Writer: Peter David
Artist: Javier Pina
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: March 24, 2021
As a recent (ie: Late) reader of Future Imperfect, I got stoked when Marvel announced Peter David would be doing a prequel series. While I liked Maestro enough, it just didn’t feel complete. I don’t mean that there was more to tell, only that each issue felt a bit thin on the story side of things. That’s been remedied a bit here with War and Pax as we get closer and closer to the future (imperfect). It feels like there are actual stakes here as Hulk deals with the Pantheon. Let’s get into this month’s Maestro War and Pax #3.
The issue opens with the Pantheon wondering what to do with Maestro. Sure, they knocked him out, and he is in a tube, but how long will that last? Their plan remains the same, get him to turn back to Bruce Banner and then kill him. I know it’s cliche, but easier said than done. I guess things are a tiny bit easier when you are part of the Pantheon, and after Delphi convinces Paris to “talk” with Maestro, things hear up.
I don’t want to spoil too much, but Paris and Hulk don’t quite see eye-to-eye, and while they are walking around in a mindscape, Paris shows Hulk that they have been watching him way longer than he knew. With that, he makes Hulk watch some pretty awful events from his early life, which doesn’t make him turn into Banner, but a homicidal maniac.
It’s then every man and woman versus Hulk, and when Ajax gets called in as a hail mary, it looks like everything is coming up Maestro! That is until we see that the Pantheon are willing to go just about anywhere to take down Hulk because boy do they go there! It’s a crazy ending with a cliffhanger that needs some suspension of disbelief, only because we know what happens in the future (imperfect).
Maestro War and Pax #3 is a quick read and reminded me of the Maestro issues I was talking about earlier. We get an extended fight with a twist, but overall, not a ton of story progression. Javier Pina’s art is excellent, and I am still all-in and look forward to the next issue, but this felt like a bit of a lull.
Maestro War and Pax #3 has a big and messed up wow moment, but there isn’t much story progression overall. It’s a quick read that looks great, and I am still enjoying the series. I only wish this issue was more than a twist ending with a cliffhanger we know isn’t going to happen.