Rating: 4/5 – Whose Side are You On? Again!
by ComicSpectrum senior reviewer Shawn Hoklas.
It’s a little hard to believe that we’re almost 10 years since Marvel’s original Civil War event. Under the Secret Wars banner, a new Civil War series has launched with a lot of the same ideas and concepts of the original. Iron Man and Captain America are at odds with one another and their ideologies are causing a rift between the superheroes. The two “civil war” events were both caused by explosions, but the one in this region of Battleworld has killed fifteen million people and has caused a divide both figuratively and literally as the literal divide is also the epicenter of the destruction that split the two regions apart now called the Iron, and the Blue.
Civil War is a clever concept that writer Charles Soule has capitalized on. Where the original Civil War, much like Secret Wars itself was an event that carried over into multiple titles and crossovers, Soule is given the “freedom” to centralize the location, shorten up the cast, and focus on the main story. In this second issue, both sides are dealing with the fallout from last issue and Iron Man reveals that there’s a whole lot more to the reasons the two sides are fighting. Soule balances the attention and motivations from both camps so it’s tough to take a side. It’s exciting to see Soule’s choice of guest stars, making smart and again, balanced choices. Also, this version of Peter Parker is a nice departure from the wise cracking hero we’ve come to expect no matter what earth or universe we’re visiting.
While Steve McNiven handled the original event’s art, Secret Invasion’s artist Leinil Francis Yu pencils this series and I’m pleasantly surprised with how much I’m enjoying his work. I can’t say I’ve always been a fan of everything Yu’s done in the past, but his art here works and works well. Yu has a style that’s distinct and if you’re not a fan of his art, this book won’t necessarily change that opinion. Yu only uses one full page splash, so there’s quite of bit of story he has to pencil and he does so effectively. Also, the inks by Gerry Alanguilan soften up Yu’s hard pencils which may also contribute to my overall enjoyment of the work.
This Civil War series is so far one of my favorites of the Secret Wars event, and that’s saying a lot since there’s so many great series to enjoy. There’s plenty of call backs to the original event that are played out here, but on a smaller scale yet at that the same time, this mini series also feels as though it’s just as big as the original. Soule and Yu are both in sync with one another as they come to the halfway point of the series and I’m looking forward to what looks to be even better second half.
Reviewed by: Shawn Hoklas
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