I generally try to stay away from spoilers in my reviews, no matter how late they’re posted. However, the final panel of this comic warrants all kinds of spoiling. If you haven’t read the issue yet and are loath to spoilers, come back after you read. Nothing will be spared, including feelings.
Steve is still on his Hydra-infused reign of tyranny. He allowed Madam Hydra to call in the order to bomb the Las Vegas area after learning that some of the Underground were stationed there. The heroes of New York, including Luke Cage, Jessica Jones, Claire Temple, and Iron Fist, are doing their best to survive a Dark Dimensioned Manhattan. The entire US has gone to hell in a handbasket, and this is merely one step in Hydra’s plan for world domination.
The only person who has a definite plan that will stop the madness is Black Widow. She’s done with Hydra’s games and she’s done with trying to figure out what’s going on with Steve. She has a bullet with his name on it, but we already know that’s not how Steve dies. We’ve all seen the vision from Civil War II.
I’m so glad I read that recently.
After kissing Hawkeye, Widow does the expected and knocks him out. She leaves the Underground so she can plot how to assassinate Steve, since the other Avengers won’t condone murder. They are finding hope in a recording Rick Jones left for them, that explains exactly what happened with Steve, Kobik, and Dr. Selvig. While Tony and the others attempt to find a way to locate all of the pieces of the Cosmic Cube (formerly Kobik), Natasha sees their plan as another false hope.
Before Nat can get too far, however, the younger Avengers, led by Miles Morales Spidey, tell her they’re coming with her. When Miles, and everyone else, saw the vision of him killing Cap in front of the Capitol Building, it terrified him greatly. It also terrified many others. Now that Steve has shown his true colors, Miles isn’t afraid of what he saw anymore. He’s willing to embrace it.
Meanwhile, in Manhattan, while Cloak and Dagger are practically killing themselves to bring light to their Dark Dimension, looters and thugs run as rampant as the demons. Luke Cage, Iron Fist, and Jessica Jones are doing the best they can, but strangely enough, the savior of most of the people is Wilson Fisk (Kingpin). The only thing he asks is for the people to remember who it was who saved them from the gangs. That’s sure to haunt everyone later. No idea where Dr. Strange is, but I’m sure he’s trying to wipe the Dark Dimension clean as best as he can.
And there sits Steve Rogers on his Hydra throne, unhappy with the measures he feels he was forced to take. He sounds like an abusive spouse, the way he whines.
All this I completely expected. After learning that Kobik brought all this upon them, I fully expected them to execute a plan to find the pieces of the Cube, put it back together, and plead with Kobik to turn Steve back. Then I expected her to do a full 180 and make it all like it never happened, including everyone who died. What, Steve killed Bucky Barnes and Rick Jones? All fixed. Never happened.
What I did not expect was the last panel of the issue to feature another Steve Rogers, bearded with torn clothes, claiming he’s “just trying to get home.”
I should have seen that coming. A doppelganger Steve Rogers. Of course. Our dear friend Larry has a theory that Cap is such a pure soul, that when Kobik altered him toward evil, his pure portion split into another Steve. I told him I wasn’t sure which was more irritating: the fact he said it or the fact it’s probably accurate.
It wasn’t Steve who killed all these people! It was an evil doppelganger! It all makes sense now!
Maybe I do need to stick just with the mutant portion of Marvel and leave the Avengers to their own devices. I’m especially irritated that Black Widow’s run to Washington is going into a separate comic, Secret Empire: Uprising. So to get the whole story, I need this series too? This is absolutely ridiculous, even for Marvel.
I have a bad, bad feeling that this will be as for naught as Secret Wars.
Our Rating: WTF
Author: Nick Spencer
Artists: Andrea Sorrentino and Rod Reis
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Publish Date: 05/17/2017
Acquired via Purchase