The Klaw takes the stage as we discover his part in the chaos in Wakanda. We see what has been going on in Ulysses Klaw's headspace and why he is here working alongside Zeke Stane, Doctor Faustus, and Zenzi the Revealer.
Ta-Nehisi Coates lays out his version of the Klaw here. It is one that is unlike one I've personally seen in the past, but it does not stray out of the realm of believability for the Klaw.
In the original Secret Wars, I remember him being driven mad by his own status as living sound. In Mark Waid and Chris Samnee's Daredevil, he was animalistic and almost without humanity. In his brief return in the Daredevil Annual by Charles Soule, he was laying out a more elaborate plan of control.
Here, he believes himself a god and is willing to tear down the world to prove it, and he is doing it for his sister, who was likely schizophrenic and lobotomized as a cure.
This version of the Klaw is far more driven and far more interesting. He's driven, dangerous, and damn compelling. He is intent on becoming a force of nature capable of bringing Wakanda to its knees. I dig the hell out of it.
It does waylay the wider "Avengers of the New World" story for an issue, and it does serve to hold the plot off for an issue. There is no Black Panther, Shuri, or Dora Milaje in this comic.
However, it's such an enthralling characterization of the Klaw and his psyche that I didn't mind waiting another issue to see the current arc advanced further.
We also get to see the brutality of this "new" Klaw, brought to life by the artwork of Leonard Kirk. He is a very talented artist, and I've been enjoying his work in All-New Wolverine. He is a welcome addition here, and I hope he sticks around.
Black Panther #166 is an astonishing rebirth for a classic Marvel rogue, and it fleshes him out more than many writers have cared to do in the past. The Klaw as his own master is a compelling change of pace, and I look forward to him opposing the Black Panther in upcoming issues.