Secret Wars (2015) #1 Review: Stillanerd’s Take

SecretWars(2015)#1--cover“The Marvel Universe, 1961-2015; The Ultimate Universe, 2000-2015”
–Jonathan Hickman

–Peter Parker, aka Spider-Man of Earth-616

“What the–?”
–Miles Morales, aka Spider-Man of Earth-1610

“It’s the end of the world as we know it, and I feel fine.” Or at least I would be if I knew what in the name of Stan Lee was going on, and how this was going to affect our friendly neighborhood Spider-Man. Welcome, ladies and gentlemen, to the most confounding apocalypse since Richard Kelly’s Southland Tales, Jonathan Hickman and Esad Ribic’s Secret Wars.

“Secret Wars, Part 1: The End Times”

WRITER & DESIGNER: Jonathan Hickman
ARTIST: Esad Ribic
COLOR ARTIST: Ive Svorcina
LETTERER: Chris Eliopoulos
PRODUCTION: Idette Winecoor
COVER: Alex Ross
VARIANT COVERS: Simone Bianchi & Simone Peruzzi; Jim Cheung & Justin Ponsor; John Tyler Christopher; Amanda Conner & Paul Mounts; Butch Guice & Andy Troy; Esad Ribic; Skottie Young; Chip Zdarsky
ASSISTANT EDITORS: Jon Moisan & Alanna Smith
EDITORS: Tom Brevoort with Wil Moss

THE STORY: We open with someone narrating how some believe the white light we see at the moment of our death is synaptic death, but it’s not; the “brilliant, blinding light is God and He has been with us all along.” This is being said over a scene showing Doctor Doom, Doctor Strange and the Molecule Man confronting the Beyonders as seen in New Avengers, Vol. 3 #33. We then go to the Manhattan of Earth-1610 (the Ultimate Universe) moments before the incursion with Earth-616 (the Marvel Universe) is about to happen. The Maker (the Ultimate Universe’s evil Reed Richards) explains to Ultimate Nick Fury that their universe and Earth-616 (the Marvel Universe) are the only two universes left in the multiverse, that this is the final incursion, and tells him that if they destroy Earth-616, they’ll be able to save both universes from being destroyed. Although Fury doesn’t trust the Maker, he believes they have no other choice, and orders all of S.H.I.E.L.D.s hellicarriers to invade Earth-616. The Maker, along with the Cabal from Earth-616 (comprised of Thanos, Namor, Black Swan, Terrax, Maximus, Proxima Midnight, and Corvisu Glaive) stay behind in The City. Thanos wants to know why the Maker lied to Fury, and the Maker explains he needed to buy a little more time before they can complete their real plan.

As the battle between Earth-616 and Earth-1610 commences, the Fantastic Four, along with Black Panther, are loading up a spaceship at the Baxter Building which will act as a life raft for the human race, while Black Widow, Spider-Woman, Beast, and Amadeus Cho are flying over scientists, trying to avoid attacking hellicarriers. Spider-Man, Luke Cage and Iron Fist protect civilians, while the Avengers, the X-Men, the Inhumans, and the Guardians of the Galaxy attack the hellicarriers, Ultimate Iron Man and his Iron Man Six cannon. Cyclops also arrives to the battle with his own Sentinels and a Phoenix Egg, while the joint efforts of Colossus, Hulk, She-Hulk, Nightcrawler and Pod bring down Earth-1610’s Triskelion. Knowing that the forces of Earth-1610 will lose the battle, Fury, just before the Triskelion is destroyed, radios the Maker and tells him to “finish the job,” but the Maker tells Fury his cause was always hopeless as “this was always how it was going to end” and says, “Let me show you what I’ll build upon your ruins.” The City then opens it’s dome and sends out the Children of Tomorrow. During the battle, Earth-616’s super-villains, having been invited by the Kingpin, watch “their enemies’ greatest failure” on live TV at a bar. However, into the bar walks the Punisher, who tells the super-villains since one can’t take what they have when they die “what exactly am I gonna do with all these bullets?”

The Children capture or kill most of the Earth-616 heroes and destroy the transport ship of scientists. This forces the Fantastic Four and Black Panther to carry out their “plan B,” where the teleporter, Manifold, will use a machine to amplify his powers to “find the survivors that [they] need.” Cyclops, meanwhile, also hatches the Phoenix Egg and absorbs the power of the Phoenix to destroy the Children, while Star-Lord, Thor, Spider-Man and Carol Danvers, aka Captain Marvel, are teleported by Manifold into the life raft. However, instead of boarding the life raft, Manifold chooses to stay behind to retrieve as many lives as he can, and before he dies manages to teleport Cyclops into the raft at the last moment.

As the life raft heads towards the center of the Incursion, a hull breach sends the section in which Susan Richards, Thing, Human Torch, Franklin Richards and Valeria Richards were sitting into the white space. Susan creates a force field to protect them, while Reed orders Black Panther to move in closer to rescue them. Unfortunately, Susan loses control of her force field and Reed is too late to save them, losing the tips of his fingers as Black Panther is forced to put up the life raft’s protective shields. As the Earths are destroyed, we learn the opening narration was being delivered by Reed, distraught over the loss of his family, and that now, he “hopes and believes in nothing.” And just before the white void turns to black, we see in the whiteness the eyes of Doctor Doom.

SecretWars(2015)#1--p19THOUGHTS: I’m sure there are those of you who, after reading the introductory paragraph for this review, who thought I was being too flippant and hyperbolic by calling Marvel’s latest incarnation of Secret Wars as “confounding,” but trust me, I really wasn’t exaggerating all that much. This is a summer comic book event which will be juggling a literal cast of thousands, many of whom are alternate versions of each other, which also requires a literal map just to see where the various mini-series are taking place. There are literally about sixty different comic book series—which include all of Jonathan Hickman’s work on Avengers, New Avengers and Ultimate Comics Ultimates—to read just to have some level of understanding of the backstory behind what is happening in this series. Even someone such as myself who has been (somewhat) keeping up with everything involving Incursions (think When World’s Collide, only with Earths from parallel universes), the Ivory Kings (who were revealed to be the Beyonders), the Mapmakers (android cartographers who strip-mine an Earth about to be destroyed of its natural resources), Rabum Alal, the Great Destroyer (Doctor Doom who traveled back in time and aged 25 years) and the like are going to have difficulty wrapping their heads around just how dense Hickman’s magnum opus is, so I can only imagine how someone jumping in cold into Secret Wars #1 will feel.

But as near-impenetrable as this comic is, all you really need to take away is that the Marvel 616 and Ultimate universes are officially dead and gone. So are all the characters from both universes with the exception of a handful of survivors. That is until Secret Wars #2 where we will have the full reveal of the “All-New” Battleworld. And therein lies of this comic’s biggest drawbacks in that, aside from the level of accessibility for the average comic book reader, much of the high stakes over the literal end of the universe and various philosophical musings on life and death by the very premise of Secret Wars. We know no matter who we see die on panel in this issue that some of them are going be resurrected in the next; I’m sure we haven’t seen the last of either Rocket Racoon or Groot as The Guardians of the Galaxy as gained a new-found popularity thanks to last summer’s blockbuster film. It’s also these very characters which are also this issue’s strongest asset.

There is, after the prologue, a cast list showing us over fifty characters, and Hickman manages to make almost every one of them distinctive and give them with their own unique voice. This feat alone is enough to show us that Marvel made a very wise decision in having Hickman be the lead writer and architect behind this event since, as we saw in Dan Slott’s “Spider-Verse,” just how difficult a task this can be. It’s especially impressive when you consider two of the characters are different versions of Reed Richards and, through their dialogue, you can read the stark contrast yet subtle similarities between them. Both Reeds are intelligent but aloof pragmatists who are causally deciding the fates of trillions of lives. However, Mr. Fantastic isn’t just a husband and father, he is also a man of faith as much as he is a man of science. Thus, when he loses his faith with the loss of his family, there’s the real possibility he could potentially become like the Maker, someone who, without those tethers to humanity, has developed a god-complex and a callous disregard towards anything but amassing power for himself—very similar to his own nemesis Doctor Doom. If this first issue is any indication, then Secret Wars is really the story of these two Reeds.

SecretWars(2015)#1--p21Hickman’s knowledge of Marvel’s vast array of characters also allows for some wonderful defining moments. Some, such as Ultimate Iron Man shamelessly flirting with Carol Danvers during the battle, or Rocket Raccoon gripping about how comic books were only “a dollar’s worth of crap,” occur through dialogue. Other moments, such as Spidey, Luke Cage, and Iron Fist doing what he can to save civilians show that, even at the end, they’re still looking out for the average person. Then there are moments of just epic and iconic fan-service such as Doctor Doom, defiant to the end, literally staring down the all-powerful Beyonders; Colossus performing a fastball special with the Hulk; and especially, the Punisher getting ready to go out in a literal blaze of glory and take as many bad guys down with him. Even as we see people die and remind ourselves it will not last beyond this issue, images of Gamora cradling a dead Rocket Raccoon or Reed reaching out to his family in desperation as they explode before his eyes still carries an emotional wallop.

Even so, there are some significant and glaring plot holes which are rather noticeable if you’ve followed a particular comic book series. For instance, why does the Ultimate Universe have a still-active version of S.H.I.E.L.D. when the organization was immediately disbanded after Cataclysm? Where was the 616 version of S.H.I.E.L.D. which hasn’t been disbanded in that universe? When did the Guardians of the Galaxy show up on Earth? And how did Cyclops get a hold of a Phoenix Egg and get his own personal army of Sentinels, something which Brian Michael Bendis hasn’t even begun to touch upon in either Uncanny X-Men or All-New X-Men? If you haven’t read those comics, however, it won’t affect your enjoyment of the issue, though it will cause you to wonder if there was something that happened in other comics not written by Hickman that you somehow missed.

Not only is the quality of Hickman’s script for this first issue is mixed, so is Esad Ribic’s art. In many respects, his work is some of the most realistic and meticulously drawn penciling I have ever seen in a mainstream comic book; there is almost not a single panel in which there isn’t something occurring within the background, and there is as much attention to detail to buildings and spaceships as he does the costumes. Yet there are times where it becomes difficult to follow what is happening on the page visually as it is reading the text. For instance, it took me a few pages to realize Colossus had literally thrown Hulk from one Earth to another when they were performing their fastball special, that he also did the same thing with She-Hulk and Pod, and that Nightcrawler then teleported him over afterward. Also, for as consistent as he is with basic human anatomy, Ribic appears to only be capable of depicting two facial expressions; either he draws them wide-eyed and opened-mouthed as if they accidentally walked in on someone naked, or narrowed-eyed and frowning as if they caught a whiff of someone’s fart. Also, I didn’t particularly care for Ive Svorcina’s use of color as it gives scenes a faded appearance, though the lighting effects are excellent.

SecretWars(2015)#1--p25As we head into the second issue, there are still some unanswered questions as new ones are raised. Since we know Secret Wars is leading to the creation of Battleworld, how did it come to be and by whom? Based on what the Maker says, it appears he may have been the one who created the patchwork planet as means of saving the multiverse, but if take what happens towards the end of this issue at face value, it could have also been created by Doctor Doom. Also, why would Manifold choose certain heroes, including Spider-Man, over others, and why are they deemed important for the survival of the human race? If someone was killed before the Incursion happened, will they be brought back to life somehow in Battleworld? Is Secret Wars a reboot or isn’t it? And more importantly. will it eventually start to make any sense?

Even so, might as well, like the Cabal and the super-villains do in this issue, take the opportunity to sit back and watch what happens next.  After all, it’s only going to affect every single one of Marvel’s comics, including Spider-Man.



  • So in the twenty-five years Doom was hunting down and killing Molecule Men in other dimensions, starting his own religion and building a bomb to destroy the Beyonders, he attached a movable lower jaw to his mask? How undignified! Doom does not waste his time in pursuit of such trivial endeavors.
  • So right when the S.H.I.E.L.D. forces from the Ultimate Universe attack, we see Spidey swinging up towards them with the rest of Earth-616’s heroes, but then on the very next page, he on the ground trying to do crowd control. Sure, Spidey’s fast but not that fast. Also, is one of those caped figures Hyperion? Because I thought he dies with Thor Odinson during their suicide mission to stop the Beyonders in “Time Runs Out?”
  • “Thank God they were redundancies, so we should be okay…” You see, Reed Richards? It’s comments like those which make everyone think you’re an elitist, entitled, pompous asshole even among your friends.
  • So sometime within a period of eight months, Jessica Drew goes back to wearing her classic costume and is an Avenger again? So much for wanting to put the craziness behind her. Though considering how this is the literal end of the world, it seems the craziness found her.
  • “No large scale response to our fleet, but we’re pretty outnumbered on the metahuman front” And out of Ultimate Iron Man’s words comes one of the real reasons the Ultimate Universe is being put out to pasture—not enough superheroes.  That and Miles Morales is the only one worth preserving.
  • So despite being a half-man, half-reptile monster, the Lizard still has personal e-mail and his own domain name? Also, it’s nice to know what Norman Osborn really takes pride in with an e-mail address like
  • Speaking of that bar scene, how the heck is Frank Castle planning to take out the likes of Sandman and the Absorbing Man with nothing but guns?  Granted, I know her figures they’re all dead any way, but given the extent of their super-powers, those bad guys are more likely going to kill him before he can get the first shot off.
  • While that was a great speech you gave, Cyclops, about how one can’t kill an idea, who exactly we’re you talking to? Or is a prerequisite of obtaining the power of the Phoenix Force that you just monologue out loud to no one in particular?
  • For those of you who have read the original 1984 Secret Wars mini-series, check out the shape of the Illuminati’s Life Raft? Notice how it looks an awful lot like the ship the Beyonder used to kidnap the various Marvel superheroes and villains? Nice Easter Egg there, Hickman.
  • Gee, Hickman sure loves his all-white and all-black pages, doesn’t he?

(34) Comments

  1. Al

    @#33-Or the continuity nerds can decide that no not every universe needs to be unceremoniously or needlessly wiped out on the backs of authors words and/or the word of someone untrustwhorthy like the Maker...or even cosmic entities like the Watcher who have in fact gotten things wrong in the past. Thus no one needs to watch the MCu or the newspapers with the mindset that in the cosmic grand scheme of things it's all going to end in Secret Wars anyway and/or they are restored after Secret Wars along with theoretically any universe you desire to headcanon

  2. Allen

    I suppose that, since the comics don't really happen in "real time" (like the MCU does within itself), each medium can retroactively decide "when" the events of Secret Wars effect them. Either that, or the continuity nerds will decide FOR them! :)

  3. Stillanerd - Post author

    @#30 Al -- You're welcome, Al. It should appear on the page as comment #26, and I can see it both on my computer and mobile device. Try refreshing the page in your browser and see if it shows up then.

  4. Stillanerd - Post author

    @ Al and George Berryman -- Already "approved it" thanks to my lightning fast point-and-click skills, guys. :)

  5. Al

    I just wrote a very long response that seems to have been caught in the spam filter. Would it please be possible to get it posted? It was in response to #24

  6. Al

    @#24-You misunderstand. Canonically speaking they are still part of the Marvel Multiverse. They have universe numbers and everything. Some of them have been seen in comics canon proper. Hell, Ultimate Spider-Man the cartoon was in Spider-Verse just this year. Therefore logically speaking if we can observe them still existing then it must mean that Secret Wars isn’t wiping out every universe, author intention be damned. An abstract but comparative example of something like this can be seen in ASM #121. In that issue Spider-Man claims the Goblin took Gwen to the George Washington bridge. That was Gerry Conway’s intention when he wrote those words and put them into Spider-Man’s mouth. The problem is the art clearly depicts the Brooklyn bridge. Canonically speaking, regardless of whom ever was working on that story, what the story itself depicts is Spider-Man swinging up to the Brooklyn Bridge and MISTAKING it for the George Washington bridge. On a much grander scale in the context of the Marvel Multiverse this story might be saying that every universe is dead, but we have blatant evidence that isn’t the case. Ergo, deductive reasoning itself determines that no, not every universe is being destroyed. I wasn’t complaining about it. If you want to take that as an out then you can, author intention or not. You don’t HAVE to accept them as happening before or after Secret Wars at all. It is entirely up to interpretation. Shit, is the Master Weaver can ‘hide’ the Daily Strip version and keep it safe why not. Also them taking place after Secret Wars is up in the air. Secret Wars might not restore these universes at all. In particular it’s up in the air since the Daily Strip is continuing and directly tied into the comicsverse. This indicates that cosmically speaking it is contemporaneous and therefore annihilation cannot happen to Earth 616 whilst the Daily Strip continues indefinitely as a prequel to Secret Wars. It is illogical

  7. PeterParkerfan

    @21 I guess that makes sense... but I don't really like the idea of the Fantastic Four members joining Inhumans/Gurdians of Galaxy. It just seems so... unfitting. The X-Men is going to live in a new planet after Secret Wars? That's sounds lame.

  8. Alex

    5- I think the MCU Universe and others you mentioned, you have to let that go and be reasonable on the fact they are completely different things and are out of Marvel's hands. Or write it off as they all take place after Secret Wars and were their own thing beforehand. I don't that's really a valid complaint.

  9. AndrewC

    Dear God, this storyline sounds dumb…. it sounds like what a 8 year old kid would come up while playing with his action figures.

  10. Al

    @#15-We don’t no worries They might not acknowledge it but it will exist ‘out there’. And personally I’m headcanoning that things like the MC2 universe and the Spider-Man Loves mary jane universe were spared from the cataclysm. @#19-Explain @#21-Thank you. The problem to me seems to be a lot of creators have irrational (no, seriously they are 100% irrational) hang ups about the mere existence of alternate universes in marvel, when they’ve been a thing since the 1970s at least. It doesn’t actually do any harm whatsoever to know that 40 years ago there was a story about Spider-Man joining the Fantastic Four and it didn’t happen to the ‘real’ Spider-Man. At the same time alternate universes are not only fun, open up creative opportunities that the regular universe can’t exploit but we know categorically from DC that abandoning them and erasing them will not make them go away. DC tried this in the 80s and sooner or later the singular consolidated DC universe birthed many other alternate universes/hypertime There are talks about synergy across the Marvel lines, which mean lining the comics up with the movies. But the cartoons DON'T reflect the movies at all. Agents of SMASH has little in common with the MCU, the Ultimate Spider-Man cartoon even less so, and even Avengers Assemble will have to now change it's roster I really don't think this is Disney pressuring people so much as it's Marvel trying to exploit the movies which they don't need to do. I hated Superior but that thing was so far from being anything like any Spider-Man movie and sales were huge

  11. Stillanerd - Post author

    @#5 Al -- <blockquote>If the 616 and Ultimate Universe are the only ones still around in the Multiverse then how come the Spider-Man Daily Strip, the X-Men Cinematic Universe and the MCU is still fine. No joke those all canonically have Universe numbers and they are a-okay. Headcanon: the Maker is lying/doesn’t know what he is talking about/somehow some universes are okay.</blockquote> Exactly! If the ultimate goal of Secret Wars is to consolidate all these different universes in Marvel's comics to make a single, cohesive Marvel Universe, then what about the non comic book universes you've cited? Excellent point. @#9 hornacek and @#11 Jeff Gutman -- It definitely was one of the challenges I had in writing this review, because I knew as I was reading Secret Wars #1 that, unless someone was very well versed in Hickman's earlier work on Avengers and New Avengers, people would be going "WTF?!" when reading a summary of it. Heck, even I, as I mentioned in the review, was having trouble trying it keep straight. @#12 PeterParkerfan -- To be fair, we know this will not be the last we see of Reed's family. That said, the whole Marvel/Fox feud is definitely affecting these comics, especially if some of the rumors Bleeding Cool have mentioned about the post-Secret Wars status of Fantastic Four and X-Men actually do pan out. @#13 Sean Whetstone -- Thanks, Sean. Not sure what the procedure would be for you to proofread our article, but personally, as a writer, I sincerely appreciate it when someone does point out any grammatical errors and mistakes I've made. It not only helps me to make what I write that much stronger, but it also shows that someone, such as yourself, is very attentive towards and cares about what they read. :) @#14 Nick MB -- Well, there was a Secret Wars #0 which apparently did recap everything during Hickman's Avengers and New Avengers run. Which, I guess, also means it was yet another comic one had to pick up just to make sense of everything. ;) @#17 Gary -- Yeah, Gary, you might want to try and tone it there down just a bit. Also, Hickman made it clear the Illuminati didn't want to kill billions to save both universes, as they originally were destroying Earths which didn't have intelligent life on them. Namor, on the hand, was willing to do just that, hence why he later joined the Cabal. Also, Steve Rodgers never liked what the Illuminati did because he knew it would eventually lead to them destroying populated Earths to save theirs.

  12. Jack

    Point is, none of this matters. It's the culmination of Jonathan Hickman's extremely long, complicated, no-fun story. FF dies. So what? They will most likely un-die by the fall, or at least after the Fox movie has come and gone. So now comes an avalanche of what amounts to "What If?" stories.

  13. dornwolf

    I've slowly come to the realization that Marvel has been teasing this concept across it's mobile and Facebook games for years now.

  14. Francisco

    @17 I was about to come up with a snarky response to this. But I can't, and this post doesn't deserve it. Just drop it.

  15. Gary

    I love how the "Heroes" of the Marvel Universe's first idea to save the day is to destroy other Earths and kill billions of people. And goodbye Peter Parker. Sure, he didn't die in this issue, but he'll be killed off by the end while licking Miles Morales' feet and telling him he is the "one, true Spider-man". That way people with white guilt can feel better about themselves.

  16. Allen

    Al makes a really good point, that I haven't seen made anywhere. We KNOW the multiverse will be restored, because we KNOW that the comic strip, the various spiderman cartoons (notably Web Warriors), etc, are part of the multiverse, and we KNOW they continue to exist! While things may change on 616, or there may not be a 616, there will be an in-tact multiverse when this is all said and done.

  17. Nick MB

    @9 I don't think you need to read every Marvel comic, just Hickman's Avengers books. It's more or less a direct continuation of that, to the extent that it could be numbered Avengers #45 and that would be completely reasonable. Which is fine if you were reading that, but yeah, it sounds like they could've added a better recap for the benefit of those who weren't.

  18. Sean Whetstone

    I liked your review a lot and now im considering buying the first issue. I have primarily followed spider-man related issues but I might give this a shot. I wanted to ask as well if I could proofread for you guys on your articles if that's possible at all. Im not asking for anything i just would like a chance to proofread. I have experience doing it and notice that this articles and others has had mistakes. Anyway I enjoy the website a lot and love to say informed about spidey news. So thank you!

  19. PeterParkerfan

    Did they really kill off every Fantastic Four member except Reed? Ugh, this Marvel vs. Fox studios brawl is getting old. They need to stop this nonsense. Oh well, at least 616 Spidey and Cyclops survived.

  20. Jeff Gutman

    I second what hornacek said. Even after reading your well written description, I have absolutely no idea what happened in this issue. It sounds like a big jumble of strangely vague sci fi terms with no point. And THIS is how marvel chose to end their comic universe? An intricate world built on the elaborate work of thousands upon thousands of talented artists and writers dedicating their lives to these stories over 75+ years and this is mumbo jumbo nonsense is how it ends? So that they can merge with an alternate satellite comics imprint tha Bill Jemas created?!?

  21. George Berryman

    @6 - <i>"I wouldn’t be shocked if Ike Perlmutter had a scene added where every XCU character is shown painfully dying as their universe is destroyed, followed by the Watcher saying it’s TOTALLY FOREVER DEAD to us, and showing a contract certified by the Living Tribunal certifying that..."</i> That made me laugh out loud, for real. Not the LOL you type out, but the LOL where you actually do laugh, and hard. First laugh of the day, so thanks for that. :cool:

  22. hornacek

    @8 - I read some Marvel books besides Spidey, but no Avengers books or Ultimate books. And based on the summary above, I have no idea what is going on in this issue. That's nothing against StillANerd's writeup, I doubt any reviewer could make this make sense to someone who wasn't reading every Marvel comic.

  23. Nick MB

    Looking forward to reading this as the "season finale" to the Hickman Avengers books, which I've been reading and enjoying. But yeah, based on how dense the storyline in Avengers is, I'm not that surprised people coming in only at the end are finding it hard going.

  24. asdf

    Also, 616 Tony actually WAS turned evil by magic, he was just prevented from turning BACK to be good afterwards. Doubting he stays evil after all this, anyways

  25. asdf

    #5: With the Marvel/Fox relations now, I wouldn't be shocked if Ike Perlmutter had a scene added where every XCU character is shown painfully dying as their universe is destroyed, followed by the Watcher saying it's TOTALLY FOREVER DEAD to us, and showing a contract certified by the Living Tribunal certifying that (Aware the LT was killed by the Beyonders; ...Hell, the Watcher died too, didn't he?)

  26. Al

    I hope and I pray that the eulogy for the Marvel Universe (1961-2015) is just a cocktease or at the very least when things are fixed we get a soft reboot and not a hard one. Headcanon: I didn’t see Norman in the Kingpin’s place. ergo I am saying he didn’t get unceremoniously killed by Punisher If the 616 and Ultimate Universe are the only ones still around in the Multiverse then how come the Spider-Man Daily Strip, the X-Men Cinematic Universe and the MCU is still fine. No joke those all canonically have Universe numbers and they are a-okay. Headcanon: the Maker is lying/doesn’t know what he is talking about/somehow some universes are okay. 616 Iron Man is easily redeemed “Well shit, a yellow fear alien bug was in my brain and making me do evil things. Sorry y’all”. But seriously just say it was mind control. Better that than supplanting the character who lived through the epic Demon in the Bottle story with just some other version Ultimate Fury sucks. I’m sorry but he does. If you want black Nick Fury, just use Marcus Johnston but don’t mention his backstory too much. If you bring over ultimate Fury is his backstory really going to be less convoluted. The son of white Nick Fury from WWII who happens to have the same name and be black vs. this douchebag Nick Fury who formed the Ultimates and then came over when his universe and this over universe collided. Marcus’ backstory is comparatively simpler to understand by that point. Or crazy idea, we could just keep WWII Nick Fury in place and let movie fans just accept things happened to be different in the comics. Like how Spider-Man has webshooters instead of organic webbing, Mary Jane knows he’s Spider-Man, Gwen is 100% dead and Norman Osborn has been alive for the past 20 years.

  27. Enigma_2099

    This is exactly why Marvel wants new readers. They hope fresh eyes are also too stupid to know that none of this will matter.

  28. Stillanerd - Post author

    @#1 George Berryman -- Damn it, George! By comparing Jonathan Hickman with Michael, I'm now going to be thinking of this every single time somebody makes reference to Secret Wars from here on out: Thank goodness you didn't compare Hickman to Roland Emmerich :P @#2 Frontier -- Thank you, my good sir. Also, you bring up a good point about the different versions of characters from the 616 and Ultimate. It's obvious one of the reasons why Ultimate Nick Fury was brought into this is because I think it's evident he's going to be the sole Nick Fury in the All-New Marvel Universe once Secret Wars is over, especially since he doesn't nearly have as convoluted a history as Marcus Johnson/Fury Jr. does. Even though you're right in saying Ultimate Fury has done far more questionable actions, even more so that the Cinematic Universe version who was inspired by him. And I agree, Ultimate Iron Man is far more likeable and heroic character than the 616 Iron Man has been ever since Civil War that I wouldn't mind if he was the only Iron Man after Secret Wars. I mean after all the efforts to try and redeem his character, the while Illumanti blowing up Earths and him becoming Superior Iron Man during AXIS had is very much one step forward several steps back.

  29. Frontier

    Maybe it's just cynicism and knowing that a lot of the characters who died in this issue will probably be back in some form later, the lack of a lot of emotional beats in the issue from Hickman, some characters just feeling...cold, I guess, in terms of their reactions, but I was honestly expecting to feel more from that last page listing the deaths of the Marvel Universe and the Ultimate Universe. But I just didn't. This is the end of two universes that I loved and appreciated, but it felt like they went out with more of a soft whimper than with an emotional bang with poignancy. It's not even that I was that confused, since I'd been following the Incursion storyline through Avengers and stuff online for details revealed in New Avengers. The most emotionally poignant moment was seeing Reed's family, the rest of the FF, die and his reaction, but I wish we could have had more of that for the rest of the MU. And Reed's line about "redundancies" also rubbed me the wrong way, but that's been the case with the Illuminati for a while now. I know it's probably going to happen, but do we really need to bring in Ultimate Fury into 616 post-Secret War? I'm not saying Marcus Johnson/Fury Jr. is a better character, but at least he probably wouldn't agree to commit genocide just to save his own world without considering other options, nor do all the awful stuff Ultimate Fury has done in his own universe. Well, among other Ultimate Heroes, Ultimate Iron Man at least is more of a genuine good guy than 616!Tony is right now. The New Ultimate's are also pretty good when they're under Bendis at least. I'd also really miss Bombshell. So I wouldn't say Miles is the only hero worth preserving from the Ultimate Universe, though that's probably Marvel's perspective on things. There were some great scenes though, from the Fastball special, to Punisher's moment (even if Kingpin sounded off in those caption boxes), the heroes saving lives, and Captain Marvel taking on Ultimate Iron Man. Though I'm kinda surprised that Fisk and Bullseye, knowing the world was ending, didn't try to settle things with Daredevil. I just wish there was a little more...pathos? Passion? Just felt like something was missing. Spidey being one of the heroes saved by Manifold really surprised me. I have to wonder just what exactly made him necessary to take onboard the ark compared to anyone else. I guess it helps that Steve and Tony might be dead now... The Guardians were there on Earth, I believe, because of the Shi'ar attack on Earth in Avengers. A really good and comprehensive review Stillanerd. Looking forward to your coverage of this event!

  30. George Berryman

    I remember thinking while reading this issue that Michael Bay is more successful with emotional beats than Jonathan Hickman is. Let that sink in a moment. <blockquote><b>Marvel:</b> <i>"Oooo! It's all over! We just killed [insert character name] off! OMG it's the end!!"</i> <b>Me:</b> <i>*yaaawn* *shrug*</i></blockquote>

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