Comic Book Review: S.H.I.E.L.D.: The Rebirth

Details: Published in 2018. Written by Jonathan Hickman and drawn by Dustin Weaver. Published by Marvel. Official site is http://marvel.com/comics/issue/67033/shield_by_hickman_weaver_the_rebirth_2018

Back in 2010, Jonathan Hickman was having a fine time at Marvel Comics. Often times, one comic author is so successful in what they do that Marvel let’s them pretty much shape the entirety of the Marvel Comics Universe, at least for a few years. Brian Michael Bendis and Mark Millar come to mind as writers who had their eras at Marvel. Hickman’s era focused mostly on the Fantastic Four, The Avengers, and Nick Fury and S.H.I.E.L.D. I read pretty much all the stuff he wrote during this time period.

One sore spot was that he wrote a story about the prolific history and origin of S.H.I.E.L.D. While many of the stories Hickman wrote at Marvel were more restrained, this story was classic Hickman in that it was epic and full of convoluted science fiction ideas that referenced a lot of inane stuff and largely made no sense. I enjoyed the book. What really sucked about this story was that for the last couple of years, it remained unfinished. It ended at issue six and Hickman and Marvel seemingly dropped the story to go work on other things.

Lo and behold, about eight years later, Hickman, Weaver and Marvel have decided to revisit the story and finally write an ending. S.H.I.E.L.D.: The Rebirth is the first of two books that will finally conclude this story and give us that ending.

The story picks up where issue six left off. S.H.I.E.L.D. is an organization that has existed since the dawn of mankind and has always sought to protect mankind. In the 1950’s, S.H.I.E.L.D. has entered into a civil war within itself. On the one side, Tony Stark’s dad and Reed Richard’s dad along with all those allied with Leonardo da Vinci (yes the actual Leonardo da Vinci) versus all those who side with Sir Issac Newton (yes the actual Issac Newton). The two sides represent conflicting ideologies about what S.H.I.E.L.D. is and what actions the organization should pursue. Enter a new, powerful character known as Leonid who seeks to resolve the conflict along with Michelangelo (yes the actual Michelangelo).

Hickman’s story is as crazy as I’d expect. The character of Michelangelo is orange, glowing and exists at all times at once. Newton is immortal. Leonardo is a robot. Stark’s dad is here and has a weapon that just builds itself. Richard’s time traveling dad is here… for some reason. Leonid looks like he’s Infinity. Stuff is cray. Add in the fact that this takes place within the Marvel Comics Universe and you got some real crazy stuff.

The art in this book is frenetic and detailed. Lots of great splash pages. Weaver does a great job.

Overall, I really liked this book because it takes the crazy of Hickman and combines it with Marvel. It’s something different from what I usually see and I can appreciate it for that. I don’t know who I would recommend this book to. If you like overly complicated science fiction, then maybe this book is for you. I enjoyed it. At the very least, you should flip through a few pages before you decide to give it a read.

Score: 7/10

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