From the ‘Fear Itself’ story arc comes a mystery about an Army Ranger by the name of Marcus Johnson who for some way is going to be a major player in the Marvel Universe in the coming month. A large chuck of this opening issue doesn’t really deal with much of the general chaos from the spandex and cape which inhabits the Marvel Universe. We see Johnson in the Middle East fighting with his platoon against the Taliban and then fast forward three days later he learns that his mother has passed away. Flying back home for the funeral Johnson visits his mother’s house and discovers a very expensive shell from a Russian weapon that should have no business being there. Growing suspicious Johnson decides to investigate but just as he leaves his mother’s house a group of Russian goons ambush him. After impressively fighting them off we see Taskmaster making an appearance. Russian goons Johnson can handle but with Taskmaster the ranger is wayyyyyy out of his league. Just before the killing stroke Taskmaster is stopped short by Captain America who demands for skull face’s surrender and leaves us with a cliff hanger.
As a main character Sergeant Marcus Johnson isn’t that interesting of a character…at least not yet. While not an everyman type character he’s still a fish out of water not used to dealing with capes and villains. Artist Scot Eaton (Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man and X-Men: Endangered Species) delivers us some impressive work here especially with his layouts. This issue starts out very clean and simple, giving readers a POV of a character removed from the costumed set but once Taskmaster makes the scene it becomes a lot more animated and aggressive.
Overall Battle Scars was an interesting read and it’s clear that this first issue is just a seed that will grow in time. And if you’re like me you just might be curious in following this title to find out just why Marcus Johnson so important to the Marvel U in the coming months. Hopefully issue two will pick up the action and shine more light on the finer details of Battle Scars and keep the readers attentions.
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