Avox in Arcadia (perpetual) wrote,
Avox in Arcadia
perpetual

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Civil War: the Comics

As you've seen if you read my monthly creative agenda, I've been educating myself on the Marvel Civil War arc that inspired the movie. Since I took the Really Freaking Thorough route, that rounded out at about 100 issues, many of which were essentially loose threads that incorporated the global event into each series' own story. That makes a lot of dead weight for anyone who's only there for the crossover, but it's also a nice way to get acquainted with the modern Marvel Universe if you're not sure where to start.


What I liked: I'd had no idea that this was when the Storm/Black Panther wedding took place, so that was a major bonus. I remember some (fairly ridiculous) controversy surrounding it at the time, but all I care about is seeing two gorgeous heavy hitters in an actual marriage. They're probably divorced by now but don't tell me, I'm still basking.

Actually, it was the first time I'd met T'Challa at all, and he's awesome. It was lots of fun seeing pretty much everyone make an appearance, especially when I was only familiar with their cinematic versions or reputation, like Deathlok, Ben Urich, Maria Hill, Bucky Barnes, Damage Control, the Jones-Cage family, and a ton I'm forgetting. Most of them were there just long enough to state their stance, but that was generally enough to either say something about the character, or complicate the issue they were fighting over. Do you want to know which side Deadpool picked? Can you not guess?

Of the major players, one of my favorite arcs (much to my surprise) was the Fantastic Four. Reed is a dick - in fact, I don't really like any of them except for the Thing - but the way he explained his allegiance, and stuck to it even when it split his family apart, really drew me in. Spider-Man had a good story, too. When he switches teams I feel like the reader is compelled to switch with him, like that's the last straw proving that Iron Man was wrong, and that's when they start revealing Iron Man's real motivations, and Mr. Fantastic's, and there's just no way to not sympathize with everyone involved.

Can someone please tell me what kind of crazy genius came up with the Illuminati and where I can find more of them?

What I didn't like: Much as I've tried to avoid saying or believing it, I think I'm finally convinced that Marvel was just better in the 70's and 80's. Characters had more dimension, plots were more adventurous, retcons were less frequent. You know how everyone complains about the body types in comic book art? I thought they were overreacting. Now I realize that we were just picturing different eras. Things may have improved between the 90's and now, but they certainly didn't improve between the Silver Age and the 90's. (I believe Civil War was published in the early 2000's. I don't want to use too broad a brush. Some of the art is really good, in every era.)

I expected a bit more involvement from the X-Men, since as one of them stated, the bill being passed was the offspring of the Mutant Registration Act. It seems like that should have been a great opportunity to revive a classic theme with a few hellbent anti-registration mutants, but aside from Wolverine commenting that a Sentinel is like a burning cross to a mutant, there wasn't much attention paid to their emotional reactions, and they mostly remained neutral.

Would it be weird to say there wasn't enough death? Aside from the big one at the end, all I remember is Goliath, who I didn't even know. The MCU has every right to hang onto those beloved characters they've put onto the screen - they're hard to come by, and we haven't had enough of most of them yet - but 616 has minor and major heroes coming out of its ears, and a truly permanent death in the world of comics has serious impact. After the incident that kicked it all off, the stakes just didn't seem high enough to make it look like a real war.

As compared to the movie: I won't get to see it until Sunday. Most everyone on my flist is good about cutting spoilers, but please don't forget about me and my sensitive unspoiled eyes. :)

The major difference I've been considering is Cap's justifications. Bucky hardly shows up in the comics, and of course there's no New Warriors or Stamford incident in the movie. Without making use of the Inhumans, which we know they're not, it just doesn't seem like there are enough super-powered individuals in the MCU to warrant any specific measures being taken to protect their freedom.

Not to mention, secret identities are barely a thing. When you have characters like Daredevil saying "If I register, my enemies have every advantage and my loved ones are going to die," it carries a lot more weight than a resistance on principle. I don't think any of the MCU heroes could make that claim, except for the ones confined to TV (like, you know, Daredevil). So who is Cap thinking of other than Bucky?

And then on Team Iron Man, after his part in the last big superhero disaster in Age of Ultron, this is really the perfect direction to take him, whether he's ultimately right or wrong. I hope there's going to be some version of the Stamford incident, but you can see where he's coming from without one.


Started this entry two days ago and lost the brain power for it, so I'm just going to wrap up here and see if any of my thoughts return later. I'm pretty sure we're all going to love this movie and I want to wring it dry.
Tags: a comic i read, marvel cinematic universe, x-men
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