Embrace the Immensity of Infinity Countdown Prime 1

By Michael DeLaney

This article contains SPOILERS. If you haven’t read the issue yet, proceed at your own risk!

With all of the backstory it lays out, Infinity Countdown Prime 1 should probably be renamed “Infinity Countdown Primer.” The book is equal parts past and prologue. Gerry Duggan and Mike Deodato Jr. set the stage for Infinity Countdown, cushioned between a Marvel editorial recap of what the Infinity Stones do and what their history is. And while it does throw a lot of information at the reader at once, it feels like one of the more successful starting points for a major comic event in recent memory — especially if you aren’t heavily versed in all things Infinity.

It’s likely that you may not know who all the wielders of Infinity Stones are or how they ended up where they have. Duggan doesn’t seem to mind this fact; he just wants to let us know where they are all starting for his epic tale. How is Logan back? Why is Hank Pym merged with Ultron? I’d recommend not stressing yourself out with the Marvel minutiae for the moment and just let things be.

Deodato constructs unique panel layouts throughout Infinity Countdown Prime 1. The majority of the book is devoid of the traditional black-lined panels and white gutters. Instead, Deodato dissects a single image on the page into many separate panels. The most eye-catching examples of this comes at the beginning of the issue, when Wolverine SNIKTs Loki in the head.

In the turn of a page the gutters flash to bright red, as if we are visualizing Loki’s nervous system to his excruciating pain. The second “panel” cleverly masks Loki’s eyes with a red gutter panel, saving the horrific reveal of that pierced eyeball for the bottom of the page.

The Marvel Universe can be overwhelming, but I like to jump with both feet in and find my way around after the fact. I think Duggan and Deodato Jr. feel the same.

The conversation doesn’t stop there. What do you wanna talk about from this issue?

3 comments on “Embrace the Immensity of Infinity Countdown Prime 1

    • You do know that a good portion of Marvel’s cosmic universe was made by the X-Men comics, with Wolverine in the middle of It? How doesn’t he belong in a cosmic setting?

      And even of he didn’t, unlikely figure stumbles upon cosmic power is a great plot point. Infinity Countdown’s depiction of Logan as a Lone Ronin caught up in events much, much larger than himself is one of the best parts. The forces against him are overwhelming, he’s alone but fights anyway because it is what is right. How is that not a great plot for a Logan story, even if it uses space ships and infinity stones?

      Similar thing with Turk. Petty crook gets unlimited power is a great twist, because it is such a nobody. What happens when you give someone like that so much power? How quickly will the power go to hisnhead, and how damaging would it be for all that power to be in the hands of Turk, instead of the more responsible hands of a villain like Fisk, who would use it with care. Turk having the stone is exciting, because it can only go wrong and the fallout that the heroes will have to deal with just won’t be able to happen in the hands of someone other than Turk.

      Honestly, the Logan and Turk parts are the best parts of this issue

  1. Weirdly, my favourite part of the issue was not the story itself, it was the diagram of the infinity stones, and the fact that they create an Infinite Loop. A really clever idea, turning the Gauntlet into something a little more interesting. It is one of those examples of giving a little extra lore can help turn a relatively generic cosmic item into a fascinating process (just like the Infinity Stones became more interesting in the MCU when they decided that they would all be existing important artefacts. Vision’s gem or the Eye of Agamotto are more intereetign than random stones, because the gathering of the stones as implications to the Vision’s life or Strange’s power)

    On the issue itself, it is a 0 issue. I don’t know if I would call it one of the most successful starting points for an event in recent memory. On the one hand, shit like Metal and Doomsday Clock, and the fact that Civil War II and Secret Empire had terrible 0 issues, do provide a lot of evidence to the assertion. On the other hand, I wouldn’t call it great.

    As I said, Logan and Turk are the best parts. Third, oddly, would be Carol. If only because of the implications of multiple realities. That is intriguing in a way that many of the other parts aren’t. A suggestion of a more complex story that other gems, except Logan and Turk, didn’t have. And the sneaky cameo of DC’s Captain Marvel was a lot of fun.

    But Super Skrull was kind of boring, and the Magus stuff suffered from the loss of potential. The answer to the riddle of what happened to the Contemplator was nowhere near as weird as hoped, and Ultron’s depiction was depressingly not like Secret Empire’s, going for a much more simplistic approach compared to the clever approach Spencer had. And the Gaurdians just sat around, doing very little.

    Most of this comic is just checking in with people and saying hi, making sure everyone knows where everything is before the story starts. Feels like the annoying exposition dump before the fun stuff. Next issue, we get Duggan and Kuder’s usual insanity. This is just what we have to do first to make sure everyone is up to date.

    At least the Logan and Turk scenes worked

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