Civil War was and is one of the greatest graphic novels that I’ve ever read. The huge series was a perfect metaphor for the Iraq war and how the government has industrialized spying on its own citizens.
It scored a perfect 10 for me and I definitely recommend that you check it out if you haven’t read it. It really is perfect and in my opinion, should have been left alone after the closing pages of its final issue.
However, for better or worse, Marvel has decided to sequalise the work and after hearing mixed things about Civil War 2 I am hesitant about approaching it.
Every single person I’ve spoken to about it has told me to avoid it like Captain America avoided Iron-Man but this is a comic book review website so I feel like it’s a duty that I pick it up.
Throughout this review I’ll be breaking down everything you need to know about the storyline and if it’s worth picking up. There will be some spoilers here so if you don’t want to know anything then I highly suggest that you skip to the score.
With that out the way I just wanna give a huge thank you for checking this review out, now let’s get into my breakdown of Civil War 2!
The Rise Of The Inhumans
Terrigen Mist spreads throughout the land, turning mere mortals into Inhumans upon breathing in the mysterious gas. This creates a new kind of superhero, one who is able to see the future and this causes a rift amongst Earth’s mightiest heroes, the Ultimates and how they should use this power.
The aptly named profit, Ulysses, is able to peer into a version of the future and using this the Ultimates wish to divert disaster before its ever able to happen.
On the surface, it seems like a sound idea and one that will ultimately be the best way to stop any upcoming cataclysm. However, Tony Stark, a true futurist, worries that in trying to beat the future before it happens that they will ultimately cause far worse issues.
This comes to fruition when the Ultimates try to preemptively stop Thanos from getting the Cosmic Cube and in the process Rhodey, aka War Machine is killed. She-Hulk too slips into a coma before telling Captain Marvel to fight for their new ability and it looks like in playing God, the Ultimates have done a deal with the devil.
Not only does it prove that Tony is right but it also drives a huge wedge between the two sides that drives the conflict throughout. It’s a unique premise and one that had me hooked straight away. I’m fascinated with all things time travel and whether knowing one’s future would cause it to differ and this book captured my interest instantly. Watching relationships fray is fascinating and as far as introductions go, this was a stellar one.
World War Hulk
The reliability of Ulysses’ visions truly comes into question when he witnesses The Hulk killing all of The Ultimates one by one in a grand battle that levels an entire city. Naturally, most are alarmed by this and they confront Bruce directly, accusing him of committing a terrible crime even though it’s yet to happen.
This sets the situation into an alarming frenzy that feels tense throughout and really makes the work a page-turner as you desperately hope that Bruce is able to get out of the situation. However, out of fear, Hawkeye kills him before he is able to transform and it’s a heartbreaking moment that will massively shock everyone reading the book. Never was I expecting such a scenario to happen however it was inevitable that something like this would occur down the line and it really makes the reader question whether this ability to see into the future would be a gift or a curse.
It’s a perfect metaphor for social profiling and how early judgment can often lead to disaster. It’s easy to apply this to how Police tend to stop a majority of Black Youths purely under suspicion and how often these encounters lead to disastrous consequences.
It makes the work relatable and there are several real-world metaphors such as pre-emptive strikes on countries that are deemed to have weapons of mass destruction even though they’ve never used them that are rife throughout the book.
Because of this, the midsection is a gripping read and I found myself turning page after page, desperate to find out what happens next.
‘A ten percent chance’
Tony discovers that Ulysses doesn’t tell the future but rather, his brain is capable of analysing all minutia of data in the world and using it to draw conclusions. Stark works out that there’s only a ten percent chance that he’s right and is merely using an algorithm to predict events.
Captain Marvel refuses to see this as folly and to her, even a low percentage still gives her all the inclination that she needs to carry out what she views as the law.
It’s a clear comment on how we in the West have bombed the Middle East several times in the hopes that we could stop any threats before they mature and it perfectly comments on just how short-sighted that thinking is.
Naturally, it creates a huge divide between the two sides and see Iron-Man’s forces going head to head with Captain Marvel’s in the latter part of the book.
Now I think where this story falls short in comparison to its predecessor is that it doesn’t depict a compelling argument for both sides of the coin. Tony, to me at least, is pretty clearly right throughout and the narrative didn’t really leave me torn in the same way that the original Civil War did.
The Death Of Captain America
In the end Ulysses shows the heroes a vision of Spiderman standing over Captain America’s body after apparently killing him. This puts a strain on everything, including Captain Marvel’s beliefs as Spiderman is a part of her team.
However, stubborn as ever, she stands by her unwavering trust in Ulysses and after an arrest on the webhead is foiled by Tony, the boy becomes a fugitive that both sides are desperate to track down.
This comes to a head when they discover him at the location where he apparently murders Captain America to prove that the visions are false and that the future is not set in stone.
The situation escalates with Tony and Carol going head to head in a massive showdown that sees the two characters tear each other apart.
It’s an awesome end to the story and one that hints at what could potentially come down the line in the Marvel Universe, making for a satisfying end to the work.
I must admit I’m pretty surprised by how much I enjoyed Civil War 2. After hearing from countless people that the book was a big dud I actually found it a fun ride.
Now it’s nowhere near as monumental as it’s predecessor, however, as a standalone story, it works at showcasing what would happen if heroes went head to head over ideologies.
If the reputation of this storyline has put you off in the past I actually recommend that you give it a chance. It’s a brisk read with a lot of standout moments that make for a brilliant story filled with fascinating art and the over the top action that really makes comic books one of the best forms of media out there.
Civil War 2 is a blast and it gets an