After the exciting cliff-hanger in the first issue, we catch up with The Maker, evil Reed Richards, to find a world that he created in his own image. Reminiscent of iconic storylines like House of M, and of course, Secret Wars, Marvel introduces a new reality where our favorite heroes either don’t exist, or have been rendered ineffective.
Ultimate Invasion #2 is in comic book stores now. Spoilers below.
The Maker plans to make sure Earth’s Mightiest Heroes never become heroes at all. And then he can reshape the universe into exactly what he wants it to be…
REVIEW – The Maker Creates a Fascinating New Reality
Ultimate Invasion might be the best series that Marvel has introduced this year. Putting Jonathan Hickman, quite possibly the hottest writer in comics today, back on a major Avengers event has elevated the expectations and anticipation, and two issues in, the series is not disappointing. The Maker is a deliciously dangerous and fascinating character, and after he easily outsmarted Earth 616’s best and brightest last issue, he wastes no time in creating his own reality. In the newly created Earth 6160, The Maker rules all and has ensured that the pesky heroes who might rise up to oppose him are either never created, or are manipulated into compliance. Notably, The Fantastic Four never experience the space incident that would give them their powers, and Peter Parker is not bitten by a radioactive spider. As The Maker himself admits, some heroes are inevitable, as Bruce Banner still becomes a Hulk and a Stark (this time Tony’s father Howard) is still Iron Man. Interestingly enough, even a being as powerful as The Maker can’t anticipate every situation, as Steve Rogers’ body isn’t frozen as expected.
The fact that Rogers is missing is an interesting hint that The Maker might not be as omnipotent as he seems. One might think that he would have been able to either prevent the super-soldier serum from being created, or manipulate the government so that a less worthy being was given the serum. Neither seems to be the case. It’s also not clear why he couldn’t prevent Bruce Banner from becoming the Hulk, another situation that feels like it could have been easily prevented. Whether these situations will be more fully explained, or whether they are left as a plot convenience remains to be seen.
Stark as Iron Man on the other hand makes a lot of sense in that technology must progress, and indeed he is vital to The Maker’s own plans.
The issue culminates in an epic attack by a bizarre group of Avengers like clones from the future, who ultimately fail at their attempt to kill The Maker. A surprising reveal at the end of the book continues to push this story forward at an exciting pace.
Bryan Hitch’s art and the colors by Alex Sinclair are a perfect complement to Hickman’s writing. This story is so epic in scale, full of countless characters and large landscapes, that it’s no easy task to capture everything in detail. Yet every panel is full of rich detail and colors that depict the nefariously perfect world that The Maker has created. The Maker himself is drawn with a consistently disturbing smirk that reflect his earned arrogance and evil intentions.
In the first two issues, Ultimate Invasion manages to find the ideal balance between telling a satisfying story in each book, while also providing the kind of ending that makes the reader desperate for the next issue. It’s unquestionably the must-read event of the summer.
RATING – 4.5/5 Pocky
Ron is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of POC Culture. He is a big believer in the power and impact of pop culture and the importance of representation in media.