Uncanny Avengers (2nd series) #2

Issue Date: 
April 2015
Story Title: 

Rick Remender (writer), Daniel Acuna (artist), Virtual Calligraphy's Clayton Cowles (letterer), Daniel Acuna (cover artist), Simone Bianchi & Phil Noto (variant cover artists), Tom Breevort & Daniel Ketchum (editors), Axel Alonso (editor-in-chief), Joe Quesada (chief creative officer), Dan Buckley (publisher), Alan Fine (executive producer)

The Avengers created by Stan Lee & Jack Kirby

Brief Description: 

The city of Anushia on Counter-Earth, where the High Evolutionary has ordered his New Men to attack Sabretooth. They do so, and capture him relatively easily given Sabretooth's lack of bloodlust. The High Evolutionary instructs the New Man called Dhrovo to prepare the Green Ones, as they will be needed. The High Evolutionary then addresses the many citizens gathered before him. He makes along speech about life and perfection – and imperfection. Sabretooth knows what the High Evolutionary is planning and tries to stop him, to no avail, as he releases energy that decimates the entire population. The Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver awake to find themselves in some sort of bunker where a trio, including the Low Evolutionary, are discussing the most recent genocide by the High Evolutionary. One of them, a woman called Paim, is upset with the Low Evolutionary because her son warned him, and still died – and all because of the Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver, who she points at accusingly. Doctor Voodoo is in a wasteland area of Counter-Earth, where the Council of Anguish start to overwhelm him with their stories of how they died. He demands that only one of them speak to him, so Doniva, the first daughter of the High Evolutionary appears and explains how the High Evolutionary wipes out an entire people once their imperfections have been laid bare. She pleads with Doctor Voodoo to help them. The High Evolutionary walks through the now deserted Anushia, as “the Green Ones” arrive, bursting up through the ground, these strange tree-like beings, of which Sam Wilson is now one, a instructed  to consume the remains of the failed. Sabretooth is being tortured by one of the New Men, but he won't reveal why he has come here. The High Evolutionary appears and extracts Sabretooth's cellular structure from his body, deciding that interesting things can be found in the trash. He contacts the Master Scientist and instructs the strange man to unravel Sabretooth's robust regeneration as he thinks it might be useful. The High Evolutionary tells the Master Scientist that he has discovered mutants here, but the Master Scientist, while hiding Rogue in his lab, assures the High Evolutionary he has detected none. The High Evolutionary adds that the fraternal twins masquerade as mutants, and the Master Scientist remarks that he remembers the old games well. The High Evolutionary then speaks to his daughter, Luminous and announces that they have a dilemna, for he needs her to kill her brother and sister!

Full Summary: 

Counter-Earth, on the far side of the sun.

'You have no place here!' one of the New Men exclaims, as another slams Victor “Sabretooth” Creed back with a weapon. 'What the hell did I ever do to deserve this? Oh... right' Creed thinks to himself. He knows that there is only one way out – he has to gut the monkeys. He starts to attack the New Men, but the evolved animals also have powers and abilities of their own. There is another problem – the old angry thing has packed it up – the thing that kept him alive all these years – the thing willing to do whatever the hell it took. One of the New Men's arms extends, and his fist slams into Creed's face, while another flutters above Creed, relasing some sort of energy towards him. 'And what it took was ugly' Creed reminds himself, as the evolved animal above him lashes out with some sort of electric whip that wraps itself around Creed. 'He is ready for your judgmment, Highness' the creature calls out. 'We must do as we always do. Strive for perfection' the High Evolutionary remarks as he releases a beam of energy from his head – which cuts a hole straight through Sabretooth's front. 'Maybe ol' Sabretooth ain't the scrapper he once was – but I'd rather die with that thing gone – than live with any more blood on my hands' Sabretooth thinks to himself, growling as the energy cuts through him, he drops to his knees, then collapses into the water at his feet.

'I can't have any of your people knowing about us' the High Evolutionary remarks, before turning to one of the armor-wearing New Men whom he calls Drhovo and tells him to prepare the rejuvenation community and to alert the Green Ones, as they will be needed soon. 'That time of year again, hhmh?' Drhovo responds, before the High Evolutionary walks among the many gathered evolved animals, or New Men, and tells them to calm themselves, as the unpleasantness is over. 'I know such violence is quite unsettling, though not completely foreign' he adds, walking up some stairs to a large platform, with an even larger statue of himself, that points out over the city. He explains that that is one of the many reasons for his visit today, and instructs the citizens to gather around, for there is much to discuss. 'Denizens of Counter-Earth, you here in my capital represent the very best of my work. But I'm  afraid your best is not good enough' the High Evolutionary announces. He asks them what the purpose of life is, and points out that some say the pursuit of happiness and the simple pleasures. 'But they are fools' he declares as his citizens listen intently.

'Primates, content to savor their evolutionary prerogative to consume and procreate. Were we to accept this as the aspiration of all life, we would be no better than bacteria' the High Evolutionary remarks, adding that they would be low and unthinking, carrying out biological processes with no mind to betterment. 'You have no idea the amount of of work that has gone into perfecting eaxch of you. But the process of perfection is arduous and never-ending. And you are far from where you must ascend'. Some of the citizens look worried. Couples hold hands, and parents carry their children. 'You still fall to base emotions such as the lie of love' Turning to a mother whose hands rest on a wheelchair where her child sits, the High Evolutionary declares that others commit the atrocity of being born imperfect. The High Evolutionary points out that some of them fall prey to the instinct of aggression and violence for material gain. 'But these failings are not your fault, citizens of Anushia. Your failings are my failings. Genetic instincts and weaknesses I somehow overlooked in your creation' the High Evolutionary declares. The High Evolutionary hangs his head and tells the citizens not to despair, for there is a solution. 'To all beginnings come endings. And to the cause of perfection you have taught me much'.

The High Evolutionary then tells his citizens that these are failings he will rectify with their replacements. Some citizens start to leave the gathering as the High Evolutionary tells them to say their goodbyes and accept his gratitude for the lessons they have taught him. 'Those who come after you will be better for it'. Suddenly, 'Forgive me for judging – sounds like you got evil on your mind' Sabretooth calls out as he lunges towards the High Evolutionary, but comes to a half mid-air as the High Evolutionary raises a hand, 'Hmmh. You've healed entirely' he comments, deciding that is extraordinary, he remarks that he has use for Sabretooth – unlike the rest. The High Evolutionary rises up into the air, Sabretooth at his side, 'Whatever the hell you got planned – don't!' Creed shouts. 'Blood like this – never washes off!' Creed tells the High Evolutionary, who suddenly glows in a brilliant light, 'It is but a drop in the ocean' he replies, while on the ground below, frightened citizens begin to run for their lives, as the energy starts to spread like a bubble – destroying everyone in its path. 'Your perception is skewed. This is not true life – this is a test tube – a failed experiment in the quest for perfection. One of thousands. And thousands more to come' the High Evolutionary announces as darkness surrounds the city.

And from darkness elsewhere, Wanda Maximoff a.k.a. the Scarlet Witch suddenly wakes. 'No!' she shouts as she sits up on a table in some sort of bunker. She smells chemicals – pungent, acrid – the kind used to hide something bad. She realizes she is in a medical lab, and recalls that she did not get a look at who ambushed them. 'The High Evolutionary? We were getting close' Wanda tells herself, before realizing that she is not restrained. She tells herself that this doesn't make any sense, and remembers it has been weeks since they found out, and Pietro is unraveling. She knows she made a promise to him, and she plans to keep it – they are not going home until they know the truth. 'Wanda... where are we?' Pietro Maximoff a.k.a. Quicksilver asks as he sits up on the table next to his twin's and rubs the back of his head. They get off the tables and Wanda tells Pietro to shush, as she hears muddled voices arguing close by, and they are angry. 'We could have done more!' a voice shouts from behind a door.

'We could have saved them!' someone exclaims angrily. 'This is his doing. It's not your fault, Paim' an older man in a grey outfit tells the angry woman, as they stand around a table, maps of the city and monitors displaying the devastation outside around them. 'No – this is your fault!' the woman snaps, telling the older man that if he hadn't been distracted, they could have at least evacuated some portion of the population – they could have done something. A bald man wearing armor stands around the table but remains silent, as Paim motions to the monitors 'All those lives lost! And for what? Two useless castaways!' she exclaims. 'THERE WAS NOTHING WE COULD HAVE DONE!' the older man booms, slamming his fists onto the table, before asking how many they saved from the last cleansing, and how many of their own they lost. 'He determines when to wipe the slate clean at such indeterminate moments that there is no planning for it – no matter how many spies we send!' He adds that they have never once had fair warning. Paim scowls and addressing the older man as Low Evolutionary, reminds him that her son died to warn him – died to give him that information. 'But instead of attempting to evacuate any of the five million souls in that city – you chose the lives of these two self-serving trespassers' Paim declares, motioning at a shocked Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver who have entered the chamber.

Elsewhere, Jericho Drumm a.k.a. Doctor Voodoo is in a seemingly empty building where the Council of Anguish reside. Dim lights shine down on him as he stands in the middle of a dark chamber. 'Died while feeding my son' a voice calls out. 'Help us!' a voice pleads. 'Killed with my wife -' another exclaims. 'His laughter filled the air' a voice recalls. 'My daughter's screams -' another begins, while Voodoo tells the Spirits of Anguish that he hears their pain. He floats up into the air and assures them that they are not alone anymore. ' - the elderly couple next door-', 'My family annihilated -', '- blamed it on us!', 'The pig gave us a lecture -' more and more voices call out, until Doctor Voodoo tells them that they must choose a single delegate. 'A single voice to -' he begins, but they ignore him and someone exclaims 'Holding my baby -' while another remarks 'Running in a panic -', '- my entire family -', ' - every friend I had -'. Doctor Voodoo appears to be overwhelmed, 'Please – your cries -' he begins, but the voices continue: 'Help us!', 'We must be avenged!'

'A schoolyard! Every child there was -', 'I couldn't protect them!', '- the flames burnt my skin!', 'Not fair, it's not fair -', 'Murderer!', 'The pain, you cannot imagine -', 'Do something to -', 'Genocide!', 'This was my life – this was how -', 'He took joy in it -', the voices continue, until Doctor Voodoo raises his staff overhead and shouts 'You are overwhelming me!' before dropping back to the floor, where he slams his staff against the ground and booms 'Enough! Reveal yourself!' With that, dozens of glowing spirits of the dead fill the chamber. Doctor Voodoo tells them that he feels their rage, and understands why they have drawn him here. 'But I cannot hear all of your pleas at once if I am to aid you' he explains. Watching the spirits float around him, Doctor Voodoo asks which one of them will be the Council of Anguish's voice. A female figure floats down to Voodoo and announces that she represents the murdered peoples of Counter-Earth. 'Who were you in life, restless spirit?' Doctor Voodoo asks. The spirit replies that her name was Doniva – first daughter of the High Evolutionary.

Doniva explains that she is one among countless millions that her father has grown and slaughtered on Counter-Earth. She adds that he hyper-evolves a people, and once their imperfections are laid bare...he annihilates them. 'No species will ever ascend to his lofty and unobtainable expectations' Doniva remarks. She tells Doctor Voodoo that her curse was her kindness, pleading for an end to this atrocity was her crime – and for that kindness, her father crushed her skull while she slept. She tells him that as they speak, it has happened again – millions more souls join the Council. 'If we do not act, if you do not aid us... billions more will join us before he's through'.

Outside, the High Evolutionary walks past the smoldering remains of the dead and declares 'Rise, Green Ones. Cleanse the city. Grow trees. Consume the remains of the failed. For tomorrow, I replant'. The tree-like Green Ones rise from the ground, and amongst them one wears a familiar red, white and blue costume – Sam Wilson a.k.a. Captain America. The High Evolutionary announces that tomorrow he will grow a new breed – a better breed – hopefully one more befitting of his gift of life.

Meanwhile, in some sort of torture chamber, Sabretooth is strung up as Dhrovo's axe is sliced into his chest. 'That's got to hurt. My plasmic core burning your cells for fuel. It feeds me, so I don't know it hurts you. Don't need to hear a single whimper to know that' Dhrovo remarks. 'You just tell Lord Gator what he wants to hear and it all ends' Dhrovo adds, before shouting 'Why are you here?' Creed grits his teeth and replies that he is bird watching, just as the High Evolutionary enters the chamber. 'You still haven't made this one speak?' he asks. Dhrovo tells the High Evolutionary that the creature is formidable, and won't even scream for him. 'Impressive for a low-born' Dhrovo adds. 'Let's see why' the High Evolutionary declares as he points at Sabretooth and energy starts to glow in his eyes, and Creed screams as what appears to be his cellular structure is torn from his body. 'He screams for me' the High Evolutionary grins.

'Hmmh. Interesting things can be found in the trash' the High Evolutionary remarks as he examines Creed's cellular structure. He announces that he has never seen anything like this. 'Master Scientist, are you observing?' the High Evolutionary calls out. A voice responds via communicator 'Always, your highness. The creature's tracking and healing abilities go far beyond anything I've encountered'. A holographic projection of the bird-like Master Scientist appears and asks the High Evolutionary what his bidding is. 'There is Earth refuse on my world. I don't need to tell you how unfortunate that could be for all of us' the High Evolutionary responds. 'The fraternal twins. They masquerade as mutants' the High Evolutionary comments. 'Yes, yes. I remember the old games, I remember well. But I can assure you...I have detected no mutants here' the Master Scientist declares, while in his lab, Rogue is his prisoner, trapped in a contraption she is unable to move. 'A pity. And a curiosity' the High Evolutionary remarks, before telling the Master Scientist to be ready, as he is sending him a gift. 'Unravel his robust regeneration. And most importantly, his hunting abilities rival all my New Men's. He is the key to locating my son' the High Evolutionary declares. The Master Scientist assures the High Evolutionary that he awaits Sabretooth's arrival.

The High Evolutionary turns to another figure who has appeared in the chamber. 'We have an interesting dilemma, Luminous' he tells woman with white hair in a blue costume and blue energy glowing in her hands that he needs her to kill her brother and sister!

Characters Involved: 

Captain America VIII, Doctor Voodoo, Quicksilver, Rogue, Sabretooth, Scarlet Witch (all Avengers Unity Division)


Low Evolutionary

Paim and another soldier


High Evolutionary

Master Scientist


Dhrovo / Lord Gator and other New Men

Citizens of Anushia

The Green Ones

Doniva and others in the Council of Anguish

Story Notes: 

The Vision appears on the cover, but not in the issue itself.

Written By: