I love these episodes where I go in expecting nothing and end up getting one of the better outings of the season.
It's a three-way fight between the Avengers, AIM, and HYDRA, all fighting for the Cosmic Cube. A pretty good fight is highlighted by some major ongoing plot threads:
-Just like I thought, they're going the "Spider-Woman: Triple Agent" route with Black Widow, in that she was secretly working with Nick Fury the whole time. The problem with that is... -Nick Fury's disappeared to who-knows-where. (Probably prepping for the Secret Invasion.) And thus we get Director Maria Hill, who brings her character right out of Civil War and demands the Avengers register as S.H.I.E.L.D. agents. It's really odd to see this dynamic play out with Iron Man, of all people, resisting registration. It works for the casual audience, but the comic fans' heads are spinning. -The Cosmic Cube was seemingly a dud, until the very end, where we find out that Captain America did change one thing: Bucky! Anyone else stoked for The Winter Soldier?
Best part of the episode was the major character moment between Cap and Hulk, with Cap giving Hulk the gratification that the poor monster always wanted. And it really does a good job in showing that Cap is the heart of the Marvel U.
Thanks for the compliment, pieman. I had three of the four right last week, but I had Bucky going out. Of course, Patrick was the one out. I had Heather at #3, which was barely in for next week, and then voted out next Thursday.