Could it be? Hank Pym is dead? That’s just what the world believes in the newest episode of The Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes! Click “More” to read our review!
S2, Episode 17: Yellowjacket
A weird acting Hank Pym, who hasn’t slept, eaten, or possibly even showered in weeks, invites Iron Man and Wasp to his lab to take a look at a new prison he’s designed. When Iron Man and Wasp leave uninterested, an explosion goes off seemingly killing Pym. The Avengers memorialize him and in private, Fury approaches and tells Wasp and Stark that Hank was murdered. The Avengers go after the most recent villains Pym was known to fight, the Serpent Society. Captain America and Black Panther find Constrictor has been attacked by someone calling himself Yellowjacket. He escapes, but not before seemingly disintegrating Constrictor. Wasp confronts Yellowjacket and he admits to being the one who killed Pym. She figures out that Yellowjacket is, indeed, Hank Pym. The other Avengers are skeptical due to the mounting evidence. When the Avengers face Yellowjacket and a backlash from Iron Man hitting Yellowjacket’s gun sends them into Pym’s new micro-prison that is more sadistic than they could have feared. The Pym particles are not stable enough for the prison and it’s shrinking uncontrollably. The Serpent Society escapes and, instead of helping the Avengers to get out of the prison, they decide to attack. When Wasp is put into direct danger, Hank snaps out of it and works to get them out of the prison. Against his wishes, the cocky, and unpredictible Yellowjacket joins the team.
I’ve spent the last several minutes trying to find the right words for this episode. Don’t get me wrong, this episode was pretty darn good. Like the earlier episode “To Steal an Ant-Man”, this episode is pretty well written on a character level. What’s interesting about this episode is how much it really feels like we’ve lost an Avenger. Even in the comics, Yellowjacket only claims to have “disposed” of Hank Pym. It’s relatively clear from the get-go that Janet knows he’s actually Hank suffering from schizophrenia. While he stays Yellowjacket for a long time, we now can debate whether or not those schizophrenic tendancies was actually a Skrull infiltrator during the Secret Invasion as since his return, the only strange behavior he’s shown is an immense sadness over Janet’s death. Even with that debate, he fully owns up to the fact that he isn’t exactly the most confident of people and can experience some pretty deep depression from years of inadeqacy.
This episode takes it a little further than that. This Yellowjacket claims to have killed his former personality of Hank Pym. Even when Hank re-emerges, at the end he refuses to call himself “Hank Pym” and opts to keep the much cockier Yellowjacket name and persona. In the end, we’re left with a shot of the statue erected for Ant-Man when they believed Pym was killed. We’re led to believe that Ant-Man is gone and the Hank Pym we’ll see moving forward is, for all intents and purposes, a completely new character. In essence, Hank has died and the Avengers have really lost their first member.
With an episode that starts and ends with our heart in our throats with sadness, this episode comes off surprisingly touching and continues the string of writing Hank’s character with care.
A COMIC BOOK BLOG RATING
|Touching and a little sad, but a great job writing one of the more complex characters in Avengers history.||None.|