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Original Sin #8 Has Striking Imagery, But Isn’t Much of an Event

Original Sin #8 Has Striking Imagery, But Isn’t Much of an Event

Original_Sin_Vol_1_8_TextlessOriginal Sin #8
Written by Jason Aaron
Art by Mike Deodato
Colored by Frank Martin
Published by Marvel

The  premise of Original Sin was quite the invitation for Marvel readers. “Who killed the Watcher? and through the first few issues, speculation ran rampant across both the Internet and meatspace. (I had a two and a half hour conversation about the potential killer on a bus in England.) However, after lots of padding, Nick Fury being morally ambiguous and speechifying, and random combinations of Marvel heroes fighting Z-List villains like Dr. Midas and Orb, the only question on my mind was “Who cares?” In Original Sin #8, Nick Fury goes out in a suitable blaze of glory and gore, and readers finally found out who killed the Watcher. Jason  Aaron does a great job with his characterization of Fury and the role he plays in the Marvel Universe. However, the rest of the characters end up just being faces in the crowd. But they are beautifully rendered by Mike Deodato, who has consistently drawn painstakingly detailed figures with a variety of layouts even if these figures aren’t doing much of consequence. In Original Sin #8, Deodato uses a “snapshot” effect in some of his panels when he is drawing flashbacks from the POV of the maimed, dying Watcher, and this technique is one of many that he uses to make Original Sin one of the better looking superhero comics on the stands.

Over the last half of Original Sin, aaron has run his two best ideas into the ground as he explains and shows them over and over. They are that the Watcher’s eyes contain all the deepest, darkest secrets of the Marvel Universe, and Nick Fury has been the “man on the wall” in an intergalactic sense protecting the Earth from intergalactic threats before even the avengers or Fantastic Four can react. In Original Sin #8, Fury gets to deliver more of these speeches to everyone: the Watchers,  Avengers, Mindless Ones. Fury’s role and the revelation of these secrets have led to intriguing story opportunities in other books, like Thor,  Amazing Spider-Man, and Fantastic Four, but Original Sin proper continues to be a flurry of old Nick Fury, flailing supervillains, and grotesque eyes. The reveal of The Watcher’s killer is suitably anti-climactic as this story went from being a refreshing twist on the summer event comic with its interesting combination of heroes/anti-heroes and murder mystery plot to Nick Fury taking down what should’ve been a one issue gimmick villain as the avengers punch mooks and pontificate. But the mook punching and Fury killing does look good.

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Except for some questionable blocking in a group fight scene or two, Mike Deodato’s pencils in Original Sin #8 are full of detail and show how broken Nick Fury is as his sins finally catch up to him. Deodato’s Fury is half soldier and half dying old man, and he frames him in ways to depict these sides of his personality from a Steranko-inspired Fury looking down the sights of his big, damn gun at a baddie to the earlier freeze frames of his talk with The Watcher. Even in Original Sin #8’s incidental moments, Deodato and colorist Frank Martin shine. For examples, Black Panther’s sleek muscles ripple as he kicks a Mindless One in the face, and the the charge from Fury’s fancy schmancy ray gun crackle a deathly blue that matches his robot eye, courtesy of Martin. Even if Original Sin #8 plot ends up being smoke and mirrors up to its epilogue, Deodato’s visuals and  Aaron’s characterization of Nick Fury keep it from being a complete wash as both an event and series.