Here's my review of the issue from the Review Group on the message board that shall not be named....
Okay……….this is going to be an uncharacteristically long review for me, but this is a “big event” so I feel like it should be a big review.
Now, to start off, let me say that I really have not been enjoying Marvel’s events over the last few years. I thought House of M was a pretty good story, but I didn’t think it really needed to be a company-wide mega crossover. If they just left it between New Avengers and X-Men and then did the main mini-series, it probably would have been received a lot better.
Then came Civil War, whose popularity continues to confuse me. I thought it had a strong concept but was delivered in the most piss poor manner possible. And I do hate it when comics try to get too political, particularly the way Mark Millar does it. Then there’s the fact that you needed to read about a dozen tie-in issues to figure out what the hell was going on in the last issue.
And my least favorite was last year……..World War Hulk. The company-wide mega crossover that didn’t need to exist. I’m sorry, but if that was just an arc of the Hulk, it would have ruled. But they stretched it out in order to cash in on mini-series’ and tie-in issues and it watered down a story to the point where it was just retarded.
So basically, that’s where I’m coming from with my approach to Marvel’s latest company-wide mega crossover, Secret Invasion.
I’m a regular reader of the Avengers books, so I’ve been pretty well versed on all the stuff leading up to this, what with Elektra being revealed to have been a skrull, etc. And it did pique my interest. So I started to read this and it went pretty much how I expected……Tony Stark would reveal that they’ve been infiltrated, there’d be some tension between the two Avengers teams and then there’d be some surprises as characters are revealed to be skrulls. So there wasn’t too much here that really impressed me. But, as with previous Marvel crossovers, I’m already starting to feel lost. For instance, what was the deal with Captain Marvel? Is he a skrull now? I didn’t bother to read that Captain Marvel mini-series, so I have no idea what’s going on there. Stuff like this really turns me off of crossovers like this.
The dialogue was typical Bendis stuff. Sometimes it’s good and it’s really sharp and it works, and sometimes he does that annoying repetition. I guess he’s trying to make it sound “real” but it comes across as annoying to read. And it’s something that I see he falls back on a lot. It’s sort of a cheap trick to make dialogue sound interesting without actually being interesting. I learned the same trick in a playwriting class in college. I ended up with an “A” doing the same thing. But don’t get me wrong. I like Bendis. I have since he was writing Sam & Twitch back in the day. And there were some moments where Bendis plays to his strength, which is creating tension between characters. The scene where Luke Cage is prying open the door to the ship and the Mighty Avengers are there to stop him was great. You could really feel the tension between the two teams.
Also, as a side note, I liked when we saw the S.W.O.R.D. space station from Astonishing X-Men. That was very cool for me, being a huge fan of Whedon’s X-Men stuff. Glad to see that’s an idea they’re running with and not forgetting immediately after his Astonishing run wraps up.
The ship full of Skrulls crashing in the Savage Land was interesting. I imagine some of them are skrulls and some are real. That’ll be a nice mystery to play with through this series.
My favorite part of the issue was the ending, where Reed discovers a way to identify who’s a skrull and who isn’t and then he gets shot in the head with a ray gun from a skrull agent posing as Hank Pym. I don’t know what it was, but something about that scene made me laugh. I loved how Reed was all stretched out and splattered around the room with the one eye-ball sort of hanging from the goo.
That brings me to the art. I’ll just come out and say it………I hate Lienil Yu’s art. Really. It’s all scratchy and angular and everybody’s eyes look like they haven’t slept in three days. What is that? And the faces on women…….god, they’re awful. The guy cannot draw a feminine face to save his life, IMO. They all have pointy chins or they look like a dude in drag. This looked better than his usual garbage, probably because it was inked competently. But I still didn’t care for it.
Overall: 6.5 (barely a passing grade)
A promising start to a company-wide Mega Crossover, but Marvel and Bendis still seem to turn to the same tricks I haven’t cared for in the last three crossovers.