Ah, the Avengers. Created as Marvel's response to the Justice League in the early 1960s, they were never quite the same thing as the prototypical JLA all-star lineup. And, as fans of the original incarnation would doubtless tell you, that was just fine. The modern era of the Avengers, beginning in 2004 when Brian Michael Bendis arrived, has heavily redefined this, bringing in Spider-Man and Wolverine as members, among other things. Setting aside any debate on the merits of this ("New Avengers" is incredibly popular, so clearly many people enjoy it), those who preferred the classic incarnation were eventually offered this, a B-team written by the eminently old-school Dan Slott.
Picking up in the aftermath of "Secret Invasion", which saw various heroes replaced by Skrull imposters, Henry Pym (aka Ant-Man, Giant-Man, Goliath, and Yellowjacket, now calling himself Wasp in tribute to his dead ex-wife Jan) finds himself holed up in his lab working on his latest invention, assisted by Jocasta, a robot modeled on Jan. However, when a 'chaos cascade' begins destroying all life on Earth, he finds himself drawn back into the open, as the reluctant and uncertain leader of a new team of Avengers. For those who think that Bendis' Avengers strayed too far from established history, the characters here will be a lot more satisfying: Hercules (and his sidekick Amadeus Cho; incidentally, buy "Incredible Hercules", the best title on the market), USAgent, the Hulk, and Jocasta are all definite Avengers characters with past stints on the roster; also in attendance are Stature (daughter of deceased Avenger Ant-Man) and the second Vision, both members of the Young Avengers. Also in the picture are Iron Man, Quicksilver, and the Scarlet Witch.
The six issues contained here (#21-26) contain three different stories of varying length (a three-issue opener, an epilogue/standalone, and a two-parter). The first brings together the group, the second fine-tunes it, and the third sends them on a new mission, also involving the Fantastic Four. Slott's strengths and weaknesses as a storyteller are both on display here. On the positive side, he has a tremendous grasp on continuity and character history, which generally serves him well, particularly with more minor characters. His dialogue, when not comedic, can be rather on-the-nose by modern standards (and he uses thought-bubbles, a generally discarded device). In general, given that this is an action book, the action is never particularly compelling (though the invasion of the Baxter Building brings some really neat sci-fi concepts), and of a style that predates "The Authority" and the widescreen format that has come to define this decade. And I don't think a book that is selling itself as an action title can really ignore "The Authority" anymore than war movies can ignore "Saving Private Ryan".
Art varies; the first arc is done by Khoi Pham (the regular artist), with Rafa Sandoval (my favourite, who sadly also only does one issue) and Stephen Segovia filling in after; the latter's grim-looking art doesn't quite suit the book as well as the others do. Sandoval most accurately captures the style that Slott is clearly going for.
This is a decent start, and people who have been waiting years for new material done in a classic Avengers style will probably rate this higher than I. The series improves quite a bit in its next arc.