Thursday, April 24, 2014

Kree-Skrull War, pt. 3





Continuing my dissection of the comic book epic that is the Kree-Skrull War, we now move from part 2 to part 3.

Part 3 takes place in Avengers #91.  Sadly, not much goes on.  The Avengers involved (Vision, Scarlet Witch, Quicksilver, Wasp, Goliath, and Yellowjacket) spend the majority of the issue in a slugfest, cleaning up the prehistoric mess they've been enmeshed in via Ronan the Accuser.  The last issue ends on a cliffhanger with Yellowjacket, devolved into a massive Cro-Magnon man, looming over the unconscious form of his wife, the Wasp, seemingly about to deliver a deathblow with his club.

But wait!  The devolved Yellowjacket pauses and utters "Girl...weak...no club...hurt...pretty...take you with...for later."  The primitive man then carries the woman off, slumped upon his shoulder.

Well, there are a lot of ways you could take this.  The feminist consensus probably wouldn't be a positive one.  Then again, I'd be curious (and a perhaps little apprehensive) to hear what Camille Paglia might say on the matter.  Were I to write an encomium of Yellowjacket, I might argue that he was under the influence of the devo-ray and therefore acting out his most primal, animal instincts.  Yet at the same time, he refused to kill the Wasp...even though he punched her out (!) in the previous issue.  Does this mean that Thomas Hobbes is wrong?  Even in a "state of nature," man is not truly "nasty or brutish?" Ronan doesn't think so.  He sides with Freud on the action, stating that the only reason Yellowjacket spared the Wasp was so that he could have a mate.  Again, the sex drive wins out.

Speaking of Ronan, he spends most of the issue in histrionics.  He spouts on about his fiendishly clever plan in the way most cliched comic book villains do.  His captives, Vision, Scarlet Witch, and Captain Marvel, are forced to hear him prate on ad nauseum.  There is an upside to this however.  We learn that the Kree's motives behind the devo-ray plot are actually rooted in what might be termed "real world" politics.  If Earth is spawning superheroes with powers and abilities above other mortals of the galaxy, might it not be a good idea to get them out of the way of your imperialistic goals?  Sure it is.  Sure it is.

Around time of one of these lectures we see one of the few truly interesting developments in the issue.  The romance between the Vision and the Scarlet Witch actually comes out into the open.  Or close to it, anyway.  Vision expresses disappointment that Scarlet Witch was captured.  Wanda tells him that  it doesn't matter as long as he is all right.  The two come close to kissing.

The couple are then cock-blocked by Ronan erupting in laughter.  An android in love with a mutant.  "Only on Earth!" he might as well have cackled.

Perhaps as karma, Ronan's hilarity is short-lived as an urgent transmission comes from the home star system of the Kree.  A massive scale attack is underway by the Skrulls and the Kree Empire is at war.  At last!  Finally!  We take our first tiny step towards anagnorisis!  There is at least a mention of the title of this story arc.  And we're only three issues in!

Seeing that there are now far more pressing issues to attend to, Ronan and his Kree Sentry activate a transporter beam that sends them back to the Kree homeworld, effectively abandoning the devolution operation.  The Arctic begins to return to normal and the Avengers along with Captain Marvel head for home.

Like I said, not much happening in this ish.  We still don't see the "big" Avengers characters (sorry to keep harping on that, but it's kind of a thing with me) but at least the whole "devo in the arctic" business is laid to rest and we can move on.  Who knows?  There is a ray of hope in this issue that we might actually get to see the Kree-Skrull War, but I remain philosophically skeptical.

I wonder how The New Yorker would review this saga?





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