By Dan Abnett & Andy Lanning (Writers), Paul Pelletier & Bong Dazo (Pencils), Rick Magyar & Joe Pimentel (Inks), and Wil Quintana & Mike Kelleher (Colors)

Some Thoughts Before The Review: Guardians of the Galaxy #8 definitely piqued my interest in the War of Kings. In addition, the Inhumans mini-series that tied into the Secret Invasion left me wondering about how Black Bolt and company would carry on in the aftermath of the Skrull’s plot. However, I figured it’d be probably worth checking out seeing as how the War of Kings one-shot is helmed by the creative team behind the excellent Guardians series and tells a story about the Inhumans.

The Story: Secret Invasion: War of Kings takes place in the aftermath of the Skrull invasion. With Black Bolt back as the driving force behind the Inhumans, the Kree science projects decide to finally take the fight to those that have wronged them. The Skrulls, the Kree, and the Shi’ar Empire all get a taste of what’s to come in a one-shot that provides all the action and exposition necessary to get readers ready for the War of Kings.

What’s Good: As cool as the Secret Invasion tie-in was at times (loved the way Black Bolt dispatched of his Skrull torturer), I never really “got” why many consider the Inhumans to be so cool. Now I do. They re-establish themselves in a big way throughout the action-packed (extremely colorful) one-shot and it definitely leaves me wanting more. Long story short, I’ve got to hand it to Dan Abnett and Andy Lanning for getting me hooked on an event I had almost zero interest in less than a month ago.

What’s Not So Good: The Inhuman Crystal’s narration throughout the book comes off as a bit too melodramatic and heavy handed for my taste. While I understand that the new Inhuman status quo is literally shaking the group to its very core, a little bit more subtlety would have been welcome. Also, while the artwork looks quite well-done for the most part, it suffers from an annoying lack of detail from time to time. And that’s something I find quite surprising considering the impressive work most of the team has done on the Guardians of the Galaxy series.

Conclusion: Secret Invasion: War of Kings works as an entertaining, action-packed prologue to the War of Kings event. While it has a few flaws, I really enjoyed my time with it. If you are a fan of the Inhumans or are thinking of investing in the cosmic crossover, consider it a must read.

Grade: B

-Kyle Posluszny