Some time has passed since the death of Bruce Banner at the hands of his friend and ally, Hawkeye. She-Hulk finally wakes up from her coma, and the first news she hears is that Hawkeye has been acquitted in the trial for Banner’s murder.
In Civil War II #3, when the majority of the Marvel Universe arrived on Bruce Banner’s doorstep to demand answers after precognizant Inhuman Ulysses predicted that The Incredible Hulk would kill them all, Banner was understandably upset. Banner’s eyes flashed green for a moment before an arrow was loosed by Hawkeye to end his life. Clint Barton’s defense was that the arrow was designed by Banner, and that he was following a pact he had made with Banner himself.
At the end of the last issue, Tony Stark has successfully replicated Ulysses’ power from the map he acquired (by mild torture) of the young Inhuman’s brain. Stark sees the future and is terrified.
Civil War II #4 sees Iron Man explaining the science and math behind Ulysses’ visions to a group of assembled superhuman leaders. The visions are not exactly what they initially appeared to be. He succinctly expresses his continued belief that following these visions blindly is misguided and potentially hazardous to the freedom and safety of law-abiding citizens.
There are difficult questions raised on both sides of the fence. Are Ulysses’ visions accurate predictions of the future, or mathematical equations of probability? Does it matter? If there’s a high enough probability that someone will commit a crime, does it make sense to detain and at least question them? How high does that probability need to be? What if acting on the probability of a future crime being committed causes a different tragedy to occur, like the deaths of Rhodie and Bruce Banner?
It was easy to choose sides in the first Civil War event. Both of the team leaders had solid, persuasive arguments, I was on Cap’s side from the start. This issue is a little less clear for me. I was initially firmly in Iron Man’s camp, then may have been swayed to Captain Marvel’s for a minute. I landed back in Stark’s yard after this entry.
Civil War II #4, Marvel Comics, released July 27, 2016, written by Brian Michael Bendis, art by David Marquez, colors by Justin Ponsor, letters by VC’s Clayton Cowles, cover by Marko Djurdjevic, variant covers by Kim Jung Gi, Michael Cho, and Phil Noto, $4.49
Review by Brendan Allen