If you read my review of Civil War II #0, you would remember that while I didn't particularly think the comic was good, I couldn't really grade it too terribly because the bar is set soooo low for "zero" comics.
I will not have trouble doing that with this comic, though.
After a solid week of hate leveled at Marvel for Spencer's retcon of Steve Rodgers, I was skiddish to pick up Civil War II #1. Despite my love of "one-shots," I do appreciate well put together, comic-wide events that have lasting ramifications upon the medium. DC had me hooked on ever sense the first "Crisis" and I have lamented the loss of my paycheck ever sense.
After the "zero" issue, we had a bunch of dangling storylines just waiting to be brought together. While I poked fun at it, I felt that Brian Michael Bendis would weave these threads together to make a coherent story.
Note: Massive Spoilers for a comic I will not recommend you buy single issues of.
We start at the denouement of a battle with a Celestial. A MUTHER MR FALCON CELESTIAL.
Miles Morales is picking a building off himself, quipping how weird this all is. It's interesting to note that we never see him again in this comic; it's as if Bendis just wanted to remind us that he created a character we all love. Thanks to the all magic wielder, the world is saved and we are left with the question (not just one, though):
How did the heroes know about this invasion of a primordial god?
So, Tony Stark has a bacchanalian party to celebrate that reminiscent of Age of Ultron, not the comic, the movie that came out last year. Seriously. Heroes celebrate at Stark Tower in what Joss Whedon might consider copyright infringement. Complete with a put down of War-Machine.
Stark asks Danvers how the Ultimates knew of the impending apocalypse. She tells him the Inhumans informed her so he walks over to do what Steve Rodgers is already doing (cause he's good at his job, which is being a hero and not a traitor (sorry, I'll stop)). Medusa and the Royal court of Attilan take a select group of Avenger members into a closet and reveal that their newest member, Ulysses, has visions of the future ... or possible futures ... or the realities of future alternate universes. They told the Ultimates, who told the Avengers,who saved the day.
But that is not good enough to Tony Stark.
Tony has a moral problem with this and Steve Rodgers has to chime in.
Tony walks out like a little bitch that can't handle people disagreeing with him (at this point I think Bendis doesn't know that Tony from the 616 isn't the drunk asshole narcissist that he made in the 1610). We flash-forward to Tony talking to Friday about why he can't get it up any more ( I may have read into the dialog), when MJ comes in with a message that his best friend Col. Rhodes is dead.
So a pissed off Tony finds out that Carol Danvers lead a mission against Thanos baased on a vision of the newest Inhuman. In a huff, over the dying body of She-Hulk, he accuses Captain Marvel of murdering his BFF and storms out. Jennifer dies while whispering something to Carol. The End.
That's it. She-Hulk, who had a huge moralizing scene in the "zero" issue, is just dead after a fight we didn't see which took place for reasons we don't understand why.
War-Machine is dead because he volunteered for that same mission.
Why did somebody die in the "zero" issue? What was the point of all that, cause the person it effected had one panel of dialog?
The main problem with this comic is that it references fights and storylines I would have rather seen and expounded upon but instead are only hinted at. It's not that these fight have even occurred in the Marvel Universe yet ... or even will ... Bendis just uses these untold (and seemingly awesome) battles as a narrative device.
Let me say it that another way: Bendis uses a "you should have been there" method to move the story on Marvel's biggest comics wide event.
You get the idea on how you feel about the writing. The problem is, the art is really good. It is consistent with no weird body type changes that took place in the previous comic. It is detailed and evocative. I really do love what David Marquez accomplishes in this issue. This gives me such mixed feelings because while this is a flagship comic that gives his delicious art exposure; you have a self aggrandizing hack doing the writing.
Again, you might think reviewing this comic is strait forward. The dialog is stilted, with some of the worst Spider-Man quips ever written. The story is based on events we never see. The great art cant off set this, right?
You are right.
Rating 5.5/10 Ohio State Buckeye References
Bendis must be stopped.