Early this year, Marvel announced that a murder mystery of cosmic proportions would be coming to the pages of their comic books. Titled ‘Original Sin’, this eight-issue event from Jason Aaron and Mike Deodato Jr. sets out to uncover who murdered Uatu the Watcher while learning some new information about some of our favorite heroes that have been long buried. While things really kick off next month, the House of Ideas has released a prequel issue that helps us get to know the ominous figure at the center of the upcoming crossover.
To get the ball rolling on the next big thing in the Marvel Universe, the company has enlisted the all-star team of Mark Waid, Jim Cheung, Mark Morales, and Justin Ponsor to bring us some background on Uatu and where he came from. The newest member of the Nova Corps, Sam Alexander, stars in this prequel zero issue as he sets out to ask the Watcher a question that no one has ever asked him. But after he finds that he and Uatu have more in common than he or anyone ever thought, Nova learned exactly what the Watcher is watching.
Marvel Comics always has a knack for assembling great teams whether it be on the page or behind the scenes and they don’t disappoint with the creative team responsible for this book. With Chueng being a co-creator of the Young Avengers, he’s always had an affinity for teen heroes, so Nova is certainly in his wheelhouse. He even gets to show a young Uatu in this issue. He’s always managed to convey a certain naiveté in youthful characters that I’ve always liked. But as cool as his versions of these characters are, the coolest thing in this issue might be the splash page featuring all the alternate universes that the Watcher is keeping tabs on. I definitely took some time to check out all the scenes that Cheung had put together. I also liked spotting some of my favorite characters like the Punisher, Wiccan, Dum Dum Duggan, Iron Fist, and more.
As far as the writing goes, Waid does a great job in laying the groundwork for what’s to come in ‘Original Sin’. Nova is the perfect point of view character because he’s fairly new to the Marvel Universe, so he’s just as out of the loop and curious as we are. Now, I don’t have that much experience with Sam, but this is probably the best story I’ve seen him in so far. He’s a great narrator (even though in the middle he talks a little too much) and his charming quirks like bringing a gift are quite endearing. It made the journey to finding the common denominator between Nova and Uatu all the more enjoyable.
Overall, this is a pretty small story. It’s not as ambitious as what’s to come when the main series gets started, but it shares some very important information that should come in handy down the line on top of being a very well-crafted tale with wonderful artwork. Now that we have gotten the ball rolling with one “original sin”, I’m definitely ready for more.
ORIGINAL SIN #1
Written by Mark Waid
Art by Jim Cheung, Paco Medina, Mark Morales, Guillermo Ortego, Dave Meikis, Juan Vlasco, & Justin Ponsor
Cover by Jim Cheung & Justin Ponsor