After reading this issue, something struck me about the Maestro and his world conquest. It only took a different gamma-irradiated monster to point it out.
Issue: Maestro: World War M #3, May 2022
Writer: Peter David
Artist: German Peralta
The Plot: The Maestro’s enemies converge, and some of them aren’t taking recent developments very well.
Commentary: Truthfully, this last mini-series of the three is basically what I would have been hoping for from this Maestro origin story. There aren’t many opponents left for the Maestro to smash, and the ones that are left may not be much of a challenge in the end. But really, the Abomination raises a really good idea here: if the world’s been destroyed and most of the human race is dead, what’s even the point of fighting over what’s left?
Peter David’s take on the Abomination has always been a man filled with regret and remorse. He’s not happy to be a monster of some kind, and he sees a lot of beauty in the world that he isn’t privy to anymore. That especially seems apparent here as he misses his wife and realizes she wanted nothing to do with him after his transformation, caused as much by his appearance as his behavior. So, while Doom and Jim Hammond are maybe taking their next move against the Maestro seriously, or at least Doom is since Hammond doesn’t seem to 100% know where he is and what’s going on, that leaves the Abomination to raid Doom’s wine cellar with Namor, leading to the two to both get drunk and reflect on what it means to be a supervillain.
For Blonski, the answer is it got him nothing, and if anything, he’s more suicidal than anything else, meaning the beatdown the Maestro appears to be engaging in on the cover is going to be very one-sided since he’s not interested in fighting back. He wants to do just enough to start the fight and then let his longtime enemy possibly kill him due to the simple fact that no one else can.
But then there’s Namor, and when he loses, he doesn’t get depressed. He gets angry and goes on rampages.
If anything, the highlight for this last mini-series has been the Abomination. His general misery in the face of surviving the unsurvivable means his reactions might be the most genuine. Namor and Doom fall back into old habits. The Hulk-turned-Maestro resorted to some brand new habits. But really, if the world is that much of a disaster, what’s the point in the end?