Secret Wars #1
The Marvel Universe has been running for 54 years now. With many scrambled stories and universes it is time for Marvel Comics to let a new universe come and their old stories go. At last upon the final chapter to give a fresh, clean slate for the future of Marvel Comics. The stories and characters we’ve grown to know and love are now ending. So open up your comic, get some intense soundtrack music going, and enjoy reading. They are going down and they are going down with a bang.
Secret Wars is an interesting title for an ending. It’s not a secret to anyone that their world is dying. All but two universes have died, and are now colliding. The Marvel Universe (Earth 616) and the Ultimate Universe (Earth 1610). With the knowledge that they are the only two remaining, they are at war with each other. Earth 1610 is trying to destroy Earth 616 in hopes to be the only world that survives. Only Reed Richards of 1610 knows that it won’t work. He lies to those around them to provide some sort of hope. Earth 616 on the other hand is in an apocalyptic panic. With Avengers and others trying to create a Resurrection Group to build another world. We can assume that this will be the new universe we will see in the future. As for the title, Secret Wars? It reminds readers of tragic and dark comics from 1984 of the same name.
When Earth 1610 strikes, Earth 616 attempts to fight back and set up a new future. May I point out there are multiple aspects that I find to be quite confusing. For example, the timeline jump and setting is rather confusing. Spider-Woman has a new costume in her own comics and now we see her here in the old one. I’m uncertain of the reasons or if they are even accepting her new story. Though Sam Wilson is still Captain America, and we still have our mysterious woman Thor. There’s still a lot of questions unanswered when it comes to things like Thor’s former identity. It will be answered in her series but I feel that they should have tied up all loose ends before starting this apocalyptic close.
Having these questions unanswered is really unsettling. We’re on the final chapter
of the ongoing Marvel Comics, and it feels as if we’re never going to get some answers. It’s possible that unsettled is how we are supposed to feel. Though if it’s the case, I don’t like it.
There are some very confusing transitions. For example, they leave this odd mystery with Captain Marvel. In one scene where Captain Marvel and Iron Man are doing something along the lines of the battle against 1610. Iron Man says something flirtatious referring to a non existent future, Captain Marvel says “Shut Up-“, we move to another panel. She continues saying “The-“ and then we cut to another scene. It left me really confused. Did she just get hit? Did she see something shocking? She was glowing after all. If she was surprised to see something then what was it? We never got to see. A few pages later there she is looking normal. So she wasn’t hit or anything that we can see. It felt so pointless and confusing.
If it means anything we’ll have to wait and see. I feel there are far too many questions and not enough answers. As I’ve mentioned before, if it’s not bad writing it could be intentional in order to give the reader an unsettled and confused feeling. If that’s the case, they’re doing it right. Yet it doesn’t mean we should be left hanging like this.
This isn’t a story for the light of heart, that’s for sure. Within only the first issue we’re seeing some deaths. At first glance we can wonder why since if they are all going to die then what’s the point but looking ahead perhaps there may be reason to have these things so soon. Secret Wars is only supposed to have a total of 8 issues. Comparing that to the Spider-Verse event, who had the main The Amazing Spider-Man, and side comics telling the same story, Secret Wars doesn’t have quite as much. Though I hear there are supposed to be side comics to read just like the Spider-Verse event had. They had Spider-Verse, Spider-Verse Team Up, and even including Spider-Woman, Scarlet Spiders, and Spider-Man 2099. Though they are hard to find. I’ve been on the lookout for one, I got a free card at the comic shop for the Spider-Verse listing but nothing for Secret Wars.
I’m quite curious to see what Mr. Fantastic does in the future after the loss of his family as they were a part of the Resurrection Team. We know for sure they’re dead. Nick Fury of 1610 went down with a fight. There’s also that other confusing moment with Black Widow and Spider-Woman where they seem to have died.
They leave out no action in this story, the title does have “Wars” in it after all. The artwork isn’t as detailed as it has been in the past. Yet simple can mean more. I personally feel the use of color could have been better. It didn’t have as much value (light to dark) as it could have. It’s quite colorful but it felt rather calm with the colors in the outside action. Nothing about the situation is calm.
The colors appear more pastel so it gives a somewhat of a classic feel but if they wanted classic it should have been more bold. Other scenes seemed to have the right amount of saturation and value.
Other than that, the rest of the artwork felt fine but could have done with perhaps a little more face detailing. The movement and action felt right but the faces not so much. I personally find these to be one of the most important yet difficult factors. The inks were great, bold when they needed to be, though not bold enough when there wasn’t enough value. The outdoor fight scenes art really didn’t feel right. I feel the colorist should have applied more color theory.
Secret Wars is off on an interesting, though shaky start. It all may be rather dramatic, I feel closing it all off like this is a bit dramatic. But I’ll enjoy it for what it is. With long running comics going for 54 years, it’s time to retire them. And time to start afresh.