The Cosmic Cube changes reality to shape the world into what you make it. In the Marvel universe it has driven entities mad. It’s also a brilliant plot device for joining a group of superheroes who would have nothing else in common otherwise. With the Avengers film a year away, one can vicariously live through the animation Earth’s Mightiest Heroes. After all the lineup is nearly the same: Captain America, Iron Man, Black Widow, Thor, Hawkeye, The Incredible Hulk and Shield, all with an agenda and secrets (Nick Fury is conveniently missing from the “Hail Hydra” episode).
With Fury unavailable newly minted director of SHIELD, Maria Hill attempts to take the Avengers into custody as they try to deal with the real threats of Modok and Baron Strucker. At a pivotal moment in the episode Captain America and Strucker fight in true battle royal style as they both reach for the cube. Each makes a wish. Everyone knows that Struker wished for world domination and the old order of Hitler’s “dream.” But what did Cap wish for? What falls out of the sky will lead to future storylines in the season to come.
In a seemingly disconnected episode the Avengers try to take down an array of super villains until they find out that Ant-Man’s “peace and order” robotic creation is about to carry out his objective by eradicating the human race. Ant-Man, a scientist and pacifist comes to a moment of crisis and quits the team. The threat of Ultron is defeated, but at the cost of Thor being disintegrated. However, the Enchantress rescues him which finally puts the pieces together.
The random criminals, the destruction of the prison that joined the Avengers together in the first place, they were all a ruse. Earth as you know it is about to fall and our heroes will be thrown to the nine worlds of Yggradisill. Originally created in Captain America’s time by the Red Skull a machine that pierces the veil between realms becomes the focus of “This Hostage Earth.” Yet more layers that would make for a great film and remakes to come. As magic meets science Yggradisill (an Asgardian tree that connects the “nine realms through inter-dimensional doorways) will reveal the true meaning behind all the shenanigans that have taken place over this past season.
Remember this is an animation and alongside the multilayered storyline are hidden jokes and witty banter between the characters. With writing this sharp and plotlines this intricate, this incarnation is by far the best representation of the comic. Science versus magic, old school at odds with a new way of doing things will reveal the Avengers weaknesses and their strengths.
Will Iron learn to trust magic? Will the Hulk crack a smile? And who is that elf staring at Hawkeye? Stay tuned.