Marvels: A Review by Rahul Bhatia

MarvelsbyBusiek-CoverAfter reading Marvels, by Kurt Busiek and illustrated by Alex Ross, I can say that is it one of the best graphic novels that I have had the pleasure of reading. As the title suggests, it takes place within the world of Marvel comics, and all the famous superheroes appear. You get to see Spiderman, The Hulk, Captain America, Iron Man, and so many more characters. It also creates an immersive and epic story that spans throughout the history of the Marvel universe. Essentially, the story retells all the main events that have happened in the world of Marvel since the beginning of the comics. The twist is that it is told from the point of view of an ordinary photographer, named Phil Sheldon, who sees these events in a totally different light than they were originally told. This would be equal to us, regular people, seeing the coming and advent of superheroes in the normal world: mind-blowing. Throughout the story, Phil witnesses the first adventures of Captain America, all the way up to the X-Men. You can connect to Phil and feel the wonder and horror he feels as well. He really does stand out among the other superhero characters.


Marvels also carries so many themes and symbols that would make sense in our world too. If superheroes suddenly appeared, how would we react? Would we accept them as saviours, or as threats to humanity? These arguments play out in very deep thought, impressive for what is essentially a collection of comic books. Also, what makes this book so good is the impressive and gorgeous art of Alex Ross. The art literally looks like paintings in a comic book, and if you want more, I definitely suggest reading Kingdom Come or Astro City, other monumental graphic novels. All the elements of Marvels join together to make an entrancing experience.


As you can probably tell, I thoroughly loved Marvels, also being a huge comic book fan as well. It was magical to see my favourite characters reimagined in this way, as it must be for other fans out there as well. I would definitely recommend it to both  Marvel comics fans and those who are still unfamiliar, as it introduces these characters in a simple way.


Marvels is a deserving read and contains many memorable stories and tales. You will see every superhero you love and Phil Sheldon is a great character. This is a terrific example of what it means to be a graphic novel compared to just a comic book.


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