My first comic book review! Pretty excited for this, folks. SIEGE is an event that crosses over multiple series in the Marvel Universe. We all know what that means, right? It’s an event that will probably reverse the things that didn’t work in previous years, along with creating multiple problems in the Marvel continuity that will probably negated by the next big event, and Marvel is going to try to get every penny out of you they can. But I mean come on, look how bad-ass that cover is!
As any of you comic book fans probably know, all of the publicity around this event is being referred to as “An Event 7 Years in the Making”. That’s probably not true, but I think that’s their way of trying to say, “We hope this is as successful as CIVIL WAR”. Now, I have no idea who is going to read this blog, but I am assuming there are going to be people unfamiliar with comics, so when I say things like “CIVIL WAR”, you probably think I am referring to the war of Northern Aggression. Let me take a minute to recap the major events of the past few years, in chronological order, that have supposedly been building up to where we are now.
CIVIL WAR (2006)
As you can see, some super heroes are on the left, and some are on the right, and they are grimacing at one another. In Stamford, CT, a group of young and untrained, but relatively powerful, group of “heroes” blow up the town and kill 600 people. The American people decide that if someone wants to declare themselves a hero and fight crime, they need to register their secret identity and powers so that everyone can be trained and placed throughout the country accordingly. Captain America opposes the registration while Iron Man supports the bill, dividing the super hero community along with them. After roughly 80 tie-ins and multiple lineup changes and side-switching, Iron Man ultimately wins because Captain America decides to give the American people what they voted for, and he surrenders. Sadly, this results in his “death” as he heads into the courthouse.
WORLD WAR HULK (2007)
Prior to this, it was determined by some of the smartest people on the planet that the only way to deal with Hulk was to send him to outer space and put a timer on his rocketship to blow up, destroying the mean green machine once and for all. Sadly, the rocket went off course and landed on a warrior planet, where Hulk fought for his survival, out of slavery, and ultimately to become ruler of the planet. He found a wife, got her good and pregnant, just when the timer on the rocket finally kicked in, killing his bride and most of the people he cared about. Obviously, this pissed him off, so he came back to Earth to ruin everyone’s day. This event felt like a distraction from the heavy political/moral/ethical issues of CIVIL WAR and made as many smashes as possible. Obviously, Hulk chilled out and got over things, for the most part, after being zapped by a lazer from space that separated the Hulk from Bruce Banner indefinitely.
SECRET INVASION (2008)
Upon the murder of Elektra, her corpse reverts back to its true form: a shape-shifting alien Skrull! No one knows when the Skrull replaced her, how she was replaced, or how no one noticed the switch. Worse than that, it turns out she wasn’t the only one replaced. No one knows who is who they appear to be or who can be trusted. Thematically, this was similar to CIVIL WAR, not knowing who to root for and who was playing for what team. Iron Man’s government-sanctioned Avengers fail when Iron Man’s armor gets infected by a virus, so practically everyone else in the Marvel universe fights everything they can see. Ultimately, it is discovered that Spider-Woman was replaced by a Queen Skrull, and she ends up being straight-up killed, live, on-camera, by the one and only Norman Osborn. That’s right, the Green Goblin. This ends the invasion, all the imposters are murdered and the original heroes emerge from a spaceship, which finally returns to Earth.
Not a huge cross series event, but important to the Marvel universe nonetheless. Thor returns to Earth and wants him and all his Asgradian buddies to have a place they can call home. He chooses a large piece of land in Oklahoma to literally rip out of the ground and float, meaning it technically isn’t ON American soil. All of his buddies are there, just chillin’, making friends with the humans. Loki, the God of Mischief, is also brought to Asgard, but obviously he makes friends with different kinds of mortals…
DARK REIGN (2009)
Thanks to Norman Osborn killing off the biggest threat on the planet live on TV, the President gives him a promotion. Osborn takes over Iron Man’s old job as the head of S.H.I.E.L.D., which is basically the C.I.A. but three letters cooler, which he then renames H.A.M.M.E.R. Osborn forms his own team of “Dark Avengers,” which is comprised of psychopaths portraying the roles and costumes of actual heroes who have been forced to go underground in the fallout of the Superhuman Registration Act. Bullseye is now Hawkeye, Venom is now Spider-man, and so on. Add in the fact that Osborn has been able to manipulate the Sentry, yes, the man with the power of a thousand exploding suns, to do anything Osborn wants, and you get a lot of fun reading bad guys doing bad things and getting away with it.
Captain America: Reborn (2009)
After Captain America’s sidekick Bucky has taken over Cap’s duties as a bad-ass shield wielding defender of America, readers learn what actually happened to good old Cap. Turns out that the gun that was used to “kill” him merely separated his consciousness from his body, presumably leaving him “dead”. Also, Cap has an evil clone involved somehow, but all that matters is that Bucky uncovers the truth and is able to get the real Cap’s consciousness back into the clone’s body, thus creating a new/old Cap back to his Hitler-punching habits. Only problem is that Cap is unsure whether he wants to wield the shield after seeing Bucky in action and realizing what a hero he has become.
WHICH FINALLY TAKES US TO SIEGE!
As of right now, only two issues have been released. The premise of SIEGE is that one of the Asgardians, Volstagg, has a similar incident to what happened in CIVIL WAR where he accidentally kills a ton of people at Soldier Field. A big difference between this and the events in CIVIL WAR is that Osborn secretly planned for this to happen just so he could use this event to gain the support of the American people to invade Asgard. Osborn has been driven insane with power and decides to storm Asgard with his Dark Avengers and H.A.M.M.E.R., and since everyone likes Thor, all the heroes who have been underground come to his aid in hopes that this will finally be the event to take down Osborn and put things back the way they should be.
SPOILERS MAY FOLLOW
The first two issues have been a blast, and from the looks of things, it won’t be as sprawling of an event as CIVIL WAR was. There’s enough hero-against-hero action to remind you of how much fun CIVIL WAR was, but because of the people involved, there is TONS of carnage. My favorite moment was seeing Ares, Greek God of War, turn on Osborn in an attempt to behead him, only for Osborn to send the Sentry after him, which resulted in a seemingly epic battle that ended when Sentry grabbed each of Ares’ arms and ripped him in half. LITERALLY RIPPED HIM RIGHT THE FUCK IN HALF. And then, only a few pages later, there was a sequence of panels involving Osborn, who now wears an Iron Man-esque suit of red, white and blue, looking into the sky as we see the reflection of Captain America’s shield getting closer, and closer, and closer. HOLY SHIT WAS THAT AWESOME! Is it Bucky? Is it the original Captain America, in his first fight since his death, sticking up for his buddy Thor? Who knows! The series and tie-ins have all been pretty solid, and considering the main story is already halfway over, I like to think it will keep up the pace. Do yourself a favor and try to catch up!
Wolfman Moon Scale
(so far, at least)