The new trailer for The Avengers hit the web today.

And while Joss Whedon's big-budget big-screen mashup of Marvel superheroes won't hit theaters until next summer, by the looks of this footage it ought to be a smashing good time.

While the storyline is a closely guarded secret, here's what we we were able to decipher plot-wise from the action-packed teaser.

"You were made to be ruled. In the end it will be every man for himself," a foreboding voice intones, presumably the villain (that's Loki in the shadows), over images of the New York skyline and a series of cars exploding.

Military and police fire their weapons at an unseen enemy, that is, until S.H.I.E.L.D. enters the scene.

The members recruited in previous Marvel films to the Strategic Homeland Intervention, Enforcement and Logistics Division—better known to comic book geeks and moviegoers as the Avengers—decide to take action to stop the evil.

Led by Samuel L. Jackson as eyepatch-wearing badass Nick Fury, the team—comprised of Robert Downey Jr.'s Iron Man, Chris Evans' Captain America, Chris Hemsworth's Thor, Scarlett Johansson's Black Widow, Mark Ruffalo's the Hulk and Jeremy Renner's Hawkeye—look to be in solid fighting form as we see brief shots of them uniting.

"There was an idea to bring together a remarkable group of people so when we needed them they could fight the battles that we never could," says Fury.

Addressing the Avengers, he asks, "Gentlemen, what are you prepared to do?"

After a little verbal tussle between Iron Man and the Captain, the Avengers go to work protecting humanity as a series of images flash by: Fury using a rocket launcher, Iron Man flying toward New York, Hawkeye shooting one of his signature arrows, a twisting and leaping Black Widow and Thor dispending some foes, and Mr. Red, White and Blue letting loose with a machine gun and getting thrown out a window.

"If we can't protect the earth, you can be damn sure we'll avenge it," says Tony Stark, aka Iron Man.

The clip ends with a quick tease of Dr. Bruce Banner morphing into Hulk.

The Avengers is set for release on May 4, 2012.

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