Issue by Issue – Marvel Two-In-One Annual #2

Writer – Jim Starlin
Artist – Jim Starlin
Inker – Joe Rubenstein
Colours – Petra Goldberg
Letters – Annette Kawecki

Though the cover of the issue might state that it would be Spider-Man starring in the book along with the ever lovin’ blue-eyed Thing, it would also feature the Avengers, Captain Marvel, Adam Warlock and for the big bad of story, the one and only Thanos. Continued from Avengers Annual number seven, the story finds Peter Parker having a nightmare where Thanos has incapacitated the Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, killed off Adam Warlock and is now in possession of the Soul Gem, looking to appease his Lady Death. Awakening, Peter knows that it was more than a dream and looks to get the Fantastic Four to help him out and instead, finds only The Thing at home. Together, they head into space to see if there is any merit to his story and it is there that they discover that it is all true. Written and drawn by Jim Starlin, the master of all things cosmic, he paints an exciting tale where the Avengers are out of the picture and it is up to only Spider-Man and Ben Grimm to stop the Mad Titan from completing his mission. While they battle valiantly, they are soon outmatched and only Spidey remains, alone to stop a ship full of enemies and Starlin shows the man doubting himself something fierce. Just when Peter is at his lowest though, he finds the courage to go back and do what he can, facing the overwhelming odds against him and freeing those who might have a better chance at stopping the monster. All the while this is going on, Starlin chronicles a conversation between Lord’s Chaos and Order and follows the travails of Adam Warlock who now resides in Soul World and is finally at peace. Of course, that does not last very long as he is brought forth once more to take care of Thanos, once and for all. Though the book might star The Thing, he actually played a very small part in the larger scheme of it all. When it came down to it all, it was Spider-Man who was the integral piece to defeating the villain, The Thing only there for a little extra muscle. Starlin would pack the book with heroes, which was great to see including Captain Marvel, Moondragon and even Gamora, though she would only reside within the Soul Gem with Adam Warlock. The action is non-stop from beginning to end and when that final showdown comes, it finds Thanos stopped for all time thanks to a timely intervention by Warlock, though Marvel readers will know that nothing lasts that long in comics. Altogether, a great issue from Starlin that never failed to entertain.

4 out of 5

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