Victor Von Doom is back from the dead, and he has a score to settle. The good Doctor has an appointment with Taskmaster and things are going to get ugly. Your Major Spoilers review of Doctor Doom #4 from Marvel Comics awaits
Writer: Christopher Cantwell
Artist: Salvador Larroca
Letterer: VC’s Cory Petit
Editor: Tom Brevoort
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: January 1st, 2020
Previously in Doctor Doom: As his homeland is invaded by foreign adversaries, Doctor Doom continues to be hunted, and on his own. But his conviction strengthens as he further embraces a possible future where he becomes the savior of all humankind. In order to confront those who have set him up as a global criminal,
Time For A Little Chit Chat
Doctor Doom #4 begins with a homeless man going through his day, until he’s taken by a group of men and informed that he’s Dimitri Fortunov, the rightful heir to Latveria. The issue then shifts to Doom outside of the A.I.M. Headquarters. He then sets out to infiltrate the building, using all of the tricks up his sleeve. He makes his intentions clear, he wants Taskmaster, and Taskmaster is what he gets. After a little back and forth the two get into it. Back in Latveria, Victorious is facing down an invasion force from Symkaria. She goes out to speak with Silver Sable and the Symkarian Prime Minister who reveals that he has found the rightful ruler of Latveria. Victorious doesn’t take this well and her and Silver Sable begin to scrap, during which Silver Sable reveals that things aren’t right and that they need to team up to find Doom. Taskmaster and Victor continue their fight with the latter gaining the upper hand and getting the info he was seeking. Elsewhere, H.E.R.B.I.E. and The Blue Marvel are continuing their work on the black hole situation when they’re distracted by an explosion from A.I.M. Headquarters and guess correctly that it’s Doom. Inside the building Victor is face to face with M.O.D.O.K. and they engage in a philosophical debate about God, time, and choice. At the end of it Doom attacks and stabs M.O.D.O.K. who reveals he’s been pulling the strings in order for Doom to choose to fight and in turn create the idyllic future he saw in previous issues. On the moon The Fantastic Four is working on the black hole problem and Reed Richard admits that he’s going to need some advice, from Victor Von Doom.
Things Are Getting Deep
Near the top of the ever growing list of things I’m apparently a sucker for, are long philosophical debates between two people. In that category, Doctor Doom #4 delivers in spades. There’s a lot happening in this issue, but the connecting thread seems to be this conversation between Doom and M.O.D.O.K. that plays out in narration boxes over the other events of the book. It’s an effective gimmick that adds weight to what otherwise might be just typical punch and kick action sequences. This issue reminded of some of the conversations from The Seventh Seal or the later episodes of the first season of Westworld if that’s any indication of the type of philosophical discourse on display here. It’s real good.
A Good Looking Hoodie.
It may not seem like a big thing, but there is something really fun about seeing Doctor Doom running around in a green hoodie and a pair of jeans. For a character that has been known for his suits of armor and flowing cloak, seeing him like this is a switch-up that I can appreciate. Also, M.O.D.O.K. somehow, doesn’t just look like a goofy, giant head, on a gold dinner plate here. He actually looks impressive, almost dignified which is something I’m not used to seeing. It’s a good looking book and the character designs lead the way.
Bottom Line: A Surprise Multifaceted Issue
Doctor Doom #4 does something really interesting. The issue is 90% fighting and action sequences. But, it’s use of narration makes it a far more intelligent book than it would normally be. There’s a lot going on with this series and this issue manages to give all those threads some page real estate, but does not waste any of it. This is one to pick up, especially if you’re a fan of some good ol’ philosophy. 4.5 out of 5.
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Doctor Doom #4
Doctor Doom #4 somehow manages to be an issue long philosophical debate hidden behind an issue long fight/action sequence. This issue, like the rest of the series, is a great example of how neither intelligence nor action need to be sacrificed and can coexist in this medium.