Secret Wars Battle Report, Week Nineteen


Welcome back to the Battle Report! More miniseries are wrapping up as we finish up the fifth month of the event. Find out which ones merit your discerning comic dollar!

A-Force #4

What happened:  Loki’s treachery is revealed, and once the women of A-Force defeat her in battle, she blasts a hole through the Shield wall and lets zombies flood into Arcadia.

Was it good: It’s great. This book combines heart and action in a way that celebrates Marvel’s female characters without objectifying or pandering.

Is it necessary: Not to the main series, but it will be an ongoing this fall.

Should you buy it: Absolutely. Best Avengers title out this summer.


Amazing Spider-Man: Renew Your Vows #5

What happened:  Mary Jane and Annie May rescue Peter from Regent’s power-stealing collection room and team up to take down the bad guy.

Was it good: It made Pick Of The Week. This is Spider-Man at his best: heroic, emotional, and connected.

Is it necessary: Nope, it’s enjoyable even without the larger context.

Should you buy it: Yes, this is the best Spider-Man book out this summer.


Red Skull #3

What happened:  Red Skull and Magneto lead an army of Annihilus’s bug soldiers against the Shield wall, but Red Skull betrays his partner and slips across the wall alone, only to meet up with another shocking twist.

Was it good: It’s been great. This miniseries kept the reader guessing the whole time. Each issue ended with a complete reconstruction of the narrative, and it’s given thriller content without losing itself in murky tone or affected art style.

Is it necessary: No, safe to say no one who survived this miniseries is going to pose much of a threat to Doom.

Should you buy it: No, but keep it in mind. It’s only three issues and would appeal to the fans of Hannibal or Dexter.


Korvac Saga #4

What happened:  Michael Korvac figures out that suppressing his godlike powers to hide from Doom only led to his subconscious infecting the people of his city. Now that he’s outed as a threat, Doom’s army of Thors burn his entire kingdom off of Battleworld, and Korvac fakes his own death to get his Guardians to safety.

Was it good: Yep, this was cosmic fun in the best way Marvel knows how to do it.

Is it necessary: Nope.

Should you buy it: No. I mean, if you were going to put money toward the generally-wretched Guardians Of Knowhere, I would smack your hand and trade you for an issue of this. But it’s okay to skip both.



Giant-Size Little Marvel: AVX #4

What happened:  The little Avengers and X-Men keep trying to get the new twins to join their teams, but then little versions of the Inhumans and Guardians Of The Galaxy try to recruit, and the twins lose patience and join the cutest version of the Brotherhood Of Evil Mutants ever.

Was it good: There have been many funny tie-in miniseries this summer. This has been the most charming of those, and it’s appealing to kids and adults.

Is it necessary: Nope.

Should you buy it: I’m not recommending any of the humor books just because the main series is so straightforward in tone and there are so many great dramatic action books. But this would be the first one I’d suggest if you save some room for a laugh.

(Check out Bam Smack Pow’s review here!)


1602 Witch Hunter Angela #3

What happened:  Angela and Serah rescue the 1602 version of Rogue and tell her the story of how Cloak and Dagger were actors in a version of Romeo And Juliet when they got their powers. The Enchantress gets Rogue to kill herself, and this kills Serah, but Angela gets her girlfriend back immediately as a sweetly gruesome talking skull.

Was it good: I am still not excited about Angela as a character, but this book is so clever. The way the Cloak and Dagger story uses almost exclusively lines from Romeo to tell the origin is potentially the Internet’s finest achievement in the field of Shakespeare literacy.

Is it necessary: Nope, this character doesn’t seem to fit with the Angela in M.O.D.O.K. Assassin.

Should you buy it: It’s good, but it’s not quite as good as the titles I’ve put up in the top tier for recommendation.


Siege #3

What happened:  Abigail Brand sends an army of Cyclops clones called The Endless Summers against the enemies besieging the Shield Wall, then Kang, Miss America Chavez, the Unit robot, Leah, and Illyana Rasputin team up to take out the monster leading the siege. At the end, Thanos shows up, “just to talk.”

Was it good: It wasn’t as funny as previous issues, but the Endless Summers pun is cute.

Is it necessary: I doubt it, but we haven’t confirmed if this is the refugee Thanos from the main title or an alternate one like in Infinity Gauntlet. I’ll keep you posted.

Should you buy it: It’s not quite making the cut yet, but let’s see who this Thanos turns out to be.


Secret Wars 2099 #5

What happened:  In a swerve from the book about corporations employing superheroes as security forces, this issue is about a descendant of Baron Mordo welcoming an octopus-shaped Lovecraftian god to eat the world, and when the Avengers and Defenders win the day, Black Widow 2099 celebrates by tracking down a murderer, having sex with him, then eating him alive.

Was it good: Umm, yes? It was so weird and disconnected from the first four issues that I can’t really tell. I liked the first issues. I liked this issue. But I have no idea how to put them together. Seriously, a woman ate a guy to celebrate a narrow escape from God the Octopus.

Is it necessary: Nope.

Should you buy it: Umm, if you need a Peter David book, this is a better choice than Future Imperfect. But I’m not sure you need it.


Civil War #4

What happened:  The Civil War is revealed to be a Skrull plot, but before Iron Man and She-Hulk can get this information to the front, Captain America’s army starts the biggest battle yet.

Was it good: Yep. It’s much better than the original Civil War series, and bringing in Secret Invasion is a good choice.

Is it necessary: Nope.

Should you buy it: Keep it in mind, but don’t run out to grab this.


Mrs. Deadpool And The Howling Commandos #4

What happened:  Shiklah’s team of monsters gets killed in a fight with Dracula, but she manages to kill Dracula, but because he’s the Baron of the kingdom, this is against Doom’s law, and a squadron of Thors kills Shikla.

Was it good: No. Ugh. Absolutely not. This miniseries was awful all the way through, and the ending was even more conclusively wasteful of my time as a reader.

Is it necessary: I refuse to live in a world where anyone feels the need to read this book in service of any other goal.

Should you buy it: You could spend four dollars on this. Or you could spend four dollars on a cheap bunch of glassware and roll around in the shards. I will help you find better targets for the four extra dollars burning that hole in your pocket.

Planet Hulk #5

What happened:  Gladiator Steve Rogers kills the Red King of Hulk-run Greenland and finds out that Bucky, who he was there to rescue, has been dead for years. He also learns that the Hulk who was guiding him through this quest is a gamma-irradiated version of himself. So he kills him, tells Devil Dinosaur they never should have come here, and slowly walks home to rejoin the Killiseum fights.

Was it good: No no no no no no. This book has been boring and padded and awful, and even the main character can’t stay interested in it by the fifth issue. What was the point? The book flat out tells you in the last panel that you have wasted twenty dollars on a story that went nowhere, failed to entertain, and added nothing to the greater tapestry of Battleworld. I’d put in a “It’s Chinatown, forget it,” joke, but it’s not even worth it. I hate this. I would read Future Imperfect again before I opened this book.

Is it necessary: A big steamy pile of no.

Should you buy it: I’m going to let you guess what snarky joke I’d put here.


Ms. Marvel #18 (Last Days)

What happened:  Captain Marvel and Ms. Marvel fight to rescue Kamala’s brother amidst all the looting that the Incursion has inspired throughout Jersey City. Carol Danvers gives young Kamala an amazing speech about the importance of doing what’s right in the face of inevitable loss and inspires her to tell her family that she’s Ms. Marvel.

Was it good: It’s great. Not as harrowing as the race through Jersey City last issue, but absolutely nailing the parts of the issue that are about a hero’s Last Days.

Is it necessary: None of the Last Days tie-ins are.

Should you buy it: Yes. If you can get three issues, get this book’s tie-ins. If you can only afford one, check out Silk instead. But this is absolutely reminding us what the importance of the crossover is, the end of the universe we know, the global catastrophe that will affect every character you love.


Essential Reading:

Really, just Secret Wars. Well done, Marvel.

Recommended Tie-ins:

A-ForceCaptain Marvel And The Carol CorpsThorsSecret Wars Journal, Old Man Logan, X-Men ’92 (digital version), InfernoAmazing Spider-Man: Renew Your Vows, Star-Lord & Kitty Pryde, Ms. Marvel or Silk(Last Days), Marvel Zombies, House Of M, and Inhumans: Attilan Rising.

Good Books That Just Don’t Make Top-Tier:

Captain Britain And The Mighty Defenders, Siege, Spider Island, Runaways, Squadron Sinister, Civil War, Master Of Kung Fu, Ghost Racers, 1872, Spider-Verse, Secret Wars 2099, Giant-Size Little Marvel: AVX, M.O.D.O.K. Assassin, Deadpool’s Secret Secret Wars, X-Tinction Agenda, Red Skull, Secret Wars: Battleworld, Korvac Saga, Where Monsters Dwell, Infinity Gauntlet, Age Of Ultron Vs. Marvel Zombies, X-Men ’92 (print version), 1602 Witch Hunter Angela, Secret Wars: Secret Love (for two stories), Howard The Human, Hank Johnson, Agent Of Hydra, and Weirdworld

Books To Skip:

Guardians Of Knowhere, Hail Hydra, Armor Wars, Mrs. Deadpool And The Howling Commandos, Future Imperfect, Years Of Future Past, E Is For Extinction, Planet Hulk, Age Of Apocalypse, Ultimate End, and any of the Last Days titles you weren’t already reading.


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