In a discovery that sent shockwaves throughout the historical community today, archaeologists found multiple copies of the comic book Secret Wars #9 at specialty comics retailers around the country. The comic, which experts believe is the final issue of a long-forgotten event series, appeared simultaneously in almost every comic book store in America, an event unprecedented in the history of archaeology. Researchers are working overtime to discover what the comic is about and what its cultural significance might have been to the people who were alive when the series was first being published.
"Remarkable! Truly remarkable!" remarked Head of Event Comics Anthropology at the prestigious University of Phoenix, Professor Thaddeus T. Puffinbottoms, who is leading a research team to find meaning in the historical artifact. "From our preliminary studies, it appears that this comic was meant to be the final issue of a super-mega-crossover event that would reshape the continuity of the fictional universe in which it takes place."
What that universe may have looked like before and after the reshaping is unknown at this time, as Puffinbottoms says it's been such a long time since the previous issues of the comic were published that no one alive today could possibly remember, and the details have been "lost to the endless tides of historical entropy." What Puffinbottoms and his team do know is that the comic was likely a top seller in its time, as comic book fans in the past, just like today, are hopelessly incapable of resisting the hype of a universe-shattering event gimmick. Still, Puffinbottoms believes that we might learn a lot by continuing to study Secret Wars #9 and unlocking its secrets about the comic book industry of ancient memory.
"This Jonathan Hickman may have been a very important figure in his time," Professor Puffinbottoms suggested, "and we believe we can learn about him based on his writings here. For instance, what personal issues plagued him that prevented the comic from coming out in the same era as its previous issues? Could a worldwide catastrophe have been a contributing factor in making the comic so unbelievably late, and what role if any did Hickman have to play in that? It's fascinating what one can learn from ancient literature."
Like most scientists and comic book reviewers, Puffinbottoms had little to say about the comic's artwork, noting that it seemed to have "tight linework" and that the colors helped to "accentuate the mood." At press time, a cult of worshippers were preparing ritualistic "cosplay" garb mimicking the characters featured in the comic and preparing to gather at a "convention" ceremony to recreate the traditions that many believe were a part of the daily life of comic book readers in the time of "Secret Wars #9." We'll keep you updated.