Infinity War #6
Issue(s): Infinity War #6
Normally this is the point where all of Marvel's other cosmic beings come in as well, but i guess there isn't time to mobilize them (or the book is cluttered enough already). Although we do have two major cosmic entities coming up.
Actually, the uncommitted heroes wind up with the others, fighting doppelgangers, until Magus gets bored with that.
And the heroes all become his trophies, like a collection of action figures.
Then Thanos shows up, having defeated his doppelganger (and he's definitely not wearing a glove this time).
Thanos goads Magus by talking about "reality".
Warlock escapes, and tries to take control of the Gauntlet.
While they have a battle of will, Thanos observes that they've lost control of the "reality flow" because something is missing.
We're really hitting on the concept of "reality" hard.
Warlock then summons the combined Eternity and Infinity.
I like that Starlin is using Infinity, a recent addition to Marvel's cosmic pantheon from Mark Gruenwald. When Infinity was introduced, it was said that she didn't have anything to do with the Infinity gems, but that seems to not be the case.
Galactus has shielded the heroes from the effects of the battle, and he's now trying to get his ship out of its range. Mr. Fantastic, who was replaced by a doppelganger early in this story, suddenly pops up.
And then everyone finds themselves back at their home bases.
The assumption is that Warlock won the fight against Magus, and now he is "god". But that's only partially true. Warlock is actually unconscious, back at Monster Island. And the Infinity Watch all have their gems back.
Thanos explains that this was all part of their plan. Warlock baited Magus into going for the Infinity Gauntlet. But they didn't really add the Reality gem, making it possible for Warlock to defeat him.
Eternity then shows up to declare that the gems once again can not be used in unison, and that they will never again be allowed to do so, "no matter what the crisis".
The Watch take this as good news, thinking that they won't be under constant attack from people trying to reconstruct the Infinity Gauntlet (although Thanos says don't count on it).
It's implied that Warlock has reabsorbed the Magus back into himself.
We see that he's been absorbed into the Soul gem.
As Thanos is leaving, Gamora notes that he seems "changed from the cold and distant creature that raised me". Thanos says that it's because Death rejected him, so "like it or not, Thanos of Titan is now one of the living".
At the very end, we find out who took the Magus' Cosmic Containment Units: Warlock's good side.
In a certain sense, the way Warlock beats the Magus kind of negates the whole story. It seemed the whole time that Magus was one step ahead of everyone, and was able to anticipate what Warlock and the others would do. But it turns out that isn't the case, and in fact Warlock was a step ahead of Magus. But i actually think that's kind of cool. Again, it might be a matter of perspective. One thing that is for sure is that Marvel's regular heroes provide no contribution to the resolution. If they hadn't been involved at all, the ending would have been the same. But if you can set that part aside, i actually really like the ending. It's a clever trick, a neat twist ending kind of like Warlock figuring out that he could beat the Man-Beast by destroying the machinery that was controlling the Infinity Gems in Warlock & the Infinity Watch #5-6. Except it was pre-meditated, a long term play, so i like it even better. This story would be even better if the heroes were trimmed entirely since too much space is wasted given the heroes pointless things to do. But ultimately it's an Adam Warlock (and Thanos) story disguised as a line wide crossover.
Quality Rating: B+
Chronological Placement Considerations: The core series is over, but several tie-ins take place either during this issue or end after it's over: Doctor Strange #46-47, Warlock and the Infinity Watch #10, Wonder Man #15, Fantastic Four #370, Moon Knight #44, and Alpha Flight #110-112.
Crossover: Infinity War
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
Inbound References (13): show
I've never quite understood the ending. How is Warlock able to suddenly summon Eternity/Infinity? Why does Eternity and Infinity being "two sides of the same coin" mean the Magus's plan was doomed from the start?
Posted by: Thanos6 | April 8, 2016 4:18 PM
I'd like to point out that while the Magus has been absorbed into the Soul Gem, he can't interact with anybody there, except for Warlock when he ventures into Soul World. The same thing happens with the Goddess and when both Magus and Goddess try to strike each other, they find out that while they can speak to each other, they can't effect the other.
Posted by: D09 | April 8, 2016 4:28 PM
It's always great to see Kray-Tor! He's so darn cute.
Posted by: Bill | April 8, 2016 7:05 PM
Did we ever get to find out what happened to Mr Fantastic and Iron Man after they got the tentacle treatment? Were they just tied up in a basement somewhere?
Posted by: Andrew F | April 9, 2016 12:27 AM
@Thanos, i always kind of glaze over the mystic gobbledygook a bit, but i think the answer relates to the fact that Eternity shows up at the end and expresses his gratitude, saying "Once again I am reality". Essentially, Eternity is reality, so the fact that the Reality gem wasn't with the Gauntlet allowed him to act. And the fact that Eternity and Infinity are one and the same means that he/they have dominance over the Infinity gems. It would be different if the bearer of the Gauntlet controlled Reality (Eternity, essentially). Again, i look at it on a more practical level - the Gauntlet was incomplete and Warlock was able to exploit that fact - but that's my attempt to answer your question.
@Andrew, pretty much. Held prisoner by the Magus. We'll see that in Fantastic Four #370.
Posted by: fnord12 | April 9, 2016 11:30 AM
@fnord: Right, I get the fact that with only 5 gems, the Magus could never beat Eternity. Whatever happened, can we agree that sometimes Starlin needs to spend a little extra time explaining his mystical gobbledygook?
Posted by: Thanos6 | April 9, 2016 11:58 AM
Personally i prefer for there to be a little ambiguity, allowing for fan speculation and the fact that this is high cosmic stuff that should be beyond the understanding of regular mortals. Otherwise it runs the risk of being Gruenwaldian over-explaining with Warlock suddenly delving into an expository lecture. But i can see why others would feel differently.
Posted by: fnord12 | April 9, 2016 12:08 PM
Personally, I'm a fan of Gruenwaldian over-explaining. I guess that's why Quasar is one of my all-time favorite series :)
Posted by: Thanos6 | April 9, 2016 12:10 PM
The Infinity War was extemely flawed by the fact that everyone involved was dumb: Everyone from the Magus, Marvel Super Heroes, Galactus, Warlock and Thanos. Lets start with the Magus. His plan was sound; to get the Infinity Gems, you let everyone know that you have five Cosmic Cubes which frigtens them into gathering the Infinity Gems to stop you. You then swoop in to steal the Gems. Good plan but the execution was dumb. Why? You don't let Thanos come to you, reveal yourself to him, and let him know your location, the location of the five Cosmic Cubes, and, most importantly, that you are after the Infinity Gems. You also don't attack the Marvel Super Heroes to rescue the Mr. Fantastic and Iron Man doppelgangers because that tips them off (if they weren't dumb) that they are being watched. You could rescue your doppelgangers after you get the Infinity Gems, after all. The same reason for attacking Galactus for no reason; he (if he wasn't dumb) would know that someone powerful was watching him.
Furthermore, why would the Magus create a Thanos doppelganger that could betray him? Why didn't the doppelganger go on to betray the Magus after the he has stolen the Infinity Gauntlet and before the Gauntlet could be activated by Eternity? Successfully betraying the Magus after he is in possession of an activated Infinity Gauntlet would have been impossible.
Posted by: OptimusFan | April 18, 2016 12:36 AM
Since the Magus was dumb enough to tip everyone off that he can watch them and can teleport anytime to attack them, the Marvel Super Heroes and Galactus should not have been dumb enough to allow Warlock assemble the Infinity Gems in open air. Since they were dumb enough to do that, they would not have been further dumb to leave Warlock unguarded as they waited for the Infinity Gauntlet to be activated by Eternity. Talking to each other instead of whispering to each other their plans to stop the Magus was also dumb.
The Marvel Super Heroes was also dumb enough to leave someone as untrusworthy as Thanos behind when they went to ambush the Magus. They would have brought Thanos along to keep an eye on him. And why did Thanos feel the need to trick the Marvel Super Heroes into thinking that they were ambusing the Magus? Did he think he could defeat the Magus and his Thanos doppelganger alone? That is dumb and reckless. And Thanos did even more dumb things.
Posted by: OptimusFan | April 18, 2016 12:37 AM
Thanos's and Warlock's plan to stop the Magus is to draw the Magus out by dangling as bait five of six Infinity Gems, missing the Reality Gem. Then once the Magus has revealed himself thinking he has all six Gems, Warlock was to sic Infinity/Eternity onto the Magus defeating him since he has only 5 of the 6 Gems. That is an extremely dumb and reckless plan that 9 times out of 10 would have failed disastrously. Giving the Magus 5 of 6 Gems would have been enough to make him omnipotent and he could have used them to find the missing Reality Gem easily. Then Eternity/Infinity could not have stopped him. A better plan is to secretly switch the Infinity Gauntlet with a fake one once Galactus leaves to plead with Eternity to activate the Gauntlet. The Magus then is fooled in going after the fake Gauntlet, is ambushed and defeated. Another plan is to use Pip the Troll's Space Gem to teleport everyone to the Magus's control center (since the Magus was dumb enough to let Thanos know where it is) where the Magus can be ambushed and defeated. If Thanos was still a bad guy and really smart like Starlin wants him to be, he could wait until Pip revealed where he hid his Gem, grab it (it should be easy since Thanos is standing right next to Pip!) and teleport himself there and grab ultimate power.
Thanos was also extremely dumb in boasting to the Magus that "reality is not what he perceives" and thereby tipping him off that something is not right. It seems Thanos's plan was to set off the Magus long enough for Warlock to free himself and touch the Gauntlet but there are better ways to set off the Magus; just tell the Magus that Warlock was his other self and, boom, he becomes angry. Instead, the Magus could easily have used the Time or Soul Gem to probe Thanos's or Warlock's mind to find out what Thanos meant by his cryptic "reality" remark, discovered that he is missing the Reality Gem, probed further to find the location of the missing Gem and whether there are booby traps, then used the Space Gem to teleport there to retreive it. And just like that, Thanos's boast would have backfired disastrously. The Magus would then have all 6 gems and can beat Eternity/Infinity.
Posted by: OptimusFan | April 18, 2016 12:38 AM
So, I don't agree with the "B+" rating to the Infinity War event. Every character involved in this event acted unbelievably dumb. The funny thing is that Starlin tries so hard to make his favourite character, Thanos, the smartest being in the universe, but he failed. Despite Starlin's best efforts, Thanos is actually the dumbest of the dumb characters in Infinity War.
Posted by: OptimusFan | April 18, 2016 12:39 AM
I enjoyed it for what it is, your mileage may vary of course
Posted by: D09 | October 1, 2016 5:04 PM
Up until this point I thought Infinity War was destined to edge out Infinity Gauntlet as the best story involving said artifact; sadly this was not meant to be as this concluding chapter is probably the one with the worst writing among all issues I've read of both sagas. I just can't buy the plan Warlock and Thanos had nor I can make any sense of the whole Infinity/Eternity twist that came out of nowhere.
I still enjoyed it for what it was but I'm not looking forward to Crusade now considering the dip in quality. I'm not saying that Infinity Gauntlet was a masterpiece but it had a more coherent arc to tell regarding Thanos and it didn't resort to an ending that makes little sense.
Posted by: Nova | January 27, 2017 2:14 AM
I'm actually glad to hear/read that I'm not the only one who doesn't "get" every explanation or lack there of and that it's not just bc of the language barrier.
Posted by: Multiple Manu | December 21, 2017 2:48 AM
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