Review by: rwpos

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Avg Rating: 4.3
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Size: pages
Price: 2.99

WTF is H.A.M.M.E.R.?  About a year ago Iron Man stories were describing how Stark’s policies at SHIELD had boosted morale, and now the rank and file are appluading his dismissal?  And where did all of the loyal SHIELD agents go anyway?  Are we to beleve that everyone just switched off their minds and now the whole place has gone evil and cynical?  My problems with this story weren’t really Fraction’s fault, just the hand he was dealt by the horrifically ill-conceived concept behind Dark Reign.  If I can’t get past my utter contempt for the idea of Dark Reign before next issue, I may just drop this series for lack of enjoyment and loss of interest.

And as for the art, Larocca still has too much inconsistancy in the appearance of characters panel-to-panel, and I don’t care for the heavy texturing thrown in (by the colorist) with Larocca’s bold lines.  Overall, the art just isn’t to my taste.

Story: 2 - Average
Art: 2 - Average


  1. "WTF is H.A.M.M.E.R.?" Where have you been, man? While I don’t like what Dark Reign means for Iron Man, the reaction to Stark’s failure has been a very realistic one. Secret Invasion posed to question "who can we trust?" Not Tony Stark, apparently, for his policies have failed. That’s just what happened. He can no longer be trusted to protect everyone the way he said he would. I don’t like it, being a huge fan of Iron Man, but it makes sense. All of this is the way that most of the world would respond if it were to happen today in the real world.

    And you probably won’t get past your hate of the Dark Reign concept. It seems to be one of those "take it or leave it" situations. As for me, I’m going along for the ride because I know that when its all said and done Iron Man is going to fight back, kick some ass, meet a few ladies, and feel good about the victory.  He’s just cool that way. 🙂

  2. @J4K3 – I wrote somewhere else on these boards that I hated the "One More Day" storyline – I thought it was a terrible break from the Spider-Man mythos that it was unneven in its writing and art, but ever since "Brand New Day" began I’ve been loving Spider-Man more than I had been for years.  I’m hoping that Dark Reign will be similar, but in order for me to get immersed in the stories, the writers need to STOP referring back to how it all happened.  On that score, I really don’t agree that Dark Reign is the way this lind of story would unfold in the "real world."  I agree that Stark would be the odd man out and that SHIELD would be investigated, BUT…  Why would the nation or the world hand control over to a madman supervillain who’s only contribution was self-serving battlefield speeches and a single round fired?  And why would the population of loyal, sane (and slightly paranoid) espionage agents all turn their loyalties so fast??  The CIA, FBI and US Army didn’t turn on Bush after 9/11, and neither did the American people.  Quite the opposite.

    As for HAMMER, is that supposed to be the formal name of the Thunderbolts Initiative?  Or is it the new name for US Homeland Security?  Or is just a new name for SHIELD (which wasn’t a US program to either rename or shut down?)?????  You didn’t answer my question!!  But seriously, thanks for the response all the same; I appreciate your point of view and hope you enjoy the ride!

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