By Brian Bendis (writer), Billy Tan (pencils), Danny Miki (inks), Jason Keith (colors)

Sadly, this is a pretty boring issue which sucks because I had fun with the last part of this story. You know, the one where Ka-Zar and Shanna got mixed up in this whole Secret Invasion mess in the Savage Land? It worked because it connected some dots that reached as far back as New Avengers #1. This issue is a continuance of that story, shedding light on how the Skrulls created Earth’s mightiest doppelgangers and sent them in their getaway pod to Earth.

Reading this issue, it just felt like a retread of stuff Brian Bendis has spoon fed us for the last few months. We get Skrulls scheming to undermine Earth’s superhero community, the undergoing of brainwashing, memory implants, and then the execution of their plan. This segue was fun when it was unveiled a couple of months ago. But since then, it’s grown stale. How many times must we hear the Skrull Queen’s musings on how creating distrust is the key to winning the war on Earth? How many times are we going to see Skrulls get draped with blood as they absorb their new skin and identities? Were it not for Spidey’s somewhat entertaining dialogue back on the planet’s surface, I’d almost call this issue a reprint!

Even Billy Tan’s art (on the Skrull side of the story) feels like stuff we’ve seen before. Yes, it’s all about being consistent with earlier stories, and make no mistake, Tan’s art is good on the eyes, but Jim Cheung already did this story and much better, I might add. The stuff in the Savage Land, however, is fair game; the art here, is pure eye candy.

Look, maybe it was necessary to tell this story. I can understand that. But it could have been done so without all the redundancies. Unfortunately, this issue feels like a waste. It’s essentially weak supplemental material that might have been better served as a backup or a side story to some double-sized issue. It doesn’t belong here. Save your money and skip this one unless you absolutely need your Billy Tan fix. (Grade: D+)

– J. Montes