Writer: Steve Orlando
Art: Lorenzo Tammetta & Sara Pichelli
Colors: Frank William
Letters: VC’s Joe Sabino
Cover: Russell Dauterman
Variant Covers: Peach Momoko; Betsy Cola; Lucas Werneck
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Release Date: July 12th, 2023
The Last Door brings people from far and wide to see Wanda Maximoff. SCARLET WITCH #6 sees it deposit in Wanda’s shop a space paladin with a grudge against the Skrulls. This time Wanda’s help means calling in a family favor and uncovering dangerous history. Ganymede is on the run from the Kree when she finds the Last Door in the opening pages of SCARLET WITCH #6. The last surviving member of the Archsisterhood, Ganymede is out for revenge. Skrulls killed the rest of her sisterhood in cryosleep. Wanda takes Ganymede to the Throneworld of the Kree/Skrull Alliance to petition Hulkling (a.k.a. Teddy Altman, a.k.a Dorrek Vell, King of all Space) for justice. Teddy in turn sends them after the true culprits: the fundamentalist Blood Skrulls.
SCARLET WITCH #6 raises the stakes to their highest level yet in the form of Ganymede searching for justice from a powerful interstellar empire. The higher stakes, though, lead to a story that is less character oriented. Orlando has used everyone who’s come into contact with Wanda to explore or comment on her character, but this issue doesn’t provide that opportunity. There are some moments between Wanda and Billy that are pleasant, but they’re largely superficial. What does work here is the overall plot. It’s a pretty black and white story with a group of murderous fundamentalists as villains. The issue is paced very well. Once Ganymede explains her problem to Wanda, the two women are off and running. Given its scope, this is a story that could be drawn out over multiple issues. Orlando’s choice to keep it confined to a single issue keeps it from ever slowing down or needing filler. Even the scenes with Teddy and BIlly, the slowest part of the book relatively speaking, move quickly and with purpose.
The Art & Letters
Coloring takes center stage as it so often does in SCARLET WITCH. The combat sequences are alive with vividly realized energy in a variety of colors. The fights take place against bright backgrounds. The color streak that emanates from Wanda grows from dark to light as it extends away and implies a sense of movement. Character expression is surprisingly light on detail. Teddy is the character that gets the most distinguishing features. A little extra shading gives his face depth. Life is reflected back in his eyes. He looks like the only character who understands the weight of the situation. Everyone else has a more one note appearance. Wanda has a sprightly quality and is smiling in almost every panel. Ganymede is downcast in almost every panel. Billy has a playful insouciance. But to look at these characters, I don’t believe that any of them are cognizant of the high stakes behind Orlando’s story.
Sabino’s choice to color the Blood Skrulls’ dialogue bubbles in something other than white (which is used for everyone else in the issue) is a nice way to set them apart even from the forces attacking Ganymede in the opening scene. Those characters may be antagonists, but the Blood Skrulls are an altogether different thing.
The Last Door concept allows Wanda’s story to be limited solely by Orlando’s imagination. SCARLET WITCH #6 is the most ambitious use of the idea yet. Unfortunately, going larger in concept diminished what the series does best and the result is a weaker issue than the series usually delivers.