Home Comics & Toys Marvel’s Civil War II has already claimed its first victim

Marvel’s Civil War II has already claimed its first victim

3 min read
32

CIVIL WAR II (1)

Death. In real life it’s about as unavoidable as explosions in a Michael Bay movie or my insistence that Assassin’s Creed is actually pronounced as Assassin Is Creed. In comic books however, death is a vacation. A blissful two-year (or longer if you’re Uncle Ben) hiatus before your character bounces back into action with an all-new number one issue.

And that’s the central theme of the first issue of Marvel’s Civil War II. The sequel that nobody was expecting kicked off last week, opening up with a big death halfway through. So uh, spoilers from here on out if you haven’t caught up yet.

CIVIL WAR II (16)

This time, it was James “War Machine” Rhodes who got future endeavoured in a death that actually occurred earlier in the pages of Civil War II Preview during Free Comic Book Day. Ouch, that’s going to leave a mark. In the first issue of Civil War II however, that death has been grimly confirmed. The War Machine is dead.

CIVIL WAR II (45)

That’s one hell of a death to start Civil War II off with. Rhodes has been getting a lot of face-time lately, which now reeks of foreshadowing. Everything from the possibility of War Machine one day being president of the US of A to his romance with Captain Marvel, ideas designed to make a likable character have a bigger punch to the gut when most of his torso was blasted off of him by Thanos.

According to Marvel’s editor-in-chief Axel Alonso, killing one of the most prominent black super heroes in Marvel history during a new push for more diversity within the ranks of those comics, wasn’t an easy decision. “This was a hard decision. Brian was walking us through his story notes at a retreat, and he needed something to happen at the end of issue #1 that would ratchet up the stakes,” Alonso said to CBR.

That’s where the scene we see the aftershocks of the assault on Thanos comes in. We started to workshop a scene that had a group of heroes, strong in their convictions, go out on a mission to stop one of Ulysses’ predictions, and we realized that for the scene to have weight, not all of them should come home. It was gut-check time.

After we’d assembled the team, it was Brian who said it made most sense for War Machine to be the casualty of that operation, and the discussion began. We examined it from all angles, the more and more we talked about it, the more we saw that the death of Rhodey — given his profile in our universe, the fact that he was strongly aligned with Carol’s position in regards to Ulysses, and his relationship with both Carol and Tony — would have the most impact, and cast the broadest shadow over everything that happened after.

Brian also felt that Rhodey’s death would create an additional dynamic in the story because it would unhinge both Tony and Carol, and bring an emotional component to fuel their passion and, at times, overwhelm their reason.

Let me be very clear: We carefully considered the fact if we were going to kill Rhodey, a beloved African-American character, at a time when we are taking great pains to diversify our universe — with characters like Black Panther, Miles Morales, Sam Wilson, Kamala Khan, Amadeus Cho, Robbie Reyes, Moon Girl and more playing prominent roles — we needed to have a long-term plan that proved we intend to stay on that course, and we needed to be able to unveil parts of that plan quickly. Which we will.

I’m still divided over this series. Whether it’ll be necessary, a worthy successor to the original Mark Millar and Steve McNiven mini-series. Story issues aside, Civil War II is gorgeous to look at. David Marquez’s art is on point, whether it be absolutely epic scenes featuring the entire Marvel roster taking on a Celestial destroyer of worlds:

CIVIL WAR II (21)

Or more intimate scenes that shows just how short the career of a superhero can really be:

CIVIL WAR II (41)

Civil War II continues in the pages of many, many other comics in the months to come. Except this time, there’s no Nextwave: Agents of HATE to make fun of it. Awww.

Last Updated: June 6, 2016

32 Comments

  1. Comics. So mentally basic that even the main hero can’t finish a sentence.

    Seriously, go read a real book instead. David Eddings or Terry Pratchet are great sources.

    Reply

    • Hammersteyn_hates_Raid0

      June 6, 2016 at 12:39

      Comic book reading is reading too.
      *Hail Hydra

      Reply

    • Greylingad[He Charges!]

      June 6, 2016 at 12:48

      WEIGHT DOES NOT COME INTO PLAY WITH THIS. MY STEED HAS CARRIED ARMIES, IT HAS CARRIED CITIES TO THEIR FINAL DESTINATION, BUT IT WILL NOT CARRY THE THREE OF YOU.

      War: “Oh, that’ll look really good, the one horseman and the three pedestrians of the Appocralypse…”

      Sourcery – Terry Pratchett

      Reply

    • Original Heretic

      June 6, 2016 at 12:52

      Eddings?!? Not exactly groundbreaking stuff….

      Pratchett is legend, can’t fault that assessment.

      But rather go with Neil Gaiman, R. Scott Bakker, Brent Weeks, Robert Jordan. To name a but a few. Much better if you enjoy the fantasy genre.

      Reply

      • Pariah

        June 6, 2016 at 12:56

        See, now I’ve not heard of any of those authors. Not a one. I’ve been reading fantasy for a long time. So is this like one of those hipster things, you know. Liking an author before they were cool.

        Reply

        • Original Heretic

          June 6, 2016 at 13:06

          Not one of them?!? Wow, okay, do yourself a favour and get hold of their stuff!

          Gaiman has been around for ages. His claim to fame was his Sandman graphic novel series. Fantastic stuff. And his subsequent novels have all been amazing. His first short story collection, Smoke and Mirrors, amazing stuff.
          Brent Weeks is bit of a new kid on the block. Only one complete series out, with another near completion. But also, awesome stuff.
          Robert Jordan, his Wheel of Time series had the potential of putting him the same category as Tolkien. But then he starting waffling for about 3 books. and then he died. And then someone else took over to finish it. Still, as a whole, a damn fine read.

          And if you want to look at the book that is STILL considered to be 2nd in the fantasy genre (behind LOTR), then look for Magician by Raymond E Feist. Still one of my favourite books of all time.

          Now go! Write all this down and let your reading start!

          Reply

          • Pariah

            June 6, 2016 at 13:16

            Now Raymond Feist is a name I know and love. The rest sound obscure and shit, and you totally lost me at “graphic novel”.

            Tracy Hickman, Terry Brooks, Janny Wurts, all authors that I know and respect.

          • Original Heretic

            June 6, 2016 at 13:19

            If you get lost when someone says graphic novel, then you’re missing on SO many amazing works. Sandman, Transmetropolitan, Preacher, The Boys. But to name a few.

            And there’s nothing obscure or shit about the authors I’ve mentioned above. They’re all top notch. Don’t knock ’em before you try them.

          • Matthew Holliday

            June 6, 2016 at 13:28

            graphic novels are pretty cool though, i grew up reading a graphic novel version of The Hobbit, and I still think its better than the original novel version

          • Original Heretic

            June 6, 2016 at 13:36

            Sometimes the adaptations from full novels do work, but not always.

            I’ve got the first couple of graphic novels of Magician, but damn, as good as they are, they still don’t compare to the original novel.

        • Original Heretic

          June 6, 2016 at 13:10

          Oh, and R Scott Bakker, also a great author, but tends to interweave a great deal of philosophy into his works. His first series, The Prince of Nothing, wow, astounding stuff.

          Reply

          • Alien Emperor Trevor

            June 6, 2016 at 13:12

            Ever read Steven Erikson’s Malazan series? There’s a series that throws you into the deep end.

          • Original Heretic

            June 6, 2016 at 13:15

            I haven’t, though it’s been recommended to me more than once. I can’t ever seem to find the first book and nobody that I know owns it, much to my dismay. I’m currently starving for a good read. I’m waiting for July when (hopefully), Bakker’s next book is out.

          • Alien Emperor Trevor

            June 6, 2016 at 13:20

            I’m firmly in the ebook camp for fiction. I’s loves mah Kindle.

          • Original Heretic

            June 6, 2016 at 13:23

            A kindle has been on my list of “things to get” for ages now. But I’m old school. Love the feel of a real book in my hands. My wife hates taking me into a bookstore. I can spend hours in there! And still walk out with nothing new but a smile on my face.

          • Matthew Holliday

            June 6, 2016 at 13:30

            get the kindle app for your phone/tablet.
            the only downside is phones not having that paperback light or whatever.

          • Alien Emperor Trevor

            June 6, 2016 at 13:31

            I buy non-fiction & humour in dead tree format, everything else is electronic now – otherwise I would’ve run out of space years ago.

            I’ve always loved going into 2nd hand book shops, a few of my favourite books have come from them over the years. One of my biggest surprises was finding CJ Cherryh’s 4th Morgaine book – I’d always thought there were only 3 up til that point.

          • Original Heretic

            June 6, 2016 at 13:35

            My library grows every month! It’s wonderful! But yes, I do need more book shelves now…

            It’s always great finding super cool books in a 2nd hand book store. My most memorable was finding Speaker for the Dead, by Orson Scott Card, in a little store in Simon’s Town. Didn’t even know Ender HAD a sequel up until that point.

      • Hammersteyn_hates_Raid0

        June 6, 2016 at 12:57

        Still can’t believe HBO hasn’t sued George R. R. Martin for copyright infringement

        Reply

        • Original Heretic

          June 6, 2016 at 13:07

          Ha! Damn, I’m still miffed that the series has overtaken the books!

          Book four was released in 2007 and then we waited, waited, waited. Then the series started, and it was amazing. And then the bloody books stopped coming…. The old bastard…

          Reply

      • Matthew Holliday

        June 6, 2016 at 13:23

        Eddings may be like a broken record with his stories, but the way he writes his characters is pretty much next level.
        I was sold on Sparhawk the moment he first said “hello neighbour”

        Reply

        • Original Heretic

          June 6, 2016 at 13:30

          Please don’t get me wrong, I wasn’t trying to bash Eddings. I loved his books when I read them. But, in hindsight, his work is very much of a “beginner’s fantasy” reading, in my opinion, anyway. It was only when I picked up some of the more mature works from other authors that I realized this.
          That’s why I love Brent Weeks so much. His style is so fluid, you find yourself devouring hundreds of pages at a time. And yet, just when you think you know where the story is going, he throws something at you that’d make Shyamalan wish he’d thought of the twist!

          Reply

          • Matthew Holliday

            June 6, 2016 at 13:33

            oh totes agree, Eddings isnt exactly breaking the curve with plot twists etc and all his books heavily feature the whole repetition thing, movie style fantasy, sorta the same way Star Wars is going with its new movies.

    • Matthew Holliday

      June 6, 2016 at 13:25

      if youre an eddings fan, give Jeniffer Fallon a go.
      Her Medalon saga is pretty great and she’s expanded that “universe” with several other carry on / side stories which you know, is always great.

      Reply

  2. Hammersteyn_hates_Raid0

    June 6, 2016 at 12:38

    Poor Rhodes got slapped so hard….
    http://i.imgur.com/zvIzRRH.gif

    Reply

  3. Alien Emperor Trevor

    June 6, 2016 at 12:58

    SPOILER
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    This is what should’ve happened in the movie. After falling a few km in a steel can. 😛

    Reply

    • Hammersteyn_hates_Raid0

      June 6, 2016 at 12:59

      Tony Stank table for one!

      Reply

      • Alien Emperor Trevor

        June 6, 2016 at 13:03

        That scene made me cringe.

        Reply

        • Hammersteyn_hates_Raid0

          June 6, 2016 at 13:04

          Was unnecessary
          *******************Spoiler*******************
          I bet the original script had him die but then Disney was all girly about it
          *******************End Spoiler*************

          Reply

          • Alien Emperor Trevor

            June 6, 2016 at 13:07

            I meant that Tony Stank Stan Lee cameo scene. 😀 I literally eye-rolled.

  4. Strawman Jim

    June 6, 2016 at 14:30

    Don’t worry guys, he’ll be back… as a girl! WAR MACHINE with BOOBS!!! WooooHooo!!!

    Reply

  5. Fletch

    June 7, 2016 at 03:11

    Don’t you mean victims, as She-Hulk dies in the same issue.

    Reply

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