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Ms. Marvel #29

Posted: Tuesday, July 29, 2008
By: Ariel Carmona Jr.

Brian Reed
Adriana Melo
Marvel Comics
Editor's Note: Ms. Marvel #29 arrives in stores tomorrow, July 30.

Holy crap! That's two issues in a row in which Ms. Marvel has presented almost non-stop action. While the main Secret Invasion title seemed stuck in neutral last month, the various tie-in issues have been vastly superior, and this issue proves no different.

The reader learns what's going on in Manhattan as the Skrull invasion has begun in earnest, and while the rest of the Avengers are in the Savage Land, Ms. Marvel is left all alone to defend the city. There are some flaws with the story though, and the most obvious has to do with the power level of the threat.

For two issues, Brian Reed does a great job establishing Carol's formidable power. Ms. Marvel is one of the heavy hitters in the Marvel universe because she is a great warrior and a soldier. Her all out assault on the Skrull armies last issue and during this follow up comic book confirm this as we see Ms. Marvel go toe to toe with the invading Skrull armada. We've seen this power displayed in previous issues as Carol has taken on cosmic threats like the Brood before.

However, in this issue, the Skrulls don't act like they have a plan, or like they are very intelligent at all. Apparently, the one power they didn't siphon off the Fantastic Four was Reed Richard's intellect. They seem to swarm aimlessly at Ms. Marvel and even with the collective powers of all the Earth's great heroes, the best they can come up with is shape shifting into humans to try and confuse the heroine.

At the start of the comic, Carol is attacked by the super giant Skrull seen at the conclusion of last issue. Let's think about this for a second: if the Skrulls are all shape shifters and one of them grows by giant proportions thereby giving Ms. Marvel more problems during the fight than the normal sized Skrulls (she asserts as much at one point), then wouldn't logic dictate that the best course of action would be for all of them to turn into giant Skrulls? Or is there some limitation to the Skrulls' shape shifting powers that prevent more than one from shape shifting the same way? I don't believe Reed addresses this obvious gap in logic.

Nevertheless, this issue is still enjoyable. The story moves at the same brisk pace established by the last one and at least this comic isn't mired in some of the soap opera elements which have been part of the book of late. There's always a place for character development, but when the Skrulls are attacking, all we want to see is some serious butt kicking taking place and Ms. Marvel brings it in spades.

Another plus is the fantastic artwork turned in by Adriana Melo this issue. The Brazilian born artist has been making a name for herself in titles like Witchblade and Dark Horse's various Star Wars titles, but her Marvel work on this title should allay anyone's fears that the departure of Roberto De La Torre would be of permanent detriment to this title.

Final Word: There are no big reveals here, unless you want to count the requisite cliffhanger at the end of the book which poses an intriguing mystery. Mostly, this comic is an old fashioned slugfest as Carol gets down to the business of bashing the skulls out of the invading Skrulls, and this is fine considering how slow the pace has been in the main title up to this point.







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