual Pestilence, War, Famine, and Death, we have four Death horseman, which means there are four new heirs of Apocalypse. This may sound confusing, but trust me, it’s awesome and will make sense by the next issue.
So who are these new Four Horsemen of Death? Read on if you dare.
The Four Horseman of Death are none other than: Banshee (Original Uncanny X-Man killed in X-Men: Deadly Genesis), The Sentry (Former New Avenger, dead after destroying Asgard in Siege), Daken (Wolverine’s son whom he drowned), and Grimm Reaper (Wonder Man’s brother who died at the hands of Rogue in Uncanny Avengers #5)
I don’t know what Rick Remender has against his protagonists, but, geez, he has put them through the grinder. These specific characters were chosen to carry the banner of Apocalypse to cause maximum pain and suffering for our heroes, both physically and emotionally.
That’s mean, Rick. Just plain mean.
And I love it.
Daniel Acuna’s art is the icing on this cake. This books is beautiful. He does a fantastic job with all of the faces so when Cap is tearing into Wolverine, you can see all the rage and disappointment right there. And the guilt on Wolverine’s face; there is one panel where Wolverine’s face just tells you all you need to know. It hurts like hell. But on top of all of this, Acuna was born to draw Apocalypse characters. His Horseman look amazing and terrifying. I can’t wait to see them in action.
As massive as this book seems, earlier I mentioned that this book was even bigger when viewed in light of Age of Ultron. Well, (again HUGE SPOILER WARNING!) at the end of Age of Ultron, the space time continuum was shattered. Time travel and interuniversal travel in the Marvel Multiverse now comes at a very great cost. We don’t know yet what that cost is, but Uncanny Avengers has been all about Kang, the forces of Apocalypse, and the Celestials. That’s a whole lot of time travel and interdimensional travel in one title, and the ramifications of the continuum’s breaking should prove to be very important. Knowing this raised the stakes of everything I read in Uncanny Avengers #9. I cannot wait to see the consequences of this story line!
If I haven’t made it clear yet, go buy Uncanny Avengers #9 right now. No, I’m serious, stop reading and go get this book right now. Are you still reading? No? Good. You should be reading Uncanny Avengers #9 anyway.