Written by Matt Fraction
Art by Doug Braithwaite
This issue features Beta Ray Bill taking up Thor's hammer and leading the Asgardians into battle against the Skrulls as Donald Blake goes off to help deliver a baby. I'm tempted to leave it at that, but I'm sure some people have never read Walt Simonson's legendary Thor run, so only have the rather embarrassing recent Beta Ray Bill appearances to judge just how great a character he is.
Thankfully, Matt Fraction is well versed in his Thor and has crafted a unique setup to send Beta Ray Bill back into action with Blake on the sidelines indefinitely, so I'm sure you'll all get to see some quality Bill stories for a change.
However, as good as this issue was, and it was damn good, it still falls under the guise of the "omg, Skrulls, we've never seen a shapeshifter before in our lives and now how do I trust with my beanie baby collection?" nonsense we've seen a hundred times now, typically two or three times a month for the past year, depending on New Avengers schedule, and this marks the third issue this week with the exact same themes (SI and SI: Inhumans being the other two) and that is the only complaint I can levy against this issue.
Also, this was pretty much all setup, just like the Inhumans tie-in, and the invasion and fighting is all promised to occur next issue. So, while this was a great read and Fraction shows a surprisingly strong grasp of the characters, especially since JMS has been the only one to write them since their return and only for a handful of issues at that.
Verdict - Check It. I want to give it a Must Read, but I just don't think it has any meat to this setup issue to warrant it. There is a lot of promise for next issue and I'm sure Fraction will be able to deliver.