I’ve been wanting to do a back issue feature for a long time, then recently a siren call echoed out to me. Looking through a back issue bin I found the glory that is What if? #104 from Volume 2 of the series. It’s appropriate that my What if Journey begins with one of my favorite characters of the Marvel Universe, The Impossible Man from Poppup. Impossible Man is one of my favorite characters because a story involving him usually involves me being endlessly amused. Add in the fact that the cover has Impossible Man with the Infinity Gauntlet and I just had to see what was going to happen within these pages. Because if Impossible Man with the Infinity Gauntlet doesn’t scream fun to you then by golly you’re boring.
The story takes place right at the end of the classic Infinity Gauntlet story by Jim Starlin. This time around we have Joey Virkaitis being the scribe for this unfathomable journey with Gregg Schigiel who you may know as the man to drew the Spider-Man Anti-Drug story “Fast Lane” inserts. Let’s just say from the set up of the original Infinity Gauntlet just dives this story in directions you would never imagine. I liked how Virkaitis started this out deadly serious and then the weird crap begins out of nowhere. That title page of our favorite Impossible Man carrying the Infinity Gauntlet it’s one part hilarious and the absolute terror at the Impossible Man having the all powerful object. Because even Thanos can’t handle Impy at this level of power.
I do love the expressions Schigiel adds to this as everyone is trying to figure out what to do with Impossible Man and the Gauntlet. I actually laughed out loud because Virkaitis adds some hilarious lines as Silver Surfer and Impossible Man are negotiating him even having the Gauntlet. It’s weird when the story starts to try to put in a serious tone for a short time when Zenn-La comes into play that the story doesn’t entirely work. I think it’s more off putting because of how fun the story is and when a serious tone is put in I couldn’t help but start scratching my head.
By the end of this though, even with some weak moments, the end of this story truly makes the issue. Just strange enough to make sense and I’m amazed at how Virkaitis turned this into a nifty story in the process. I even learned that this was Glenn Shigiel’s first work drawing comics and while a little rough at times he does a cool job. This is an engaging and effective little story, even better than I only paid 48 cents for this at my local used book store. I also can’t find any credits of Thomas Virkaitis outside of this and that’s a shame because this was a good read overall. If you find this for the price I did I recommend grabbing it. Though of course my love of this one started because of the fact that I am a huge Impossible Man fan, but even if you’re not go read this if you like fun. I know you all like fun out there too. Till next time, as Wesley’s What if Journey continues.