Marvel Comics Presents is a hallmark series from the late ’80s into the early ’90s. It’s a series that, if you are in your 30s, you’ve probably read at some point. It’s back this week and it’s hosting three stories. Gone is the flip format (where you can flip the book over and get the second story) but you do get three this time. Charging ahead on this series are writers Ann Nocenti, Greg Pak, Charles Soule. It’s gonna be good.
So what’s it about?
Read the preview.
Why does this matter?
This book offers a story about Wolverine, Captain America, and Namor. All but the Wolverine story are complete mini-tales. The Wolverine story is a “to be continued” so if you want more Logan in your life, but also want stories that have an end, this is your bag.
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
This book opens with the Wolverine story by Soule and artist Paulo Siqueira. It’s set during World War II, fitting in nicely with Namor’s story (also set in WWII) and Captain America’s story (because he fought in WWII). Soule is no newbie when it comes to Logan and this tale is all about setting up the stakes and threat. Wolverine is fighting on the Allies side, naturally, and the story involves a strange woman and her daughter. Soule adequately draws you into this mystical element and it suits Logan since magic isn’t quite his forte. One has to imagine he’s in way over his head, which makes for the best stories. He also gets to fight a monster of sorts and pop those claws. If you’ve been wanting more Wolverine you get it here. No brown suit though!
The second story by Pak and artist Tomm Coker focuses on Namor and how he was used during WWII. Used by the Americans in 1945, to be more precise. He’s sick of the war and how it is influencing Atlantis. It jives well with the original story of Namor (which is collected this week in Decades: Marvel in the 40s) and shows how he’s a good guy at heart, but is certainly a pawn of sorts. It’s a good story, with an impressive giant Nazi monster rendered by Coker (with colors by Michael Garland) and the overall story has a darker tone that suits the war-time events.
Third up is the Captain America story by Nocenti with art by Greg Land. This story is a lot lighter than the previous two and showcases how bright and positive Cap is even with citizens who might need help. Land does a great job rendering the motorcycle Cap rides and it has an American appeal thanks to the setting.
It can’t be perfect, can it?
They couldn’t do the flip comic style?! Seriously though, it’s not that big of a deal, but I loved that and it would have brought so much nostalgia. That said, these are shorter stories to be sure. The Cap story is good, but not the most rewarding. It feels a bit like fluff especially paired with these darker stories. Soule’s story is good though more of a cliffhanger builder than anything else.
Is it good?
A good collection of stories that should scratch your Cap, Namor, and Wolverine itch. Soule delivers a first part Wolverine story you’ll want to come back for, and the format is compelling since you get a grab bag of superhero storytelling. I can’t think of a better way to celebrate Marvel’s 80th anniversary.
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