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Ruins #1: Review

Aug 1995
Warren Ellis, ?

Story Name:

Men on Fire

Review & Comments

2.5 stars

Ruins #1 Review by (April 19, 2023)

Review: Yikes! What a miserable story. Warren Ellis has given us the ANTI-MARVELS in this work which has been termed a parody despite nothing even remotely funny taking place in it. It sees a world, not of heroes, but of ruins, against the backdrop of a Fascist America. Sort of. The political situation is more implied than presented, presumably because Ellis was more interested in showing superheroes with cancer. Ugly and miserable is the only way to describe this. And there is more to come….

Comments: Marvel Unlimited uses the title TALES OF THE MARVELS: RUINS, though the Marvel Database uses the original title. This reality has been designated Earth-9591. The Beaubier siblings are Aurora and Northstar from Alpha Flight. And that final corpse is identified as Frank “the Punisher” Castle by the Marvel Database. Painted art and cover by Cliff Nielsen and Terese Nielsen.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Ruins #1 Synopsis by Peter Silvestro

In an alternate reality where everything has gone wrong, Phil Sheldon sees a Patriot missile from the US military strike and destroy the Avengers Quinjet, killing all on board. He recalls how Tony Stark was critically wounded by a grenade when he was trying to mediate between a secessionist group and the National Guard; he saved his life with technology then formed a revolutionary cell called the Avengers, with Hank Pym, Janet Van Dyne, Captain America, Stephen Strange, and others. He heads to a bar reading about Matt Murdock, a boy who was killed by radioactive waste thrown from a truck. At the bar he is hassled by a barfly who is a Canadian with a weird bone disease….

T'Challa has been arrested with the radical Black Panthers; Clint Barton was executed in San Francisco by a military advisor; Wanda Maximoff has turned against the Avengers, seeking immunity.

Phil journeys out to the prison camp where the Kree invaders are being held to interview their leader. After being required to don a radiation suit, he meets the leader, Mar-Vell who relates how their invasion fleet came across the corpse of the Silver Surfer in space and the radiation it emitted negated the Kree cloaking devices so they were shot down by the Earth military. The few survivors were imprisoned in these camps located at an atomic testing ground and over the years, all of the Kree have developed cancer….

In Washington DC, Phil sees a homeless woman, Jean-Marie Beaubier fused at the elbow with her dead brother Jean-Paul. Phil then meets with Nick Fury, who, on finding out Phil is wring a book, punches him in the gut. Phil assures Fury he has no political agenda and only wanted to talk about Captain America. Fury shoots a rabid dog and tell Phil that Cap introduced him to cannibalism. A prostitute, Jean Grey, approaches them and Fury calmly shoots her to death. He then tells Phil that Cap was killed recently and then fires a bullet into his own head….

The corpse of Galactus has been found floating in space; a porn star called Enchantress is accused of murdering a Hollywood producer; there has been a sighting of the reclusive US President Charles Xavier….

In a Chicago slum, a woman tells Phil that her baby Daimon Hellstrom will be the messiah some day. He meets Rick Jones and his drug-addicted girlfriend Marlo Chandler. Jones, drinking liquid morphine, tells Phil how he was traveling across Arizona when a scientist tried to warn him away from an area. The man pushed Jones into a trench when a bomb went off; the man was immediately swelling and breaking out in cancerous tumors; Jones heard that he was still alive being kept in a lab under the code name: Hulk. Marlo sneers at his story and Jones beats her. Phil leaves hurriedly. In the street it begins to snow but Phil trips over the corpse of a murder victim wearing a black T-short with a stylized skull on it….

Letterer: Jon Babcock.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.

Captain Marvel
Captain Marvel

Son of Satan
Son of Satan

(Daimon Hellstrom)

(James Howlett)

Plus: Marlo Chandler.

> Ruins: Book info and issue index

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