Home > Marvel Comics > Bullet Points #2

Bullet Points #2

December 9, 2006

Quick Rating: Very Good
Title: Trajectories in Flight
Rating: T+

As Steve Rogers ponders retirement, Peter Parker wanders onto a very familiar missile testing range.

Writer: J. Michael Straczynski
Art: Tommy Lee Edwards
Letters: John Workman
Editor: Mark Paniccia
Cover Art: Tommy Lee Edwards
Publisher: Marvel Comics

Last issue, two Marvel icons were irrevocably altered by the same bullet when a German spy successfully murdered Dr. Abraham Erskine before he could transform Steve Rogers into Captain America. The same bullet killed an MP by the name of Ben Parker, depriving the future Peter Parker of the only father figure in his life.

Now, years later, Rogers is semi-retired from the program in which he served his country – the “Iron Man” project. Parker, however, is a young punk, rebellious at school, failing, and addicted to danger… which leads him to a missile testing range, where he absorbs a life-altering dose of gamma radiation.

Yeah, you get where this is going.

Straczynksi has crafted a pretty good story here, showing how the initial alteration has a ripple effect throughout time, changing things for one hero after another. This is the sort of thing the original What If? series did so well, and in fact, that’s what this comic reads like. My only concern is that this doesn’t simply turn into a case of, with every issue, two characters getting combined. It works for Steve and Peter, but if it keeps going it will start to feel like a gimmick.

Tommy Lee Edwards’s artwork is perfect for this title. He’s got a very dark, edgy, sketchy style that fits this twisted version of the Marvel Universe to perfection.

So far, this has been a very strong prism through which to show a different Marvel, and it’s working quite well.

Rating: 8/10

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