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Thursday, October 17, 2019

Review: Marvel 1602

I somehow missed Marvel 1602 when it came out in 2004, probably mistaking it for The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, which is set 200 years later and doesn't involve Marvel superheroes. Well, there was a Kindle sale, so I picked it up since it was by Neil Gaiman.

The story involves the last days of Queen Elizabeth, and starts with her spymaster, Nicholas Fury meeting her personal Physician Dr. Stephan Strange. Half of the fun of the comic has to do with seeing familiar superheroes and seeing what twists Gaiman chooses to put on them in 1602. It's also interesting to see which superheroes get left out, and how Gaiman ties this universe with the rest of the Marvel mythology. I'm not sure I enjoyed the "multiverse" ploy here in this book, and would have preferred that it be left out, but Gaiman does a reasonable job of it, though he can't resist toying with our expectations.

The art is good, though not spectacular, and the change of venue for marvel characters is reasonable. It's still not as good as Gaiman's magnum opus The Sandman, but there's only so much you can do with licensed characters. It'll make a good light summer read, which according to Gaiman was all he intended. Recommended.

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