Really it’s not his fault that the 616 in the Marvel Multiverse is such a mess; he’s just making the mess his sandbox. GrownNerd actually might be on to something when he said that the mess is the responsibility of Chris Claremont and John Byrne splitting on Uncanny X-Men, allowing the whole thing to go to pot.
Personally I blame the ’80s.
I think the ’80s had a lot of crap writing in it when it came to Marvel. Yeah, yeah, I was a defender of Secret Wars 1 and some other things, but really, lots of crap. Lots and lots of crap. Much like music and television of the time, specially He-Man and the Masters of the Universe.
Truth is I can’t blame Bendis for the current state of the Marvel Universe; I blame the X-Men. With their reality altering Phoenix and the utter destruction of the M’Krann crystal to their alternate realities, the X-Men have done more damage to the fabric of the 616 reality than any other Marvel Team out there. And who is ultimately responsible for their actions? Chris Claremont. Yes, he created this mess. All of it. With one hand I applaud Claremont for his work on the X-Men in the ’70s and with the other, bitch slap him.
It all goes back to Uncanny X-Men #101 when Claremont introduced Phoenix. Yeah, right then, right there the whole balance of the 616 went wrong. That single event allowed every other author to mess with the fabric of this universe’s reality.
There are other events since that impacted the reality of the 616, but none of them would ever have occurred if it wasn’t for this single event. And it wouldn’t have allowed any writer to come in and mess up the Multiverse.
Bendis isn’t the root cause, he’s a product. Who can blame him for doing what he is doing? If Claremont’s reality warping in the ’70s wasn’t enough, the how about the ’80s? Jim Shooter’s Secret Wars? How many times did the 616 get butchered during that mini series, or the Kulan Gath saga on Uncanny, or Avengers 200 when Marcus Kang/Immortus not only raped Carol Danvers but managed to destroy the 616. And I am certain there are more examples. And don’t get me started on the mess of the ’90s. Sure, sure there was fantastic art in many comics (lots of bad too) but how many times did the M’Krann crystal get abused and reality warped during that decade?
We can credit Bendis for a lot, bad plotting (in some opinions), bad dialog (in some opinions) and a horrible finisher (in my opinion), but he isn’t responsible for the current state of the 616. He’s just playing in an already soiled sandbox. And who can blame him? I’d love it, I would be able to write any arc that I wanted to, create massive cross overs, end them with a thud and then have no consequence on anything. Afterwards I could just pick up anew with whatever thread that I wanted to. Why? Because Claremont already did the damage in 1976.
Don’t blame Bendis.