OK, just read issue #0.  It involves the current iteration of Nova, who is apparently a kid named Sam Alexander, whose father was an old drunk who claimed to have been an intergalactic space hero, and who eventually disappeared. In time, the son discovers that the old man had been an intergalactic space hero and ends up becoming the new Nova himself. I'm not familiar with this version of the character, so I can't say how long he's been around. I remember reading the original Nova nearly forty years ago - I don't have any great memories of him except that he was drawn by Carmine Infantino for awhile.

 

Anyway, our Sam fights a robot version of Tomazooma and meets the Avengers and asks them about the Watcher and finds out that while they know the Watcher watches, they don't know why. So, he goes to the Moon and gives the Watcher a rock and Utau Atua Utapau Uatu shows him his home movies of how his Dad (Uatu's, I mean, not Sam's) was the one who had the bright idea of giving the Prosilicans nuclear energy and we all know how that worked out.  Is this new?  I don't remember it being U Thant Utrecht Uatu's old man who did that. Anyway, Sam asks Uatu just how much he watches and Uatu blows his mind by showing him scenes from old issues of What If.  Anyway, Sam realizes that what Uatu is really hoping to see is a world where his dad wasn't wrong. Sam commiserates and says that he wishes his father wasn't a screw-up, too, then asks Uatu what happened to his (Sam's, not Uatu's) dad, and after a slight pause, Uatu tells Sam that his dad is still alive. (Say, isn't that sort of "interfering", Uatu, old son?).  Sam goes off happy and Uatu puts the rock on a shelf. 

 

A mildly interesting story, and the art is nice enough.

 

Say, the Watcher apparently has an armory - he's really loaded for bear - where he keeps the Ultimate Nullifier. How'd he end up with it? I thought Galactus took that back after Reed made him promise to leave Earth after threatening to blow his head off with it.

 

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Luke Blanchard said:

Nova was a development of a fan character created by created by Marv Wolfman and Len Wein. I'm sure Wolfman was trying for a Spider-Man vein in his Marvel series. Who suggested that I don't know.


I think Marv Wolfman himself suggested that. That's what I recall from reading those earliest issues of Nova nearly *choke* 40 years ago.

“A mildly interesting story, and the art is nice enough.”

Once again, Bob, you’ve crystalized my thoughts exactly.

The last “Watcher” story by Mark Waid I read was Onslaught, which began with a full-page panel of Uatu announcing “My job is done.” What? Because a handful of costumed adventurers were whisked into another dimension for a while? That was some 15+ years ago and it still sticks in my craw. I know Waid was doing “work for hire” on an editorially mandated “event,” but I hope this series gives him the opportunity to write something a little more in character.

Time was, I’d’ve encountered a character such as Sam Alexander and I’d immediately want to find out all I could about him and set about a hunt for back issues. At this point, I’m perfectly satisfied with the backstory Waid supplied and am willing to let this stand as the new Nova’s “first appearance.” It would have been neat if Sam’s father was Richard Ryder, the original Nova (if that’s even possible in “Marvel Time”). Speaking of which, the original Nova was very much intended to be for kids of the seventies as Spider-Man was to kids of the sixties; an editorial in the first issue said as much.

I re-read the entire series and posted my thoughts on this board a couple of years ago. On the whole, it was much better than I remembered it. It got off to a somewhat slow start before it went “cosmic”, but I found the storytelling to be clear, concise and the series was well worth my time to read.

The numbering of the new series bugs me, though (of course). The front cover says “#0 of 8.” Of eight total? The way I count, that’s 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7. But an ad at the end advertises issue “#1 of 8.” If “Number Zero” is not intended to be part of the count, don’t put a number on it. This kind of thinking could lead to celebrating the “millennium” a year early!

Every time I see an ad for this series, I think of the Meatloaf song.

I've been looking for an original sin
One with a twist and a bit of a spin
And since I've done all the old ones
Till they've all been done in
Now I'm just looking -
Then I'm gone with the wind -
Endlessly searching for an original sin



Jeff of Earth-J said:

The numbering of the new series bugs me, though (of course). The front cover says “#0 of 8.” Of eight total? The way I count, that’s 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7. But an ad at the end advertises issue “#1 of 8.” If “Number Zero” is not intended to be part of the count, don’t put a number on it. This kind of thinking could lead to celebrating the “millennium” a year early!

 

Does "anal-retentive" take a hyphen?  ;)

Jeff of Earth-J said:

Speaking of which, the original Nova was very much intended to be for kids of the seventies as Spider-Man was to kids of the sixties; an editorial in the first issue said as much.

I thought I remembered an editorial push to try to make Nova the new big deal teenage hero. I am reminded of the first issue of Daredevil, when the cover copy and the young-looking appearance of the characters on the cover made it seem like he was a teenage hero when he wasn't.

Remembering that this is a spoiler thread, I 'm giving some spoiler space here...

 

Spoilero

 

Spoileras

 

Spoilerat

 

Spoileramus

 

Spoileratis

 

Spoilerant.

 

Original Sin #1 of 8 (July 2014): "No One is Watching"

Written by Jason Aaron, with art by Mike Deodato.

 

Someone shoots Uatu. He sees it coming, but doesn't duck. Would avoiding your own murder constitute unacceptable interference in the affairs of the Earth?

 

Elsewhere, Steve, Logan, Natasha and Nick meet for Meat Night.  "Meat Night"? The mind boggles. Pardon me for a moment whilst I clear my mind of a few "Bad Baron" thoughts as to what "Meat Night" might comprise.  Anyway, our heroes are conversing about the best meat they've ever had when Thor calls and they zip off to the Moon in Nick's special space convertible. "Space convertible"? I guess S.H.I.E.L.D.'s* technology has really improved! Anyhow, they join Thor and Tony at the scene. (I guess they don't get invited to "Meat Night".)  They work out that Uatu has been shot dead, and several of his things stolen, including his eyes.

 

In Wakanda, someone calls T'Challa and implies that the Avengers aren't up to the job, and tries to persuade him to join the team that they're gathering, said team apparently including Scott Lang, Emma Frost, Stephen Strange, Frank Castle, Marc Spector, Bucky Barnes and Gamora. Back on the Moon, Natasha has found fragments of a glowing, green bullet in Uatu's head. Wow, she went digging inside the Watcher's head?  Ew.  This vaguely reminds me of the murder of Orion in Final Crisis, except that the DCU (at least, the DCU that I knew) was lousy with super-detectives, whereas the Marvel Universe traditionally hasn't had much of any, that I can recall.

 

Back on Earth, Ben and Peter are fighting a Mindless One which has somehow acquired a mind and isn't happy about it. After making cryptic remarks about knowing sin and what it saw on the Moon, it kills itself with the Ultimate Nullifier.  Wait, I could swear I remember seeing it established that if anyone ever used the Ultimate Nullifier, it would destroy the entire universe. Guess not, apparently. Anyway, Nick and Steve arrive to take charge of the crime scene.

 

Anyway, we then see T'Challa, Emma and Lang heading for the center of the Earth, Stephen and Frank going who knows where, and Bucky, Marc and Gamora either going to and just leaving the Moon, it's hard to tell.

 

We end in a warehouse somewhere, where three heels that I don't recognize are accompanied by some more Mindless Mindful Ones. They have the Watcher's eyes, which are apparently causing them to evolve somehow.

 

OK, based on the clues so far, I'm guessing that the one who killed Uatu was none other than Arne Saknussemm!

 

Overall:  Not bad for a current-day Marvel book. The art is real nice, too.

 

 

 

 

*Stands for "Special Herbal Iced Eel Liquid Dessert". Or not.

  Wouldn't Uatu's race be first on the scene?

You'd think so. Maybe they weren't Watching. HAW! HAW! HAW!  ;)

Why would anyone think it was a good idea to include Frank Castle in a murder investigation? Unless you wanted the Watcher's killer (and several suspects) to be killed and to be able to pretend you didn't know it would happen.

Well lets face it there is no one in the mu who could actually conduct an investigation like say Batman could, except maybe Howard the Duck.

Gamora?

Mark S. Ogilvie said:

Well lets face it there is no one in the mu who could actually conduct an investigation like say Batman could, except maybe Howard the Duck.

Now you're talking! I'd actually consider buying it if Howard was the lead investigator.

“Meat night”? You have got to be kidding. That sounds like your sense of humor at play, but no, it’s probably not.

I think the Ultimate Nullifier works along the same concept as Darkseid’s Omega Beams, in that it doesn’t simply destroy its target, it completely wipes it from existence, including all memories that the target ever existed. The scope of the Nullifier depends on the will of the user. It can be used to wipe out a single foe, but in the hands of a cosmic being (or a human with sufficient intelligence and imagination, such as Reed Richards), it could obliterate a planet, solar system or even a universe. In the hands of some unskilled users, it even destroys the weilder.

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