The following contains major spoilers for Avengers # 55, available now from Marvel.
The Avengers have faced off against some of the most impossibly powerful villains the Marvel Universe has ever known. Over the years, Earth’s Mightiest Heroes have prevailed against all of these threats, yet nothing so far could have possibly prepared them for an invading army of Mephistos from across the Multiverse. Of course, the coming battle is one that has been brewing for well over a year at this point. Not only that, but the latest member of the Avengers just so happens to be one of the few people who understood the threat from the beginning, and he may even be responsible for it getting to this point.
Avengers # 55 (by Jason Aaron, Javier Garron, David Curiel, and VC’s Cory Petit) finds Kyle Richmond, aka Nighthawk, struggling to come to terms with his place in the universe. It was not long ago that he uncovered the lab where he and the rest of the Squadron Supreme of America were created as part of Agent Phil Coulson and Mephisto’s plot to remake reality. While Nighthawk has tried to distance himself from his origin most recently, the rest of the world’s heroes aren’t making that particularly easy. Once Black Panther came calling on Nighthawk to join in their fight against Mephisto, it became clear that even the Avengers did not understand the full scope of what the villain is planning. Nighthawk, however, knows all too well what Mephisto has in store, especially since he spent so much time trying to turn the devil’s world back into reality.
Like the rest of the Squadron Supreme of America, the Nighthawk introduced in 2018’s Avengers # 10 has played an important role in Mephisto’s machinations. Throughout the events of 2021’s Heroes Reborn, which saw Coulson remake the world in Mephisto’s image, Nighthawk was far more devoted to this new reality than any of his compatriots. Even after things were set right by the Avengers, Nighthawk’s memory of the world as it was, drove him to continue championing Mephisto’s cause.
Thankfully, it looks like Nighthawk is finally coming to terms with the damage he helped to cause, as well as how dire the consequences of it all truly are. Far from claiming one reality as his own, Mephisto has set his sights on the entirety of the Multiverse, and his test run in the Primary Marvel Universe proved to be an invaluable font of insight into what Earth’s Mightiest Heroes are capable of. On the other hand, now that the Avengers can count Nighthawk among their numbers, they might have just gained the one ally who can actually anticipate where Mephisto’s ambitions are leading them.
If there is anyone who grasps the full scope of Mephisto’s intentions, it is undoubtedly Nighthawk. He might not be the most powerful hero, but he is absolutely one of the most cunning. There is also the fact that no one else apart from his fellow Squadron Supreme members is so inextricably tied to the threat at hand.
Hopefully, all of that will not only give the Avengers a fighting chance but also will give Nighthawk the shot at redemption he needs. If not, it could very well be what ends up getting him killed. Considering everything he has been through already, it’s hard to imagine even this being the end of Kyle Richmond. And considering the might of the Council of Red that Earth’s Mightiest Heroes are currently up against, they certainly can not afford to lose each and every edge they can get.
The Avengers’ Massively Powerful Enemy Introduces an Entire Army of Multiversal Variants
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