Secret Invasion #8 Review

The Revolution has been summarily unimpressed with the unoriginal and one-dimensional big event known as Secret Invasion. This story has lumbered on for seemingly an eternity. I am so grateful that the end is finally here. I have low expectations for this finale, but maybe Bendis will surprise me with an exciting and thrilling ending. Let’s go ahead and do this review for Secret Invasion #8.

Writer: Brian Michael Bendis
Pencils: Leinel Yu
Inks: Mark Morales

Art Rating: 6 Night Girls out of 10
Story Rating: 3 Night Girls out of 10
Overall Rating: 4.5 Night Girls out of 10

Synopsis: We begin with two voices from off panel narrating the final events of Secret Invasion. (You must be kidding me. The finale to Secret Invasion is going to be told in the form of a past tense narration?) We learn that Janet Pym was turned into a last ditch bio-weapon by the Skrulls. Janet began emitting energy that was killing everyone, humans and Skrulls. The Skrulls decided that if they could not have Earth then neither could the humans.

Fortunately, as one of the voices narrates, Thor took control and formed a massive tornado around Janet that allowed her to dissipate into nothingness without harming anyone. (At least that is what it appeared happened. I found this scene a bit clunky and hard to follow.) Janet is dead.

The heroes then charged the Skrull Queen. However, it was Norman Osborn who got the kill shot and blew the Skrull Queen’s head off with his gun. Iron Man appeared back on the scene in one of his older suits of armor. The heroes that could fly then took to the air and destroyed the remaining Skrull warships.

The heroes then flew into space and destroyed the rest of the Skrull armada outside of Earth’s atmosphere. Iron Man scanned the ships for anymore doomsday weapons. Iron Man is stunned by what he found on one of the Skrull ships. The heroes bring back the one Skrull ship that Iron Man scanned and took control over with his tech.

The heroes land the ship back in New York. They open the ship and out steps every single super hero and SHIELD agent that the Skrulls had impersonated. One of the voices asks why the Skrulls would keep the humans alive after impersonating them. That it would make more sense to kill the humans and dump their bodies. The other voice answers that the Skrull technology that allowed them to totally mimic a person required that the original person to be kept alive. (Very convenient.)

We see Jarvis among the heroes and SHIELD agents getting off the ship. At that point, Jessica realizes that she left her and Luke’s baby with a Skrull posing as Jarvis. Jessica screams and flies off for Avengers’ Tower. Ms. Marvel grabs Luke and follows Jessica. They all arrive at Avengers’ Tower and see that the baby is gone. Jessica screams that the Skrulls stole her baby. (Dingo stole my baby!)

The Hood and his villains decide that since the war is over that it was time for them to make a quick and silent exit. Iron Man happily hugs Henry Pym. Henry then asks where Janet is. Everyone falls silent. Also among the rescued heroes and SHIELD Agents are Dum Dum Dugan and Fontaine. They are happy to see Nick Fury. However, Nick just glowers at them and then teleports himself and his new Howling Commandos away from the scene.

We see Mockingbird also stepping off the Skrull ship. Clint is beyond happy to see that his wife is alive. The two kiss. We see Sue Storm step off the ship and hug Reed. At that point, Sue, not Reed, notices that the Baxter Building is engulfed by the Negative Zone. (Jeez, you just noticed a massive negative zone black hole engulfing your building where your kids are?)

Reed and Sue zip over to the Baxter Building. Reed tells Sue not to worry that the building has a secure line back-up procedure in the ninth level of the basement in case the negative zone is ever breached. Sure enough we see Ben, Johnny and the kids hanging out safe and sound. Reed then taps away at the computer system controlling the Negative Zone and tells everyone that they should go outside just to be safe. We see the Fantastic Four standing outside the Baxter Building as the building suddenly and miraculously completely re-builds itself.

We cut back to the scene where the heroes are welcoming back the kidnapped heroes. Iron Man approaches Thor and thanks him for his help and says that he is glad that Thor is back with them and that there is so much they have to do.

Thor snaps that he said he would never fight along Tony’s side again and that he would never join Tony’s ranks again. Thor says that he abhors what Tony has become and that Thor is sure that he will not be the only one who finds the blame in all this to fall square on Tony’s shoulders. Of course, since Bendis is writing the issue Tony just stands there like a bitch and says nothing and simply hangs his head.

We see Hulkling watching the Skrull prisoners of war being rounded up. The Skrulls whine that they no longer have a home planet and that without Earth they will have nowhere to live. Hulkling laments that the Skrull Empire is not about war (Huh, what?) and that this Skrull invasion is the work of extremists and not the Skrull people. Hulkling says that this was terrorism. (Um, no actually it was a full scale invasion. It was war not terrorism.)

We cut to the White House and learn that the two voices who have been talking back and forth and narrating this entire issue are none other than the President and one of his advisors. The President decides that Tony Stark has failed and is to be removed as the Director of SHIELD. (Thank god. Something positive has come out of this wretched big event after all.) The President says that SHIELD has proven to be no longer viable and will be shut down. (Wow, that is just a bit of an overreaction. And isn’t SHIELD a United Nations sponsored and governed agency and not an American sponsored and governed agency?)

We cut to a press conference with the President unveiling the head of this new agency that will replace SHIELD and work to protect the planet from any threats inside and out. The President says that only one man has shown himself to be worthy of this position. And that one man is Norman Osborn. The President announces that SHIELD’s old jurisdiction, the Avengers and the Fifty-State Initiative now falls under the Thunderbolts Initiative.

The President continues that Starktech will no longer be used in any form of defense capacity or by the military since it has been shown to be compromised to the point of uselessness.

Norman Osborn then takes the podium and announces that Tony Stark will be subject to a full-scale investigation. We see Tony sitting at his SHIELD desk with the Osborn press conference playing on a large screen. Maria Hill comments that this is all a kick in the head. Maria wonders how long it will take the government to realize that they handed the keys to everything over to a psychopath.

Tony just sits there like a lump and does not answer. Maria asks if Tony is okay. Tony does not respond. Maria asks if Tony is okay once more. Tony looks up and says “What?”

We shift to Avengers Tower with Norman pouring himself a drink. He then walks to a secret room. In the room is a round table. Seated at the table are the Hood, Namor, Doctor Doom, Loki and Emma Frost. (Wait, am I missing something? When did Emma become a bad guy on this level?) Norman says “Thank you for meeting with me…It’s a new day. So listen carefully. This is how it is going to be…” End of issue.

Comments
The Good: What a fittingly unimpressive finish to an over-hyped, over-blown and unoriginal big event. Having said that, there were several positives to come out of Secret Invasion #8. I am glad that Henry Pym, Dum Dum Dugan, Fontaine and Jarvis are all alive and well. I like each of those characters, in particular Henry Pym, and I was not thrilled when they all turned out to be Skrulls.

I have enjoyed how Bendis has handled Nick Fury’s character throughout Secret Invasion and all of the various tie-in issues. And my enjoyment of Bendis’ handling of Fury continues with Secret Invasion #8. I thought it was a great move by Bendis to have Nick Fury give Dum Dum and Fontaine the cold shoulder and simply teleport away from the scene without a word. It certainly seems that Marvel is making Nick Fury their version of Batman since Nick is the resident trust nobody dick.

This scene was a great way to establish the fact that Nick Fury is going to assume a position on the fringe and operate independent of every other agency and group in the 616 universe. This scene was a subtle yet proper segue into Nick Fury’s new direction in the Marvel Universe on Secret Warriors where Nick is going to work in the shadows and outside of the law and government in order to combat Norman Osborn’s Thunderbolts and the cabal of villains that we saw at the end of this issue.

Of course, it will come as no surprise to any regular Followers of The Revolution, that what I enjoyed the most about Secret Invasion #8 was that Marvel finally removed Tony Stark from overseeing the Initiative and removed him as the Director of SHIELD. Thank God.

I have been not so patiently waiting for this moment since the minute Marvel completely screwed over Tony’s character during Civil War. Hopefully, writers like Bendis can now leave Tony alone and Iron Man fans can get back to enjoying a more entertaining and classic version of Iron Man that is true to his roots and his continuity.

Bendis did a fine job setting Norman Osborn up as the “hero” of the Skrull invasion in the eyes of the media by allowing Osborn to get the dramatic kill shot on the Skrull Queen. I absolutely love that Marvel is sliding everything under the direction of Norman Osborn. It is an excellent decision to place the Avengers, the Fifty-State Initiative and SHIELD’s old jurisdiction and duties under the Thunderbolts Initiative and under Osborn’s singular control.

Osborn is a wonderful classic Marvel villain and is the perfect character to place in charge of an “evil” government agency. And writers can now easily and relentlessly kick around Norman Osborn without having to resort to distorting his character like they have been doing with Tony Stark over the past couple of years.

The ending to Secret Invasion, while anti-climactic, without a doubt serves as a great lead-in to the next big event in Dark Reign. The fact that Norman Osborn has gathered together a cabal of villains is of no surprise at all. However the members were a bit surprising.

Doctor Doom was a predictable choice. The Hood was also painfully predictable since that is one of Bendis’ pet creations. Namor was a bit of a surprise. However, Namor has always straddled that line between hero and villain so I like his insertion into this group. Emma Frost was most definitely a surprise. This cabal of villains is an interesting flipside of the Illuminati.

In the end, the best aspect of Secret Invasion #8 has nothing to do with Secret Invasion itself. Instead, it is the next event in Dark Reign and all the titles that will spin out of the aftermath of Secret Invasion. Dark Reign, while not a terribly novel or surprising concept, most certainly has the potential to be an entertaining event that should spawn plenty of enjoyable stories.

I am certainly excited about several of the titles spinning out of Secret Invasion. I am looking forward to Agents of Atlas. This is an intriguing collection of characters and this title should provide plenty of enjoyable action adventure stories.

I am also looking forward to Secret Warriors covering Nick Fury and his newbie metahuman recruits. I have enjoyed how Bendis has handled Fury’s character up to this point and I have always thought that placing Bendis on a Nick Fury title would be a good idea. And the best part is that Bendis will be co-writing Secret Warriors with Jonathan Hickman. I hope this means that Bendis can help with plotting but leave the actual dialogue to Hickman which should help with Bendis’ obvious weakness with writing team titles.

Bendis will be kicking off a new title called Dark Avengers. While I have little interest in Dark Avengers and I question the need for a third Avengers title, the good news of Dark Avengers is that it means that Bendis will be leaving Mighty Avengers to write Dark Avengers.

And the even better news is that Dan Slott will be taking over Mighty Avengers. I am beyond ecstatic. Finally, we might actually get an Avengers title that focuses on the Avengers. And Slott is a wonderful choice to handle this team title. This title should dramatically improve. Now if we could just get Bendis off of New Avengers then I would be in heaven.

The Bad: Secret Invasion #8 was another unimpressive read. As it has been through out this event, the dialogue was resolutely average. Characters either spoke in typical “Bendis speak” or they had a completely bland and generic voice. The character work in this issue was also non-existent. As it has been through out this event, the characters are all rather one-dimensional and mechanically move their way through the story as if they were robots.

Even though technically a lot of plotlines were wrapped up and concluded in this issue, the fact is that Secret Invasion #8 felt like a slow and bloated issue that lumbered along at a clumsy pace as tried to conveniently tie-up most of the loose-ends. The plotting has been a weakness on Secret Invasion since the beginning and it continued to be a weakness in Secret Invasion #8. Various parts of this issue lacked internal logic and too many plotlines were resolved in a hurried and convenient fashion.

The finale of Secret Invasion in this story was as thin, dull and predictable as the rest of this big event. This big event has had a paint-by-numbers feel to it since the beginning and so did the ending that we got in this issue. All the events in Secret Invasion #8 felt rather rote. It seemed like Bendis had his standard issue checklist that he got from his Big Events 101 class and simply went right down it and checked off each plotline that had to be concluded.

The biggest technical flaw to Secret Invasion #8 was the horrible decision by Bendis to deliver this final “climactic” issue in the past tense via narration from two off panel characters. Dios mio, I cannot believe a professional writer would think that this was a good idea. This passive technique of delivering the story in this issue completely mutes the story.

This passive technique robs the issue of any energy and also removes the reader from the immediacy of the scenes as we know that everything has already been wrapped up and the Skrulls have been defeated. Instead of the reader feeling like they are experiencing the action live and as it is happening, the reader feels like they are watching the events in this issue on television in a documentary done well after the events have concluded.

I was largely unmoved by Janet’s death. It was not particularly interesting, well developed or dramatic. And Janet did not die in a particularly heroic fashion. And the impact of Janet’s threat as a last resort doomsday device was a total failure since Thor was able to dispatch her with relative ease and in short order.

I guess Bendis felt like he had to kill someone in this final issue and that Bendis chose Janet since her death would have “impact” since she is an original Avenger. And also that Janet’s death would not set off a fury of protests from fans since Janet has never been a particularly popular character with your average reader.

And the way that the heroes easily resolved the Skrull’s last ditch doomsday weapon leads me to my next point. Too many of the plotlines in Secret Invasion #8 were resolved in a far too easy and convenient manner. The Skrulls folded like a cheap suit in a matter of two pages in this issue. The heroes plow through the Skrull army and the Skrull armada like a hot knife through butter.

The ending to the war with the Skrulls was so rushed and way too easy. And the worst part was that we saw very little fighting at all. Instead, we simply saw the aftermath of the heroes dismantling the Skrull Armada. The vast majority of how the heroes won was simply told to the reader by the two off-panel voices narrating this issue. This was about as unexciting a victory in a war story that I have read.

The revelation that all the heroes and SHIELD agents who had been replaced by Skrulls were alive and well on one of the Skrull ships was another far too convenient ending to that plotline. The excuse that the technology that allowed the Skrulls to perfectly replicate a human required the Skrulls to keep that human alive seemed like a bit of a cheat.

The resolution to the disaster over at the Baxter Building was also too easy and convenient with how Ben, Johnny and the kids had been perfectly safe this entire time since Reed had a special 9th floor of the basement designed for exactly this situation. And I found it absolutely silly that with just a few keystrokes Reed has the Baxter Building completely rebuild itself.

Now, I am a big fan of Hawkeye so I am glad that Mockingbird is not actually dead. I guess that Bendis has felt guilty for mishandling Hawkeye ever since Bendis took over the Avengers that Bendis felt the need to give Clint the gift of having his wife back. But, the fact remains that I could have cared less about Mockingbird coming back to life or not. This had little impact on me. Honestly, has anyone been clamoring for Mockingbird to be brought back to life?

And Mockingbird being brought back makes me wonder just how far back do these Skrull replacements go? Mockingbird died in West Coast Avengers #100 and that was in 1993. So does Marvel now have a get out of death card for any character that died in the Marvel Universe since 1993?

And I also have a problem reconciling Bendis having Mockingbird alive all this time on a Skrull ship with the stories that we got about Mockingbird after her died. How does this fit with the events of when the Grim Reaper used Mockingbird’s re-animated corpse to attack the Avengers? Or the Hellcat mini-series where we see Mockingbird in hell were she turns down an opportunity to come back to life.

If the Mockingbird who died in West Coast Avengers #100 was a Skrull then why didn’t she revert back to her Skrull form upon death? Why would Mockingbird’s human soul be in hell if she was being held captive in a Skrull ship this entire time? Does Bendis every do any research at all for anything he does or does he simply slap on a pair of blinders and just write his story and the rest of Marvel continuity be damned?

I could honestly care less about the plotline involving Skrully Jarvis stealing Jessica and Luke’s baby. The war is over and the Skrulls got absolutely crushed. What the hell good is stealing the baby of two C-list characters? It just seemed unnecessary and pointless. And if all the Skrulls have surrendered like they did in this issue then what is Skrully Jarvis going to do? Use the baby as a hostage to take over Earth all by himself?

Of course, with Secret Invasion coming to an end with this issue, Bendis took this final opportunity to perform some more character assassination on Tony Stark. It is obvious that Bendis dislikes Tony’s character and has never read a single issue of Iron Man. And Bendis clearly could care less if he writers Tony in his proper character or not. This is rather unfortunate to see from a professional writer.

The scene with Tony and Thor was just vintage Bendis taking several more cheap shots at Tony. Thor’s condemnation was really over the top. I mean Thor completely abhors everything about Tony. Bendis makes Tony come across like Ted Bundy. Seriously, does Tony also eat small babies for breakfast?

And I love how somehow Bendis has Thor blame everything on Tony. Why not? I am sure that global warming will also end up being Tony’s fault? Bendis went so overboard with his misrepresentation of Tony Stark’s character and Thor’s condemnation of Tony was so heavy handed that this scene became absolutely laughable and comical. I do not think that Bendis’ intent with the scene between Tony and Thor was to make me burst out laughing.

Tony’s reaction in the scene with Maria Hill during Norman’s press conference was also just silly and out of character. All Tony does is just sit there in the dark in a chair and all he is able to utter is “What?” Please, Tony has never been presented in this fashion. Tony is a ultra-Type A personality with a mind that never stops calculating his next several moves.

And another problem with this scene is that we have already seen during the Knaufs’ run on Iron Man: Director of SHIELD how much Tony hated running SHIELD and how he often wished that he could leave it all and return to running his own company. Tony also had already been placed under arrest by the government and stripped of his command of SHIELD during the Knaufs run. Tony had been expecting at some point for the government to end up replacing him. So, Tony’s speechless reaction by Bendis simply exposed Bendis for his lack of knowledge of anything going on outside of his own titles and his obvious lack of research before writing this issue.

I found the President deeming that Starktech has been compromised to the point of uselessness a little silly. So it got hacked by the Skrulls. Does that mean that Stark could not come up with a security patch or modify his tech? And what technology is there that the government could employ that would not run the risk of being hacked into. It is almost impossible to stop that from happening. All tech eventually gets hacked at some point.

Bendis’ weak and unoriginal effort to squeeze some tired post 9-11 commentary into Secret Invasion with the scene were Hulking says that the Skrull invaders were not representative of the Skrull Empire was a total miss with me. The idea that the Skrull Armada was nothing more than extremists and terrorists is totally unbelievable. These were Skrull soldiers and this was a full scale war. This invasion was nothing even remotely like terrorism. And the Skrulls has pretty much been proven to be a nasty species throughout their history in the 616 universe.

Now, even though I like that Norman Osborn now heads up SHIELD’s jurisdiction as well as the Avengers and the Fifty-State Initiative I do have just one nagging question. Isn’t SHIELD a UN sponsored, governed and sanctioned agency? How does the President of the United States have the authority to fire the Director of SHIELD and then unilaterally shut down SHIELD if it is a UN agency? Maybe SHIELD got retconned into an American agency at some point and I did not know about it.

Now, let’s talk about Norman Osborn’s cabal of villains. I alluded to the fact earlier that while I agree that Doctor Doom, Namor, Norman Osborn and Loki all deserve to be at this table I had reservations about the Hood and Emma Frost. There is simply no way anyone will convince me that the Hood belongs to be at the same table as the rest of these characters.
And my initial reaction to Emma Frost being included with these criminals is a negative one. Personally, I love Emma as a “good guy” and a reformed villainess. It is what makes her character so intriguing. You want to hate her, but you can’t because she really does make for an invaluable member of the X-Men.

Of course, to be fair, I will give Marvel some time before I jump on them for including Emma in this circle. For all we know, Emma is acting as a mole and could be spying on this cabal of villains in order to help bring them down from the inside.

In the end, I found Secret Invasion’s ending to be an incredibly small payoff given the amount of hype and the length and scope of this big event. Even though I like the concept of Dark Reign and the possibilities that it presents with the various new titles and the general direction for the Marvel Universe, this was still an incredibly underwhelming payoff for such an overblown and overhyped event like Secret Invasion.

The long and the short of it was that the entire point of Secret Invasion was so Norman Osborne would be put in control of SHIELD’s jurisdiction, the Avengers and the Fifty-State Initiative and then, in turn, Norman would gather his own cabal of villains. Honestly, Marvel did not need to waste time going through all the ridiculously silly machinations of Secret Invasion just to get to this point. It is like using a flamethrower to light your portable barbeque grill.

Dark Reign could have been easily put in place in a much faster and easier fashion. The Knaufs already hinted during their run on Iron Man: Director of SHIELD how tenuous Tony’s position as the Director of SHIELD was. It would have been easy for the President to fire Tony since the Avengers and SHIELD continuously failed and/or refused to bring in unregistered heroes when they clearly had an opportunity to do so.

I would have found Dark Reign much cooler of an idea if it had been brought into place by something not as overly hyped as Secret Invasion. Marvel built up Secret Invasion so much that the pay-off of Osborne being in control of SHIELD’s old jurisdiction and the Initiative and forming a cabal of villains was anti-climactic and nothing particularly surprising in the least bit. Dark Reign is a rather predictable direction that most readers felt Marvel was going to move toward a long time ago.

I am simply not a fan of Leinel Yu and Mark Morales style of artwork. I find the faces of the characters to be downright horrendous. All in all, Secret Invasion was not the prettiest looking big event that I have seen. Having said that, many readers love Yu’s style of art and surely they will enjoy the look of Secret Invasion #8 much more than me.

Overall: In the end, Secret Invasion was exactly what I though it was. It was an unoriginal, predictable and mindless fight-fest. Secret Invasion can truly be summed up by a line from Shakespeare’s Macbeth: “it is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.” The Secret Invasion event was shallow, poorly paced, sloppily plotted, often lacked internal logic and at points suffered from poor research. I am sure that Secret Invasion will be quickly forgotten.

But, let’s take this opportunity to kick the dirt on Secret Invasion and focus on the positive aspects of this new direction of the Marvel Universe that Dark Reign presents. Dark Reign, while not that original or earth-shattering of an idea, still should provide for some entertaining stories.

I do appreciate that Marvel was able to crank out Secret Invasion without any real delays. The way that Marvel handled the shipping schedule of Secret Invasion and all of the various tie-in issues was impressive. And without a doubt, some of the Secret Invasion tie-in issues were quite compelling reads that overshadowed Secret Invasion itself.

Also, while I might not agree with everything Joey Q does, that Marvel certainly has a clear direction and purpose in mind with each big event and how they lead into the next big event and the way that they impact the Marvel Universe. Marvel carefully plots out their goals and stays focused and committed to their decisions and to the direction that they are headed in. That is something that DC could learn to do.

17 Comments

  1. Yeah, i thought the ending was rather unimpressive. I like the direction they are taking the MU with dark reign. I think that the easiest way to justify Emma Frost being in that group is that her number one focus is to keep mutants safe. Cyclops has already shown to do questionable things to ensure mutant saftey, if norman osborn is in charge, then he could very easily decide that mutants are to be hunted down. Also, with the original illuminati, the whole purpose was that someone represented all factions of the MU. The x-men dont really have a big bad right now. Pre-Messiah Complex, i would have said that Sinister would make a good addition. Now, the tranny sinister just doesnt seem that sinister. Magneto isnt really a big bad right now either. You could go with Bastion and his cabal of revived villains from x-force but i dont think he would concern himself with anything but anti mutant affairs. The inclusion of Namor is not really all that suprising either, it was foreshadowed in Penance: Relentless (great comic) and Sub-Mariner (another great comic).
    -hobosk8er

  2. One major plotline that I wanted resolved was the one with the Sentry becoming the Void again. What happened to that? The Sentry is one of my favorite characters and I would have thought that this Dark Reign was actually stemming from this event. I think it would have been interesting if the Sentry/Void creature used his powers to take over the earth since he is practically unstoppable. It could do a lot of good things if it was given to the right writer. I also think it would be cool for Thor and the Sentry to fight too. I think Dark Reign could have been a bit less generic if it had taken that approach.

  3. Didn’t the Skrulls already have trouble keeping a Henry Pym copy from “going native” as a human? It seems that they actually did need to keep him alive if he had to be recopied every so often.

    Or maybe telepathy was involved in the process of a Skrull living as a human to this degree. Needing to keep the originals alive wasn’t hoaky in itself, it just wasn’t explained well.

    So was the ending of RIP more of a let-down because excitement ran high up to the end, or less of a let-down because the trip to get there was better?

  4. I’m disappointed as well. It’s one thing to tell people that all of a sudden the people you trust are really shape-shifting aliens, but it’s another to suddenly have the fight end and then all of the people they replaced are miraculously found alive. Where is the sense of real loss here? Wasp is dead. Baby Cage is missing. But everything else is okay?

    Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad Spider-Woman is back, but in terms of a general storyline, it sucks.

  5. “Janet began emitting energy that was killing everyone, humans and Skrulls. The Skrulls decided that if they could not have Earth then neither could the humans.”

    See, if I was a Skrull in Space, I’d just drop a bomb or something instead of some conveluted gentic bio thingy. Seriously, nukes from space, the end.

    “At that point, Sue, not Reed, notices that the Baxter Building is engulfed by the Negative Zone. (Jeez, you just noticed a massive negative zone black hole engulfing your building where your kids are?)”

    Come on, give the guy a break. Look, there have been times when I turn my head for just a second, and when I turn around, one of the kids has somehow climbed up on one of the bookshelves. It happens.

    “How does this fit with the events of when the Grim Reaper used Mockingbird’s re-animated corpse to attack the Avengers? Or the Hellcat mini-series where we see Mockingbird in hell were she turns down an opportunity to come back to life.”

    Easy, Bendis hates other writers.

    “What the hell good is stealing the baby of two C-list characters? It just seemed unnecessary and pointless.”

    He also hates the readers.

    “Seriously, does Tony also eat small babies for breakfast? “

    And now you know why the took Luke’s kid.

    “Bendis’ weak and unoriginal effort to squeeze some tired post 9-11 commentary into Secret Invasion with the scene were Hulking says that the Skrull invaders were not representative of the Skrull Empire was a total miss with me.”

    True, but made the point was Hulking being dumb for thinking that it was in fact a small group, and not reolizeing the real danger. But I’m probally giveing Bendis too much credit.

  6. Overall, I think the Revolution is right.

    I believe that instead of spinning this into a new “Event” (if that is what Dark Reign is) is not as good of an idea as progressing a continuing 616 evolution.

    I know that the difference is subtle, but with each new event the feeling of environment gets lost. A good example of this is the X titles. Since M-Day, we have felt the oppression of extinction weighing on us even as just readers. We know where this is eventually going to conclude if something is not done. We are slowly developing out of this with the onsight of Uncanny 500 and the end of Cable’s first arc, but we still see the point of the titles as well as the motives of the characters shifting to new or uncharted areas. And I have to admit that there have been several times I pause and feel sorry for Layla Miller, even when reading X titles other than X-Factor. This epitomizes what I’m talking about.

    This, and only this, was the one success of Secret Invasion. The “event” was a progression that led the reader to many tie-ins and background tales; some good reads and some not-so-good (Secret Invasion 1-8). In other words, the mystique of doubt and not being able to trust each other was more compelling in the 616 than the eventual climax.

    Feeling this way about the progression of Marvel, leads me yearn for an admittedly non-traditional view of the story that is Marvel. Instead of wanting writers to display absolute in-character dialogue, I would rather contextual character dialogue relevant to current 616 mood. (I believe the Revolution mentioned this idea in the post, when stating Iron Man’s character in SI compared to his Director of SHIELD dialogoue.)

    To end this lengthy comment, I’ll sum up. SI as a evolutionary step in the MU was fantastic, as a “tie-in event” it was below average. I hope Dark Reign is a motif that we need to overcome without retconns, not an event that could easily fizzle. I may not like the direction that this would go in, but at least it is a direction of growth that I can associate with.

    The End

  7. Kudos to Bendis for managing to knock the finale for “Batman: R.I.P” off the top of my list for most disappointing series climax of the year.

    Part of my problem, I admit, is that I’m too old school: I want the original Avengers back, I don’t like Bucky as Captain America, and Spider-Man should still be married. But what the hell?!? Norman Osborne is the top dog now? There’s suspending belief, and that there’s this.

    Also, I haven’t liked Tony Stark since Civil War (which also stunk), but to blame everything on him is just ridiculous. It’s terrible storytelling, and it’s just an excuse to shuttle him out of the way quickly.

    I can’t say I have any great expectations for anything Marvel is doing after this debacle. Maybe Mephisto can just show up and take everybody’s marriages away and we can start all over again.

  8. “Does Bendis every do any research at all for anything he does or does he simply slap on a pair of blinders and just write his story and the rest of Marvel continuity be damned?”

    BMB’s track record shows that he doesn’t give a damn about continuity or making sense, as long as it fits with HIS story.

    “What the hell good is stealing the baby of two C-list characters?”

    shhhhh…don’t tell Bendis they’re C-list. They’re the foundation of HIS Marvel Universe!

    Snark aside, Luke Cage is C-list Jessica Jones is a D-lister at best.

    “Bendis took this final opportunity to perform some more character assassination on Tony Stark.”

    Of all the things I hate about Bendis (and there are a lot), his treatment of characters he doesn’t like is at the top of the list. And yes, it is extremely unprofessional.

  9. After the whole thing has been said and done, I just don’t understand the “Secret” of SI. Sure, they are shapeshifters and Bendis beat to death the “Are you a Skrull?” fingerpointing. But the only two effects of the secret happen in this issue: Janet’s secret transformation and the baby’s kidnapping. Nothing else, including all that the skrull Spider-woman did needed any undercover skrulls. For all skrull Pym’s doubts, the only thing he did was poison Jan. What a waste of shapeshifters. No killing heroes in their sleep or anything! They didn’t even really do any espionage or spying that couldn’t have been done otherwise. I think the shapeshifting Durlans did better in DC’s 1988 Invasion. At least they went after Fidel Castro. Might as well have been a Kree Invasion. What a waste of paper!

    –werehawk

  10. Hm, my copy seems to be missing the page where Tony says, “I bankrupt myself, torpedo my life and sell my soul for you people and this is the thanks I get? Seriously? You know what, fine. Enjoy having the keys to national security in the hands of the Green Goblin. I hope that works out for you. Me, I’m taking what’s left of the fortune I spent on you idiots and heading to Madripoor, which has lovely weather, no extradition treaties and a sexy leader who thinks I’m awesome. Oh, and P.S., SHIELD is a UN organization, so you can’t actually disband it. Bye now!

    -Joan

  11. I’m just stunned they’re putting Norman Osborn in charge of the new SHIELD – and not in a, “Whoa!” kinda way.

    I wish they hadn’t of ended that particular scene before one of the reporters asked the question, “Mr. Osborn – isn’t it true you used to fly around on a glider throwing bombs shaped like pumpkins all over New York City? Can we assume you got the Director position because Carnage wasn’t available?”

  12. That being said, you guys have seriously got to give up on the whole conceit that Marvel is telling one big story. It was always an illusion, and one that Marvel no longer (I think to their detriment) really tries to keep up.

    The truth is that no, Marvel doesn’t care that Mockingbird’s return doesn’t square with what we’ve seen. Marvel knows that the vast majority of today’s readership has never read the story of Mockingbird’s death and that her being dead is keeping her from doing stories about her – so, back she goes.

    Storing their victims instead of killing them, incidentally, is indeed convenient, BUT I can’t say it doesn’t make sense – at least, if you ignore Bendis’s explanation. You could take genetic samples and then kill them if it’s a “genetic thing”, but perhaps in order to mask themselves mentally, etc., you’d need to constantly be making use of their brainwaves, etc. Y’know?

  13. So…does EVERYBODY get to be married except Peter Parker?

    Joey Q and his “brain trust” sure do seem to have an overall plan for what they want to do with their books…HOW they execute it doesn’t seem to matter. It’s like planning a road trip without any regard traffic laws.

  14. Isn’t Norman’s past as the Green Goblin public record, if not common knowledge? I mean, if O.J. Simpson stopped an alien invasion, would all be forgiven?

    I was thinking, and Marvel may have missed this window of opportunity, if Mephisto in “Brand New Day” made Spidey’s secret origin secret again, and Norman’s; that would be something. (Mephisto could also have brought back future psycho Harry as the evil cherry on top.) Then, Spidey’s little favor would open the door for Norman’s takeover.

    Great write-up though. Maybe Dark Reign will be an improvement. Maybe.

  15. the idea of having Osborn as the Avengers director is justa consequence of the process of sinking the concept of heroes and villain into the grey hell started with Civil War, whenheroes became villains. Continued with Thunderbolts (were Osborn, a person without political ties and a strange historial9 becames the leader.

    Just another nail in the coffin.

    Also I don’t understand why every time Stark needs to use an old armor he uses one not updated in what? 20 years?

    Yeah, continuity doesn’t matter today.

    Another little detail

  16. Another thing: the Wasp is DEAD! A death just exactly as stupid as Hawkeye’s one!

    the death is unimpressive by many reasons. One of them is that NOBODY REACTS. Her oldest friends (Stark, Thor) don’t say a thing to Hank Pym. They are too busy with they stupid enemity. Just like if the person killed was the f… Stingray.

    I suppose when Slott writes mighty Avengers (stupid name) to find some human touch.

    The second reason is Hank Pym doesn’t react. Not mutch. He is just numb. but that’s comprensible to some point.

    The third one is that is a random death. She is killed becouse somebody had to be killed. And it shoul be a dead with some effect for the fandom.

    The fourth reason is that a few seconds after Jan’s death, Bendis is making his usual jokes, so any dramatic feeling is lost in about 0.005 seconds.

    Lousy death, lousy comic.

    Bendis go home and take Cage with you.

  17. Is no one catching here that tony stark is drunk at the end?

    I usually really like Bendis’s work, but yeah, this could have been better. I would’ve expected a bigger thing made out of Luke Cage and his baby, and more of a poignant death out of Janet Pym. Like there was years of foreplay with all of this and the payoff didnt match it

    But the big twist that i actually liked is that Tony Stark relapsed. They were hinting at that since Civil War, and now it happened, and since Marvel writers started crapping all over his life, it was bound to happen sooner or later. That’s really the only part of this all I’ll want to follow up on in the future. And yeah, also Luke Cage’s baby, sure.

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