Review: Original Sin #8 by Jason Aaron & Mike Deodato

Original Sin #8

Written by: Jason Aaron
Art by: Mike Deodato
Cover by: Julian Totino Tedesco
Colored by: Frank Martin
Lettered by: VC’s Chris Eliopoulos
Published by: Marvel
Cover Price: $3.99

Note: This is a review of the digital version which can be found on Comixology.

Warning! This review contains quite a few spoilers!

Summary (contains spoilers): The issue starts a few days before current events. Fury arrives on the moon to find that Uatu had already lost one of his eyes (presumingly to Orb, Dr Midas, and company). He demands to know what happened, and is concerned about the other “trinkets” that Uatu kept watch over. Uatu reveals that he knows what Fury has been doing. Fury call’s him a son of a bitch, and the story catches back up to now.

A gathering of Watchers has appeared over the battle. Midas has decided to try and take the Watcher’s body, figuring that his eye had a ton of knowledge, what would happen if he took the blood and brain too. Fury shoots Midas’ hand off, so Midas’ sicks his Mindless Ones on Fury.

Back to the flashback, Fury is pissed that the Watcher is judging him. Fury always had to act, even if it damned his soul, while Uatu could just sit back and do nothing, hiding being the fact that he was purely an observer.

In the present, Oubliette tries to sneak Midas out in the confusion. Midas tells her that he wants her to “put a golden bullet in that old man’s skull.” But Oubliette has vanished, taking her father’s hand and getting out of there on her own. Orb joins the fight against Fury, revealing that the Watcher’s eye had “showed him where Fury’s soul and armor were the weakest.” Orb confirms that he was the one who stole the Watcher’s eye that set all this in motion, but he says that the “Watcher chose us.”

Flashback – Fury realizes why they took the Watcher’s eye. Uatu never wrote down any secrets he saw…they were all stored in the eye. He realizes that he can do a lot of good if he knew all those secrets. He demands to know “what did you see?” Watcher admits, “I have seen…too much” and “it is time for someone else to watch.” Watcher then “suicides by Fury.”

Present- Fury looks like he is close to defeated. Fury refuses to die until he knows that “this isn’t the end.” The other heroes arrive to fight back the Mindless Ones, and to bring Fury in to answer for his crimes. Doctor Strange says there is one last sin Fury has to confess for, and Fury admits out loud that he killed the Watcher and took the Watcher’s other eye. Fury confronts Midas, using the Watcher’s eye to kill Midas, and himself. All the LMD’s vanished once Fury died.

The Watcher’s other eye wraps itself around Orb’s neck. Orb screams for help, but the other Watchers remind him that they aren’t allowed to interfere. Later as the heroes go through the remains of the Watcher’s base, Orb and Oubliette are both gone. Oubliette has returned to Earth determined to start a New Midas Empire. Orb has returned to Earth with the Watcher’s eye now implanted in his chest.

Thor still can’t lift Mjolnir because of whatever Fury said to him last issue. Winter Soldier has taken over Fury’s role protecting the Earth from all the hidden enemies seeking to harm us. Orb is now the new Watcher (assumingly). And Fury seems to have been reborn as a creature called the Unseen.

Review: One thing I really loved about this issue was that the reveal about who killed the Watcher was the answer you expected all along. There was no last minute evidence reveal that didn’t make sense with the rest of the story (see the revelation of Monarch’s secret identity in Armageddon 2001 or the killer in Identity Crisis). Granted, it ended up not being much of a murder mystery, but I thought the reveals worked very well.

I also think a lot of people didn’t quite understand what happened in this issue. They take the simple answer of “Fury murdered the Watcher,” but that isn’t quite what happened. Watcher seemed to know he had to die. He forced Fury to pull the trigger. I thought this made the story much more powerful.

Assisting in that effort was the terrific artwork by Mike Deodato, I thought he pulled every last drop of emotion out of each scene in this issue, especially in the flashbacks showing the Fury’s final confrontation with the Watcher.

I say this all the time in reviews, I see a lot of comic artists that do action well. But, its the artists that can slow down the pace and do emotional character moments well that always impress me. To me, Original Sin was made into a terrific event because of the strength of those moments.

My only real gripe about this book was that Jason Aaron’s dialogue was a little long winded.  Too often, it felt like characters were making speeches and not talking to each other.   It didn’t really distract from my enjoyment of the issue, but I definitely noticed it a few times.

I know a lot of people have an automatic hate for any comic event, but I thought Original Sin was very well done. I do think that Fury’s dark secret about being willing to do whatever it takes to keep Earth safe didn’t have a huge impact to me. These didn’t feel like new revelations about Fury. The extent of his lies was all that I gave much thought to, like the reveal about his extensive use of LMD’s, including to cover the death of Dum Dum Duggan.  But none of that really surprised me based on what we’ve seen Fury do in the past.

I also thought that went along real well with the rest of the reveals of this crossover. Most of the “sins” weren’t really sins at all. They were just hidden things that the characters held on to (or just didn’t know about) for various reasons that made sense to them at the time:

  • Luke Cage’s dad once worked with a group of superheroes, but cowarded out during a major case.
  • Iron Man tinkered a little with the Gamma Bomb that created the Hulk, and realized how dangerous the weapon was…he tried to warn Banner, but Banner hated Stark so much he ignored him.
  • Spider-Man is not the only person the radioactive spider bit.
  • Thor has a sister.
  • Xavier used his powers in a questionably ethicly way to help save the world and a young mutant…an act that the young mutant even later admitted was probably the best course of action.
  • Johnny Storm once unintentionally messed up an experiment that could have possibly cured Ben Grimm.

In pretty much all of these cases, characters were shown to be imperfect, but none of them did anything evil. I thought that created for much more nuanced storytelling, and I really enjoyed the results.

One thing I am really curious about is, what comes next?  Fury’s transformation into the Unseen, the Orb and Oubliette now seem poised to become major threats to the Marvel Universe,  Thor can’t lift his hammer (okay, we already know what happens there).  Marvel seems to be setting up a lot of new status quos here…and frankly, I find these FAR more compelling than the multiverse domino effect of destruction that is happening in the Avengers books.  I really hope the changes here don’t get lost behind “Time Runs Out” and “Axis.”

I will admit, I actually love comic events.  They can be a bit overblown and always cost way too much, but I still tend to enjoy them.  I definitely thought Original Sin was a very good one, and well worth checking out.


Title: Original Sin #8
Written By: Jason Aaron
Art By: Mike Deodato
Company: Marvel
Price: $3.99
Pros:
  • The mystery of the Watcher’s death came to a satisfying resolution
  • Sets up some major ramifications for the Marvel Universe
  • Deodato’s art is gorgeous and fits perfectly.
Cons:
  • I am worried that these ramifications will be lost in the shuffle of Marvel’s next big event Axis.
  • Some of the dialogue comes off as long winded and unnatural.
Is it worth your $3.99? 8.5/10 – I thought Original Sin was one of the best non-X-Men Marvel events I’ve read.  Things stay relatively grounded and everything came together real well.  Plus, it may have elevated some D-list villains.  Wins all around.

 

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