Review: Civil War II #5

civil-war-ii-5The devastating fallout from the first half of this event is enormous and being felt in every corner of the Marvel Universe. The truth about Ulysses’ future-seeing power is revealed and it is a game changer. Sides are irrevocably drawn and the gauntlet is thrown for the biggest battle in Marvel Universe history. And that’s just the stuff we can tell you. All this, and the story goes galactic!

I’m not going to harp on how Civil War II lost its promise early on in the series. Instead lets just focus on this jumble of an issue where you need a pin board of pictures to keep track of who’s on what side. First, I read the issue digitally and this issue has a lot of double page spreads and pages that flowing interestingly from one into the other, so that’s not optimal and didn’t help matters at all figuring out what’s going on.

The entire issue is one giant battle as Tony and his folks face off against Carol and hers. Various individuals get their moments to fight and banter, except unless you’ve really memorized who is on what team, it’s kind of hard to remember whose side folks are on during this, and thus care about an outcome. I was distracted by it all, and the dialogue that was present didn’t give a ton as far as motivations to figure out where people stood. Things aren’t helped that I found myself trying to reference the team break down at the beginning and the two-page spread of the teams to figure out who was on what side, which killed the flow of reading. So, best to keep notes if you care.

Writer Brian Michael Bendis again gives us a comic that’s paper thin. There’s a lot of statements made back and forth to what comes to maybe 100 words total as the comic is mostly people throwing fists. The problem is we’ve seen this before in the first Civil War, and also Secret Invasion, Dark Reign, and each of those times it felt more impressive. This is the third or fourth sequel of the film where the sequence is repeated to lesser impact.

And as expected the issue goes for shock value towards the end. I’m sure folks will spoil it, but not here! It’s an interesting aspect and plays into another storyline in another shock series, at least I expect it does. It’s foreshadowing for what’s to come down the road based on statements from other creators on other series.

The art from David Marquez is still the best part of the series, but that too is a little lessened here. There’s some very cool page layouts, and some scenes have some awesome detail, for instance Tony’s army getting beat to crap, but other scenes the detail is just lacking.

It all feels like there were issues putting this issue together. Some things are rushed, othere things there’s not enough detail or discussion. I’d guess it was around this issue that plans changed and the series was expanded. Overall, the issue continues an event that’s more flash than substance.

Story: Brian Michael Bendis Art: David Marquez
Story: 6 Art: 7 Overall: 6 Recommendation: Pass

Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


  • I totally agree. I couldn’t keep track of anyone’s team (other than the GotG) and kept having to flip back to the front page with the team lists. I did think the surprise ending was the strongest part of this comic mostly because of Ms. Marvel’s reaction. Her Civil War tie ins have really laid out the real issue of this series, how profiling is not a good thing, and put her on an emotional journey dealing with losing respect of her hero, Captain Marvel. We don’t see it here in Civil War #5, but it makes me look forward to the next issue of Ms. Marvel.

    • Glad I wasn’t the only one! The ending was absolutely the strongest part, but in a series that’s been defined by “shocks” it just felt like yet another to me. And interesting on the Ms. Marvel tie-ins. I need to catch up on them. I think that’s a failure though, where you need to dive in to a tie-in to get the real issues of the series. That should be in the main series and then the tie-in expands upon it.

      • I completely agree. The tie-ins have been the best part especially Ms. Marvel, Patsy Walkers, and The Accused. I feel like Ms. Marvel should scratch the profiling topic a be more (because well, that’s the world we’re living in where douches would profile her because of her religion), but it’s one of the better one because she’s seeing Carol Danvers fall from grace as Kamala’s persona; hero.