One of the most confusing mega-battles I've ever seen in comics; not because it's badly written in a technical sense, but because it's an inherently confusing setup.
I love the concept and 99% of the batshit secret history details of S.H.I.E.L.D., but perhaps I have to accept that the plot itself is both muddled and rather pointless — huge but unclear stakes, confused motivations, and no game rules.
Maybe the next issue will resolve some of this, but so far I'm disappointed. It's not worse than the average Event Finale, but the world-building, specially at the beginning, and the visuals, suggested it could be so much more. (That said, Hickman does tend to be absolutely superb at world-building and war setup, and rather wooly in his resolutions.)
No, not the Fury-led Hyper-Interpol, but the Newton(and da Vinci, Imhotep, etc)-led Hyper-Hyper-Interpol. The one who went from preventing the end of the world to making sure it went according to spec (and isn't there an interesting topic...). It's out of hiatus again, and everything is still as crazy and beautiful as it was before.
This isn't an spoiler, but I do wonder if we're going to see the Shield disappear during this story. I mean, what other reason could there be for Reed Richards and Tony Stark not to be in it like their fathers were? (not because of any stupid right of blood, but simply because Tony and Reed have the kind of crazy genius that would have fit perfectly with this crazy organization; hell, look at what happened with Reed's sociomathematics and the Civil War, which was in a way a small-scale version of the Newton thing).
(This in lieu of a bunch of negative comics reviews I won't be posting, as I've realized my bleak mood is making me a bitter comics reader, and what's the point of comics, then?)
S.H.I.E.L.D. #1 Director's Cut, because everybody deserves to see a BAMF person-that-turns-out-to-be-a-BAMF-squared-Isaac-Newton say Behind everything we do, there's a purpose — a structure — for achieving what's necessary... We are the engineers of change a second time.
Sun-eaters? Call Leonardo da Vinci. F*cking Galactus? Call Galileo Galilei (who won't just take care of our planet eater problem, but also spark a civilization-wide revolution as a freebie). Badass agents with self-reconfiguring guns. Dead people that go boom. And, let me point it to you again, Isaac "SOME PEOPLE CALL ME BROTHER, YOU WILL CALL ME MASTER" Newton. His awesome laboratory is only surpassed by his awesome headgear.
As a fan of Francis Yates (I don't care if her thesis are sometimes exaggerated — her books are pure brain candy), S.H.I.E.L.D. is a book that's likely to keep me doodling weird ideas for years.
Bonus yay of unexplainable joy: the cover of the Director's Cut shows, on one side of Leonardo's studio, his Lady with an Ermine... which happens to be the only painting or picture I have hanging on my apartment's walls :D. PAINTIN OF MAD RENACENTIST GNIUS, I HAS IT.