Man, this series just keeps reminding me how much I really miss Abnett.
An open question during the first two issues of this series was where Michael's powers were. Everyone else had the same power that they had in the original Marvel Universe, but Korvac was presented as a normal human. I didn't particularly take note of it before this issue, but Abnett highlights it here when Michael is forced to use his cosmic powers to save Starhawk. In the process, he reveals just how powerful he truly is, since he essentially reassembled Starhawk's soul to resurrect him. Simon encourages Korvac to use his powers to purge The City of the Madness, but Korvac reminds him that he swore an oath to Doom to "curb" his powers to become baron. (He made an exception in Starhawk's case due to their friendship.) The issue is forced when the Madness swiftly overtakes Mar-Vell. Vance urges the Avengers and the Guardians not to kill him, due to their friendship, but Mar-Vell pushes them to their limits as he becomes an Abomination. Korvac decides to help, regardless of his oath to Doom, because it's his domain. But, in the process, he learns what Starhawk had learned on the Astral Plane: he is the Madness, a side effect of his repressed power.
Obviously, the developments here spell trouble for everyone, including Doom. It's pretty clear that Doom wanted Korvac to curb his powers because, at least in the original Marvel Universe, they would be somewhere on par with Doom's. Simon tell us that Korvac used to use his powers more freely (for example, during the "Ultron Wars"), but Abnett doesn't clarify whether he was using the full range of his powers at that time. If he was, it raises the question why he didn't make a move against Doom back then (and would agree to curb their use). If he wasn't, it's unclear why he would've imposed self-limited his powers even before he was offered a domain of his own. Either way, the fact that he's now fully in control of his powers doesn't sound like something that Doom is going to take lying down.
*** (three of five stars)