Shadowland #2 and Shadowland: Bullseye
So, a few years ago, something called "Civil War" happened, in comics. Captain America and Iron Man go to war over whether vigilante heroes should submit to government control. Its kind of like the arguement over the legalization of Marijuana, except with more explosions. Government sanctioned explosions. Marvel stated that they wanted to paint a fair and balanced picture of both sides. Captain America is Captian America. Aside form being hounded by Iron-Man and the U.S. Government, Captain America's biggest headache is havign to work alongside The Punisher. Iron Man, meanwhile, hires villains to hunt down rogue heroes, makes a clone of Thor that is prone to going on homicidal rampages, locks any rogue heroes he captures in a concentration camp in another dimension, and has to fight against Captain America. So, the two negative extremes of each side represented, here, are The Punisher or Hitler.
So, out comes Shadowland, and now we see what the danger to Cap's arguement is. They take Dardevil and make him into Hitler with an army of ninja villains to help him fight New York's street level heroes. Except now he's doing it without government sanction. Greatest quote out of Shadowland #2 that sums up this whole thing: "You sitting here in your throne room in your ninja castle in your own little kingdom in the middle of New York..." that is both the most awesome thing about Shadowland, and the most dangerous thing, in terms of the actual situation, about a vigilante hero. Daredevil, fed up with law enforcement in a small area of New york city, has taken it upon himself to construct a castle int he middle of a major metropolitan area and a jail for anyone that crosses his ninja law code.
For the past year, Marvel has been doing some great events that boil down to delightful concepts. Siege is Evil Avengers try to destroy Asgardian Gods who live in Oklahoma. World War Hulks is The Leader and MODOK make an army of hulks to conque the world. Second Coming was Evil Machine opens a time portal from the future so Terminators can come through and kill mutants. Curse of the Mutants is vampires come to take over San Francisco. Now, Shadowland joins these great over the top concepts with Ninja lord attempts to impose ninja law on New York City from obvious castle stronghold in Manhattan.
All in all, Shadowland #2 is a real hoot. Shadowland: Bullseye isn't so bad, either. It gives the story of how Ben Urich fits into this while also giving us ghostly Bullseye haunting a schizophrenic. That is full of win and awesome.
I am not quick on most readings, especially ones that are disjointed. I tend to respond to such narratives better through movies where I can recieve visual AND audio clues. So I had to read this twice to grasp what it was talking about. It is a fine book, though. It lacks action, but here's hoping a showdown of epic proportions between time traveling leonardo DaVinci and Immortal mad genius Isaac Newton pays off better than my homemade videos of physicist backyard wrestling featuring a titanic clash between Tycho Brahe and Johannes Kepler.
Meh. My real quarrel with this book is that it appears other countries don't look favorably upon an invasion of Latveria. I guess I missed the boat on why a country would be against weekly invasions of the home of Doctor Doom, considering how often heroes just stop by to have a good throwdown with the doctor of the brutal arts. I respect Maberry for what he has been doing with this book, which is super-hero statecraft. However, once someone decides to take over the world, that should be unilateral cause for a beating.
Now, I'll just think how awesome a Marvel U.N. comic could be if we had the following things in it: Ambassador from Utopia, home of the mutants Scott Summer. Ambassador form the US Steve Rogers/Norman Osborn, Ambassador from Atlantis Namor, the Submariner, Ambassador from Wakanda T'Challa/Shuri, the Black Panther, Ambassador from the Vampire State of England, Dracula, Ambassador from Mandarin City, The Mandarin, and Ambassador from Asgard, Thor. That is a security council.
Avengers: Prime #2
A great story. Love where it is going, except: Why is Hela taking over the remaining Nine Realms in the wake of Asgard's departure when she barely has any real estate to her name in the Thor books? Most importantly, how does this sync up with what went down with Hela in Siege, which this story takes place directly after? I can only assume Bendis is creating a new swerve to throw at the reader in anticipation of issue 3, out in two months :(
Brightest Day #7
I felt satisfied in this issue. I've mentioned before that with 6-12 characters to feature every issue, that stories can't advance for each character at a satisfactory pace. What can happen, though, is that a common event/theme can be shared amongst all the different characters and, thus, a satisfactory story can be communicated to the the reader. That hasn't really happened until this issue, and that's why I am so tickled pink over this.
FVL's story was best, bar none. Remender's story was second best.
And here we get the metaphysics of this bizarrely populated world.