I will say right from the outset of this review, I am totally digging the Secret Invasion concept. What I’m not digging are the crossovers into other books. I understand crossing over into regular monthly titles. That’s fine. My problem is that there are some of the crossovers into regular monthlies that should have either been one shots or dubbed Secret Invasion #0. I’m referring to some of the Avengers crossover stuff. The Fantastic Four Secret Invasion 3 issue mini I’m enjoying. I like the idea of having to follow the team who first encountered Skrulls and defeated them. It also makes sense that the Skrulls would try to completely remove the FF from the equation. If anyone on Earth can devise a way to stop them, it’s Reed Richards. I have yet to see what is being done in all of the crossovers into regular monthly titles, but if the trend of having none of the characters of the regular title appear in the book continues, I will be a little annoyed by them.
Secret Invasion 2 picks up right where issue # 1 left off. The heroes of Earth are in a stare down with the people who got off the ship that crashed in the Savage Land. As Tony Stark’s armor continues to buzz that it is failing and has been infiltrated with a virus, the two groups of “heroes” talk back and forth and finally go to fighting. As they stand off is happening, Ares constantly tells his companions to flee. Hawkeye is stunned by the appearance of his one time love interest Mockingbird (who is, of course, thought to be dead.) As the fighting begins, we get some fun banter between the two Spider-Mans… uhm …Spider-Men? Anywho, it’s funny to hear them go at it a bit. Vision goes after Sentry and reveals himself to be a Skrull as he changes his form to the Void. This of course drives Sentry nuts and he flies off. (We do see him back at the battle though, so it’s possible that Skrull-Vision shifted to take the form of Sentry.)
As the battle rages, Warbird flies Iron Man away from things. Stark can barely muster strength to talk much less walk in his now useless armor. However, he instructs Warbird (I guess she’s calling herself Ms. Marvel again. I’m just getting back into the comic scene remember.) to take him to a laboratory that he knows is nearby. Apparently, he plans to build new armor that the Skrulls can’t infect with their alien techno-virus.
The fight is broken up by a Dinosaur and everyone scatters. (As Wolverine says, Dinosaurs have that effect.) Spider-Skrull is smashed in the dino-attack, and we see Mockingbird weeping over a dead Hawkeye that turns out to be a Skrull. The real Hawkeye comes out from hiding in the trees just as Wolverine is about to kill Mockingbird. He asks her to answer something that only the two of them would know. He is satisfied that she’s the real deal. She tells them that the Captain America that landed with them is the real deal as well. She also reveals that the Skrulls that are here on earth are on a suicide mission.
Back in Manhattan, the Young Avengers watch as the top portion of the Baxter Building is vortexed away. (From reading Secret Invasion: Fantastic Four, we know they have been taken to the Negative Zone by Lyja. Interesting to see her again by the way.) The Baxter is suddenly replaced by a Skrull warship. It opens up and teleports (by my count) 25 Super Skrulls to the planet’s surface. In the mix is a classic Super Skrull with the powers of the Fantastic Four, an X-Men Super Skrull with the powers of Wolverine, Colossus, and Cyclops, a Giant Super Skrull which apparently possesses the Avengers powers, one with Archangel’s powers and what looks like either ice or blue energy rays blasting from his hands, and Iron Man Super Skrull or two, a Captain America Super Skrull, a Super Skrull with villains powers including Doc Ock’s arms and a Sandman arm (maybe a Sinister Six Super Skrull), and in the middle of them all a Super Skrull with the combined powers (apparently) of the Illimunati.
As I said from the outset of this review, I am totally digging on Secret Invasion. This second issue does a lot to further the events of the first and tack on more new problems and mysteries. Is Mockingbird really the real deal? Can we even remotely think that the Captain America from the ship is the real Steve Rogers? (I don’t think so.) What about Reed Richards? He’s not dead (is he?). How can our heroes even hope to combat an army of Super Skrulls?
I especially like that it seems that Tony Stark is starting to take another hero’s journey. I kind of thought going in that this would be the story that redeems him from being seen as the bad guy from Civil War. With what we’ve seen in this issue, it looks like we may get that yet.
Story 5 out of 5 – As much as I’ve been disappointed by some of the crossover issues since last months premiere issue of Secret Invasion, the main story has got me hooked right now. There’s action, there’s mystery, there’s suspense, and I sound like a movie announcer from the 1930′s. Everything just came together in this issue to do what it needed to entertain me and bring me back next month. I’ll probably even check out some of the crossover stuff between this and issue # 3.
Art 4 out of 5 - There are four really awesome two page splashes in this issue. Two at the beginning, one in the middle, and one at the end. The rest of the time I think panels and pages are used appropriately to tell the story. Throughout the fight, there is a lot to look at. I had to stop and just look at almost every page to take it all in. I dock a point because of the four really awesome splash pages. That’s eight pages to show four scenes. I feel like maybe some of the action could have been better served to do a half page to a page splash of the Dinosaur breaking everything up.
Cover 4 out of 5 - I’m referring to the main cover, I have none of the variants. I like this cover so much better than the first issue’s cover. It could be safe to say that this is a cover full of Skrulls. I say that because we know for sure that three of the characters on the cover turn out to be Skrulls in the story. I like the painted look. I just like this cover. I dock a point because it would have been nice to see something with a bit more action in it.
All in all, this story has gotten me hooked after two issues, and I hope that it continues right on through the end. I won’t lie…I don’t really expect it to. Marvel has track record in recent years of building up to a big finish only to have a not so big finish. So we will see. We will see.