If you have read my Marvel Cinematic Universe review on Smashwords, you probably know my feelings on Agents of SHIELD. Unlike Daredevil, there is nothing that sets it apart from convectional television. It is boring, predictable, and not at all reflective of the quality of the movies. It has more in common with a run-of-the-mill procedural. Joss Whedon was at the helm and the show still failed to hold my interest, compounding my decision to give up on television as a whole. I must confess I have not seen season two or Agent Carter as I wait for it to become available on Netflix. I do not know if it has improved, but my instinct says otherwise.
Recently it was announced season three will feature the Secret Warriors (SW), a team from a story of the same name that I just happen to be a big fan of, as indicated in my profile picture. The first issue I bought was number two in my formative years as a comic junkie and I proceeded to read the entire series. The appeal was author Jonathan Hickman’s signature big idea concepts and the set-up of a team similar to Special Forces or CIA operators. It was a great series that inspired a part of my Punisher script and the idea of Hydra controlling SHIELD in Winter Soldier.
The last thing I want to see is my favorite team on a below average prime time slog fest. So, like any pissed off nerd, I am going to use this as an opportunity to explain who the Secret Warriors are and why they are the greatest. By the way, if you want an X-Men equivalent breakdown, look not further.
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The SW was formed before the beginning of Secret Invasion, a Marvel Event where Earth’s mightiest were captured and replaced by Skrull agents. Nick Fury (who had passed his position of Director to Maria Hill following Secret War) formed the team to expose possible infiltrators in SHIELD and later showed up to assist in the final battle. The Skrulls were defeated, but Norman Osborn, the Green Goblin, delivered the final blow. To commemorate his victory, he was made Director of SHIELD, later renamed HAMMER. Fury then tasked the SW to cause chaos and pull apart Osborn’s regime in Dark Reign.
Colonel Nick Fury– The Nick Fury of comics of vastly different from Nick Fury of the MCU, apart from the difference of race. Where Black Fury is cool, smooth, and likeable, White Fury is the most unreasonable, secretive, and pragmatic human being that has ever existed. Imagine Snake Plissken, Big Boss, a little bit of Frank Castle, and Bruce Campbell’s hair combined into a singular cyclopean super spy badass, whose sole purpose in life is to protect the world and its people. Not only did he fight in WWII as one of the original Howling Commandos, he served as a CIA operator in Cuba, Vietnam, and Nicaragua. Even as a senior citizen with a bullet in his head he finds a way to keep fighting or uses his espionage skills to get others to do it for him. He has defied governments and destroyed friendships to accomplish his goals and has no problem making sacrifices without remorse. He manipulates anyone and everyone, even people who do not know him, hidden behind layers upon layers of secrecy.
Daisy “Quake” Johnson– As before, Daisy from the comics has nothing in common with Skye from Agents. The power set is the same with vibration manipulation, but the whole master hacker crap that does not make any sense for someone that beautiful is nonexistent. Their personalities are also contrasting. Daisy is by and large a tomboy who cuts her hair short to be proficient in her duties and has natural leadership skills. She is in charge of the SW, but treats it like her family, and respects Nick Fury as her superior.
JT “Hellfire”– The grandson of the Phantom Rider, JT is an Atlanta native that can set chains on fire. He is a suave character in the same regard as a frat boy who hits on anyone of the opposite sex. He is also loyal to his friends and eventually Daisy when they begin a romance.
Alex “Phobos” Aaron– Alex is the god of fear and son of Ares, who was an Avenger before his death in the Siege Event. On the outside he is an 11 year-old with thousands of years of godhood to his name. Alex can induce an extreme feeling of fear with just a look, leaving his enemies petrified and vulnerable to attack. Despite being a god with minor precognition abilities, he still acts like a child because he can get away with it.
“Yoyo” Rodriguez– Yoyo is a mutant with a super speed power set and daughter of the super villain Griffin. After completing a full run, her body automatically slingshots back to her point of origin. She is an innocent character who is thrust into Fury’s world and comes out stronger on the other side.
Sebastian “Druid”– Sebastian is a Hawaiian native and the son of Doctor Druid, a lesser-known magic user opposite Doctor Strange. He is the “fat-guy” of the team, a sad sack with low self-esteem and a skilled sorcerer.
Jerry “Stonewall” Sledge– The son of Absorbing Man, Stonewall has a power set similar to his father, without the antisocial tendencies. He can increase his size and his skin takes on the consistency of stone. Stonewall is also kind at heart despite his appearance and develops a close friendship with Yoyo.
Eden “Manifold” Fesi– Eden is a teleporter mutant that can create portals to accommodate more than one passenger and can reach wide distances. He is Aboriginal and has a great affinity for rock ‘n’ roll.
HAMMER– Though its concept is reflective of SHIELD, HAMMER is opposite in purpose. It creates the illusion of enforcing peace while perpetuating conflict for personal enterprise at many levels of crime.
- Norman Osborn– Known as the Green Goblin, Osborn is the Director of HAMMER and used the fallout of Secret Invasion to take out heroes and supplant his control as Earth’s new top cop.
- The Thunderbolts– As Marvel’s equivalent to the Suicide Squad, the Thunderbolts are comprised of villains that do the jobs SHIELD cannot. During Dark Reign, however, they were given (for lack of a better word) free reign to do whatever they want. The team includes Ares, Venom, Bullseye, and Osborn himself as the Iron Patriot.
Hydra– The most prominent adversary of SHIELD, Hydra made a steady recovery after the Skrull Invasion with diminished numbers. In a HAMMER world, however, it became more of a threat as the two worked together in a secretive capacity.
- Baron Wolfgang von Strucker– Compared to the film version, comic Strucker is far more sinister and plays a bigger role. He is essentially a Nazi version of Fury who founded Hydra after WWII with remnants of Imperial Japan.
- Kraken– A mysterious and methodical figure, Kraken is Strucker’s second in command. He wears a helmet that projects a suit over his body and grants him powers.
- Viper (Madame Hydra)– The matriarch of the organization, Viper is unmatched in her fighting ability and cunning as she manipulates others to further Hydra’s influence.
- The Hive– Born from a symbiotic parasite attached to a reluctant victim, Hive is an anthropomorphic squid creature and conduit for an untold number of similar parasites Hydra uses to conscript henchmen into their ranks.
- Gorgon– His real name Tomi Shishido, Gorgon is a skilled swordsman and agent of the Hand. As per his namesake, he can turn people into stone with a look and takes pleasure in honorable combat. He is also an extreme nihilist, his mind so empty his thoughts are equal to that of an abyss. His sword is Godkiller, an ancient blade forged by the gods themselves.
Leviathan– What happens when Hydra forgoes its Nazi roots in exchange for Communism? You get Leviathan, the Soviet equivalent of Hydra with a similar Cthulhu-ian aesthetic. They were a separate group to the KGB and remained dormant until the 21st Century. They posses one collective goal and do not allow personal needs to get in the way. They also make up for their inconsistencies in technology with superior numbers.
- Orion– Not much is known about him, but Orion was a veteran of WWII and was there at Leviathan’s inception before going into cryostasis with other select operatives.
- Magadan– Orion’s second in command, Magadan remained out of cryostasis to observe the progression of history and build up Leviathan’s influence before waking the horde.
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And those are the Secret Warriors. I could get into the story arcs (perhaps at a later date), but it would be futile considering Agents of SHIELD will be vastly different. I am more worried, however, about what will happen to the characters. I am fine with Black Fury because you can never go wrong with Samuel L Jackson, but I fear they will screw up as hard with everyone else like Daisy. I do not want these diverse and fleshed-out characters reduced to the department store catalog drones of the show. If Gorgon shows up and he is not my favorite undead nihilistic samurai, I will give up on all Marvel television, now and forever, excluding whatever they do on Netflix.