REVIEW: ‘Timeless,’ Issue #1

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Timeless #1 - But Why Tho

Timeless #1 is written by Jed MacKay; illustrated by Kev Walker, Greg Land & Jay Leisten, Mark Bagley & Andrew Hennessy; colored by Marte Gracia; and lettered by VC’s Ariana Maher. It is published by Marvel Comics. Anatoly Petrov, a professor of superhuman studies, has been abducted by the time-traveling tyrant Kang the Conqueror. Kang knows that Petrov will soon write a book that declares Doctor Doom to be the greatest supervillain the world has ever known; he intends to change the professor’s mind by showcasing his various triumphs over various challenges. However, the Conqueror faces a new challenge when a “pirate timeline” intends to hijack the current one-revealing various futures for the heroes of the Marvel Universe.

Kang has recently enjoyed a resurgence in popularity at Marvel, even headlining his own miniseries; Jonathan Majors also played a variant of Kang in the season finale of Loki and will reprise the role in Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania. Here, MacKay decides to explore what drives Kang in his conquest of time. The answer is surprisingly simple: he seeks a challenge to prove his superiority to others. Whether it’s fighting a wooly mammoth with his bare hands or a version of Doctor Doom who has gained godhood, he will stop at nothing to achieve his goals. “Excellence, Petrov. At any cost,” Kang snarls when Petrov lambasts him for leaving his subjects to die. “That is my pursuit. My obsession. Nothing else matters to me.”

That pursuit leads Kang and Petrov to Oracle Base, one of Kang’s strongholds that resides outside of time. There, the duo witnesses time splintering apart, revealing what lies in store for heroes including Spider-Man, Thor, and Iron Fist. A mysterious event called “Judgement Day” is also hinted at, which involves the Avengers, X-Men & Eternals; more information is slated to be revealed at next year’s Free Comic Book Day. What I appreciate about this sequence is that even though it’s meant to hint at the next year’s worth of storylines for Marvel, it does so in a way that actively drives the story and doesn’t feel forced.

I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the three different artists. Walker handles the first section of the book, which details Kang and Petrov’s first meeting along with the aforementioned mammoth fight. This scene has a mesmerizing sort of brutality to it; you won’t be able to tear your eyes away as Kang rips into the mammoth using nothing but a spear and knife. Bagley draws the majority of the book, which features Kang’s battle with Doom in the pirate timeline; this world is littered with the bodies of dead Celestials, and Gracia’s colors led a foreboding vibe to the proceedings. Land illustrates the Oracle Base sequence, where the alternate timelines are depicted in a hazy pink filter. Throughout the entire sequence, Maher peppers the issue with captions that look like handwriting, as Petrov depicts his encounter with Kang; it feels like a science fiction novel in the vein of H.G. Wells, and I love that.

Timeless #1 digs deep into the mindset of Kang the Conqueror while also hinting at the future of Marvel’s heroes and villains. If you want to understand what makes Kang Kang or you’re curious about what to expect from the House of Ideas in 2022, pick this book up. It’s a story that’s worth your time and money.

Timeless #1 is available wherever comics are sold.


Timeless #1
4.5

TL;DR

Timeless #1 digs deep into the mindset of Kang the Conqueror while also hinting at the future of Marvel’s heroes and villains. If you want to understand what makes Kang Kang or you’re curious about what to expect from the House of Ideas in 2022, pick this book up. It’s a story that’s worth your time and money.

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