Steve Orlando and Cian Tormey’s Darkhold event ends this week with Darkhold: Omega #1 after it kicked things off in September. Since then, we’ve seen what has happened to Iron Man, Blade, Wasp, Black Bolt, and Spider-Man after Scarlet Witch had them read from the Darkhold so as to enter the Other-Realm. It did not go as planned. They’ve lost their minds and all they once held dear, but can Scarlet Witch turn the tide against all of them? Find out all that and more in Darkhold: Omega #1.
If you like big battles and war scenes, this book is for you. Essentially all the one-shots get a big payoff here as we get to see the evil versions of these heroes fight and fight together. The opening summary even calls them the Darkhold Defiled, which is a rather cool name for a team perfected by Tormey who shows them ripping apart enemies in some creative ways. Seeing Wasp tear a guy’s stomach out with her wings was a nice touch, for instance.
This sequence runs for much of the book and is a bit long, but there are some incredible moments of beauty and gore to witness. The main villain, for instance, has a kind of disturbing beauty one might liken to Satan in some depictions, and yet what he is turned into is quite grotesque. It’s actually surprising how far they take some of the gore in this issue given it’s a Big Two title. Even though it runs long, it does give the event a big climax deserving of how we got here.
This isn’t just a fight comic though, as Scarlet Witch gets to shine in more than one scene. This event is her doing and she doesn’t shy away from the responsibility behind that. At the same time, she must deal with Dr. Doom and she holds her ground. I can’t see anyone reading this book and not realizing Scarlet Witch is a heavyweight in the grand scheme of superheroes. She even gets a rather heroic final two pages that feels very much like the ending of The Matrix. She’s more confident than ever in her powers due to this event, and what she is forced to do, and relishes in that power by the end. For that reason, this one-shot acts as a great turning point for the character.
There’s also a meaningful reintroduction of a character in the final pages that should get fans excited. With Miracleman coming to Marvel in 2022, this issue further shows we’ve got an exciting year of stories ahead of us. There are multiple new beginnings at work here.
Colors by Roberto Poggi with Marc Deering and Walden Wong help keep the orange hue of the sky ever-present. These characters are fighting in a very evil place, after all. The costuming looks great thanks to the colors too, and Tormey’s design of Chthon is quite cool thanks to the subtle color choices. The design itself mixes shiny with matte coloring that adds another layer to his personality.
As far as magic is concerned, Tormey draws a lot of really cool energy effects with great use of color to make it all pop. There is a full-page splash utilizing tentacles that’s a show stopper and overall Tormey knocks this out of the park.
Darkhold: Omega #1 wraps up its story in a satisfying way offering up a big climax, some resolution for our heroes, and some closure for Scarlet Witch too. It’s a series that has been filled with clever ideas with an evil slant and it all ends with readers knowing it all mattered. That’s something many recent Marvel events can’t say.
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