Friday, 23 October 2015

Secret Wars #4 Review (Jonathan Hickman, Esad Ribic)


Jonathan Hickman wakes up Secret Wars with an action-centric fourth issue as the Thors battle Thanos and the Cull Obsidian (called it!) - and then the surviving 616 heroes join in! Also Doom proves his badassery by murderising not one but two Marvel heroes (but nobody popular so that’s ok). 

That all follows after the first talky part though. The more Sheriff Strange tries to explain Battleworld and its existence, the less sense it makes. I think most readers at this point know Battleworld is made up of fragments from other universes - conveniently pieces of the surviving heroes’ homes like Miles Morales’ New York and Black Panther’s Wakanda - but what about the people? 

Strange and Doom are the originals from 616 - we know this as Strange talks about the Illuminati trying to stop worlds from colliding like we saw in New Avengers - but what about the others? Did Doom make them all like he made Battleworld? And what about the Thors - are they clones or something? We’re only at the halfway point though (and I haven’t read any of the tie-ins) so maybe it’s going to be explained or has been elsewhere. 

At 26 pages this is the shortest issue in the event so far (Marvel shrinking the page count but not the price point - this is how event comics work!) yet lots of stuff happens - I didn’t expect character deaths this early on! I’m still not sure what the story is though. Is it purely about explaining how Battleworld came to be? Is it going to be about 616 and Ultimate Reed Richards teaming up to fight Doom (I just made that up, there’s been no intimation of that I’m just grasping at straws)? I don’t know. An excuse for lots of generic Marvel action seems the likely bet. 

Also the title page summary seems off - it says that two life-rafts survived but we’ve seen three so far. Buh - has Hickman lost track of his own story?! 

Secret Wars #4 has the shock factor for the deaths but not a whole lot else. Also, a plot would be nice. 

On we go - louder! More incoherent!

Secret Wars #4

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