I spend more time pretending to be Spider-Man than I should.
Marvel’s Secret Wars is one of the biggest comics events in recent memory. Fortunately, we have our very own user guide for you, right here on ComiConverse.
In Issue 1 we were left ominously with the heroes awaiting the final incursion and the end of the Marvel Universe at stake. Multiversal Avengers had failed to stop the Beyonders and we were left with no hope in Dr. Doom and Dr. Strange’s capacity to defeat them. Secret Wars issue 2 starts with a million different questions that at no point get answered. We are thrown into a new world, Battleworld, where Doom is God and Dr. Strange is his sheriff. Everyone in this world has no memory of the previous universes; Battleworld is all they’ve known. The Marvel Universe is dead, all that remains is Battleworld. A patchwork planet consisting of domains of earlier worlds brought together by the will of God Emperor Doom.
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This issue starts with an introduction to the Thor Corps, various people from different domains that have proven themselves worthy by lifting their own Mjolnir. The Thor Corps police Battleworld and above all else are the jurisdictional law of Doom. Who else to keep order other than your own army of Thunder Gods? From the off we see that all is not perfect in Doom’s world; Even as a God and Emperor Doom’s divine will is doubted by the lower Kingdoms of Battleworld. In the Kingdom of Utopolis this evidence is mounting when the life boat from issue 1 is found.
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A newly ordained Thor is accompanied by Old Man Thor to summon Baron Sinister to trial at Doomstadt. (The capital of Battleworld, where Doom occupies) Baron’s are the rulers of domains, they are given authority over their land as long as they work within guidelines set out by Doom. Baron Sinister, of Bar Sinister, is brought before the council to receive trial after accusations from Baron Braddock, of High Avalon, of discord. Baron Sinister chooses to challenge his accuser to combat, a luxury given to him as a Baron of a kingdom. During the fight Sinister is about to deal a fatal blow to Braddock when Doom interrupts and makes everyone bow to him. Doom spares Braddock’s life and in turn wants gratitude, he asks for information on heretics being conducted in the domain of High Avalon, Baron Braddock confesses and is sent to death at the Shield.
Valerie Richards has a private conversation with Dr. Strange and explains that there has been a discovery that affects both his role within the religion of Doom and herself, the science needed for the society to run. She explains the life boat has been found, an incredible discovery that could rock the foundations of Battleworld as the carbon dating of the object dates before the creation of the world. With this knowledge, Dr. Strange sends the two Thors to quarantine the matter. (Don’t forget to check out the giant Galactus protecting the front of Dooms castle, awesome!!). James Braddock is equipped, at the Shield, with basic weaponry and sent over the edge, the Shield is a wall that separates the dangerous domains from the rest, and they’re the Annihilation Wave, Ultrons and Zombies! (This is pretty much Game of Thrones at this point… but there’s a very, very cool Venom zombie here). At the site of the life boat the Thor Corps set in motion to quarantine the area where the life boat is accidentally opened. Old Man Thor sends the young Thor for back up when he is instantly killed, when out of the life boat steps the Cabal…
Jonathan Hickman has masterfully crafted his writing technique that keeps you constantly hooked begging for answers. When an answer is presented it provides absolutely no closure only begging even more questions than you started with. Hickman has been doing this throughout his run in Avengers and continues this with Secret Wars with every issue. Other than learning the intricacies of this new world, throughout this issue all I could think was “How the hell did Doom pull this off?”
Guess there’s only one way to find out.
Louis Waldron is a contributor to ComiConverse, you can follow him on Twitter: @LouisWaldron