Original Sin Annual #1: Review

Oct 2014
Jason Latour, Enis Cisic

Story Name:

The silent war of Woodrow McCord

Review & Comments

3.5 stars

Original Sin Annual #1 Review by (November 1, 2014)
According to #5 Nick Fury was with Army Intelligence in 1958, and fairly recent tales have repeated that he served in WWII. OS itself mentioned the Infinity Formula which kept him young for a long time. So Fury's origin can remain rooted in time, but other Marvel origins have been updated. Marvel invented SHIELD in 1965, and had Tony Stark induct Nick Fury. But the modern day Iron Man couldn't have been alive then, let alone grown up. So this issue has Howard Stark with Fury instead. But the writer makes some extra unnecessary changes. Howard shows Nick the new helicarrier in 1968, when he's already in SHIELD and knows about Hydra. Whereas in 1965's Strange Tales #135 Fury was introduced to SHIELD, helicarrier and Hydra all in 1 go. But at least the iconic flying car is included here. (But Howard was using the same thing back in 1958 in #5.) #5 also indicated that Fury and SHIELD was already up and running at the start of the Marvel Age. And he'd already started using LMDs of himself as he shuttled between Earth and his satellite base. This issue suggests that he spent most of his time as the Man on the Wall, and most of his appearances in comics may have really been LMDs.

This is artist Enis Cisic's 1st published comics work. They've kept continuity with the main series by having Julian Tedesco as cover artist. Howard Stark mentions that Woodrow McCord broke away from his 'group' in later years. In Original Sin #5 I suggested that this group was probably the earlier incarnation of SHIELD in Jonathan Hickman's series of that name, populated by long-lived guys like Isaac Newton and Leonardo Da Vinci. But here it is suggested that the Man on the Wall system was instigated by President Roosevelt, and Howard Stark's group would then be just a government agency. However it does say that Roosevelt thought of it as his shield. It does make the advanced weaponry less believable, but then this is comics. And Stafford's tech looks fairly clunky. This story indicates some ways history has been changed by Marvel's rolling origin that always stays a few decades behind the present.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Original Sin Annual #1 Synopsis by Rob Johnson
This annual is a companion to #5 of the main series, and expands on the story of the 'Man on the Wall'

It continues from the end of the 1st scene in #5. Back in 1958 Woodrow McCord has just died preventing the invasion of Earth by Tribellians. The troops Nick Fury led died here too, and only Nick and Howard Stark are left to clean up the mess. There must be no trace of the invasion. Fury and Stark throw the troopers' bodies through the invasion portal, which now leads to an exploding world. And McCord goes last.

We now skip to the end of the 2nd scene of #5 in McCord's Rocky Mountain base, where Fury accepts the job as McCord's replacement as the Man on the Wall who protects the Earth from such invasions. Here Nick wants to know more about Woodrow. Howard leads Nick to Woodrow's war room and shows Fury McCord's journals. He says they're written in English up to 1945. After that they're in Kree or Badoon. And he adds that as years went by McCord reported back to Stark's group less and less.

We now see some journal entries.

In 1931 intergalactic slavers called Entari rook McCord's family away. Teenage Woodrow was saved by a man called Stafford, the previous Man on the Wall. Stafford took him on as an apprentice in his mountain hideout.

An entry in 1936 explains that Stafford was part of a group of Men (and Women) on the Wall in India who opposed the (H G Wells) Martian Invasion of 1913. Afterwards Roosevelt backed them, but left them independent. The group successfully kept aliens off the Earth, until the Entari broke through and killed them all except Stafford. Then Stafford turned from defence to offence.

In 1943 Woody took to going into town for drinks and company. He let slip some stories of Stafford's exploits. But then he wised up, cut down on the drinking and cut out the stories. He became friendly with a waitress named Hana, but she was still waiting for her man to come home from the war.

When he returned to the mountain he was attacked by 2 cloaked Entari. He killed 1 and Stafford took out the other. It was then that Stafford took him along into space for the 1st time.

They went to a space bar where Stafford confronted Teraphin Mox, an informant who he figured had now informed on him. Their discussion was interrupted by some Entari led by Dreel, who had commanded the raid on Earth that killed Stafford's companions. Since then Stafford has become a legendary ghost that stalks the spaceways.

Dreel shot Stafford. But McCord was nearby using an Entari cloaking device. He killed the other Entari, and Stafford got his revenge on Dreel.

But now Stafford wanted Woodrow to kill all the alien witnesses, to preserve the legend of his invincibility. They'd seen him wounded and needing help. And the (possibly fatally) wounded old man quits and leaves his role and legend to McCord.

Woody can't bring himself to kill the bar's patrons. Until they attack him and he shoots back. But he leaves Mox alive to spread the word that there's still a Man on the Wall protecting Earth.

That's the end of the diary entries. But we have an epilogue in 1968.

Howard Stark comes to show Nick Fury SHIELD's new helicarrier. But he really wants to know why Fury hasn't been reporting back his activities on the Wall. Nick doesn't reply. But we see that it's just a malfunctioning Life Model Decoy, and the real Nick Fury's on an orbiting satellite as seen in Original Sin.

Enis Cisic
Enis Cisic
Chris Chuckry
Julian Totino Tedesco (Cover Penciler)
Julian Totino Tedesco (Cover Inker)
Julian Totino Tedesco (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Chris Eliopoulos.
Editor: Tom Brevoort.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Plus: Howard Stark, Stafford, Woodrow McCord.

> Original Sin Annual: Book info and issue index

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