The Agent of Nothing

There a review hyping Secret Warriors @ Comics Should Be Good , but it’s this comment by Matt Bird that pretty much refllects my point of view, although I had also other problem with the story.

I gave up on Marvel a long time ago and every time I try a book again I’m reminded why.

This is the first issue of a new series, so you’d think it might want to explain what’s going on in the series, but no. They even devote a separate text page at the beginning to explaining the set up, which is a great idea, but, alas, it contains nothing but a macho manifesto and no information.

So we’re dumped into a story in media res as four agents we’ve just met are raiding some secret base (yup, the same way that every Image book began) and get caught in a clash between two other armies. Which two armies? We never find out. What the war about? They don’t say. What was the objective of our heroes’ mission? Nothing, just “recon”. We learn nothing about our heroes but their codenames and their real names, which we get from captions. We can’t tell what their personalities are, or their relationships, or even their powers! Our heroes then re-convene and they talk and talk and talk for the rest of the book.

The one good bit of dialogue was between Fury and a twelve year old playing video games on his couch. His kid? Maybe. Fury calls him a “twelve year old diety,” but it’s unclear if that’s supposed to be sarcastic or very serious. You say that the concept of the book is that these are the kids of obscure superheroes, but you’d never discover the concept from reading the book itself.

The crazy thing is that they burn through all that dialogue without establishing any plot OR character. The whole trick with dialogue is usually to achieve a balance of essential plot information with affecting character moments. Yet this book, which is wall-to-wall dialogue, doesn’t give us ANY essential plot information OR affecting character moments. Instead, all that that talk falls into one of two categories: bad-ass posturing and ominous hints. Sigh.

PS: I’m a Nick Fury, but for my fix of the one-eyed spy, I’ll reread some of the old tales.

2 thoughts on “The Agent of Nothing

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