Welcome to the third installment in what is most likely at least twenty to twenty-four weeks’ worth of analysis for ALL the SECRET WARS tie-in series all Secret Wars Declassified. We’re now onto Week 3!
Here we go!
INHUMANS: ATTILAN RISING #1
“The Voice Unheard” (20 pages) by Charles Soule, John Timms, Roberto Poggi, Frank D’Armata, VC’s Clayton Cowles
G-Man, Naja, Flint, and Mega-Rad teleport into Greenland. They barely get their bearings straight when a Sand Hulk pops up ready to pummel them. Mega-Rad is a Hulk as well. He struggles with his compatriot until Flint headlocks him. Mega-Rad then sprays him with a serum that makes him completely rational. Naja tells this Hulk (Rick Jones) that they are a resistance movement known as the Voice Unheard. Rick realizes that lucid gamma-irradiated individuals would cause a major shift in the balance of power, especially against God Doom. G-Man is pressed for time to deliver the serum. A storm tears the sky asunder. Naja flies to investigate. It’s the Thor Corps. G-Man provides a distraction so that the mission can be carried out. Despite the two Hulks ambushing them, G-Man is crushed by one of the enforcers.
Medusa, the baroness of New Atillan, demands to know why one of the Thors brought a rebel (G-Man) to her court. Doom instructs her to interrogate him then eliminate the insurrection. New Atillan plays into Doom’s plans in terms of being a stronghold. Should she fail, her domain is gonzo.
Two other members of the resistance are introduced: The Bard (Matthew Murdoch) and Karnak. Mega-Rad informs Karnak that they gave the serum to Rick Jones. They leave it in his hands to administer it to the residents of Greenland. Naja is freaking out because she doesn’t want G-Man to be tortured and blab. Karnak agrees. They either rescue him or kill him.
Medusa has G-Man strapped and ready to be tortured. The spirit of ignition won’t say anything. She apologizes for what is about to transpire. Sterilon probes his mind. The invasion was so extreme that he dies within seconds. Sterilon tells Medusa that G-Man had powerful psychic triggers that almost took him as well. One prominent place is all Sterilon could get: the Quiet Room.
Medusa sends Auran on an undercover operation to find the leader of the rebellion. She is Medusa’s chief of security. Even before she reveals her face, one can tell that she is attractive in body and seductive in nature. Medusa chose her spy wisely. It is imperative Medusa’s name not be mentioned should Auran be captured. As she enters the establishment and walks to the bar, Blackagar greets Auran and surmises that she was sent by Medusa. Black Bolt can speak :0 Plus, he saw right through Auran!! Political intrigue and one-upmanship!! (8/10 shots)
“He named us The Voice Unheard…A song calling out across the world, seeking justice in a world made deaf to hear it.” – (Matt Murdoch) Such a neat reversal in acknowledgement of Black Bolt’s ability since he is the leader of the resistance.
“But I’m a musician by trade, and I’ll tell you this much. If no one’s listening, that’s the time to do something loud.” – Truer words could never have been spoken!! This is more akin to BB’s style.
Domain #20a: Atillan
SECRET WARS JOURNAL #1 (of 5)
“The Arrowhead” (10 pages) by Prudence Shen, Ramon Bachs, Jean-Fran¬çois Beaulieu, VC’s Cory Petit
Lady Katherine of Bishop is the victim of theft by the Arrowhead. Little do the townsfolk know that she is the one and only!! Along with her partners-in-crime (literally!), she pulls a Robin Hood. There’s the lawman persecuting them who goes by Punisher Sheriff. When they arrive at the unveiling of the latest fresco inside God Doom’s Cathedral, Kate seizes the opportunity to steal tons of treasure. Unfortunately, while the trio rummage through the valuables, Kate opens a box with an enormous orb with a note. It’s a trap set by the Punisher Sheriff!! Kate tells Teddy and Billy to escape. She jumps into the midst of the lawmen. Her exile to the Shield doesn’t faze her in the least. I want to see more of this feisty female and her two buds. (8/10 shots)
What happens next? SIEGE #1 will give us more details.
Domain #9: King James’ England
“We Worship What We Don’t Understand” (10 pages) by Michael Rosenberg, Luca Pizzari, Rain Beredo, VC’s Cory Petit
Mutants are hot on the trail of Khonshu. They want to kill the deity so that it does not lay claim over mutantkind. They come across a Moon Knight named Spector. He tells them of a way to be rid of the Moon Goddess. When she walks alone, that is the time to strike. Spector transforms into a werewolf!! He tells the rag-tag of muties that the curfew was for their own protection. A fight for survival is at hand. Khonshu appears in the flesh (if such thing can be said of a goddess). She wants to know why her death is being sought. Shadowcat tells her the mutants are the slaves who built the temples in her honour. Khonshu makes Kitty realize that all humans have a very temporary stay on Earth. When they return, Kitty, Logan, and Colossus are interrogated by Archangel. He’s highly suspicious of them especially since they all bear the crescent moon mark on their faces. He was right on the mark!! Kitty repeats the speech given to her. Archangel knows that this is bogus. Kitty informs him that they were saved but that act was not merciful. She and the other two become lycanthropic attacking their former friends. The merging of the disparate franchises is innovative!! (8/10 shots)
“Slaves. Lords. These titles mean nothing. Your lives last but a brief moment. Why spend that time plotting against your own gods? It is like a fish trying to kill a river.” – Khonshu
Domain #4: Egyptia
“” (20 pages) by Dennis Hopeless, Javier Garrón, Chris Sotomayor, VC’s Joe Sabino
Four years ago, the X-Men failed to stop Inferno. Since then, the demons have no way of being vanquished. One of the many losses was Illyana Rasputin going over to the dark side (literally!) and permanently becoming Darkchild. Thus, every year on the anniversary of her capture, Colossus leads his teammates into Limbo with the undying hope of rescuing her. On the fourth year, three terrible things transpire: Cyclops is crippled by N’astihr, Jean unleashes the Phoenix Force, and Colossus is bitten by N’astihr then infected by his demonic sister. Another agonizing year passes. Colossus is crestfallen when Cyclops orders him to cease his futile mission. Colossus snaps and decides to go it alone. Domino (his lover), Nightcrawler, and Boom-Boom volunteer to come with. Tabitha is impaled by N’astihr. Darkchild zaps Kurt. Neena is swarmed by a horde of demons. Colossus is in dire straits and distraught when two unlikely saviours — Madelyne Pryor, the Goblin Queen and Alex Summers, the Goblin Prince!! Neena is alive but unconscious. (5/10 shots)
Inheriting the mantle: Cyclops is the new Professor X having been paralyzed and using the same hoverchair from the 80’s.
Heartburn relief? “Well, Tin Man, we just pulled your butter from the frying pan.” – Madelyne Pryor “Welcome to the fire.” – Alex Summers
Domain #37: Limbo
INFINITY GAUNTLET #1
“” (20 pages) by Dustin Weaver & Gerry Duggan, Dustin Weaver, Gerry Duggan, ComiCraft’s Albert Deschesne
Anwen Bakian and her clan live aimlessly in the wake of mass destruction. Yet, she views herself and her family as the lucky ones. Why is that? They’re alive. Scrounging for food isn’t so bad since the bugs (the Annihilation Wave) have been unaware of their presence. Like any other family, this one is far from perfect and is dysfunctional. The spectre of Anwen’s mother haunts her, her younger sister Fayne, her father Menzin, and her grandfather. Mom joined the Nova Corps and went MIA or was KIA. Their luck couldn’t last forever. The bugs find them and the brood is separated. Menzin takes Fayne and their dog Zigzag. A shadowy figure laser-blasts some bugs granting more time to escape for the trio. Anwen runs with Gramps but he sacrifices himself so that she may live. Anwen falls down a hole. She lets out all her rage on one of the irradiated insects that wants to ingest her. After she beats it to a pulp, she pulls out a glowing gem (the Mind Gem). A dazzling light show is occurring top side. When Anwen surfaces, she hears and spots her mother. She never perished!! Mother and daughter are reunited Mom assures Anwen that nothing bad will happen. From a rooftop, the shadowy figure is none other than Thanos. With the Time Gem in his fingers, he disagrees. Dustin Weaver has produced a most marvelous modern masterpiece! (8/10 shots)
Domain #40: New Xandar
M.O.D.O.K.: ASSASSIN #1 (of 5)
“” (20 pages) by Christopher Yost, Amilcar Pinna, Terry Pallot & Amilcar Pinna, Rachelle Rosenberg, VC’s Travis Lanham
I mentioned in last week’s installment that I never was a fan of this monumental floating cranium. His murderous origins led to more comic relief, especially in the animated series, and he even got a sympathetic spin in SECRET AVENGERS vol. 3. Well, after having read this first issue, I will backtrack on my previous statement. M.O.D.O.K. literally lives up to his name. The fact that the designation ‘assassin’ is added is completely redundant. This guy is bad-ass (or is it bad-head?). First off, after having met his match (not!), Modie offs the capable killer: Bullseye. The Man Who Never Misses’ target was Octavius. The pudgy scientist had stolen Sentinel tech from an A.I.M. lab and was going to sell it to the Assassin’s Guild. Well, the save was temporary. He is disposed too. Modie begins examining the tech. It is a Nimrod CPU, the highest grade of Sentinel. Just having it in his hands would put him in trouble with the authorities. Sure enough, Baron Mordo and his lover Clea appear. The Baron delivers a stern warning to Modie since is the lawkeeper. M.O.D.O.K. ventures into the Sentinel Territories. He is there to flaunt his superiority. There is a truce along the borders. Nevertheless, he saves Gambit who crossed over into Killville. Modie provokes the mutant-exterminators, attacks them, threatens them, and that is that. No one is safe from the greatest killing machine of all. Modie’s world is about to change. A female Thor (Angela) has dropped from the sky. His first and only instinct is to kill but then he experiences a change in his programming: he is smitten :0 Pure genius how Modie’s thoughts are ‘interrupted’ by computer language. Is he man, machine, or both? I doff my hat to you, Mr. Yost! (7.5/10 shots)
“Be quick about this, my Baron. I cannot stomach looking at this abomination of science.” “Enough. I fell the bile rising in my throat just looking at this thing.” – Clea
Domain #34: Killville
Domain #?: the site of Graviton’s death [to the north]
OLD MAN LOGAN #1
Domain #29: Monarch of M [to the west]
Domain #27: 2099 [to the south]
Domain #30: Sentinel Territories [to the east]
“” (31 pages) by Brian Michael Bendis, Andrea Sorrentino, Marcelo Maiolo, VC’s Cory Petit
For my thorough analysis, click here.
SECRET WARS 2099 #1(of 5)
“” (20 pages) by Peter David, Will Sliney, Antonio Fabela & Andres Mossa, VC’s Joe Caramagna
Earth’s Mightiest Heroes carry on in the late 21st century!! Role call: Black Widow, Captain America, Hawkeye, Hercules, Iron Man. This quintet of heroes may look cool, confident and experienced but that is an illusion! Tania (Black Widow) is on a date when she gets the call to assemble. The Chain Gang are menacing the streets of Nueva York. She begrudgingly complies. The tech-based thieves give the Avengers a run for their money. Hawkeye is about to be blood splatter when Widow comes to his rescue. She savagely attacks the hoodlum and is about to stab him with her stinger when Cap tells her to stand down. Problem #1: Herc comes on way too strong to the woman whose car he trashed. He is a lecherous lout. Cap knocks some sense into him [literally!]. He also reeks of alcohol. Problem #2: The Avengers are under the employ of Alchemax. CEO Miguel Stone finances the organization. She reports the cracks that are starting to form within the team. Miguel wants her to be more at ease and work on a first-name basis. She finds that difficult. He calls her Roberta. She doesn’t respond to that name. He promises to get to the bottom of it all. When Cap takes off her helmet, she goes into a pre-programmed trance. She is Roberta after all but has no knowledge of her Cap persona. That’s manipulative!! Roberta places a call to her hubbie and daughter. She really has no clue about her alter ego. In fact, she loathes the Avengers! What the shock?!? Miguel has a one-on-one with Herc. The Olympian explains that it is the anniversary of his wife’s Megara’s death. To make it more twisted, she died by his hands, strangled in fact. Iron Man enters a secluded room. Emerging from the armour is a diminutive man known as Sonny Frisco. He approaches the Vision (a female hooked up to a mainframe immersed in water). He is proactive. She informs them that new enemies will appear as friends but the opposite is true. Their next opponents will be the Defenders. (7/10 shots)
WHERE MONSTERS DWELL #1(of 5)
“Let’s Fly, Let’s Fly Away” (20 pages) by Garth Ennis, Russ Braun, Dono Sanchez Almara, Rob Steen
Phantom Eagle soars again!! Karl Kaufmann is ever the dashing rogue. First off, he ditches a princess of an arboreal tribe after he impregnates her. The cad!! Secondly, a warlord going by the nickname of No-Balls Tong is after his head. Thirdly, he owes lots of dough to his repairmen Winch. The hits just keep on coming! Enter a young, attractive well-to-do woman: Clementine Franklin-Cox. Informally known as Clemmie. The airy [no pun intended!] socialite desperately needs to get to Singapore to meet her hubbie. In terms of money, the sky’s the limit [natch!] The wad of cash is presented and Winch helps himself to most of it. With the pleasantries and transaction out of the way, No-Balls Tong comes a-thunderin’ with his clan. Karl manages to take off by a hair’s breadth. That ain’t the end of it. The duo are barely airborne when dark skies produce a savage storm. They pass through a break in the storm only to come across a flock(?) of pterodactyls. The dino-birds engage the aeroplane. A crash landing is inevitable. Karl realizes there’s more to Clemmie than meets the eye. While foaming at the mouth, Clemmie notices to her horror that he’s not leaning against a tree but a T-Rex!! (9/10 shots)
Not just a pretty face: Mystery surrounds Ms. Clementine. (1) She recognizes Karl by name and appearance. She and her girlfriends were quite enamored by him. (2) She sings along a tune supposedly known only to the Royal Flying Corps. (3) She suggests using the compass when the plane’s instruments go out of whack. (4) She recommends that Karl check the pan underneath the plan for duds. (5) She makes excellent use of the Lewis gun and tells Karl to break right so she can be in optimal firing position. (6) She identifies the pterodactyls as Pteranodon Longiceps.
Artifacts: (a) Karl’s plane is an F2B Bristol Fighter colloquially known as a Brisfit. (b) The Lewis gun was used from 1914-1953, hence originating during WWI.
Eloquently put: “Death to the white betrayer Kaufmann! The sky-pig who soars on the wings of deceit! Death to the purveyor of discount gelignite…” – No-Balls Tong. For shame, Karl!!
Who, me? “Just a minute, Missy! What happened to the ditsy little half-wit who needed a ride to…” – Karl was hoodwinked by a dame!!
Domain #24: The Far East
Domain #25: Valley of Flame
Tags: Marvel, Secret Wars, Secret Wars Declassified