Comic Books


The penultimate chapter of the apocalypse is here! Captain America, Thor, and Iron Man scramble to make Earth’s last stand against the relentless Serpent and his army of world-shattering avatars–all while amongst unbelievable chaos and destruction, Spider-Man makes the choice of a lifetime! Dark Asgard has risen and all of Earth’s forces converge on the World Tree as the globe shudders in the shadow of FEAR ITSELF!

Story by Matt Fraction
Art by Stuart Immonen & Wade Von Grawbadger
Cover by Steve McNiven, Stuart Immonen, Humberto Ramos & Ed McGuinness

Price: $3.99
iFanboy Community Pick of the Week Percentage: 0.1%
Avg Rating: 3.2
Users who pulled this comic:


  1. Immonen’s art is good, this summer event is a big failure for me

  2. I totally forgot that this was still going on.

  3. I love Immonen but this terrible event solidifies the complete failure of Fraction’s Marvel work recently. Iron Fist and his early Iron-man issues were great but since then Fraction has faltered.

  4. Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me five six times, shame on me. I’m out.

  5. I did it! I didn’t hit the pull button despite my OCD to always finish out a series. You won’t get me this time!

  6. I’m gonna finish this just because you never know. I’m still just content with it for the fact that Bendis isn’t writing it.

  7. Another issue of Fear Itself, another chance for me to defend it from all you ravenous, venom spitting fanboys. (I am happy to seemingly be the only person other than JimSki who is actually enjoying this series) To all the haters, a couple points: its long form story telling that reads better all at once than in pieces, you have to read the tie-ins, it is a fairly large event story-wise that is pushing the characters farther than they are typically pushed.

    The first two are simply smart decisions by Marvel in the fact that they will end up with a tpb that reads well (seeing as it will only be released in issues once but will be a tpb and hc forever) and they can hopefully spread readership for various books and get people to generally buy more through the tie-ins. And no, contrary to popular belief, most modern events require you to read more than the main series. Sinestro Corps, Civil War, Blackest Night, Secret Invasion, Siege, War of Kings, Final Crisis, Annihilation, all have tie-ins that are if not ABSOLUTELY necessary to understand the plot then at least flesh out the main plot points that just can’t fit in to a series thats less than 8, 25 page issues long. If you don’t like that, its your choice, you should probably read more one-shots and self-contained limited series, the latter seemingly being what most people actually want out of these events. There are little series and big series, this one just happens to be huge, so its not for everyone.

    In terms of the story, I’m tired of people saying characters like Spider-man and Captain America are acting out of character when they have moments of weakness given the circumstances. New York alone has seen 5 of the Worthy attack along with their Nazi mech cadre and the Serpent himself, so yeah, Spiderman is rightfully freaked out about the status of his family who happen to live in the city.

    If you think about it, things are getting a bit out of hand in comparison to typical Marvel events. Most Marvel events are largely confined to one location, typically New York City, with an quick visit to Braxton for Siege, and in the end hardly anyone dies or even gets hurt, particularly civilians. Fear Itself on the other hand is truly global and the causalities are through the roof. Paris, Washington DC, New York City, Chicago, San Francisco, Atlantis, Las Vegas, Rio, Beijing, and Vancouver (I’m sure I missed some) are all threatened, if not already in ruins with literally tens of thousands (in some cases millions) of causalities in each. The US Capitol is on fire and caved in on itself, Avengers tower is full 9/11, Paris is pretty much completely dead, there are Hulk level threats appearing across the planet, as well as an Odin level threat to deal with on top of that, actually two because the real Odin apparently wants Earth dead as well. All of the heavy hitters the heroes would usually turn to in this kind of situation, like Hulk or the Asgardians, are now their enemies, with Thor as the only real stand out, and he isn’t looking too great. This is pretty much Marvel 9/11 (expect backlash against the Asgardian-American community). Is it so shocking that the heroes are a bit stressed out given these circumstances? I thought this was Marvel, where characters were treated less like immutable boyscout gods and more like real people with flaws and weaknesses.

    Sorry that was so long, but proportionally its a drop in the bucket against the negativity. We’ll see how this goes. It could always build up or fall apart from here.

    • right on man! I too am enjoying this.

    • Bravo … I can’t say this has been the best story I’ve ever read, but its slow burn quality has endeared it to me. My only criticism has been that this can’t really be read on its own like some event stories in the past have been (e.g. Siege). At the very least, one really has to read Journey Into Mystery to get the whole picture on this.

    • p.s. That JIM isn’t a complaint on my part. The kid Loki origin story has been the sleeper of the summer for me and I think a great many Marvel fans will find themselves disappointed to have missed it. That said, the Journey Into Mystery Fear Itself Loki arc will be a perfect hardcover volume.

    • I love Fraction’s writing. I would defend Invincible Iron Man with this level of passion and will be buying The Defenders series, but Fear Itself hasn’t been working for me.

      With the exception of your characterization counterargument, your counterpoints are excuses. They don’t redeem the story in any way.

      I want these last two issues to sell this whole event for me.

      I’m pretty sure that isn’t going to happen.

    • “ravenous, venom spitting fanboys” NOT enjoying an event book is not being a fanboy. In fact it could be characterized as anti-fanboy.

      “you have to read the tie-ins” BUT Fraction said you didn’t

      “will end up with a tpb that reads well” MAYBE but we cannot know this until its finished. And a great event reads well in both trades and singles. Example: Sinestro Corps.

      “most modern events require you to read more than the main series” Sinestro Corps: There were no necessary tie-ins. The entire event took place as a cross over between GL and GLC.
      Civil War: Loved this series and only read this series.
      Blackest Night: Read better with GL and GLC but not necessary and the other tie-ins did not matter. I read most of the tie-ins for this and was made I did afterwards.
      Secret Invasion: New Avengers made this better but it was not necessary
      Final Crisis: Most tie-ins had nothing to do with this series. In fact most of the tie-ins caused more confusion than clarity.

      Spider-man and Captain America never quit, thats who they are. Leaving the field of battle is against their inherent character.

      “Things are getting a bit out of hand in comparison to typical Marvel events.” : In Secret Invasion the entire planet was being invaded by an alien race. The Skrulls had taken over and the heroes didn’t know who to trust, yet still the heroes fought back.
      “Is it so shocking that the heroes are a bit stressed out given these circumstances?” No but that is no excuse to changing an essential character trait to fit the story.

      You didn’t even mention Bucky’s death that came out of nowhere and destroyed the epic, multi-year story Brubaker was telling in his Cap book.

    • @glwarm76: Spider-man and Captain America can quit, characters change especially in a time of overwhelming FEAR. I actually found the fact that spider-man and Captain America quitting to be intriguing. Characters are not set in stone and rigid, they are human and just like us can change in certain settings.

      I guess I will put my opinion here, Fear Itself is alright, not terrible. I enjoyed the Flashpoint main series more but the art here is just so so so so much better. However, the Flashpoint tie ins ended terribly, pretty much all having the same conclusion of SEE FLASHPOINT 5. I think the fear itself tie ins have been more fun such as The Deep or Youth in Revolt and so on.

    • Couldn’t said it better myself. This is my first big event to read and I have loved avery second of it. Also, I have picked up Journey into Mystery and Thunderbolts for good, two books I never would have read otherwise. Thank Marvel it’s been fun.

    • Feels like this issue basically backed up all my points, especially the character ones. I will say the spiderman section was a bit long winded, and I felt Odin could have been a bit pushier, but overall it was a good issue with great art, so Ill say 4. Its funny how the public support seems to be following the feeling of hope throughout the story.

      And to all the mega-haters who already dropped the series issues ago, why are you here? Go back to the Batwoman forum and stop torturing yourself (by forcing yourself to think about comics you clearly loathe) and the rest of us (people trying to atleast talk ABOUT the book instead of personal buying practices).

    • If you have to read all of the tie-ins to enjoy the main story, IT IS A FAILURE.

      Despite that, I’m not calling this a failure, but it is a huge disappointment. I think there was enough story there for a 4-issue fun mini. Adding 3 issues of padding made it not so fun. And I’m so over Iron Man, Thor and Cap (though I still love Brubaker’s Captain America work).

    • @glwarm76: you had me until “Final Crisis: Most tie-ins had nothing to do with this series. In fact most of the tie-ins caused more confusion than clarity.”

      Without reading Superman Beyond 3D, there are a number of things in issue 7 of Final Crisis that just don’t make sense. Mandrakk, the Supermen of the multiverse, the Miracle Machine – all those things come out of left field if you didn’t read these two tie-ins. That makes it so the event cannot stand on its own.

  8. I’m looking forward to this. The art is great and it’s always nice to know what’s up with some of my fave characters. This hasn’t been a bad event at all, but I’m looking forward to what’ll happen with the big three guys.

  9. Why I am pulling this again? Oh yeah, it’s like slamming your head into a wall — because it feels so good when you stop! Only 2 more issues to go!

    @Kamilo: I will read this again once it is all collected (which is the real reason I am still on-board with Fear Itself.) I am hoping you are right, and that it will read better all together. My problem right now is that I am just not sure why I should care. Cool stuff going on; I just don’t care.

  10. @Kamilo I am doubtful it will make a very good trade. Almost all those events you listed were significantly more coherent stories. It may be that if you read all the tie-ins that it gets much better, but that seems to me death for a good trade. The main problem with this main book is all the holes in the story. We see one scene, one plot point and then jump on. It is like Fraction is channel surfing. Having said that, I do think the story has been fun and gotten a bit better in the last couple of issues. And the JIM storyline has been fantastic, worth the event just for that. No way with the gorgeous Immonen art would I even think of dropping the last two issues. I have certainly seen worse events.

  11. Really wanted to like this. But, I’ve given it more than enough shots, count me out on this one.

  12. i’m not hating this, but i’m really only continuing to pick it up so that the JIM books make more sense.

  13. I forgot about this book. All the Marvel books Have gone into “Get beyond the event” mode. And to think there a number of point issues to follow on. This has felt endless. This is not the event we were sold on. So I’ve decided to drop this. Perhaps much later than I should have.

  14. FML. I think i’m the only one left getting everything Fear Itself. What a mistake putting anything with a FI cover on my pull list. This event just sucks.

  15. This is sooo freaking bad! If I wasn’t such a massive fan of Immonen I would have dropped it two issues ago! It’s like driving a beautiful Lamborghini except the only catch is the Lamborghini shocks you in the balls every time you push the gas pedal.

  16. I am enjoying this series…LOVE the Immomen art and the story is faced paced and exciting. I think it is like a summer action movie…looks great and is a thrill ride but is a bit short on story and deep emotional impact. I feel like some of the characters and scenes were just glossed over and I had no idea who the new All Father was but I have been able to follow alog and enjoy it.

    Also, I have not been reading Marvel super hero comics for long so seeing Cap’s shield break was a huge surprise for me. I have read some comments that these are old tricks being rehashed. To me, they were all new and pretty cool.

    My wife just started reading comics this year and she thinks Fear Itself is pretty cool. So maybe this is an event for readers who are not as locked into Marvel history?

    All in all, I am enjoying the series for what it is.

  17. I am so proud of myself for dropping this after #4. What sheer crap!

  18. “Wrap it up, B…WRAP IT UP!!”

  19. Demon Knight is getting more pulls than this, close behind is Grifter…… Marvel must be pissed.

    • Let’s see where those books when issue #6 hits for them.

      That is not a statement rooting for the 52 launch to fail, but it is a prediction that the #1/newness/hype around books will not be maintained.

      Marvel will do fine.

    • Wasn’t meant to be Marvel bashing, I read probably 70% Marvel myself, just that C list DC books are getting as much attention on here as their big A list event , how pulls here transfer to actual sales we’ll have to see.

    • Yeah, regardless of which issue this series is in, it’s a Big Two Event….DAREDEVIL is beating this in pulls. I mean, ouch.

    • iFanboy is a more discerning audience.

      Daredevil is excellent.

      Fear Itself is average.

      If you think that invalidates my point above, we will have to see in a half a year or so.

    • I’m not saying Marvel is going bankrupt. I’m saying I haven’t seen an event book rank so low on the pull list.

    • Daredevil is excellent and Uncanny X-Force is even better. FI, may be my least favorite story ever.

  20. I’ll finish this series for the art but this is the last Marvel event I’m reading. I’m soon done with Thor after Copiel leaves. That means I’ll only be reading Daredevil and Cap unless that continues on it’s ridiculous path after last issue. Still I’m very much looking forward to The Defenders and must admit I’m loving Uncanny X-Force in trade. Tried the Ultimate relaunch and found myself bored. Marvel is really losing me.

    • You should give FF and Journey Into Mystery a try. Top Five Marvel Books Right Now: Daredevil, FF, Journey Into Mystery, Uncanny X-Force, and Cap & Bucky. (Of course, YMMV.)

    • FF has never really been my thing personally. I’d love to read JOurney Into Mystery but have no idea where to start? I forgot I read Cap and Bucky as well fun book but may have to drop it with all the books I want from DC now.

  21. Well I pulled it because I too need to finish a series when I am already reading it wait; I have not been reading it at all just looking at the very cool artwork. The artwork has been fantastic thru out this series unlike the story which has been lame and all around worthless; sorry. I am also down to three Marvel titles: Wolverine, Deadpool, and Alpha Flight…
    Everytime I give Marvel a chance they lose me just as fast….

    Just sayin’,


  22. On the topic of Spidey and Cap quitting, I kinda just chalked that up to the Fear effect that the Serpent is having on the planet. Everyone in every tie-in is experiencing out-of-character bouts of terror. I’ve really had a hard time figuring out why folks are so bent outta shape about that, to be honest. It seems pretty obvious.

    And I’ll agree that this is not the worst thing evar. The proclamations of GARBAGE from certain internet pundits notwithstanding, this is a big action book that has had some very cool moments (see all of issue #4) and is probably perfect for capturing the imaginations of new readers. By that measure, it is a success, and well done Marvel.

    It is, however, not for me. Even though I love big time action stories (Loeb’s Hulk, for example), this is lacking for me in the way of an actual “story.” There’s no character to connect with or follow through these events, and so there’s no emotional attachment. I’m really not interested in a series of fight scenes with no stakes and no drama. I love the big, mindless fun, but there needs to be SOMETHING to make me care. Here, I find nothing. No matter how good it looks.

  23. Well, I’ve come this far. Might as well finish the fight, right? RIGHT?!?!?

  24. I see a lot of comments saying “Well, it still sells well” validating the book and tie-ins. One thing about the Diamond numbers is that they only represent books that are sold to retailers. They do not represent the amount of books stores sell. At least two other stores I talked to have said they only sold through half of their orders on issues 4 and 5 and there wasn’t enough time to revise their FOCs before ordering 6. The book has been a critical failure, the only word of mouth for this in my shop is how bad it is, and the amount being bought is diminishing each month. Sadly… there’s nothing left to do with these books. The promise of the ads and sales of Issue 1 failed for readers and we’re stuck with pre-ordered books no one cares about. But the wholesale level sales will be used as the justification for further summer events.

    In contrast, I barely heard a negative peep about Flashpoint. Though, I didn’t hear anything positive either. And I’ve only been stuck with a relatively few unsold copies of the issues of the main series and was able to better manage the miniseries so that I only about 1/4 of them have any issues on my shelf whatsoever.

  25. Flashpoint was not a good event either. It was shorter, which I believe made it sweeter. I felt most of the tie-ins started strong and fell completely apart under the deadline of the approaching reboot. Even the ones that ended strong felt like they could have ended stronger. The main Flashpoint story was straight forward, compared to the sprawling confusion of Fear Itself, but it also rambled a bit and hurried to the finish. To me, it felt like DC undercut their own event to get to their bigger event: The Reboot.

    Fear Itself is NOT garbage. It is just mediocre fun. Lots of flashy art, lots of big destruction and death, some good Thor moments. However, also lots of bad characterization and lots of story holes leaving the both the reader and the characters without the proper motivation to care. Definitely like a popcorn blockbuster. Fanboys just have a love/hate relationship with events, we love the big stakes, but the hands reaching for the dollars in their pockets could not be more obvious. So we circle these events like sharks, waiting for blood to be in the water. Fraction let loose a lot of blood.

  26. Why’d this take six issues to get going?

  27. Despite all of the Haters I am really enjoying this event, the story is good not great but good, and the art is fantastic, definitely will be buying this in trade form

  28. I have been enjoying Fear Itself but I absolutely hate TWO PAGES of Spider-Man running off like a little mama’s boy to an old hag who should be dead by now. It makes my favorite character pathetic because he, yet again, needs Aunt May to tell him that the whole world is more important than her. Everything else I enjoyed but that is unacceptable.

  29. Thor is the god of thunder, why would he say he’s just a man? Lame.

  30. This was my favorite issue. I finally felt something for what was happening other than frustration. The pacing was stronger. I understand the threat now and I like how the heroes don’t have much hope. Iron Man coming with the weapons also seems like a cool touch. The last stand set up seems like it might pay off. I still had some problems with how the relationship is being handled between Thor and Odin but it is a minor issue.

    I think most of my ratings have been 2s with maybe a 3 in there. This was a 4/5.

  31. I have not been very happy with Fear Itself. I didn’t read the tie-ins but I was promised that I wouldn’t need to. The main series, though, has been very disjointed and felt rushed. The art has been okay but the story has just lumbered on from plot point to plot point without making any of this mean anything.

    This issue is the first one that I put down after reading and I was happy with. The characters finally have a clear motivation. We’re finally aware of what The Serpent’s plan is and what the heroes are going to try to do to stop him.

    I’m actually looking forward to the next issue.

  32. This issue was definitely better than the last. I just hate the incorrect characterizations of all of the marvel characters, especially Steve Rogers.

  33. Something is just straight up WONKY with this series.

    What the hell was that Iron Man line?

    Odin asks Iron Man yo where is yr wpn.

    “I rather came having had.”

    What the?! Is this a sentence you have heard anyone utter ever? It sounds and reads ridiculously awkwardly.

    I think Fraction might be thesaurus-ing entire sentences to find worse and worse ways for characters to express themselves.

    I just googled “I rather came having had.”

    [No results found for “I rather came having had”.]

    I guess you can’t fault him for originality with syntax.

    • hahaha

      So how was the rest of it?

    • Yeah, there were a couple other lines that I had to read aloud to understand, but I just gave up on “I rather came having had”.

    • Spent 5 minutes puzzling over “I rather came having had.” It has got to be a printing error/typo. It makes no sense and I don’t think it is some kind of obscure slang… From context I think he is saying “I would rather have the weapon with which I came.” but I can not get there to what he said by just dropping a word or two. I have to smash that sentence on the floor and pick it up at random, broken words and all.

  34. Crapppppppp

    Just sayin’,


  35. I actually really enjoyed this issue.. we are finally getting somewhere.

  36. For Immonen I will always come back. What ever her draws, I’m there. I’m not really enjoying this series mainly because I really don’t understand what’s going on but I’ll be finishing it out anyway.

  37. This book is good and I don’t see what anyone is talking about with “out of character” I really, really don’t.

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