Civil War II has finally come to an end with this week's Civil War II #8, from writer Brian Bendis and artist David Marquez (along with a whole host of flash-forward guest artists). Though many of its ramifications have already rippled through the Marvel Universe thanks to "Marvel NOW!," the hows and whys of those changes have been mostly answered in this final issue - including what actually happened to Tony Stark, and where Ulysses will be now that the crossover has ended.
Spoilers ahead for Civil War II #8.
Civil War II #8 picks up right where #7 left off, with Tony Stark and Carol Danvers clashing on the steps of the U.S. Capitol Building in Washington, D.C. As their vicious battle rolls on, S.H.I.E.L.D., the Inhumans, and the much of the rest of the Marvel Universe struggle to decide whether to intervene; at first avoiding an all-out conflict, but finally arriving on the scene when Ulysses breaks into another vision, and Steve Rogers is caught in a blast.
As the heroes arrive, they stop short of full-scale violence as Carol blasts Tony's armor to smithereens, sending him careening into the ground. At that exact moment, Ulysses' visions kick into overdrive, engulfing the entire scene in a rapid fire series of glimpses of possible futures - many of which fit into what we already know about "Marvel NOW!." We're shown a glimpse of Monsters Unleashed, a scene of the X-Men apparently attacking Attilan, another vision of Miles Morales holding Steve Rogers' lifeless body, a glimpse of Killraven's future (which Bendis has teased in various titles for years), a Sentinel looming over dead characters, a vision of Ultron standing atop the Avengers in victory (evoking Bendis' Age of Ultron), and an image of Odinson, wielding Mjolnir in a costume similar to the current Thor's armor, facing Loki wielding the Godslayer sword.
Each vision centers on a character from Civil War II who is experiencing that particular vision, such as Miles Morales seeing the Sentinel, and Medusa envisioning Killraven's future.
After the visions subside, Eternity, the living embodiment of the Marvel Universe, arrives, asking Ulysses to join him. Ulysses accepts, presumably ascending to the power level of one of Marvel's cosmic powers such as the Living Tribunal, Infinity, and the Beyonder. As Ulysses departs, Miles Morales is left holding Tony Stark's seemingly-lifeless body on the Capitol steps.
A pair of denouements explain the final status quo of both sides of the fight. Tony Stark is essentially in a coma, and Beast's efforts to revive him have failed, largely thanks to apparent genetic modifications Stark made to his body, but which were previously unseen. This confirms and clarifies his fate based on knowledge from Infamous Iron Man and Invincible Iron Man. Finally, Captain Marvel is greeted by the U.S. President, who tells her that she has his full support in moving forward, and she responds by saying she has "some ideas for the future."
And thus ends Marvel's 2016 event. Many of the glimpses at future events portend stories that have already started, or will start in the coming months including Monsters Unleashed and Inhumans Vs. X-Men. The other glimpses may be looks at what's coming in the rest of Marvel's titles, or, in the case of Killraven and Ultron, may simply be glimpses at alternate futures we've already read about.
As for Ulysses, with the Inhumans taking to the stars in the upcoming "ResurrXion," perhaps their mission will involve seeking out the now cosmically-powered Inhuman.
An epilogue to Civil War II, subtitled The Oath, is due out January 25.