SECRET WARS #1 [Face-Off Review]: The Whole Gang’s Here!

It’s the biggest Marvel Comics event since last week! Well, OK, fine. Secret Wars 2.0 (or is this now 3.0?) is easily the biggest Marvel event ever. There, hyperbole up the ying. But it’s true. With SW, every significant Marvel event/crossover/elseworlds tale/universe dukes it out for the Wrestlemania of superhero Royal Rumbles.

Hope that made sense. Either way, we’ve got four dynamic clergygeeks who dared enter the first day of the 6-month spanning squared circle. Here’s what they have to say…

SECRET WARS #1 - Marvel Comics
SECRET WARS #1 – Marvel Comics
Lance Paul "The Apostle" @lance_paul
Lance Paul “The Apostle”

This reminds me of a song from the blissful years of 1987 by the always great R.E.M., “It’s the End of the World as We Know It (And I Feel Fine).” Truly fitting for the end of the Marvel Universe as we know it, and thanks to Jonathan Hickman (New Avengers, X-Force) it is Amazing, Uncanny, and Spectacular!

The Secret Wars have begun.

Secret Wars #1 has been years in the making, and Jonathan delivers in full Aces. Still, the issue does leave a ton open for discovery, and this issue does function more as a fitting end than either the recent New Avengers or Avengers end sufficed to accomplish. Secret Wars is going to be massive, way more established and filled out than DC ever hoped to accomplish with Convergence, even if you don’t touch the Battleworld labels.

This issue will have fans and news talking, maybe even more than the recent deaths of Captain America, Spider-Man, etc. ever accomplished. Because for once, Marvel has delivered an event that will truly have lasting effects.

What Hickman accomplishes with superb storytelling, the combined duo of penciler Esad Ribic (Thor: God of Thunder, Uncanny X-Force) and colorist Ive Svocina (Starlight, Dexter) go even further to knock this issue out of the f%&king comic shop park! Ribic handles this massive event and huge cast with conceptional aspects and facial delivery that should place him on the top of Marvel’s roster. You combine those efforts with Svorcina’s palette richness and you have a masterpiece.

If this is any indication where Hickman will end, we are in for one of hell of a roller coaster. 5/5 Revelation Bibles agree.

"Abbess" Jackie @Jackie_Henley
“Abbess” Jackie

All hell-on-earth is breaking loose in Secret Wars and the entire Marvel gang — and I mean the ENTIRE Marvel gang — has joined forces to save Manhattan, and ultimately, Earth. Keeping track of so many story lines in so little frames is a complicated task that is done well in this premiere episode, but I would have more appropriately titled it “What the…”, as that seems to be the general consensus of all the superheroes at this point. Which is fair, because that’s exactly how your Abbess felt when I figured out Captain America’s Chris Evans was originally one of the Fantastic 4. The artwork from Ribic and Svorcina is the perfect aid to such a large story with so many character lines, and hones focus well on what otherwise would be too scattered to keep track in a lesser-quality comic. 4.5/5 Secret Bibles, deducting a mere half a point for ending too soon!

Getting us together for breakfast was never supposed to be so hard.
GHG’s 3-year anniversary party was a blast.
"Deacon E" Esko @EskoBTS
“Deacon E” Esko

WHOAH!! I’ve got to admit, I’m no bonafied board licensed comic book expert. So maybe I just haven’t come across the right kind of comic book lately. Maybe I’ve been surrounded by subpar super citizen stories. Or maybe, Secret Wars is just pure awesomeness poured straight from the natural springs of Marvel Mountain. The drawings are fully engaging and detailed. All the colors work together to not only set the vibe of the frame, but also the frames works together to make the entire page a work of art. It’s awesome to see the heroes of different universes in roles you wouldn’t normally expect. I loved seeing every character play their part in the war. The team aspect of it all really comes across well in this, too. Usually every hero is the star of the show, where as in Secret Wars, the focus is on the teams as a whole and the overall objective of each side. The last 2 Earths battling for survival. I’m not even sure which side I want to Groot for. Rocket Racoon’s jab at dollar comic books felt completely out of place and forced. However, overall, the writing is fluid and very robust. There’s not just action, there’s embedded emotions and connections brilliantly integrated in the story. Not once did I think the plot was predictable. There are rumors that my heart rate increased while reading this, but I can neither confirm nor deny such allegations. Loved this issue and can’t wait for the next. 4.5/5 Bibles.

Ryan "Salvation" Scott @radio_adventure
Ryan “Salvation” Scott

What the serious fuck just happened? No really, not in like a “whoa Breaking Bad was crazy last night, but I understand it” kind of what happened. Like, really, what the cluster f*** just actually happened. I’ve read a lot of event comics over the years, and I understand that if you don’t read all of the tie ins leading up to the main event it can be a bit confusing at times, but this is utterly baffling. Secret Wars #1 is like stepping into the main event of a long and complicated action movie where you know next to nothing of the plot and have to figure out what is happening. The art is totally great and the whole gang is along for the ride; but to this Sermonizer, this falls way short and feels like Marvel is trying to rip off the reboot bandaid. I can only hope this series become more coherent. *sigh* Jonathan Hickman is amazing at what he does, but, sorry guys, this is a hot mess so far. 2/5 Bibles.

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