Monday, October 24, 2016

Civil War II: Kingpin #4 Review and *SPOILERS* - Marvel Monday

Return of the King

Written By: Matthew Rosenberg
Art By: Ricardo Lopez Ortiz, Hayden Sherman, Mat Lopes
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: October 19, 2016
Publisher: Marvel

*Non Spoilers and Score At The Bottom*

There have been very few things about Civil War II that I have enjoyed but Kingpin has definitely been one of them. Sure, the comic had a little bump at the beginning but since then it has been smooth sailing. Here’s the thing though. The Kingpin series is a four-part miniseries much like the ones that came out for Amazing Spider-Man, Gods of War, X-Men, and more. A lot of those series all had something in common and that was that they had great lead up and an ultimately disappointing ending. So far the pattern hasn’t been broken and Kingpin has me excited. Considering how excited I am, I just might be in for a rude awakening as yet another series lets me down. Perhaps though, the series will be able to stand out from the rest. Let’s stop talking about it and just jump right in then.

We pick up where we left off. Kinpin is bleeding out from a chest wound that was inflicted on him by the Punisher. Fisk was able to climb to the top of his building where S.H.I.E.L.D. agents have been waiting to bring him in. They are able to load in into the chopper and they make haste to the nearest medical facility. The medical staff flings into action but it seems many of them wouldn’t mind if Fisk kicked the bucket. He is a notorious criminal after all. This is when we turn the page to see a news reporter stating that Wilson Fisk has died. We see reactions across the Marvel universe from people like Matt Murdock, Punisher, and Spider-Man. However, the biggest reaction definitely comes from Janus, the Inhuman that has been missing for the last issue. Readers may remember that Fisk was worried that Janus betrayed him.

Janus leaves the room he was staying in and instead walks into a room that has all of the big crime bosses inside. Now that Kingpin is dead, the bosses are feeling a bit itchy and are starting to turn on each other but Janus steps up and brings them all together. He claims that he doesn’t want the mantle but someone has to become the next Kingpin. Considering Fisk was training him, Janus says that it should be him, even though he doesn’t want it and the rest of the bosses agree. Back at a S.H.I.E.L.D. facility we learn that Fisk isn’t actually dead but instead an agent has been able to keep him alive and well. He says that Fisk will either stay dead where he is now or he can help him. Fisk agrees to his terms.

A few days later Fisk is looking a bit better but the agent seems to be angry with him. It would appear that Wilson Fisk hasn’t given him what he wants so Fisk gives him a new location. After he leaves, Fisk starts seizing and a nurse rushes to help him. During the commotion Fisk is able to grab her phone and when she rushes away to get help. He sends a text saying “Scorch the Earth” and destroys the phone. We then cut to Turk who is in S.H.I.E.L.D. custody when they are stopped by the agent that we met in the second issue. The agent has been turned by Fisk and kills the two agents escorting Turk. Turk is freed and given the information. The agent says that he is out now so Turk puts a bullet in his head.

Time passes and it seems that Fisk’s men are cleaning house. Back at the medical facility the agent is putting the screws on Fisk when he is informed that all of his moles have been eliminated. The agent is upset and his career is destroyed. He is going to kill Fisk himself now but he is stopped when Maria Hill enters the room. She is accompanied by Fisk’s lawyer who easily is able to secure Fisk’s release. We cut to Janus again who is raising a toast to his new group when Fisk enters the room. Janus welcomes him with a hug telling Fisk that he has kept everything together for him. However, Fisk doesn’t see what he did as loyalty. Instead, he sees it as a takeover. A fight breaks out and Fisk kills all of Janus’ men before turning his attention on Janus. Janus makes excuses for what he did and pleads with Fisk but he grabs Janus by the neck and breaks a nearby window. Janus reminds him that his powers let Fisk continue his operation but Fisk doesn’t care anymore as he releases Janus’ neck and Janus plummets down the building to certain death. This is where the issue leaves us.

I think it’s safe to say that the pattern is broken. Kingpin has risen above all others. While other series fizzled at their finale, Kingpin’s fire raged on as we got an epic Godfather-esque finale to this miniseries. Not only did we get a satisfying story out of the cliffhanger from the previous issue, but we also got all the major plots tied together at the end. Kingpin is still the man and this miniseries should have fans very excited about the upcoming Kingpin ongoing series that is set to debut in 2017. Rosenberg just gets this character and with him at the helm, it is hard to see this series be anything but a success. His interpretation of Kingpin is just so intelligent while be so perfectly and brutally violent at the same time. The bar is set incredibly high now.

Bits and Pieces

Out of a terrible crossover event we might have gotten one of the most entertaining Kingpin stories in a long time. This issue finishes off this miniseries will a bang and will lead the creative team into the new Kingpin series on a VERY high note. I cannot recommend this series enough now.


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