Nick Spencer continues his trend of success with Secret Empire #6, as the story only continues to ramp up the emotional stakes and action in this Marvel Event, and further cement it as one of the best ever that Marvel has pulled off.
Secret Empire #6 takes a break from it’s epic adventure/quest that was set up at the end of the first issue, with a focus on all the heroes stranded in a New York completely shrouded by a dark bubble, as well as the mysterious circumstances of a seemingly stranded (and most definitely NOT HYDRA) second Steve Rogers, with an even more mysterious Red Skull guiding him through a mysterious land. Basically, there is a lot of mystery regarding that subplot. Along with those two stories, we get a glimpse into the red room Natasha, The Black Widow, has made with Spider-Man, Iron Heart, Viv Vision, Amadeus Cho and other young heroes. If anything, Secret Empire #6 is a character study and psychological examination of what it means to be a hero, and the consequences that come with decisions they make.
While this event is thanks to what came before in Steve Rogers: Captain America, which is also written by Nick Spencer, Captain America is more talked about than he is actually show, akin to something like Kurtz in Hearts of Darkness, and whenever the Captain does make a presence it is truly felt, with every word he says manipulating and cunning, always with one point or objective in mind to accomplish. It has gotten quite frightening to see a once kind hero turn into the Tyrant that he is now, with his own army of Avengers at his beck and call. Speaking of which, we get a small moment with the Unworthy Thor as he raids the resistance hideout with his fellow Hydra Avengers, and it is quite touching and emotional. Even in the small things Nick Spencer manages to provide some levity to the moment.
The fight that follows in the intense raid on the resistance all leads up to the use of a resurrected Hulk (courtesy of the Hydra Captain America) who tears through the resistance base. When all seems lost, select few stand up to the Star Spangled Tyrant, with Tony Stark making an emotional Last stand against Captain America, before the fight ends under (once again) mysterious circumstances and ends with Natasha more than ever determined to complete her mission against Captain America.
Nick Spencer manages to continue to find the perfect balance between Drama and Action in this Secret Empire event, and with only four issues left, it is bittersweet to watch it end, as it is sad too see that the event is coming to a close but also exciting to watch an event of such an epic scale to unfold. Secret Empire #6 is another home-run for Marvel and Spencer, and yet another astounding issue in Secret Empire as a whole. – Ernesto Valenzuela
GRADE – 10/10 PERFECT