Siege: Second Front

Dan Slott and Christos Gage discuss the other sides of the Siege on Asgard



By Marc Strom

While Norman Osborn's Siege on Asgard continues to change the face of the Marvel Universe, our heroes must fight a number of battles on multiple fronts. On March 24, Hank Pym's team enters the fray in MIGHTY AVENGERS #35 while things get even hotter for Taskmaster and his troops in the pages of AVENGERS: THE INITIATIVE #34.

Writer Dan Slott, who chronicles the Mighty Avengers' mission with artist Khoi Pham, reveals that two different characters help throw the team into the melee.

"[It's] one part Amadeus Cho, one part Steve Rogers," relates Slott. "You'll see how that comes together in both THUNDERBOLTS and MIGHTY AVENGERS."

Though the Mighty Avengers didn't appear alongside their fellow heroes in SIEGE #2, that doesn't mean Steve Rogers didn't extend an invitation to the group.

MIGHTY AVENGERS #35 pencils by Khoi Pham
"In MIGHTY AVENGERS #35 you'll see that Steve did reach out to Hank Pym, but Hank's kinda got his hands full at the moment," notes Slott. "Don't know if you've heard but one of the biggest Avengers baddies of all time, Ultron, is back."

And Ultron's return couldn't come at a worse time for Pym and his team. According to Slott, they'll have their hands full dealing with Osborn and the ruthless robot simultaneously.

"This is the worst possible time for Ultron to be making a big play," warns the writer. "And with what happens at the end of MIGHTY AVENGERS #34, having a war on two fronts is probably the worst thing that could happen for these characters."

With Hank's attention solely on stopping Ultron, the Mighty Avengers will find themselves in need of a leader as they jump into the Siege. But who will they look towards to fill that role?

"That's a very good question," acknowledges a tight-lipped Slott.

While the team recently faced Osborn's own group in MIGHTY AVENGERS #32 and #33, they still remain unprepared for the threats they'll face next month.

"Nothing has prepared them for what's coming," says Slott. "Nothing could."

MIGHTY AVENGERS #35 pencils by Khoi Pham
As MIGHTY AVENGERS steers towards its conclusion in issue #36, Slott promises fans at least one more surprise waits just around the corner.

"Let's just say that, as big a surprise as we had for you in MIGHTY AVENGERS #23 when we revealed that the new Scarlet Witch was actually Loki, we've got a bigger shock in store for you than that!"

Meanwhile, in AVENGERS: THE INITIATIVE #34, writer Christos Gage and artist Jorge Molina pit Taskmaster against Captain America, a battle that comes on the heels of the villain's involvement in taking Thor down.

"As we'll see, Norman doesn't let Taskmaster's thrill of victory over Thor last very long," remarks Gage. "That leaves Taskmaster feeling like he needs to prove himself more than ever, and Captain America is the perfect target!"

Meanwhile, Justice and the Avengers Resistance have seized on the opportunity to destroy Camp H.A.M.M.E.R., but as they'll soon find out it won't prove that easy.

"There will still be a strong complement of H.A.M.M.E.R. troops as well as a number of the Hood's super-powered Initiative operatives-magically enhanced by the Norn Stones-defending Camp H.A.M.M.E.R.," explains Gage. "So it'll be far from a cakewalk. But this is still the best opportunity Justice and the Avengers Resistance will have. They know it's now or never."

AVENGERS: THE INITIATIVE #34 pencils by Jorge Molina
The other members of the Initiative-both heroes and villains-will have to come to terms with some major changes very soon, as the tide of battle in Siege begins to shift.

"We'll be seeing exactly that in upcoming issues, as well as [in] SIEGE itself and other books like the SIEGE: CAPTAIN AMERICA one-shot on which I'm collaborating with Federico Dallochio," says Gage. "That's right, I'm shameless, but it's true! As for how the heroes who are still part of the Initiative will react, that's a key part of our story."

Much like MIGHTY AVENGERS, AVENGERS: THE INITIATIVE will reach its finale in April with issue #35.

"Everything is coming to a head," forewarns Gage. "The end of the Initiative as we know it is coming and nothing will ever be the same!"


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