One of the coolest aspects of Battleworld has always been the Shield, which is a giant wall holding back roving bands of symbiotes, Ultron armies and Marvel zombies. Basically all the big bad monsters that have been skulking around the Marvel Universe. The latest tie-in from Marvel focuses on the men and women who man the wall to protect Battleworld. The head of security since Nick Fury disappeared (he’s so good at that) is Abigail Brand, but how is she holding up after a few months battling the hordes…and more importantly how is the comic? Is it good?
Siege #1 (Marvel Comics)
Overall this is a nice read, particularly if you’re interested in the history of the wall and how it’s fared against the monsters and beasts constantly pummeling it. We open on Brand and the trial she went through in order to become the leader of the wall, which is not only epic but downright badass. From there we learn the day to day operations, how the other members fear her grumpy ways and ultimately the hook that will drive the story forward.
Writer Kieron Gillen does a bang-up job with Brand first and foremost. The character is a bit war torn, a refuge from the one instance when the monsters broke through the wall and a downright hard working soldier. She’s the glue that holds this issue together, and while there isn’t a ton that goes on in the issue itself, the flashbacks serve up quite a bit of epic storytelling.
There are two of these flashbacks which take up a double page spread each, drawn by the incredibly detailed work of James Stokoe. These show some epic moments in the history of the wall and they are quite nice to look at. In fact Gillen must have been aware of this as he keeps the narration small and light to let us soak up the beautiful art. Essentially these serve as the action scenes of the issue while the rest, drawn by Filipe Andrade, serves as a more forlorn and tragic art style. Because Stokoe’s work serves as the flashback art they work well together in telling the overall story. Plus they’re both a bit dark and fit the mood too.
Everyone starts talking to Brand with, “I’m sorry.”
Overall the issue is a good introduction to the wall, the cast of characters which include Miss America, Lady Katherine, Kang the Conqueror, Leah Shieldmen, the Endless Summers Company (not sure who this entails completely just yet aside from Scott) and Leonardo Da Vinci. It’s a weird mix of characters, that is for sure. Because we don’t see any actual fighting with these characters and instead see them getting ready for the day there’s no telling how they work together exactly. Do they shoot off the sides of the wall or something? Or maybe they have a door like in Game of Thrones’ wall? This brings up a slight problem with this issue, which is that it’s a bit slow. Ultimately it’s a morose look at the hell of the wall via the characters’ moods. It’ll be interesting to see where it goes from here though, especially with the tease of a new villain making things all the more complicated.
Talking to Kang like that in the old 616 got you killed!
Is It Good?
This is a great edition to the tie-ins as it has resounding importance on the main event. It also has some stellar, moody art and a worthy edition of an important character.