Check out Our Review [WITH SPOILERS] of Civil War II #5!
Writer: Brian Michael Bendis
Artist: David Marquez
Colorist: Justin Ponsor
Oh, Civil War II, do I have a complex relationship with you. I like you, at times, and I might even love you a little, but I’m still waiting for the relationship to truly begin.
At times, it seems that Civil War II is a collection of moments and the rest of the story exists to get to these moments. So far, those big moments include the introduction of Ulysses, the death of War Machine, the injury to She-Hulk, Tony Stark’s attack on the Inhumans to kidnap Ulysses and the Inhumans’ counterattack, the death of Bruce Banner at the hands of Clint Barton, and the events of this latest issue. The stuff in between feels a bit rushed and at times, somewhat artificial, but when the action crescendos, it’s oft-times breathtaking.
So let’s get to Civil War II #5, the very late chapter of the event. This issue is a big ass slugfest. Many Marvel characters, old and new, finally throw down in the war between Iron Man and Captain Marvel. You’ve seen this sort of thing many times before, but Brian Michael Bendis keeps it somewhat fresh by including some newer Marvel heroes like Miles Morales, Nova, and Ms. Marvel. The battle also sharply focuses in on some key members of the Guardians of the Galaxy so this is in no way a paint by numbers retread of the original Civil War. Allowing readers into the minds of these heroes allows for a fresh perspective into the ‘ol crossover whiz-bang fight scene so it kind of all moves pleasantly forward as heroes philosophize and fight.
Alright, I’m going to drop a fat spoiler on you here, so turn back now. Ready?
So, during the fight Ulysses has a big honking vision that he is able to share with all the heroes throwing down on his behalf. The vision consists of Miles Morales murdering Steve Rogers. Now, this in and of itself is pretty shocking, but when one adds the layer of Rogers’ HYDRA allegiance, well, wow, Bendis just opened some serious story doors here.
This is one of the best uses of dramatic irony I’ve seen in mainstream superhero comics in a very long time. To the heroes present, Miles may do the unthinkable. But to the reader, Miles may have just killed the most dangerous man in the Marvel Universe. We’ll see how Bendis sticks the landing, but this moment makes me want to read a whole hell of a lot more Marvel books to see how this plays out.
In that case, I guess Civil War II #5 is a success. I’m still troubled that Carol Danvers is acting like an obsessive nutjob rather than, you know, Carol Danvers. I’m still annoyed by the delays, and I’m still irked by some of the plot liberties this crossover has taken, but I’ll be damned if that bit of business with Rogers and Miles didn’t hit me in the nerd g-spot.
Artist David Marquez brings his A-game as every panel is packed with superhero vs. superhero action and hey, even Alpha Flight gets involved so there are some deep cuts here.
Everything is still a bit of a mess, but Civil War II is a fun mess and now I’m deeply itching for the next chapter- which probably hits sometime in 2018 or some such nonsense.