As I suspected, I thoroughly enjoyed this issue. Bendis does indeed write solo characters far better than team books. In a nutshell, Jessica Drew is at the bottom of the barrel. Her life is in shambles. She's a broken woman whose face and identity are in ruins because some Skrull b###h queen used them to try and take over the world. She even contemplates blasting her own head off with a venom blast. However, she's receives a new purpose in life when she gets contacted by Agent Brand, who offers her the chance to secretly destroy all aliens who are currently living on Earth illegally. As an agent of SWORD, Jessica can do whatever she wants, especially against the Skrulls still hiding all over the place. Agent Brand also suggests she keep her activities a secret from her New Avengers friends, for her missions are not for them. And so, after being given a special watch that detects Skrulls, Jessica takes the job and is sent to Madripoor, the most scum-infested city of the world. She encounters Spider-Man, who turns out to be a Skrull, and Jessica beats the holy hell out of him, possibly even to death.
Maleev's artwork/colors soared in this one. Bendis' flair for the grim and gritty, which he set up in ALIAS and DAREDEVIL, also shined. While this isn't the Jessica from the past, I'm still interested in reading more about this broken, desperate woman who's got nothing to lose now, nothing to give into but her anger and need for vengeance. This book is far better than NEW AVENGERS and DARK AVENGERS, I think.
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