A talk with my conscience. - TPBReview
Devil: You know ya loved it! Another rip-roaring Marvel crossover event! HUGE battles man! I'm telling ya, Captain America and Iron Man really tore it up! Don't tell me you didn't have goosebumps in the final battle when they were all about to kill each other!
Angel: That may be true sir, but you also know it continues Marvel's path down the dark side. Remember when Marvel heroes could be called.... well, heroes? Over in the DC Universe, they grapple with their own issues, but they still feel like the good guys. Nowadays, it seems like every former Marvel legend is a brooding dark figure who continually crosses the line.
Devil: Aw shaddup ya wimp! There's nothing wrong with stretching the boundaries. I remember when all superheroes were toned down spandex Boy Scouts who couldn't mutter the word "dang" without some retribution from the CCA!
Angel: That's true, but I also remember when Iron Man used to be a hero I cheered on, not cheered against. I remember when Mr. Fantastic was someone to admire. I remember when Spider-Man's secret identity meant something.
Devil: Change happens ya hippie! This crossover event was true to modern times! Government control over superheroes! People overreacting to disasters! The dark days, I lovezz 'em!
Angel: I realize Civil War was an allegory for 9/11, but comics have always been a fantasy world I could inhabit for a brief break from the carnage of the modern world. A place where good still beat evil. A place where writers attempted to do the right thing. Superman stood for truth and justice. The X-Men alluded to racism and equal rights. I don't pick up comics to see my favorite heroes acting like chickens with their heads cut off and easy prey for manipulative politicians. The thing about our real world is that we realize our mistakes and try to fix them. Namely by voting in new heads in Washington who deal differently with the trying issues of our time. What do you do in a comic book world where the acts of fictional characters forever change the direction of an entire comic book line? It's hard for Iron Man to suddenly become a lovable hero again. It's difficult to bring Captain America back to life after becoming a martyr. How do you make Spider-Man's secret identity a secret again?
Devil: You have another crossover event ya moron! Ya call it Secret Invasion and say that they were all Skrulls and didn't know what they were doing!
Angel: Oh..... Well, in that case, I did enjoy some of the stories. I thought it was funny as hell (excuse the cursing!) when in the middle of a calm planning session, the Punisher shot down the villains who showed up ready to help. I did like how I could read this TPB only and not the gazillion crossovers to understand what was going on. Although I'm sure they would just add flavor to the story.
Devil: There ya go! Now we're talking! I told ya Mark Millar was a genius.
Angel: Remember, this is the same guy who tried to market a comic as the most violent book in comic industry history.
Devil: Aw shut yer trap! His Ultimate runs were still better than anything the 616 universe had to offer at the time, and that's why they pulled him in to write Civil War, the 616 Fantastic Four and other regular universe runs. With the exception of a few dudes like Bendis, there wasn't much new talent at Marvel to spice things up. So he enjoys a dark comic book, deal with it! It's not like Marvel was having great success with its other new talent! They needed their own DC version of Geoff Johns and Grant Morrison.
Angel: Well, I guess I can see your point. I admit, it was a fun read. Oh well, I guess I'm off to read Final Crisis to see how much DC can shake-up its universe. I would read Secret Invasion to see how Bendis fixes some of the problems Millar gave us, but frankly, I'm lost. I think I almost prefer Millar's literalist interpretation right now over the Bendis X-Files mumbo jumbo.
Devil: I'll be waiting! I can't wait to have another round of yappin' when these publishing giants decide to screw up something else with their annual crossover events!