I didn't read much of Brian Michael Bendis' Avengers Assemble, a new Avengers series designed to feature the cast of the movie – and, naturally, a bit of Bendis' record-breaking run with the team in Spider-Woman and Carol Danvers. I've had a tumultuous relationship with the Bendisvengers to say the least, and I didn't want to read a THIRD Bendisvengers book (especially since I dreaded how he was going to tamper with the Guardians of the Galaxy). However, Kelly Sue DeConnick has taken the reins, which means I've been able to check back in.
Avengers Assemble #10 is her second issue, and it's a pretty fun book. I imagine it's designed to stay pretty stand-alone and separate from Jonathan Hickman's big plans in the NOW A-books, as the gateway Avengers title. Last time out, Tony Stark and Bruce Banner were having a friendly competition about who could solve the latest mysterious case in Antarctica the quickest, but the discovery of dead bodies has put the kibosh on that joviality. Now, they figure out the cause of the stomach-bursting monsters in the water supply a second after Bruce swallows a big gulp of it – meaning the Hulk has an alien parasite of some sort churning in his guts. Meanwhile, Captain America and Captain Marvel have a weird aerial fight with the men behind the monstrosities – one renegade scientist Sergei Sorokin and a droll, Tombstone-looking sociopath genius named Yun Guang Han. The latter is a guy who seems like he's going to be a fairly interesting bad guy.
The art from Stefano Caselli is pretty great, doing interesting things with the action sequences and giving us a real sense of battle at ten thousand feet once a bunch of undead goons swarm the Quinjet. DeConnick's story so far is entertaining, as expected from her solid work on Captain Marvel and Ghost, and I'm thankful for an isolated Avengers book like this.
If you want some Avengers fun without the complications, look no further. And start with Avengers Assemble #9.