Captain America's Secret Empire is imminent, but even before it arrives in April, CBR has a sneak peek at what readers can expect once the nine-issue event hits its halfway point.
Marvel Comics has provided CBR with Mark Brook's covers for Issues #4 and 5, and while the contents of these issues remain shrouded in secrecy, the covers offer some clues as to what writer and "Secret Empire" mastermind Nick Spencer has in store for both Marvel's heroes and at least one villain.
First, we see the return of Ultron in his latest incarnation, having taken control of his father/creator's body, Hanky Pym. When last readers saw him, Hank/Ultron had been sent into the sun for what was believed to be a fiery death, leading us to wonder how he's back here, and whether his plans work alongside or against Steve Rogers'.
Then, Hawkeye (the original, Hawkguy version) is in big trouble on the cover for "Secret Empire" #5. While his fellow heroes lay unconscious behind him, the longtime Avengers faces down an unseen antagonist with what appears to be his final arrow, and an unusually panicked look on his face..
While "Secret Empire" is, at its heart, a Captain America story, Marvel and Spencer have made it clear that it will affect the entire Marvel Universe. "This is also an Avengers, X-Men, Inhumans, Champions, Defenders and Guardians story," Spencer told CBR in a recent interview. "If you're a fan of the core casts of those titles, your favorites are going to be well represented here, but we're also going to reach out into cosmic Marvel, street-level Marvel, the X-Universe and into the Inhumans. We really brought everyone into the fray one way or another."
"Secret Empire," by Nick Spencer, Daniel Acuña, Steve McNiven, Andrea Sorrentino and Leinil Yu, kicks off in April.