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Ex Machina: March to War

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Ex Machina: March to War (2006) Brian K Vaughan

March to War is the fourth installment of the Ex Machina series. The president is pushing for war in Iraq, and Mitchell Hundred is dealing with the repercussions of that in New York. A group wants to have a peace protest, and the police commissioner wants him to cancel the permit, because of the possible threats to the safety and security of the city.

The first have of March to War I liked. I found the story about the parade and the events leading to the invasion of Iraq interesting. Mitchell Hundred has to deal with the fact that his actions–whatever they are–are seen as a statement about national politics, and no matter how much he wants to focus on local issues, national issues keep forcing their way into how he wants to run new York.

The second half of March to War I didn’t particularly care for. I don’t quite see why The Great Machine has to have an arch enemy, and why his enemy turned out the way he did. Perhaps that thread will make sense later, but for now, I found the whole bit rather frustrating. I suppose that if I’m going to learn more about Mitchell Hundred’s past, I’d rather learn about what happened immediately after he gained his powers, and what happened when he was at the FBI office.

I also found the bit with Suzanne confusing–I didn’t recognize her in the second story in which she made an appearance, which made it even more confusing.

So, I found this a mixed bag. I liked the first half, but didn’t care as much for the second half.

Plus, we barely got to see Kremlin and Wylie. I like that Mitchell Hundred recognizes the part that Wylie plays in his life–I just wish he did more of it, and that Mitchell actually seemed like he was listening.

If you’ve been reading Ex Machina, you certainly want to pick up this installment. If you haven’t been reading it, I still recommend the series, I wouldn’t necessarily rush out to get this volume. Rating: 6/10

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