Marvel Legacy #1
Writer: Jason Aaron
Artists: Daniel Acuna, Jim Cheung, Russell Dauterman, Stuart Immonen, Greg Land, Pepe Larraz, Alex Maleev, Ed McGuinness, Steve McNiven, Esad Ribic, and Chris Samnee
Ever wonder what your legacy would be after you are long and gone? Would your children’s children follow in your footsteps or burn their own path? The ancient heroes of Earth and the present heroes all struggle with this question. Now sit down and buckle up, this is a long review but it is a long book with a lot to cover!
What you need to know…
This is a new Marvel Universe forged a million years ago. The past, present, and the future of all. This book will answer long overdued questions, tell us old secrets, bring back a hurricane like force to our delight and one that we’ve feared. The only way to read this book is to dive in with your full knowledge of the Marvel Universe, and hold tight for the wild ride you’re in for!
What just happened…
A million years ago, Mjollnir fought it’s welder, but it’s not the Thor we know but instead his father Odin. Odin is a young warrior and Mjollnir doubts his own worthiness. With his team “assembled” we see the heroes that started at the beginning of the human race, ones that carry a striking resemblance to ours, we meet the first of their kind. Black Panther is wearing the head of a panther, Ghost Rider is mourning the death of his ride, a mastadon killed in battle, craving his first taste of vengeance. Iron Fist is a woman, Agamotto is the Earth’s first Sorcerer, Starbrand a brutish caveman, and Phoenix is a sharp witted redhead woman. They have assembled to fight a foe they have never seen before, one they call a sky god, Agamotto calls him a Celestial, but deranged unlike the others he has encountered in his travels. And so the legacy begins.
This book packs in so many promises and it delivers! Jason Aaron writes an eloquent saga of the new Marvel Universe to come. So many stories take off in this first book, and we’re given a glimpse at the origins of many legacies. We meet the first generation of the Avengers after their first major victory, planting the roots of their own legacy. Legacies that despite the hero of the story, seem to mimic those of their ancestors.
The present day stories start off with Robbie Reyes being woken up by a police officer in his car, unaware of where he is. As he takes off, he passes a sign saying Capetown, he is in South Africa with no memory of how he got there. Within seconds he’s attacked by a blast, Starbrand is expecting him. With a crazed look in his eye Starbrand rips Reyes from his car and a battle ensues.
As promised, this journey goes to many places and touches many lives. We’re taken to Jotunheim next where Loki of all people, is using the lowest and most desperate of frost giants to carry out his dirty work, which shockingly is him trying to save the world! With a battle cry speech, he sends them through a portal, fully knowing that their lives mean nothing to him, but the “trinket” he’s after means everything. Off they’re sent to a debunked S.H.I.E.L.D. facility to retrieve this mysterious box, only to be met by the newest group of heroes, Sam Wilson as his last time as Captain America and Thor (Jane Foster). Despite Thor’s legendary theatrics in battle, we see a sexualized side of her with her wishes to make out with Sam Wilson, throwing off their concentration while in battle. Luckily for them Ironheart is trying to live up to her predecessor’s reputation and explodes her way into the fight against Loki’s lackey frost giants.
The story jumps around quiet a bit as would be expected in a 50 page story. We’re given a glimpse into page long introductions to new stories to come. We see Steve Rogers at a quaint little road side empty diner with a glimpse of his backpack and his iconic shield poking out. Back at Stark Industries, a comatosed Tony Stark disappears without any trace. Thor is seen drinking at an Asgardian tavern, drowning his unworthy sorrows. A royal viziers can’t handle the horrors he saw of the future, so he says three words, “MANGOG IS COMING” and throws himself off Bifrost. Starbrand and ghost rider Ghost Rider are still fighting. Back to the frost giant battle, Ironheart tries her best to rally her team with an “Avengers…..” cry, but it just doesn’t hold the same strength as it use to. One of the giants gets away with the mystery box, while the rest are defeated.
Deadpool is being Deadpool. While in a dingy bathroom stall, he tries to give his best confession as if he was talking to a priest but still being crass as ever. Officers yell at him to get out of the Roxxo Burger bathroom so they can arrest him for the murder of Agent Coulson, he just sits there. Deadpool admits to himself that this time, for once, he might’ve taken things too far. The officers open fire, and as he sits on the vile toilet seat (pants up for a change), he shows remorse. As every bullet tears through his flesh, Wade says “thank you father, may I have another.” Our Merc with the Mouth has found his guilt conscious.
Over at 177A Bleecker Street, Doctor Strange and Iron Fist exit the front door of Strange’s Sanctum Sanctorum, ready for a fight. The Sanctum has alerted Strange that something has tried to break into the townhouse. Of course, who ever it was, couldn’t even make it past the shrubbery. As Rand tries to joke about Strange’s shrubbery and fridge, Danny tries to get serious with our Sorcerer. He asks him if he ever had a dream where he was a caveman who killed a god, and in a casual way, Strange responded that he has, many times. Their dreams would have to wait though, because finding out who tried to break in was more important, of course we know who it was. As he wonders off, we see Norman Osborn grumbling how dare he be stopped by simple shrubbery.
Onto the next one page chapter, we see the iconic NYC skyline, and two members of the first family of the Marvel Universe, Johnny Storm and Ben Grimm. Feeling obsolete, Storm worries if the world will even remember them, but Ben reminds him in his own sarcastic way, the world needs them now more than ever. It doesn’t matter if we remember them or not, all that matters is that they never forget. Before you turn the page, Thing fires a flair into the night sky, and it forms the iconic Fantastic Four logo in fire. They are back and they have a mission to protect the world!
Our next legacy intro is something rather obscure. Now most people might have a hard time with this page, but you need to stop and think about the mythos of the Black Panther. The nation of Wakanda was built around a mountain sized meteor of vibranium. Meteor! You know those rocks that fly around in space. So it comes off as a stretch, but this is a new universe and we see the origins of the Wakandian nation. In another star system, on a planet named Bast, we get a glimpse of Birnin T’challa, throneworld of the Intergalactic Empire of Wakanda. Again, this is a stretch, but what if it was more than just a meteor and the true history was lost to the ages?
Again to another one page story intro, an employee at a deep space monitoring facility is distracted by another employee. Despite his dedication to his job, he gives in to watch a wrestling event with his other coworkers, but of course at this time an urgent deep space message is received. From the Tayo star system, a broken message is sent begging for “Green Scar” to return home. The Hulk is needed by his people.
Back to Ghost Rider and Starbrands battle. Reyes has reached his limit. Starbrand keeps rambling on about the Fallen and a Host, but the Rider doesn’t understand and doesn’t really care. Instead he stares Starbrand down with “a little penance”. Not only does this kill Starbrand but his body explodes while he drones on about now there won’t be enough power to save the world, the sleeper will walk and the final host will…… Talk about a cliffhanger. Robbie is shocked, he’s never seen the stare do that, and as he drives off, he drives right into this mysterious archaeological dig.
Oh yeah, and those two archaeologist, of course they went into the tunnels. Despite one of them being terrified the both continue to explore. They find wall carvings they don’t recognize. Us as Marvel True Believers recognize them immediately. There, carved into the wall is Mjollnir, the eye of Agamotto, the head of a panther, a dragon, a fiery bird, and the Starbrand symbol. Nevermind the pulsing hand of a long lost Celestial that has been trapped for ions. As the men scream, it calls out to the final host to “cleanse them all”. What we fear the most has awoken.
But wait? What about that return we’ve been waiting for? Well that frost giant who took the mystery box, he finds out real soon who has returned. As the mini giant flees, he mistakes a set of headlights as a portal sent by Loki, and is mowed down by a semi truck. Not just any semi truck, but a BEER semi truck. And there’s only one man in our beloved universe who would not only use a beer truck to kill a frost giant, but use his now “snikted” opened body to keep his beer cold. Yup, WOLVERINE IS BACK! At the same time, the time displaced Jean Grey visits the adamantium statue that Logan was sealed in, to find it sliced in half. If anyone knows what it means to be brought back from the dead, she does, for that is her legacy, and she’s happy to have him back.
Hold on though, what was in the mystery box? Seems to me Mr. Howlett is hunting infinity stones, and he’s not the only one. Gamora too is looking to collect the stones, she is looking to win the war that is to come from all this. Although Logan has the stone that Loki wanted, Loki found a consolation prize, the Celestial. Loki’s not surprised though, he calls him friend and references how Odin wanted to nail him to the moon when they battled a million years ago. So is Loki not trying to save the world now? Another beginning to the new legacy that is Loki’s.
Throughout every page of this opening saga, a narrator has been telling the tale. So many stories, it seems like it couldn’t possibly be from the same person. The voice talks about how throughout history, no matter the threat, Earth has always put their faith into some kind of real but unrealistic person, being, or thing , comes and saves the day. As the narrator’s hand reaches up into cosmos, their train of thought is torn into reality by their brother Franklin, as the explore universes. Our narrator is Valeria Richards, and she is coming home.
This is a lot of information to take in. Mind you this is a new universe starting with many new stories to be told. Yes theres a lot of jumping around and one page beginnings, but you cannot tell a legacy in 50 pages. Legacies take time, story telling, and a little big of magic. Jason Aaron writes a beautiful beginning to our universe’s origins. It’s not an easy job to start off everyone’s legacy, some people are going to hate “Space Wakandians”, Wolverine being back, and Deadpool even making an appearance, but this is what makes the Marvel foundation. This is what builds our adventures and imagination. Even if you didn’t enjoy Secret Wars, or are upset about the new universe, stop and give this book a chance. Open your imagination to it, as if it’s the first time you ever cracked open a Marvel Comic. Take what you know and give new a chance….trust me it’s worth it! Again Jason Aaron did a wonderful job introducing little bits to big beginnings, and the entire artistic team brings new life to old friends.