Absolute Carnage: Weapon Plus #1
Carnage is straight up tripping all over the planet in the name of Knull. Doing a world wide killing spree tends to draw attention and when Carnage is targeting former symbiote wearers it's only a matter of time before he comes afoul of the Weapon Plus program, who you may know from such greatest hits as: Sabretooth, Deadpool, Captain America, Luke Cage!
So when Weapon Plus gets their collective butts handed to them they do the only rational thing: kidnap Weapon H's mother in law and hold her hostage so he's forced to kill Carnage. I'm gonna reserve judgement on how smart of an idea it actually is to try to use a man's mother in law as leverage to make him do anything but hey we got Weapon H and Weapon V troops vs Uber Carnage so why question it and not just enjoy one hellacious throwdown?
Let’s be real, when Weapon H was announced/created who didn’t scoff? On paper it’s one of the most unironically juvenile thing pretty much ever and it’s an extremely hard sell as anything other than raw meme material. But the fact is Weapon H is actually pretty dope and this one shot is a primo example of that.
Jed MacKay nails everything we need for a solid Weapon H story. Clayton Cortez gets derailed from doing his “hiding in plain sight” thing by some black OPs douchebags and ya know insanity follows. While the issue is fairly straightforward it still manages to be an entertaining fun ride. The majority of it is just straight up brawling but the refreshers on the history of symbiotes and the Weapon Plus program is well refreshing, it’s awesome to see history added to Venom that’s a bit more grounded while also adding to the lethality of their nature. MacKay also manages to make something as simple as Visine utterly creepy and for that alone this book is worth a read.
The ending itself was amazing because it doesn’t go against type, Weapon H isn’t a hero. Cortez, doesn’t wear a costume go around thumbing A.I.M. goons and bank robbers. Instead he’s just a man trying to live a decent life in the crazy that is the Marvel universe. That element is basically what makes the idea of Weapon H enjoyable despite being a 10 yr old’s dream come true. His journey is almost ironic when you consider the fact if you did offer the powers of the Hulk and Wolverine to any young fan they’d do back flips at the chance but in all reality being a superhero kinda sucks. You can barely go to the corner store without getting swept up into some straight up nonsense and despite his absurd origins and abilities, the bittersweet nature of being a superhero is very rarely is this portrayed as well as it is with this issue of Weapon H. Jed MacKay homes in on all of this and makes a concise fun story out of it that doesn’t skimp on the seriousness of endangered family and the burden Cortez bears.
Jed MacKay and co. knock out a homerun in the next chapter of the Weapon Plus series of one shots. If you're looking for a great self contained read despite being attached to a huge event, this issue is perfect. All the benefits of Hulkverine vs Carnage without all the baggage of keeping up with a ton of other books.
Absolute Carnage: Weapon Plus #1: Hulkverine Smash Puny Symbiote!
Writing - 9/109/10
Storyline - 8.5/108.5/10
Art - 8.5/108.5/10
Color - 8.5/108.5/10
Cover Art - 9/109/10
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