I haven't seen the Bengal used in a while, but he was a South Vietnamese assassin whose parents were killed in Vietnam. He sought revenge on all of the American veterans involved in destruction of his village, including Will Talltrees/Red Wolf, Willie Lincoln, and even James Rhodes, a.k.a. War Machine, who is a member of Slott's cast. Not only does he not need training (although I understand the "be sent to camp or retire" bit), but he wants James Rhodes dead, dead, dead. So, if I had been writing the book, I would have had the Bengal willingly go to the camp just so he could get his mitts on Rhodes and kill him. I suppose that could still happen, but really. That would be an actual plotline. It's likely Slott just thought the Bengal was cool and stuffed him in the book so people who liked the character would say "Hey, it's the Bengal! I haven't seen him in a while! Cool!".
And that's one of the many problems with AVENGERS: THE INITIATIVE (one that likely would have plagued any writer, I admit) -- there are too many characters in the book. Most will be background, blink and you'll miss 'em cameos. And the characters who do make up the main cast (Gauntlet, Trauma, that lizard chick, and the other newbies) are dull and uninteresting, both character-wise and visually. And it's also more cases of creating new characters when an old one would suffice. Instead of Cloud 9, Slott should have used Cloud from the Defenders. These two are practically the same, except for background. Why not use Cloud? Heck, Cloud could turn from a woman into a man and back again. That was interesting to read about during Gillis' NEW DEFENDERS run, so I wouldn't have minded seeing Cloud pull the same trick at Camp Hammond. Imagine the reactions. But now, with Cloud 9 around, we'll likely never see Cloud ever again....unless Ellis uses her and kills her off/maims her in Thunderbolts or something.
Ah, well. But hey, thanks for your polite response.
I remember you complaining at length about the illusory Red Ronin who cameoed back in New Thunderbolts #13, for example.
- Omar Karindu
"A Renoir. I have three, myself. I had four, but ordered one burned...It
displeased me." -- Doctor Doom
"It's not, 'Oh, they killed Sue Dibney and I always loved that character,' it's 'Oh, they broke a story engine that could have told a thousand stories in order to publish a single 'important' one.'" -- John Seavey