Writer: Kieron Gillen
Artist: Esad Ribić
Color Artist: Matthew Wilson
Cover Artist: Esad Ribić
The Eternals have a murder mystery on their hands! Their king, Zuras, has been murdered! The suspect? Thanos, The Mad Titan! But he’s not working alone. The Eternals have been following a trail of death with few clues and fewer answers behind the murder. But in Eternals #4, they might get closer to some answers.
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So, things are finally starting to move forward a little in this comic. Key word: little. Again, Kieron Gillen puts the focus on spotlighting the personalities of the Eternals and their history at the expense of moving the story plot forward. Even if it makes some of them unlikable or annoying characters.
From the beginning, we get some polarizing characterization of Sersi as she talks to her fellow Eternal Phastos. Sersi is written like a condescending & petty mean-girl, throwing shade at the Avengers, Tony Stark, and even the Illuminati just because they weren’t Bavarian, like the real-life Illuminati secret society from the 1700s (which she apparently helped found). She even talks about how she’ll “try” not to seduce Tony, with the implication of sleeping with him, saying, “He’ll cheat on his girlfriend soon enough. But I’d rather not be implicated.” I just don’t understand what Marvel comic writers have against Tony Stark.
Worse, when Phastos asks if she’ll tell the Avengers about Thanos, she said, “Absolutely not. Thanos is our problem. He’s always been our problem, really.” Which is a HUGE mistake and awful decision that anyone would agree on, since the Avengers are the ones who’ve been fighting and thwarting the Mad Titan for decades. Compared to the Eternals who have had zero interaction with Thanos at all in their ENTIRE comic history.
On the flip side, Thena and Kingo travel to the Eternal City of Polaria to speak with Druig, a manipulative and treacherous Eternal comparable to Loki, though far less popular. Meanwhile, Ikaris and Sprite are keeping watch over the kid Toby Robinson for 2 pages, and that’s about it for their contribution. While throughout the story, the Great Machine starts becoming more “kooky” by its own admission as it continues to break down, which makes for some entertaining and simultaneously annoying narration.
The real meat of the story is Kingo and Druig, as the comic delves into their shared history, their animosity, and displays the lengths of Druig’s manipulative nature. Reception to the backstory will vary based on the reader, I think it was fine but not great. However, when the comic shifts back to the present, things finally start moving and the comic kicks into high gear, for like 5 pages. Then it gets slightly confusing as Druig essentially brings up the next batch of Eternal suspects to investigate, neither of whom have shown up in the comic. So they’ll likely be the focus of the next issue.
Near the end, Thanos attacks the Eternals in Polaria, he even nearly kills Druig but is tricked by him with a sly psychic move. However, after Thanos retreats and Thena and Kingo leave afterwards, the Mad Titan secretly returns to speak with Druig as the two discuss a potential partnership. But in the process, Druig reveals that Thanos has a traitor working with him and it’s NOT Druig. That is the biggest takeaway from this entire comic.
Eternals #4 finally moves the plot forward, and the murder mystery picks up a little steam. There is some weird characterization of Sersi, but the focus is mainly on Druig and Kingo this issue, especially the former. It’s not bad but it’s not great either. The comic finally delivers some desired action from a certain Marvel villain, but it’s very brief.