What’s going on in the world at large today? Besides war and Olympics that is…It’s time to talk a bit of current affairs here on Ilovethingsthataregreat. Did you know that your next door neighbor, your girlfriend, or even you pet goldfish may have been replaced by a Skrull–a race of militant aliens hellbent of conquering Earth? No? Well it’s a good thing you’ve read this effing blog, my friend. Let the baseless accusations begin! Better to lose friends and protect yourself than to succumb to their alien trickery!
Assume the worst! Here’s one in its true form now!!! ——————->
Actually, this terrific advancement on the “Invasion of the Body Snatchers” concept is just the basis for Marvel’s latest inter-title crossover, “Secret Invasion”. Today’s great thing:
22. Marvel’s Secret Invasion
I’m geeking out over this story. For those uninitiated into the acne-riddled, corn chip-strewn, and nerdish depths of comic fan-dom, these crossovers happen once or twice a year. They are massive story-lines that affects almost every single character in the Marvel universe. So, this story will unfold in most titles from “Iron Man” to “Black Panther”. Marvel is the company with Hulk, Spidey, X-Men, Captain America, etc… You’re probably clever enough to realize that this is just a marketing gimmick to get you to buy more comics. Not me, though! Gotta collect ’em all!
DC is the comics publishing company that owns Superman, Batman, Green Lantern, Flash, Wonder Woman, etc… They have massive crossovers within their company as well. But, even though I collect comics on both the Marvel and DC sides of the fence, I often prefer the big Marvel crossovers. Marvel tends to shoot for more current political themes as an undercurrent and they show how the events play out in character relationships and dynamics. DC’s crossover events tend to be much more epic and fantastic. Often they involve time travel, the discovery of alternate universes and lots and lots of space battles. This might be because many of their iconic characters have a ‘spacey’ background: Superman is an alien, as is Supergirl and Powergirl, Hawkman and Hawkgirl get their powers from an alien metal, The Green Lantern was appointed to his post by aliens, Legion of Superheroes is set 1000 years in the future, and The Flash is forever getting lost in the time-stream. Anyway, they publish great books and Batman is still, like, my man guy, but in my opinion, the DC crossovers always seem harder to follow with more space-future-past-continuity-messing head games.
Sure the crossover that I’m hyping right now has a space element to it. The Skrulls are aliens after all. But, that’s all secondary. The primary issues are of secrecy, trust, and religious prophecy. Introduced as villains in 1962 (in a Fantastic Four comic), the Skrulls most recent attempt to conquer Earth comes down to their ancient religious prophecy that to do so is their destiny. So, it’s almost a jihad of sorts. Before every act that requires the same steadfast certainty of religious dogma that a suicide bomber might possess for instance, they’ll say this creepy battle-cry of the faithful: “He loves you…”
They also hate the shit out of The Fantastic Four…so they’re looking to kick their asses extra hard. Doesn’t hurt to have a back-up secondary motivation when you’re conquering a planet.
The Skrulls have the power to morph into absolutely anything and a vast army of them, called Superskrulls, can mimic the powers of Marvel superheroes. In this storyline, there is no way to tell who may have been replaced by a Skrull agent. You wouldn’t know unless you suspected that person enough to kill them. Once dead, they revert back to Skrull form. Like so:
Anyway, I’m really enjoying almost ever book that’s involved in the big event. Even the crappy ones that I wouldn’t normally read provide the minimal amount of entertainment. That’s how fab a story-line it is. We’re slowly learning who has actually been a Skrull agent over the last couple of years (that’s how long this idea has been in the works). The first big shock was when Elektra died, but shortly after that, we learned that Jarvis, the Avengers’ butler was replaced by a Skrull. No one is safe! Not even British butlers!
One element that I’m really enjoying is the morality crisis that some Skrulls are shown to suffer. There’s a couple that, since being planted on Earth as imposter super-heroes, have grown to love the culture, the food, the people, the nightlife, etc…and don’t want to see it get all captured and enslaved and junk. So, it’s not a faceless enemy, in other words. It’s got a face alright. It’s all green and craggy.
The other thing that brings my comics-addled mind great joy is the Mighty Marvel recap page at the start of each comic. Basically, you get a little synapsis about what’s been going on when you open the book. When you are as big a junkie as I am, you need a little reminder. Most of these titles only get released once a month. Could you remember the intracacies of what happened on your favorite soap opera a month ago? You can? F you, you Skrull!
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