Secret Wars Declassified Week 28: SS & HH Bye-Bye!!

NOTE: no new books shipped on Dec. 2, 2015. This entry is for the books released on Nov. 25, 2015. Apologies for the delay. Truth be told, they temporarily slipped my mind :$

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SILVER SURFER #15

SILVER SURFER #15

“Your Universe” (20 pages) by Dan Slott, Mike Allred, Laura Allred, VC’s Joe Sabino

Absolute power corrupts absolutely.” so sayeth John Dalberg-Acton, First Baron Acton. Who will succumb to the rush: Norrin Radd or Dawn Greenwood? The Surfer has just re-created his homeworld of Zenn-La. Much to Glorian’s surprise, he has no intention of staying. His point of origin was always a little too perfect for his liking. The Shaper of Worlds materializes and informs the Surfer that his tampering has caused severe anomalies and unnecessary duplicates. The Shaper’s own existence is in peril. Surfer realizes his limitations when he returns to Euphoria. The doubles cannot occupy the same time and space. The Surfer departs distraught. Dawn seems to be faring better. She is with Norrin Radd proper before he became Galactus’ herald. She’s having the time of her life. She tries to resurrect her mother but to no avail. Infinite power has its limits. Things go awry fairly quickly. Two halves of the same being face each other. Dawn has to make the right choice to reset reality. Glorian begs the Shaper to act on Dawn’s behalf. The omnipotent being refuses to do so. Glorian betrays his master by slaying him and ascending to godhood. The lowly Zee ends the charade – he is the Incredulous Zed! The real Surfer tells Dawn to pick Norrin since he’s the epitome of perfection. Dawn sees the nobility in the Surfer’s altruism. Glorian slays Zed when he realizes that his servant would betray him. Toomie shows Dawn the solution to the problem: the location of the Queen of Nevers’ heart. The embodiment of possibility has returned to life!! She tells the duo that they must choose a single universe – one ruled by Doom, or one under Glorian’s thrall. That’s no easy choice!! The biggest deus ex machina [literally!] comes in the form of Eternity!! He has freed himself from Doom’s Battleworld. The personification of time indicates that the 616 has drastically changed albeit being still familiar. Glorian threatens to undo the new universe if he isn’t followed. Dawn sees through his empty threat. She remembers the Surfer’s observation that the universe is indeed infinite. It will keep expanding. With that realization, Glorian dissipates into the void. A new trek through the cosmos awaits the lovebirds.

This issue determines the fate of Eternity in SECRET WARS #9 which will not ship for another four weeks. *groan* Either way, the finale of that series better be beyond epic.

Not up to snuff:I’m sorry, children. Perhaps…I am ill-suited to play god.” – Surfer to the people of Euphoria.

Channeling Gwen Stefani:This is…it’s bananas!” – Dawn’s reaction to choosing one Surfer.

High opinion:I should have done that before. Being a god is still so new to me.” – Glorian is ill-equipped.

Reality check:Norrin, don’t. They’re just make-believes. Daydreams. All of your would-haves and should-haves…They’re regrets. We don’t get to choose different pasts. What you do get to choose is the future…the person you want to be.” – Dawn makes a world of sense!!

I’m overjoyed that Dawn Greenwood, a ‘lowly’ relatively powerless human being bested a power-mad entity. Faults and flaws are not only part of the human condition. They are indeed universal and apply to all beings from the far reaches of space. This is a trippy treatise of the metaphysical and surreal. Dan Slott should get multiple PhDs with awards to match!! Mike Allred makes every page and panel so vibrant. The larger-than-life representations are deftly handled by the ingenious illustrator. Laura Allred drops a massive bucket of paint across the expanse. The brighter hues are eye-catching and attention-grabbing. This is sublime so that one may be engrossed in the sequence of events.

This is the essential Silver Surfer – a nigh-unstoppable being comfortable in his own sheen. There is drama, heart-warming moments and major moral dilemmas. All this combined with hope and willpower make this title reflective of the genre. Mr. Slott has to receive several accolades for elevating this underrated book. The Surfer returns in a month’s time with the same creative team. WOOT WOOT!! Until then, I look skyward in the hopes of spotting him. [9.5/10]

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HAIL HYDRA #4

HAIL HYDRA #4

“Futility” (20 pages) by Rick Remender, Roland Boschi, Chris Chuckry, VC’s Clayton Cowles

 Happier times are re-lived by Ian and his adoptive father Steve Rogers. Ian is frustrated by the futility of fighting the bad guys only to see them walk away. His better dad, ever the optimist, asks him how he will improve. He points out that every single being struggles with belonging. Back to where we left off last issue!! Nomad is dangerously hanging by one hand as his warped clone of a brother taunts him. He voluntarily freefalls. Captain Hydra sics his Avengers on the man who lives up to his name. Ellie swoops in and grabs Ian. She is the last person he’d expect to see. Luckily, she has full control of the symbiote within her. Ian suggests they retreat and head back to his Earth via the Infinite Elevator. Ellie is enraged that he’d be willing to give up so easily. Their convo is cut short when they have to swerve Dr. Mindbubble’s bubbles. The Avengers engage Nomad. Ellie is trapped within a bubble. Ian manages to invade her headspace and shockingly bring her back to her senses. As they make their way to the teleportation device, Hydra’s shield knocks over Nomad. He selects the ‘616’ button just before Ellie is gunned down by the Iron Baron. She dies in Ian’s arms. He proceeds to project missiles. There is a massive explosion. Hydra is incensed at the man’s impetuousness. Once the light show is over, there are no traces of either. Capt. Hydra is dismayed.

Thus ends Rick Remender’s tenure at Marvel. This issue had some redeeming qualities. It is unfortunate Ellie met her demise. She could have been an interesting addition to the Captain America universe but that was not her fate (nor the creator’s/editor’s decision). Ian Zola cannot measure up to Steve Rogers’ impeccable track record. They are not biologically related but that is beside the point. The nurture won out but the nature still resides within the Dimension Z denizen. It is more realistic to see a human aspire to heroics but failing far and wide, plagued with doubts and insecurities. Ian got his wish to return home but it came at a heavy cost. Nothing ever comes easy to super-heroes.

The art team heighten the intensity and depravity of the Hydra domain. Things are beyond bleak. Ellie resembles Captain Marvel in her symbiote suit with the star emblazoned across her chest. Steve Rogers could pull off an older and relaxed Jimmy Carter. The villains each have a chance to demonstrate their wicked ways. Ian will most likely reappear in CAPTAIN AMERICA: SAM WILSON. Until then, never give up, True Believers!! [7/10]

Thanks to my local comic shop for providing these issues.

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