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Secret Avengers: Let’s Have a Problem (Marvel Comics, 2014; #1-5)

Ales Kot, Michael Walsh, and Matthew Wilson’s run on Secret Avengers is one of my favorites. This is the first chance I’ve gotten to reread it since it came out, and it holds up.

The first Secret Avengers book followed superheroes running missions under the radar to avoid public panic.  The second focused on S.H.I.E.L.D. spycraft and conspiracy.  But this one is a different beast altogether: a workplace comedy.  M.O.D.O.K. has joined S.H.I.E.L.D. as its resident Mad Scientist.  Black Widow and Spider-Woman have to put up with their ex-boyfriend Hawkeye’s goofy antics.  There’s even a sentient, suicidal bomb named Vladimir with the potential to rewrite reality.  While there are still secret missions and world-ending stakes, character and humor define this book.

This is also the series that introduced me to Michael Walsh’s art.  His lines are expressive and energetic; and he bends them from smooth to rough and sketchy depending on what the moment calls for. He’s a great fit for a book like this, because it shifts locations and can get pretty weird at times.  And Matthew Wilson’s colors are, as always, masterful.  He also displays great dexterity in fitting palettes to scenes that are all over the place in location and tone.

I will recommend this run of Secret Avengers to anyone with a pulse.  It’s funny, intricately plotted, and stylishly rendered.  And it stars M.O.D.O.K.  Clap for M.O.D.O.K.

Collected in

Secret Avengers, Vol. 1: Let’s Have a Problem (#1-5, Secret Avengers: Infinite Comic #1-2)


Writer: Ales Kot | Artist: Michael Walsh | Colorist: Matthew Wilson | Letterer: VC’s Clayton Cowles | Covers: Tradd Moore & Matthew Wilson | Assistant Editor: Jon Moisan | Editor: Wil Moss

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