New Avengers #8
written by Brian Michael Bendis
penciled by Steve McNiven
Inked by Mark Morales
SPECIAL GUEST ARTIST: SAL BUSCEMA (pages 1-3)
Having been a fan of Paul Jenkins 'Sentry' mini a few years back, I was very excited to hear of The Sentry being featured in New Avengers.
After last issue's stunning cliff-hanger, I wasn't sure what to think. I knew I loved the issue, but I was totally clueless as to where it is/was going.
Enter issue 8, which starts out with the legendary Sal Buscema doing the art chores for a tale from The Sentry comic.
Confronted with evidence that he may only just be a fictional character, and that the wife that he thought murdered is actually alive, The Sentry eludes Cap and Co. and returns to his 'normal life' in Connecticut.
Meanwhile, there is still the battle with The Wrecker to contend with. Sadly, The Wrecker, has pretty much wiped his butt with the team, and the only thing in his way is Spider-Woman. What could she possibly do?
The answer is not obvious, but you know something is at work, there. And when you get the reveal, not only does it make sense, but the reaction from the rest of the team caused me to laugh out loud.
McNiven's art shines here, as there is something oddly alluring about his Spider-Woman--actually all his characters are beautifully depicted. The sadness of the wrecker, the anguish of Linda, and the confusion and terror of The Sentry/Robert Reynolds are all wonderfully conveyed.
The final page was a complete surprise, as I didn't expect to see who I saw there, and the menacing cliff-hanger is just done right.
Inter-mixed into the story is a nice conversation between Tony Stark and Logan, a neat bit of inter-title continuity (that people who read The Runaways may enjoy), and a nice 'silver age' moment at the beginning.
I know people who have been down on New Avengers miss their old team, etc. But, 8 issues in, Bendis is really doing something different with this book, and this tale is very enjoyable. Mostly because I am confused. Again, I don't know where this story is going, and for that, I am wicked glad.