When I started this earnest effort at charting Marvel’s big summer event, my goal was to tackle, first and foremost, the readability of War of the Realms and all of its associated crossovers, tie-ins, and supplements. The idea was to see whether or not I could recapture the wonderful anticipation I used to feel with these types of stories (Civil War comes to mind most immediately), or if disjointed and confusing narratives were going to be the new norm. I haven’t always read all the tangential crap, but I’ve felt like, in most cases, I’ve consumed the majority. Despite that, gaps in storytelling from forced compression or publishing delays have really affected that experience (Civil War II, by contrast, stands out in this regard).
So then, this week, I’m reading the latest installment in the main book, War of Realms #5, the penultimate chapter in Jason Aaron and Russell Dauterman’s epic fantasy/superhero explosion. And I’m thinking… when the hell did we get to South America and what the fuck is the Enchantress doing with an army of the dead… But instead of complaining about linearity, I am treated to Doctor Strange leaning out the window of Ghost Rider’s Hell Charger, piloted by Balder the Brave, while the Sorcerer Supreme plays mailbox baseball with Asgardian zombies. Cool. I’ll buckle in. I don’t know where we’re going, but this is definitely all about the ride.