|New Avengers (2nd series) #16.1|| || |
Issue Date: November 2011
Story Title: Untitled
Staff: Brian Michael Bendis (writer), Neal Adams (penciler), Tom Palmer (inks), VC’s Joe Caramagna (letters & production), Neal Adams & Paul Mounts (cover artists), Lauren Sankovitch (associate editor), Tom Brevoort (editor), Axel Alonso (editor in chief), Joe Quesada (chief creative officer), Dan Buckley (publisher), Alan Fine (executive producer) with special thanks to Kris Stone
Norman Osborn’s alter-ego, the Green Goblin, is eager to escape confinement. He reminds Norman that he already has followers willing to help in this matter, so what is he going to do about it? At the mansion, the Avengers are informed by their liaison, Victoria Hand, that the Raft requires assistance in transferring Osborn out of there. The Avengers aren’t overjoyed upon hearing the news but, as Steve Rogers himself requested this, they oblige. They head over and prepare to move him. Ready for an attempt to break him out, Dr. Strange assumes Osborn’s form and, sure enough, he is grabbed by Osborn’s followers. Unfortunately, he doesn’t get the location of where they were about to take him before defeating them, as only Osborn knows that. Unfortunately, this breakout was only the first attempt and a second group that was already stationed in the Raft, as prison guards manage to get him out of there, despite the best efforts of the assembled Avengers. Norman is taken to where his followers await him and he joins Viper and Superia on stage to take in their adulation.
The insane Norman Osborn is sitting alone in his cell and, as is often the case, hearing the Green Goblin’s voice in his head. The Goblin tells him to look at him but Norman says he isn’t in the mood for their talk today. The Goblin asks what he thinks about the cult. Norman insists that it isn’t a cult. The Goblin says they’re his followers, then. Even though he’s locked up in there, they are out there, waiting for him. They’re waiting for him to live up to the promises he made them. The Goblin explains that he told the people of this world that he would stand up and fight for them. He told them he would protect them and they believed him. Has he changed his mind? Norman becomes increasingly alarmed at the voice’s continued presence but is unable to stop it.
The Goblin reminds him that he built a magnificent organization in H.A.M.M.E.R. He says that the people who have locked him away know that he is their future. Deep down in their hearts and souls, the Avengers know that he is right, too. The old ways don’t work anymore. He is the new. So, asks the Goblin, what is he going to do about it? He needs him to tell him what happens next. The Goblin’s image appears before him and says, “I’m getting restless.”
Victoria Hand tells the team that she has something which may be a touchy subject. Spidey asks if it has anything to do with poopy diaper smell wafting through the house. “Hey!” replies Luke as he and Jessica play with Danielle. Ms. Marvel quips that she thought the unbelievable smell was an early manifestation of the baby’s super powers. Wolverine says that there aren’t enough wet wipes and Lysol in the world to cover up that funky smell. “That’s enough,” says Luke. Jessica wonders if he should perhaps go back to the X-Men, but he asks if she thinks it smells any better over there. Carol asks if she’s smelled a wet Hank McCoy. “Shudder,” replies Iron Fist. “Exactly,” says Carol.
Victoria brings them back to the touchy subject, that being the one and only Norman Osborn. Spidey asks if she and Norman are finally tying the knot. Victoria admits that she used to work for him but Spidey reminds her that it was more than that. She was his right-hand man! Victoria replies that she understands his issues with her in this regard. He’s made them very clear. She explains that Osborn is being transferred off the Raft and being tried in the International Criminal Court. And, because of all the rumors of his H.A.M.M.E.R. organization still being active…
Spider-Man interjects, exasperated. “Rumors?!” he asks. Victoria adds that, because of the rumors of this Goblin Cult or whatever they’re calling it… Spidey cuts her off again and asks how it’s a rumor when a) they went head-to-head with this new H.A.M.M.E.R. organization and Mockingbird got shot and b) they tried to blow them up! Victoria admits that perhaps ‘rumor’ may have been the wrong word, but nevertheless they have been asked to negotiate his transfer off the Raft. The Avengers stop in their tracks and look at her, concerned.
Victoria says she told them it was a touchy subject. She informs them that they want some muscle and they also want something flashy for the cameras. So, Steve Rogers would like them, all of them, to escort Mr. Osborn safely out of there. Bobbi asks if they’re talking in code here. Is she saying ‘transfer’ when really she’s telling Wolverine to slice and dice? Victoria replies that she isn’t, so Bobbi asks why them? Victoria tells them that it’s because the other Avengers are busy and they’re just sitting there, eating. “When is this happening?” asks Dr. Strange.
(later, Ryker’s Island Maximum Security Penitentiary - The Raft)
The Avengers are on hand to escort Norman Osborn from the facility. Luke and Ben flank him as they walk him towards a gauntlet of guards leading to a Quinjet. Norman notices Spider-Man sitting there, ominously. As they approach the craft, Mockingbird (who is at the controls) informs them that she’s picking something up. In mere moments, several airborne H.A.M.M.E.R. agents have enclosed the ship in some kind of protective forcefield and used a strange device to retrieve Norman, leaving the helpless Avengers inside.
Once he is on board, one of them welcomes Norman and tells him it’s a huge honor. He tells them they went to a lot of trouble, but Norman replies that the word was given. They’ll get him out of his shackles. Once his hands are free, he asks the agent’s name. “Joe Grace, sir,” he replies. Norman asks where they are headed. Joe tells him it’s the rendezvous point. Norman asks where that is, exactly. Joe replies, nervously, that he was suppose to tell them. Dr. Strange then transforms into his real form and tells them that would have been too easy. They are, of course, all under arrest… or something. He uses the Crimson Bands of Cyttorak to bring their craft down. The Avengers laugh and Ben asks someone to tell Logan that it’s his turn.
Inside, Logan visits Osborn’s cell along with Iron Fist and Jessica. He tells Norman that it’s time to go. As they walk through the facility, Osborn asks Jessica how she’s been and how motherhood is treating her. She asks if he thinks that’s what she wants to do. Talk about her kid? Norman replies that she should know he’s going to kill her baby. Before Jessica can respond, Wolverine snikts two claws and places them inside the corners of Norman’s mouth, recommending that he doesn’t talk anymore. No one told them what condition he has to be in when they get him where they’re going. Norman looks to one of the guards and tells him the word is given.
The guard then turns his gun on Wolverine and fires several times at point blank range. Other guards back him up and Iron Fist takes out two of them, as does Jessica. Norman, however, somehow frees himself and grabs her, hurling her towards Danny. He then joins three guards and disappears behind a solid door. As Wolverine slowly begins to recover, Jessica hits the alarm, which alerts the other Avengers outside. Norman and his men head through the facility with Norman being guided by an electronic map. They come to a door which he asks one of them to open. When they do so, out steps Dr. Deidre Wentworth. Norman tells her that it’s a pleasure to meet her. She thanks him for thinking of her. “Your chariot awaits,” he replies.
Iron Fist asks the others to stand back and then strikes the wall. Inexplicably, his energy is projected back towards him and he is sent flying across the floor, forcing Jessica to duck for cover. Jessica tells the others that the prison is in lockdown and Osborn’s on the loose. She tells Ms. Marvel to get to the other side of the building. Carol wastes no time in exiting the prison and flying around the other side, only to discover that Osborn has seemingly vanished. She holds her head in frustration.
“Tell me this isn’t happening!” she cries. She decides to head underwater but finds nothing there either. She resurfaces and hears a boom from inside the southwest loading dock entrance and informs the others. “Avengers Assemble!” she shouts. However, when the loading dock door opens wide, it’s her fellow Avengers who are standing there. “Oh, no,” she sighs. Luke asks if she didn’t see Osborn. Dr. Strange realizes he must have had this planned down to the very last detail.
Wolverine, as is his way, grabs a guard who has been left behind and snikts his claws, ready to stab the guy. He asks how Osborn did it. How did he take one of the most secure prisons on the planet and fill it full of people who would risk their necks for him like this? The guard, holding Wolverine’s hand, which is wrapped around his throat, informs him that he really doesn’t get it. Osborn is the future! The world will be better. It will be better for Wolverine and for him. It will be better for their children. He adds that everything will be better. They just have to open their eyes. “You have to see that your time in charge is…” Wolverine slams him in the stomach with a clenched fist, which lays him out.
Norman Osborn is delivered to a secure location where hordes of followers welcome him with cheers and raised fists. He revels in the adulation and sports a wide grin as he opens his arms out wide. “This is it,” says Dr. Wentworth. “It’s happening!”
Luke Cage, Dr. Strange, Iron Fist, Mockingbird, Ms. Marvel, Power Woman, Spider-Man, Thing, Wolverine (all Avengers)
Victoria Louise Hand
Superia (Dr. Deidre Wentworth)
A.I.M and H.A.M.M.E.R. operatives and Osborn’s followers
Norman Osborn was incarcerated in Dark Avengers #16 during the Siege storyline.
Issue Summary written by: Fantomex