SPOILER WARNING: This article contains spoilers for “Civil War II” #5, which is on sale now.
After a few issues of preamble and hearing each side state their case when it comes to doling out precognitive justice, last month’s “Civil War II” #4 ended with both halves of the discussion charging towards each other for a battle on the roof of the Triskelion. “Civil War II” #5, which comes from the team of writer Brian Michael Bendis and artists David Marquez and Sean Izaakse, allows that battle to play out in full with over a dozen pages of punch-em-up action. Magik fights Sam Wilson, Venom attacks Miles Morales, Blue Marvel tries to reason with Luke Cage and Doctor Strange tangles with the X-Men.
Just a little ways away from the skirmish, the Inhuman Ulysses — whose precognitive visions set this entire fiasco into motion — realizes the role he’s played in this war. The Inhumans arrive on the scene, leaving Ulysses behind, hoping to broker peace between the two factions, but that doesn’t exactly happen.
Instead, Ulysses is overcome with a new vision, one that snakes its way into the minds of every hero at the battle. And this vision is pretty grim.
This new vision of the short-term future depicts Spider-Man (Miles Morales) standing victorious over the dead body of Captain America (Steve Rogers), his shield broken and a bloodied metal rod protruding from his chest. This leads Captain Marvel, the leader for the predictive justice side, to make the call:
The finale of “Civil War II” #5 places the cover for the next issue, which was revealed months ago, in new context. It could previously be assumed that the image of Miles battling Steve was just a splashy moment from the heat of battle placed on the cover. Now we know the truth, and Miles’ fate is irrevocably entwined with that of Steve’s.
There’s also another twist to this: Steve Rogers isn’t Steve Rogers. This is, in fact, a Steve Rogers whose childhood memories have been manipulated by the Red Skull and the Cosmic Cube, thus resulting in an adult Captain America that has a secret loyalty to HYDRA. Captain Marvel doesn’t know this; she just sees Spider-Man standing over the dead body of a perceived American icon.
It’s also worth noting that Tony Stark discovered that Ulysses’ visions aren’t the concrete future, but instead based on probabilities instantaneously pulled from every ounce of data available and projected through the young Inhuman. While his visions have been pretty consistently correct, there’s still room for error. Odds are the next issue will see this debate heat up even more, especially now that a beloved young hero is facing criminal charges for the death of a (secretly nefarious) Captain America.
“Civil War II” #6 will arrive in stores on October 5.
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