The WAR OF THE REALMS train keeps on rollin’ forward at a furious and brutal pace. Issue #3 takes us away front the front line and across the universe.
***SPOILERS LIE AHEAD***
Much of the first two issues of War Of The Realms were about the invasion, the front line being Manhattan, but in issue three we hop around a lot. We see familiar faces and places as we jump from realm to realm, surveying the chaos.
Our heroes have split up into smaller teams, the two main missions being to rescue Thor and to destroy the Black Bifrost. These two assignments are absolutely loaded with insane obstacles and tantalizing scenarios. The makeup of these teams, and their interactions, continues to be a major highlight.
War Of The Realms is loaded with memorable moments as well. Daredevil assuming Heimdall’s role, becoming “The God Without Fear” is all kinds of bad-ass. Malekith wielding the Ebony Blade and learning of Knull’s Necrosword continues solidifying him as a top-tier villain. (Also, hey Black Knight it was great to see you!)
At this point, it’s never going to stop being a ton of fun seeing Punisher, Blade, She-Hulk, and Ghost Rider rip their ways through enemies they would otherwise never face. Jason Aaron has found a way to take us on this ridiculous journey without it getting stale or repetitive.
Russell Dauterman makes every battle feel unique and urgent, no action sequence is just for the sake of an action sequence. There’s tension and consequence driving our heroes to their every decision and sacrifice. Dauterman also illustrates this particularly epic story in such a grand and determined fashion that every page provides something you’ll want burned into your brain forever.
All the jumping around we do in War Of The Realms #3 yet the script never gets confusing. Jason Aaron’s dialogue and Dauterman’s layouts keep the reader from ever losing the thread. We always know what the stakes are for everyone and what each character’s goal is.
It’s mightily impressive to be able to juggle this many characters on this massive scale without overwhelming the reader or over-complicating the explanation.
Dauterman may have a few goofy looking faces on Venom or Wolverine occasionally, but you’ll be having so much fun it’ll barely register. Matthew Wilson does wonders with the colors once again as each scene and location has a distinctly different feel and atmosphere.
All of the character redesigns and battle armor are fantastic. Captain America and his Pegasus-riding squad look incredible as they sneak through the world of Frost Giants in search of Thor.
War Of The Realms is shaping up to be one of the best crossover epics in a long time. Fans were burnt out by Marvel’s unending string of constant events and relaunches, but this is the real deal. After some time away from an all-consuming story such as this, Jason Aaron proves that slow and steady does indeed win the race. This isn’t another sales tactic, this is something special.