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Civil War II #4: Review

Jul 2016
Brian Michael Bendis, David Marquez

Story Name:

(no title given)

Review & Comments

4 stars

Civil War II #4 Review by (July 30, 2016)
It's a fairly Illuminati-heavy meeting. Black Bolt, Dr Strange and Iron Man are all that's left of the original group. Mr Fantastic is off exploring the multiverse (and failing to cut it in the movies). Sub-Mariner is dead as of Squadron Supreme #1. Prof X is longer dead since Avengers vs X-Men, except maybe he's still alive inside Red Skull. Beast, Black Panther, Captain America/Steve Rogers and Medusa have all been in the team at some time. Captain Marvel is the ringer.

We've got 2 Beasts and 2 Icemen here. The young X-Men were brought from the past by modern Beast in All-New X-Men #1, turning the timeline they left into an alternate. Thus young Beast isn't furry. And young Angel has cosmic-powered wings he gained in this future the Black Vortex crossover.

The X-Men on Captain Marvel's side are all members of the Extraordinary X-Men team. But then so is Nightcrawler who has obviously sided with Iron Man. But then he's just switched to Magneto's team in CWII: X-Men, and the split there is basically pro- and anti-Ulysses.

Angela has just rejoined the Guardians of the Galaxy in their #10. Everyone else has been around since #1 of the latest series, but Gamora and Star-Lord didn't officially rejoin until #5. Thing joined up as part of the Fantastic Four-less post-Secret Wars universe. Kitty Pryde joined at the same time but she'd been involved with the team, or at least with Star-Lord, since All-New XM #22.

Given the empasis on choosing sides in this conflict the rosters here mostly just seem to be basic loyalties to the leaders. Captain Marvel has her Alpha Flight and Ultimates teams plus the affiliated Guardians and SHIELD. Iron Man has his Avengers and presumably Riri Williams. (Although it's true Ms Marvel has been on Carol's side and is in the process of defecting in her own title. And Tony Stark went to Sam-Cap and Miles-Spidey in *their* titles to assure their loyalty.)
Storm and Magneto effectively made choices for the X-Men. She has brought her contingent to back CM. The crew from All-New XM may have been brought into Magneto's fold via the young Angel who has been with Maggie in Uncanny X-Men, but I don't think it's been mentioned.
Steve-Cap and Dr Strange seemed undecided in this issue. Kate Bishop didn't choose a side in her app in Choosing Sides #3 (par for the course for that series). Luke Cage hasn't decided yet in Power Man & Iron Fist, but it seems he and Iron Fist *will* choose opposite sides. That leaves Ant-Man who *does* seem to be opposing his friend Stark.

Tie-ins linked to this issue:-

Astonishing Ant-Man #11 was plugged as a tie-in but came out without the banner and had nothing to do with CWII.
Invincible Iron Man #14. After Hawkeye's acquittal Tony Stark goes to an AA meeting where he meets Carol Danvers and they agree to disagree about Ulysses.
Fallen #1. We have Bruce Banner's funeral and the reading of his will. Amadeus Cho and She-Hulk (still in her coma) are made managers of a Corporation which owns his patents, and whose profits aid victims of Hulk's rampages. They and Betty Ross, Rick Jones, Skaar and the Warbound are the shareholders and will receive generous dividends. Most of them manage their anger, except Cho who heads into Totally Awesome Hulk #9.
Uncanny Avengers #14. Some of the team attend Bruce Banner's funeral. Captain America fails to stop Cable, Rogue, etc from stealing Terrigen Mist from the US military. He disbands the team.
UAv#15 is bannered as an Aftermath, but follows on directly from #14. The team continue without Cap, and temporarily without Cable, but Wasp stays with them. They team up in Tokyo with Elektra to try to stop the Hand resurrecting BB.
Totally Awesome Hulk #9-12. Amadeus Cho isn't happy about Hawkeye being found not guilty. Captain Marvel and gang come to warn him not to take things into his own hands. Cho tries to find Hawkeye in the wilderness but Black Panther is waiting for him in a Hulkbuster armour. Cho defeats Hulkbuster/BP but abandons his hunt for Hawkeye to go save his sister Maddie from a monster. Later he does meet Hawkeye and they chat.
Ultimates #10-11. The team arrest Alison Green but find no evidence of her predicted crime. They argue about it and Ms America attacks the others because she believes they've overstepped the line. Meanwhile Thanos breaks free with the help of confused Anti-Man. The team stop Thanos escaping. Then CM and Black Panther go for the meeting with IM in CWII#4.

ANAD Avengers #13. Vision uses the Baxter Building time machine to go kill Kang as a baby. But 1st he goes to ask Ulysses about the ethics of such a thing. And we see that the Ultimates have turned U's ability into a production line by deliberately feeding him data. (So this should be after Tony Stark's revelation of the workings of U's power in this issue.)
ANAD Avengers #15. Thor asks Heimdall if it's a good idea to look at the future. He tells her a tale of the original Avengers who looked into the future to win a battle against Dr Doom, but in doing so lost the 'war'.
Guardians of the Galaxy #11. Captain Marvel calls the GotG to her side before the conflict at the end of CWII#4. Peter Quill and Kitty Pryde decide not to tell Gamora that the Ultimates have Thanos.
Rocket Raccoon & Groot #8-10. While they're waiting for the big battle the GotG help out with an alien invasion. But instead Rocket uses being on Earth as an excuse to settle a personal grudge with an alien. But then Gwenpool gets involved. RR&G team up with Gwenpool to get the alien, until *he* hires them to protect him from another alien. RR fends off Captain Marvel's request that the duo come help her. The gang stop the other alien Reeve from killing CM.
Venom: Space Knight #11-12. And Venom goes off on his own personal mission too, which leads to a fight with Spider-Man. Then Venom and SM team-up, until Spidey has to go answer the call to another Ulysses prediction.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Civil War II #4 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
Last issue Hawkeye was tried for the murder of Bruce Banner. Now Captain Marvel flies to the Triskelion after the verdict has been given. She's heard She-Hulk has woken from her coma and wants to be the 1st to let her know what's happened to her cousin. And Jennifer Walters isn't happy at the end to hear that Clint Barton was acquitted.

It's all over the news, and we see Miles Morales/Spider-Man listening to some of it. There are suggestions that it was an assisted suicide or mercy killing (because Banner requested it). Many people are just relieved that the Hulk is gone (forgetting about the Amadeus Cho version). Many believe the conspiracy theory that the super-community deliberately let Hulk live for this long.

Tony Stark is devastated over this death, and the death of James Rhodes/War Machine earlier. And he blames Carol Danvers for those deaths, for trusting too much the visions of the Inhuman Ulysses. Now he's called together a group in the old Illuminati meeting place, his abandoned Funtime Inc factory. He wants to show them some new information. The group consists of Beast, Black Bolt, Black Panther, Captain America/Steve Rogers, Captain Marvel, Dr Strange and Medusa.

Stark repeats his basic problem with Ulysses' prophecies - they all know there are alternate futures so how can his predictions be certain? In #2 he made a computer copy of the Inhuman's brain and last issue his AI Friday gave him her conclusions. Ulysses' unique brain takes in all available data and calculates the most likely future which it displays as a vision - a vision which Ulysses can now, as a result of training by Karnak, even make other people see too.

But it's still only an informed guess based on current data, which to Tony in some cases is akin to profiling. It isn't the absolute certainty that Carol is betting on.

But Stark isn't going to repeat his error from Civil War I - he's not going to force his view on everyone else. That's why he's called this meeting, even including Medusa whose people messed up his life (Uncanny Inhumans #11) in retaliation for his abduction of Ulysses. This time he's going to listen to Steve Rogers.

Captain Marvel wants Henry McCoy to review Stark's findings. But Beast already has, and his conclusion is that he's at least not wrong. But Danvers still thinks she's right in doing all she can to prevent disasters, even minor ones. Stark wants to know what percentage chance of correctness she considers sufficient to act on. Her reply is that the track record is very good so far. And she leaves.

The rest of the group are still unsure, even divided. But Tony isn't sure Bruce Banner had to die last issue. (In fact it looked to me as though CM's actions triggered off the problem Ulysses had foreseen in this case.) He feels it's his duty to go public with his theory.

What the group (presumably) didn't know is that Marvel already has a test case on her hands. She and SHIELD arrested a banker Alison Green who Ulysses said was a Hydra Agent, part of a plot to destroy US capitalism using the contents of her briefcase. But when they picked her up the briefcase was empty.

She joins Maria Hill and Black Panther in considering the problem. SHIELD has found nothing suspicious in Alison's life, and she denies knowledge of anything terroristy. She even has an explanation for the empty briefcase. And her cop father is already making waves. But Danvers is convinced they'll find evidence if they dig deep enough.

Suddenly the game changes as Nightcrawler bamfs in and teleports the suspect away. And Hill learns that Iron Man is on the roof. But he's not alone. It's time for a confrontation.

Shellhead has brought the other ANAD Avengers (Captain America/Sam Wilson, Ms Marvel, Nova, Spider-Man/Miles Morales, Thor and Vision) alongside Cap/SR and Dr Strange (noticeably Beast and the Inhumans are keeping out of it) plus the young X-Men from an alternate past (Angel, Beast, Cyclops and Iceman) and newer young X-Men Genesis and Oya  (with them in All-New X-Men), topped up with Hawkeye/Kate Bishop, Luke Cage and the new armoured female Riri Williams from Invincible Iron Man.

Captain Marvel is backed by the other Ultimates (Black Panther, Blue Marvel, Ms America and Spectrum), fellow Alpha Flight members (Aurora, Puck and Sasquatch), more X-Men (Forge, Iceman (the current 1), Magik, Storm and the young alternate Marvel Girl) plus Ant-Man, Maria Hill and SHIELD.

Even so Iron Man thinks he's got the upper hand. Until Danvers calls in the Guardians of the Galaxy too (Angela, Drax, Gamora, Groot, Kitty Pryde, Rocket Raccoon, Star-Lord, Thing and Venom).

David Marquez
David Marquez
Justin Ponsor
Marko Djurdjevic (Cover Penciler)
Marko Djurdjevic (Cover Inker)
Marko Djurdjevic (Cover Colorist)


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Black Panther
Black Panther


(Scott Summers)
Doctor Strange
Doctor Strange

(Stephen Strange)

(Clint Barton)

(Bruce Banner)
Iron Man
Iron Man

(Tony Stark)

(Walter Langkowski)

(Jennifer Walters)

(Peter Quill)

(Ororo Munroe)

(Ben Grimm)


> Civil War II: Book info and issue index

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