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Marvel Super-Heroes Secret Wars #1: Review

May 1984
Jim Shooter, Mike Zeck

Story Name:

The War Begins

Review & Comments

3 stars

Marvel Super-Heroes Secret Wars #1 Review by (June 10, 2011)
On the other hand the Beyonder does show his preferences the other way when it comes to X-Men because he drags Cyclops in, who had left (again) to marry Madelyne Pryor. Kitty Pryde has just temporarily left the team, but the Beyonder has brought in her pet dragon Lockheed who wasn't with them when they entered the building. He also takes Rogue who only recently joined the team but wasn't in UXM#180. And Magneto who was definitely still a villain, but *was* offered a place on the team in his last appearance in the 'God Loves, Man Kills' Graphic Novel.

And he seems to have taken the villains selectively from wherever they were.

The Beyonder scans Earth several times before Secret Wars. Various people detect the energies:-
Professor X in Uncanny X-Men #178 and #179 and New Mutants #13.
Vision in Avengers #240 and #241.
Spider-Man's spider-sense in Amazing SM #249 and #250.
Mr Fantastic's machinery in FF#263.

They all detect the same energy in Central Park in UXM#180, Av#242, ASM#251 and a flashback in FF#265.
UXM#180 and Av#242 end with the X-Men and Avengers entering the alien building in the Park and being spirited away.
Captain America is with the Avengers, and the Av#242 entry is also seen as an epilogue to CA#292.
Thor is with them too, and it happens at the start of Thor #341.
After the FF#265 fb the FF pick up Thing in his #10 and enter the building from there.
Spidey enters at the end of ASM#251, also shown as epilogues to Spectacular SM #89 and Marvel Team-Up #140.
Morley Erwin detects the energy at the end of Iron Man #181 and sends the James Rhodes Shellhead there.
Hulk happens to be passing Central Park at the end of his #294.

Some Avengers (Mockingbird, Scarlet Witch, Starfox and Vision) are left behind. I don't know if it's the Beyonder being picky or if it's just that these 4 lagged behind. In truth it could be more to do with what Peter mentioned - who had a Mattel figure. Except only Captain America of the other Avengers rated 1.

Marvel Super-Heroes Secret Wars #1 Review by (June 10, 2011)
COMMENTS: Explanations: Iron Man is Jim Rhodes, Hulk has Bruce Banner’s mind, Professor X can walk.

REVIEW: Epic miniseries was designed to tie-in with a Mattel line of Marvel superhero toys and it shows. A contrived plot with a lot of featured characters does not a classic make, though many remember this fondly. The story is okay, though it was clearly written to showcase various merchandisable heroes, and adds too many absurd romantic subplots but it clearly goes above and beyond the call of duty with the apocalyptic events of the final issues. Mike Zeck’s art is merely passable, in all its bland 1980s glory, though the last issue is badly done and looks like it was rushed to meet the deadline. The series is notable for many events that carry over into the regular continuity: Spider-Man gains the Black Costume, Spider-Woman 2 (Julia Carpenter) is introduced, She-Hulk replaces Thing in the Fantastic Four, and more. And issue #4 features the cover showcasing one of Hulk’s greatest achievements. Overall, a fun though not particularly well-done limited series.

HEROES: Captain America, Captain Marvel (Monica Rambeau), Hawkeye, Hulk, Human Torch, Iron Man (Jim Rhodes), Mr. Fantastic, She-Hulk, Spider-Man, Thing, Thor, Wasp and X-Men Professor X, Colossus, Cyclops, Nightcrawler, Rogue, Storm, Wolverine, plus Magneto.

VILLAINS: Absorbing Man, Doctor Doom, Dr. Octopus, the Enchantress, Galactus, the Lizard, Kang, Molecule Man, Ultron, the Wrecking Crew.

Marvel Super-Heroes Secret Wars #1 Review by (June 10, 2011)
This issue says that the galaxy that gets destroyed isn't ours, and is completely uninhabited. But the planet that is formed has inhabited parts taken from other planets, including as we'll learn later a bit from Denver on our own Earth.

Galactus actually wanted Beyonder to remove the hunger that makes him consume worlds.

At this point the only stated possibility for Kang's history was that he was a descendant of Dr Doom. We haven't yet reached FF#272 where we will find Reed Richards' father Nathaniel living in an alternate timeline. And later What If (1989) #39 will say that Kang was born in that timeline, and that he is also named Nathaniel Richards, a descendant of the original (and also possibly of Dr Doom).


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Marvel Super-Heroes Secret Wars #1 Synopsis by Peter Silvestro

A number of superheroes suddenly find themselves in a space station in a remote region of the galaxy and floating nearby is the craft’s twin containing several supervillains. The most puzzling aspect for the heroes is the presence of Magneto among them. As the two parties watch, this entire galaxy is destroyed in seconds, and a new planet is formed near the last remaining star. On the villains’ ship, Ultron pursues his purpose to destroy every living thing with an attack on Absorbing Man. Doctor Doom appeals to Molecule Man as the only one with the power to stop him. Molecule Man, reformed from evil and insecure about his powers, flips Ultron into Galactus’ leg, bringing the robot to the attention of the cosmic being. Galactus drains Ultron of all his energy, leaving him an empty adamantium shell.

A rift opens in space and the voice of the Beyonder addresses them, telling them to slay their enemies and he will grant them their hearts’ desires. Galactus, irritated at this interference in his life, launches himself across the void to confront his enemy—and Doctor Doom follows in his wake, hoping to escape and also learn the secrets of the universe. They are swatted back to their craft like flies. The two ships are deposited on different areas of the newly created planet. Among the heroes, a dispute breaks out over whether Magneto can be trusted, which the Master of Magnetism settles by levitating away. After more argument, they agree on Captain America as their leader.

Doctor Doom awakens near the unconscious form of Galactus and heads to a nearby citadel which the villains have occupied as a base. They want Doom to be their leader, but Doom disdains their petty ambitions of wealth and power, instead seeking to gain the Beyonder’s secrets of knowledge and immortality. Doom holds the baddies off with his force bolts, choosing to head off to contact Reed Richards in a small ship. A bitter Kang uses one of the citadel’s weapons to shoot down Doom’s craft. The heroes investigate the crash and find the injured Doom ranting about power. They try to help him but Doom is insulted by their pity, drives them back with his blasts, and leaves. Moments later, the heroes are under attack by the villains, wielding weapons supplied by the Beyonder….

Mike Zeck
John Beatty
Christie Scheele
Mike Zeck (Cover Penciler)
John Beatty (Cover Inker)
(Unknown artist) (Cover Colorist)


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Absorbing Man
Absorbing Man

(Crusher Creel)

> Marvel Super-Heroes Secret Wars: Book info and issue index

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