Marvel’s Civil War II, issue 8 is out. Finally. The grand summer event comic from Marvel finally reaches its conclusion long after the other comics in their line moved on. So with the final issue in the books, how does it end and what are my thoughts on the series as a whole?
A word that comes to mind is rushed. This felt rushed. It went by way too fast for me to get a handle of what was going on. What didn’t help was the odd release dates the series saw thanks to the birth of Dave Marquez’s baby (congratulations by the way!) as well as the addition of this issue to the story. The series was originally meant to end at issue 7 yet Brian Bendis felt he had a little more in the tank to flesh out the story some.
A single issue comic for me has to feel like a real story. It has to have a proper beginning, middle, and end, even if that issue is apart of a much larger story. This comic failed to achieve that. We were thrown right into the big fight between Carol Danvers and Tony Stark, with Maria Hill refereeing things from a SHIELD helicarrier in the sky. The story sped quickly to it’s big finale, Carol Danvers defeating Tony Stark and putting him in a coma of sorts. The Beast didn’t want to perform an operation on him due to experiments Tony had done on himself over the years. This of course is done to allow Riri Williams as Iron Heart to gain traction in the comics before he makes his heroic comeback.
This ending though seemed like a non-ending. Nothing was really resolved. With the President giving Carol Danvers carte blanche to do whatever she wants after all this, do we really know that Carol Danvers learned any sort of a lesson? Will she continue looking for that something or someone that will allow her to profile others or will she take the lessons she learned to heart in Civil War II?
The other aspect of the ending I didn’t care for was the fact the huge cast of characters in this story had no real satisfying ending. It could be argued that we know how things turn out for them in the tie in comics related to this series but I find that a cheap cop out. While some may say this is a norm for comics, I find it lazy to not find a way to offer a satisfying resolution to the characters we’ve encountered in a particular story.
Take Miles Morales. Ulysses had a vision that he killed Steve Rogers. That didn’t end up happening. We get the impression that he was seriously affected by this emotionally but we don’t really see it. If you’re going to go so far as to dedicate one cover of this series to Miles purportedly killing Steve Rogers, we have to know how that affected him.
Overall, this was a disappointing end to the series. As a sequel to one of the most famous comic book event stories of all time, it had a lot to live up to and honestly, comparing this story to the original is not fair. It has some strong points, especially early on in the series. Yet the ending just kind off peters off.
One point of contention I have with Marvel is the fact that this was the second major event series that suffered from delays in releasing of the issues. When you have a series like this which is set on changing the Marvel Universe as we know it, having any sort of delay in the series kills momentum you’re looking to create. It also does the series no favors when the stand alone titles from Marvel have already moved on from this story without the general public seeing how the story ends. That should not happen.
My advice to Marvel would be to have their event stories in the can before they release issue one. Delays happen. As a writer myself, I know anything and everything can get in the way preventing you from meeting deadlines you either set for yourself or ones your editor makes for you. But having a piece that is so critical to your overall universe be delayed for any reason just gives the audience a reason to tune out. What with DC turning up the heat with their Rebirth series, Marvel better think more strategically for the future to make sure this doesn’t happen again.