I’m going to assume that Avengers #30 was something that Brian Michael Bendis forgot to write. I’m not saying that it’s bad, but it feels like our man Brian got so swamped writing Avengers vs. X-Men that he lost track of time. Why do I say this? Well, Avengers #30 is an obvious filler issue. I don’t mean that it misses some cosmic comic book mark I’ve set for it, I mean this is an issue that fills the slot between last issue and what the Avengers do post-Cyclops becoming the Dark Phoenix (as seen in Avengers vs. X-Men #11).
So what happens in Avengers #30? The story is sad to tell, a teenage ne'er-do-well. Okay, maybe it’s not "Beauty School Dropout" from Grease but the story, featuring Hawkeye and Spider-Woman, does feel like a teen novel come to life. Mister Negative (remember him from Spider-Man?) has discovered the room where Red Skull’s daughter planned to unleash more havoc during the incredibly awful mini-series Fear Itself. Just as he’s about to claim the goods, Hawkeye and Spider-Woman bust in to save the day. The other Avengers are off fighting the X-Men, so Hawkeye and Spider-Woman tool around foiling domestic capers.
During this nail-biting (not really) fight with Mister Negative’s henchmen, Hawkeye and Spider-Woman argue about their relationship. They quibble about feelings and Spider-Woman gets very neurotic about Hawkeye’s past with Scarlet Witch. The two trade Twilight-inspired barbs until the bad guys are beaten and then they sort of resolve everything.
Bendis attempts to add some weight to the story by shoehorning in an ending where the Avengers, who’ve returned and seem oddly unaffected by the mutant situation, get upset because Madam Hydra tipped Spider-Woman to the heist. The final splash page seems to indicate that Hydra is ripping off SHIELD. In reality, it doesn’t matter. By the end, you’re more interested in the Red Baron pizza ad than the plot of this dry story. Hopefully, Avengers picks up after this because, outside of needing it to keep up your Avengers run, there’s no need to buy this book.
The art is by comic legend Walt Simonson. It is above reproach. The man is a God and we should all tend to bowing down before his greatness. It’s just too bad he’s being wasted on filler issues.
(2 Story, 5 Art)