Mind Capsules – Secret Wars #8 and Scarlet Witch #1

Secret Wars #8
Secret Wars #8

Writher – Jonathan Hickman
Artist – Esad Ribic
Colours – Ive Svorcina
Letters – Chris Eliopoulos

The battle against God Emperor Doom is raging and it is chaos at its finest. Ben Grimm, the man who was the Shield, the man who kept the hordes of Ultron and Annihilus and the zombies at bay is awake and angry. Seeing him face off against Franklin Doom/Galactus is a sight to behold, but it could only end one way. Doom’s generals are falling, the heroes from the life raft are invading, Doom’s castle explodes with the coming of Groot and members of the Cabal are being cut down like wheat before a scythe. The book is packed full of action from cover to cover and Doom proves why he is a god before all others, if only for a moment. Jonathan Hickman and Esad Ribic do not make it easy for the man, especially as the world that he built is starting to tumble down around him. Many heroes and villains get a moment to shine in this particular issue including Star-Lord, Thanos, Terrax, Black Panther, Namor, Black Swan, the Maestro and more, and while it would be nice to say that they all make it out the other side of things intact, war has its casualties. What is going to be extremely interesting is to see just how Doom will solve this problem, especially as it is getting further and further out of control by the moment. Does he do it himself or does he call on the Molecule Man? And what of the two Reeds? Will they stop Doom, will their very presence be enough to make Doom pause and make a mistake? There is one brief scene where Earth 616 Reed meets Sue and Valeria and it is bittersweet as it may be the only moment they have before the world Doom has built comes to its end. You want Reed to succeed, in destroying Doom, restoring the universe and getting the girl, but for some reason, you know that some of this just may be beyond his abilities. With the new wave of Marvel titles under way, you can already half-guess how this series will end, but guessing about it and seeing if first-hand are totally different and you can be sure that Hickman and Ribic are going to make it worth every penny.

4 out of 5

Scarlet Witch #1
Scarlet Witch #1

Writer – James Robinson
Artist – Vanessa Del Rey
Colours – Jordie Bellaire
Letters – VC’s Cory Petit

For the last ten years or so, perhaps a little longer, Wanda Maximoff, the Scarlet Witch has been a mess. She has been crazy and sane and in love with Doctor Doom and all sorts of madness. But now, thanks to James Robinson and a rotating team of artists starting with Vanessa Del Rey, the woman everyone is wary of in the Marvel Universe, gets another shot at life and an ongoing title to show for it. Out of Marvel’s current slate of books, this title did not really scream to be read, but it features some of Robinson’s best writing in a long time and it is utterly compelling from cover to cover. Here, Robinson makes Wanda a very confidant woman, something she has not been in since her last stint as a member of the Avengers. She wants to help people again, much like she used to and she is going to do so one person at a time. Robinson also takes a look at her powers in this first issue, and where once upon a time her abilities were chalked up to being chaos magic, he refines it into witchcraft, pure and simple. There is also a mystery introduced, a couple of them actually, one to do with the case that Wanda is working on and the other to do with magic itself, as if someone is tampering with the very nature of it. She can feel it and it is not natural and she means to get to the bottom of it. A really nice surprise is the fact that Wanda already has the start of a supporting cast in the form of Agatha Harkness, or at least her ghost. The woman is just as wry and witty as she has always been, though being dead she can offer very little of anything other than conversation and wisdom. Reading this book, you realize that Robinson has taken Wanda in exactly the right direction and he makes it so good that you cannot help but want to come back for the next issue.

4.5 out of 5

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