The current team of Avengers came together to defend the world from Loki’s army of Dark Celestials. Since then, they've kept busy dealing with the many international threats brewing on Earth. The biggest of these threats is the vampire civil war. The Legion of the Unliving, led by the mysterious Shadow Colonel, is hunting others of their kind. Dracula, Lord of the Vampires, turned himself over to the Winter Guard, a team of Russian superheroes, in exchange for asylum. Meanwhile, the Shadow Colonel turned himself over to the Avengers. His surrender proved less sincere. Avengers #16 reveals the Shadow Colonel’s plan.
SPOILERS for the issue follow. Avengers #16 is written by Jason Aaron, drawn by David Marquez, and colored by Erick Arciniega.
The Avengers found themselves needing more information about the conflict between the Legion of the Unliving and Dracula. The Winter Guard isn’t interested in working with the Avengers, so the Avengers take it upon themselves to gain access to the deposed lord of the vampires. Tony Stark takes matters into his own hands, suiting up in new Iron Man stealth armor to infiltrate the prison where Dracula is being held.
Iron Man man doesn’t get far in his discussion with Dracula before Dracula instigates a riot in the prison where he’s being kept. Iron Man is forced to reveal himself in order to help Winter Guard members Crimson Dynamo, Red Guardian, and Darkstar quell the chaos. Dynamo, a longtime rival to Iron Man, punches Stark in the stomach before Iron Man begins the trip back to the United States.
Meanwhile, at Avengers Mountain, Shadow Colonel’s demonic-looking dog creature companion Sarge seeks out Ghost Rider while the Shadow Colonel fight with Blade, the newest Avengers recruit. After finding Ghost Rider, Sarge speaks an incantation that causes a violent, painful change in Ghost Rider, putting him under the Legion fo the Unliving’s control.1comments
In Avengers #16, Ghost Rider regains control of himself and the Avengers manage to beat back the Legion of the Unliving, but this was all only one part of the Shadow Colonel’s plan. After the Winter Guard leaves the prison where Dracula is held, the Shadow Colonel sets off “blood bombs” full of dead vampire blood within. The blood covers the inmates and transforms them into a brutal new bread of vampires:
The Legion of the Unliving seems to be shoring up its ranks to take control of the vampire community. Can the Avengers stop the war? What have you thought of this story? Let us know in the comments! Avengers #16 is on sale now.