The end of the Marvel universe is getting closer. Is it getting more entertaining?

General Information

Title: Marvel Universe: The End #4
Author / Penciller: Jim Starlin
Inker: Al Milgrom
Original Publication Date: April 30, 2003.
Cover Price: $2.99US, $4.75 Can

Premise

Thanos and the remaining Defenders face off against the Celestial
Order. Thanos takes the only way out he perceives.

High Point

This redeems some moments that earlier issues treated much too lightly.

Low Point

The Surfer can take more punishment than that. So can the Hulk, but
he needs air to breathe.

The Scores

This lacks some of the originality of the earlier issues by
moving into territory more familiar to Starlin and his readers. It
hurts in this category, but the rest of the issue does well by it. I
give it 3 out of 6.

The artwork is excellent, not because of a change in style or
quality over previous issues, but because the story spends more time
on characters Starlin is better able to draw. I give it 5 out of 6.

The story here is not terribly impressive, but it’s a step in
the right direction. This series really feels like it’s spent four
issues building up to the story Starlin wants to tell, and I suspect
that story will start with issue 5 (out of 6!) on May 14. I give it 3
out of 6.



The characterization is all about Thanos, and it doesn’t
develop anything we didn’t already know about him. It does do a nice
job of showing his selfish and cold mindset, though. I give it 4 out
of 6.

The emotional response this produced was impressive, not so
much because of my reactions to this issue, but because it managed to
make me anticipate the next issue in a way that the rest of the series
hasn’t managed to do. The only part that truly disappointed was the
confrontation with the Pharoah. I give it 5 out of 6.

The flow was well done throughout. It really had me going
through it quickly and smoothly enough that I was actually surprised
when I ran out of pages. I give it 5 out of 6, due to some
disorienting moments in the confrontation with the Pharoah.

Overall, it’s not a great issue, but it’s good. I’m looking
forward to next month. I give it 4 out of 6.

In total, Marvel Universe: The End #4 receives 29 out of 42.

Additional Notes and Comments

Next up: the promotionally priced first issue of the new
Namor series.