Compared to the comic book, the movie really is just a dozen guys brawling in car park. The number of heroes that appear is staggering, but for the most part they act as ciphers or props to keep the story going. However, if you miss something or don’t get a reference, you are not really left behind; there’s a enough to hold onto, and even the least savvy reader will get a kick out of this book.
Mark Millar tells a big story. He touches on reality TV, authoritarianism, being a hero and dealing with the repercussions of hurting the ones we love. He skims these ideas, never letting them bog down the action. Essentially, two sides of the superhero coin struggle to do what’s right by them and the society they protect. This is one of the few stories where Captain America is treated as villain, or more correctly, an anti-hero.
The artist, Niven, is perfect for this type of story. His detail and structure pack every panel with information to help keep the story moving, but also portray the grandeur this story deserves.
You don’t need to know much to really enjoy this book. It’s the type you can share with your non-comic reading friends.