Let m explain. Here are the Dark Avengers, mostly bad guys appropriating the good names of established good guys:
1. Captain Marvel, aka: Marvel Boy- Marvel Boy showed up a few years ago from a parallel universe, got a not-so-warm-reception from the denizens of this new-to-him-un
iverse and declared war. He's been rotting in prison for a few years but recently helped repel a Skrull invasion. He's kind of a brat.
2. The Sentry- Not so much a bad guy as bat-shit crazy. And hella annoying. Marvel keeps trying to push him down our throats as this awesomely conflicted character but what we really get stuck with is a whiney, mostly incapable of action Superman.
3. Ms. Marvel aka: Moonstone- Old school villain whose super power seems to be super mind fucking.
4. Iron Patriot aka: Norman "Green Goblin" Osborn- Like I said, he's won the public over and taken over Nick Fury's old job.
5. Ares- Yep. The Greek god of war. Again, like Marvel Boy and The Sentry, not strictly a bad guy, just a deity with a piss-poor attitude. Loves axes.
6. Wolverine aka: Daken: Wolverine's bastard son... wait, what? Goddamnit, is something that we really needed? Is it not enough that Wolverine himself shows up in at 27 books a month, now we have to get saddled with his dark, brooding son with a mowhawk no less? Jesus Christ, it's like they found an old file Rob Liefeld left sitting around the offices and ran with an idea he found too stupid to run with.
7. Hawkeye, aka: Bullseye- Old Daredevil baddie, former hitman for The Kingpin and murderer of Elektra (she got better).
8. Spider-Man, aka: Venom- Yep. That Venom. No, hold on, not "that" Venom. This one is Scorpion who has been wearing the Venom symbiote for the last few years. He eats people. A lot.
So there you have it. The Dark Avengers, an innovative team made up of villains who have tricked the public into thinking they're righteous do-gooders, thwarters of evil, blah, blah, blah. Good job, Marvel! You've just invented...
The Thunderbolts! Former Avengers' baddies The Masters of Evil all decked out in new costumes, winning over the public as the newest super heroes on the block. No kidding, the last page reveal that these were in fact classic villains was mind blowing back in 1997 and the first 12 issues of this series were brilliant. But I digress...
Like the guys from the Coke Zero ads, you have to ask if it's possible to plagiarize yourself?
Now I'm not saying I'm not enjoying the series so far. Quite the contrary, so far so good. But the great writing from Brian Michael Bendis and art from Mike Deodato is a little hampered for me by the nagging thought that this has all been done before. I guess the big deal this time out is that the villains aren't in a brand new team, but taking up residence as the actual Avengers in their actual head quarters.
Still, it would be a lot cooler if Zemo could show up at some point threatening litigation...