I remember when Deodato unveiled his new style with Witches, however many years back, and his art continues to be so slick and moody, I want to see how he renders every character in the Marvel universe. Here, he makes the surface of Mars look like such a foreboding and dangerous place... you really buy that the Secret Avengers are in a horrible situation without even having to consider the context they're faced with. Also, I want to single out the specific scene of Ant-Man tumbling into oblivion as being one of the most effective in this issue. Through choice words and poses, you feel just as awfully overwhelmed as he is.
I don't see that much here to make the Secret Avengers stand out from the regular Avengers, or from any superhero team book for that matter. All of the cosmic revelations about the history of the Serpent Society seem to fly in the face off this title's stated purpose of being a more low-key, black-ops version of the Avengers.
The Verdict - 3.5/5
I haven't read the first two issues, so maybe this was addressed somewhere in the first two issues, but I'm not seeing how the Secret Avengers having this adventure on Mars jibes with them being this covert strike-force. I think their guest appearance in Moon Knight's book was a better execution of that notion. Here, they seem like just another team - - basically like the West Coast Avengers.