Title: Prisoners of War
Release Date:June, 1984
Artists: Mike Zeck and John Beatty
Editor:Tom DeFalco, but really Jim Shooter. (Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?)
Heroes:Most of the Avengers, The Fantastic Four, The X-Men, The Incredible Hulk and Spider-Man
Villains: Doctor Doom, Doctor Octopus, Kang, assorted B-List Villains
Also: Galactus and Magneto
Cover: A tortured (or constipated) Magneto grimaces in anguish in front of a burst of flame while the shocked/tormented faces of the heroes look on in shock/torment. I mention this cover because it doesn't seem to be specifically related to the contents of this book.
Plot: The story beings in media res, with a continuation of the story that begin in Secret Wars #1. The villains, (minus Dr. Doom, who fell in an internecine battle with Kang) attack the heroes, and despite their initial surprise and possession of alien weaponry, fall to the superior skill and teamwork of the heroes. In the middle of their battle, there is an interlude where we see Dr. Doom following Galactus, and then recapitulating the events of last issue. The remainder of the issue is the heroes and the villains going back to their respective bases, to plot for the future. At the end, Magneto does enter the heroes' base, but to what purposes is not yet explained.
Hulk: "Torchie, when you can bend this ultra-hard alien metal with your bare hands, then you can give me orders. Till then, I'll listen to our designated leader---Captain America, and no one else!"
Captain America: "It's no wonder that the name Mister Fantastic is renowned for compassion as well as courage! You give added meaning to the word 'hero', Richards"
Jim Shooter was a controversial figure in comics, and since we don't have any NPOV nonsense here, I can say that means he was not well-liked. One of the things that he insisted on at Marvel was that comics remained accessible for people with a) basic literacy and b) a non-intensive knowledge of Marvel chronology. In some ways, this is good, because picking up a comic book can be somewhat intimidating. On the other hand, having to wade through pages of expository panels in any 1980s Marvel comic was somewhat annoying. And in Secret Wars, it is doubly annoying, because Jim Shooter wants to tell a big story, with many characters and complex conflicts, but he insists on doing it at a basic level of story telling. If he was writing a story in which Green Arrow stopped a diamond heist, setting up a story like this would make sense. But if Jim Shooter wants to write a big story, his simple story telling methods fall flat on their face.