***SPOILERS LIE AHEAD***
Sam Wilson and the resistance lead their final assault against the cosmic cube powered Hydra Steve. A well crafted plan brings Kobik and the real Cap to the surface to fight his Hydra counterpart and restore freedom to the country.
Hydra is defeated and wiped clean by Kobik. She left some major scars, like the rubble of Las Vegas, as a reminder of how ugly things had gotten.
Much like the trials and resistance of his tenure as Captain America in his solo book, the comic book community also didn’t exactly accept him with open arms. If there’s only one thing to take away from this section of Marvel history, it should be that Sam was worthy of the shield. He stayed true to what Captain America stood for against all odds.
It’s annoying that Bucky is head-to-toe in his MCU outfit, simply because it’s dull. Despite how forgettable Thunderbolts was, this issue makes it matter somewhat with Bucky’s relationship with Kobik being a major point.
Nick Spencer did a spectacular job with making events and moments from the past few years actually matter now. Kobik, Civil War II, Sam’s tenure as Cap, Avengers Standoff, and the current state of Marvel are all repurposed and utilized to serve a purpose in the grand scheme.
Secret Empire‘s finale also does it’s part in setting up the Generations books. Another curious move by Marvel in its scheduling as readers’ questions and incentive for reading those one-shots can be found here but four of those books have already come out.
If those in the comic reading community have really abandoned Marvel as much as they say they have, this issue may not resonate effectively. For those of us who have kept reading, through good and bad, there is a weight here as things tie up. Secret Empire is really a culmination and end piece for this era of Marvel. How much of this era you were on board for will raise the gravity of this final chapter.
That being said, when our tried and true Steve Rogers appears to kick Hydra Steve’s ass, it’s a satisfying moment.
Pretty much everything involving Mjolnir is suspect. After being introduced as a major turn at the start of Secret Empire, it wasn’t a factor again until the very end of the series. Also, where the hell was regular Jane Foster the whole time before appearing to catch her hammer? These nit picks aren’t enough to derail the narrative, but they’re frustrating details.
The art team made sure this event ended on a positive note. The rotating artists throughout didn’t pan out every issue, but here it did. Readers are provided a colorful and easily digestible ending.
The only gripe I have is repurposing the famous Civil War pose of Tony and Steve, it doesn’t mean the same thing here. It felt cheap to me. That failed where the callback to Infinity Gauntlet succeeded, which was a nice reflective moment solidifying Sam’s tenure even further.
After all is said and done, Marvel is moving on. Spencer did an amazing job trying to satisfy the unsatisfiable while tying up a lot of loose ends. Secret Empire isn’t perfect, but it’s definitely worth your time reading.
There will undoubtedly be people annoyed by the “reset button” that is Kobik. That’s just comics baby, if devices like that are going to bother you then maybe superhero events aren’t for you.