REVIEW: ‘Secret Invasion,’ Issue #1

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Secret Invasion #1 - But Why Tho

Secret Invasion #1 is published by Marvel Comics, written by Ryan North, art by Francesco Mobili, colours by Jordie Bellaire, and letters by Joe Caramaga. Nick Fury walks into the office of Maria Hill. He comes with news of a Skrull invasion, beginning with a house in Iowa. But that is only the start of something bigger.

There has been a Secret Invasion comic already, so this one needs to set itself apart whilst being faithful to the concept. Skrull stories like this are built on paranoia and uncertainty, and North begins that quickly. The plot exists in two periods of time as a mission debrief is told to Hill by Fury. That story is creepy and exciting, going to a dark place quickly. Secret Invasion #1 jumps into horror with an unsettling opening gambit.

However, it also becomes clear that it is difficult to make judgements and predictions as the story can change in an instant. No one is to be trusted. Many reveals are made relatively fast in this first issue, with the Skrulls making their presence known through a few characters. That doesn’t ruin the tension, however, instead making it harder to place your bets. It is the tip of the iceberg of a much larger infestation of Skrulls. A final surprise may have been expected, but it leaves many questions unanswered.

Some fan-favourite characters make a return in this issue that are the perfect inclusions for Secret Invasion. Those are Maria Hill and Nick Fury. They are the ultimate and most experienced spies in the Marvel Universe, with those infiltrating their own ranks. What I like is the familiarity between the two but also an innate mistrust. The family that Fury visits are a brilliant first introduction to Skrulls within this particular story. They are normal but utterly terrifying and unnerving. North’s dialogue magnificently walks on tenterhooks until it needs to strike with a spine-chilling twist. It will be fascinating to see the extent of the cast in this book, as it is kept relatively small so far.

The art is tremendous. There are parts of Mobili’s art that make it quite similar to Leinil Francis Yu, who pencilled the original secret invasion. But this is a style that has its own distinction. The sudden slips into horror from seemingly normal panels are haunting yet brilliantly executed as facial expressions change. The first page before the title page is a terrifying moment that also creates a benchmark for the rest of the issue. The fight scene halfway through the comic is extremely shocking as Fury faces very unlikely foes. The power of the Skrulls is fantastic in this issue, with some shapeshifts showing capabilities I hadn’t even considered. The fight is nasty and violent, demonstrating the grittiness this series could possess.

The colouring is terrific. Parts of the comic contain a compelling contrast between greys and any positive colours. This is notable in Hill’s office, where it is almost like brushstrokes of autumnal orange are added to the grey. The colouring changes throughout the issue but is often influential to the storytelling. It can either be vibrant and rich or singular in shades.

Secret Invasion #1 lives up to the name. Initially, reusing the concept of a comic that already exists means that it might be easy to see what is coming. However, this version of the Secret Invasion is not a rewriting of history but a spiritual sequel. At the moment, it isn’t as expansive, which makes it more terrifying and intimate. As much as I adored the original event, this is a story that may be more approachable to new readers, not burdened with years of build-up and history. And that is paired with an incredible art team that has created a fantastic horror comic. 

Secret Invasion #1 is available where comics are sold.


Secret Invasion #1
4.5

TL;DR

Secret Invasion #1 lives up to the name. Initially, reusing the concept of a comic that already exists means that it might be easy to see what is coming. However, this version of the Secret Invasion is not a rewriting of history but a spiritual sequel. At the moment, it isn’t as expansive, which makes it more terrifying and intimate. As much as I adored the original event, this is a story that may be more approachable to new readers, not burdened with years of build-up and history. And that is paired with an incredible art team that has created a fantastic horror comic.

But Why Tho? A Geek Community
%d bloggers like this: