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X-Men comics of May 9 2018

May 10, 2018

Follow me on Twitter (@XMenXPert). You know what I haven’t talked about in a while? I still play Marvel Future Fight on my phone. I still enjoy it. I’ve got nearly 3 dozen characters at Tier 2, which sounds like a lot, but there’s a lot of people with way more characters that high. However, my Ms. Marvel is in the top 50 highest-ranked. It’s honestly been limiting my ability to improve other characters, because I am laser-focused on improving her. But hey, I maxed out Squirrel Girl’s alternate costume, based on her USAvengers look. Woot.

X-Men Blue #27, by Cullen Bunn, Marcus To, Rain Beredo, and Joe Caramagna. Flashback to weeks earlier, with Magneto trying to earn Lorna’s trust by taking her out for sashimi and ice cream. He wanted her on his side so she could try to get through to Alex and get him back to normal. In the present, Lorna’s X-Men are fighting the new MLF, which unfortunately still includes Wildside, one of the least interesting of the original MLF. On the plus side, Lorna punching him out is satisfying. Magneto fights the Ultimate Marauders, and Evil Armour is surprisingly polite, apologizing as she hits Magneto. In the fight, he’s forced to kill the mutants he was trying to protect, and then flees through his time platform. Also, Emma has ethical concerns and is The Best at being haughty.

X-Men Blue #27

Man, Emma must be the most fun to write.

It’s OK. There’s some plot advancement, and some minor character beats. I’m finding myself most interested in Emma, here, as she’s clearly uncomfortable with everything going on, and she gets some pretty good reaction shots showing that. I gotta figure she’ll help the X-Men to stop Mothervine, showing that she’s still a hero at heart, preserving all the character development she’s had since the death of the Hellions, rather than continuing to let that development be thrown away because her boyfriend died. Regardless, I’m still largely bored when I read this series. It’s never grabbed me, and it still isn’t. The plot is more focused, compared to the early issues, but it’s not a plot I’m all that invested in. And that would be easier to deal with if there was more character work going on, but that’s been kept fairly low-key. Little moments, here and there, not as big a focus as I’d like. Nice to see Marcus To on art, though. I first came across him when he was doing the last New Warriors series. I like his style. Expressive. Not the most dynamic in fight scenes, though. Might be too many large panels – as I’ve said before, I much prefer a lot of small panels to a few large ones, for action scenes.

New Mutants: Dead Souls #3, by Matthew Rosenberg, Adam Gorham, Michael Garland, and Clayton Cowles. Prodigy is on a plane, and the captain alerts everyone to it, and then announces everyone is about to die. The New Mutants are fighting Mindless Ones beneath New York. Prodigy calls Boom-Boom’s phone to let Magik know what’s happening so the Mutants can teleport to the rescue. And the passengers immediately attack them. Whatever’s affecting them seems to get to Rahne, too, as she starts snapping at Guido and Illyana. Guido is understandable, he did kill her son. Saying Illyana has no soul is what tips me off that something’s affecting her, because she likes Illyana. They get to the cockpit door, but can’t open it, so Boom-Boom suggests she blow it up, because that is literally her solution to every problem, even when even she knows it’s not a great idea.

New Mutants: Dead Souls #3

“You guys should know better than to let me ‘splode everything.”

It doesn’t work, and Illyana confirms there’s magic involved, and she gets rid of the others so she can try to save the plane. Except Rictor, who simply jumped out of the stepping disc, a plan so stupid no one had ever tried it before. And Illyana confronts the villain of this story, who hints that Karma might be the real villain. I do wish the story being told was more focused on Karma. She needed a bigger part in this. She’s only appeared at the end of the first issue, and she should’ve been a bigger presence. There’s still three issues left, but just the same, it feels like a major mistake on Rosenberg’s part. The cast he’s chosen is great, don’t get me wrong. They’re fun characters with fun chemistry. The dialogue is very clever, and this issue brings some tensions to the surface in an interesting way. But Karma still should’ve played a bigger role. I like the art. It matches the weird tone of the writing. It makes the story more entertaining. So this is still a great series. Even if it needed more Karma.

Domino #2, by Gail Simone, David Baldeon, Jesus Aburtov, and Clayton Cowles. Domino’s plummeting to her death, and Topaz finally gives her back her luck, so Spider-Man can rescue her. Old Dude and Topaz are found by Deadpool, Diamondback, and Inez, and we learn that Topaz’s ability is to mess with the powers of others. Diamondback notes that she doesn’t need powers, but, like, there’s a lot of people in that room who can kick ass without powers. You know what happens when you turn off Storm’s powers? You make her more dangerous. There’s a really nice scene between Domino and Spider-Man. She tells him his best power is being a decent guy, which is so sweet. And a really nice scene between Domino, Diamondback and Inez, highlighting their friendship. Which is also really nice. I like seeing good friendships. The next day, she goes jogging with Amadeus Cho, who is not good at jogging when he’s not Hulked out, and I relate, Cho. I relate so much. Don’t make me exercise. Domino also crushes a trio of muggers, and asks Amadeus to watch on a gig that night, since she’s not sure if Diamondback or Inez might not be on the level. The gig is to protect a casino boat from being robbed. It’s a nice boat. And we find out why the old guy hates Domino, and it’s pretty cool and intriguing. We don’t know yet why Topaz hates Domino, but Domino’s the kind of person to make a lot of enemies, so it’s probably not a big mystery. Regardless, it’s a really good comic. Domino’s emotional low point at the start of the issue is powerful, and it’s cool watching her try to reclaim her confidence, and show that she’s not just lucky, she’s got mad skills. But it’s the relationships that feel core to this book, and particularly her friendship with Inez and Diamondback, who are such good friends to her and I love it. I look forward to more of this female version of a bromance. Sismance? Can it still just be a bromance? Screw it, I say we let bromance be a gender-neutral term. This comic has a bromantic triangle and it’s lovely. Baldeon’s art is going to be the big obstacle for most readers. It’s a style with weird dimensions and faces. I’m mostly fine with it, but I couldn’t blame anyone who doesn’t like it.

Hunt For Wolverine: Adamantium Agenda #1, by Tom Taylor, R.B. Silva, Adriano Di Benedetto, Jesus Aburtov, and Joe Sabino. Flashback to the New Avengers days, with Spider-Man, Luke Cage, Jessica Jones, and Then-verine respond to a SHIELD situation with a bomb that will detonate with a radius of either a mile or 200 feet, depending on whether anyone is stupid enough to flick a switch. During the course of the discussion, Jessica reveals that she could get a dead body within 4 minutes. Logan, naturally, takes the boom. The bomb seems to have had something to do with Tony, so now, in the present, with Logan’s body missing, Tony feels obligated to help, and he gets the other New Avengers from that mission together. He’s got a lead on an auction involving the genetic code of someone in the superhero community. There’s a pretty cool twist regarding whose code it is. This is another well-crafted comic. The writing and art are both solid. There’s some fun dialogue. There are certain panels that actually remind me quite a bit of Stuart Immonen. Not to say I think Silva is aping Immonen, I would think it’s more a matter of similar influences and it just happens to be the way Silva’s currently moving his style. But hey, Immonen’s a beast, so it’s high praise. Seems to me I used to not be a fan of Silva, but he’s been growing over the past few years, and I’m liking the ways he’s growing. Still, this is another cash-grab mini trying to profit off the X-office’s apparent disdain for Laura Kinney.

Old Man Logan #39, by Ed Brisson, Ibraim Roberson, Carlos Lopez, and Cory Petit. Logan returns to the school to get help figuring out why his healing factor’s gone to crap. He runs into some of the kids, and says that his X-Men days are behind him and he has to make room for the next generation and maybe Marvel and the X-office could learn a little something from this. But none of this matters, here’s the important thing: Brisson ignores the Glob/Sprite romance that happened in the background of Generation X. We find out he’s going on a date with a mutant girl he met on a dating site, and I am so angry at Brisson for this. I love the Glob/Sprite romance that was completely in the background of Generation X. It was cute, and I loved that it was just there. No attention was ever drawn to it. We just kept seeing the two together, walking together, holding hands. It was cute. And Brisson had to come along and break them up, the jerk. Anyway, Dr. Reyes takes Logan to the lab to examine him. Yay for Reyes, she’s awesome and deserves so much more use. She tells him he can wear his eyepatch again. Also, Shark Girl gives Glob a pep talk in advance of his date, and fine, it’s pretty cute, too, and the fact that Old Man Logan is dealing with a student’s romantic life is so oddly up my alley that it probably says more about me than it does about the creative team. And he goes to a florist who doesn’t even comment on his looks, and why the hell can’t we get more of that in X-Men comics! Regular people who see a mutant and don’t shout, “Aaaah! Mutie! Kill it!” The date does not go well, though. Even so, I was way more invested in Glob Goes On A Date than with damned near anything else in this entire series. Even if I do still resent Brisson for breaking up Glob and Sprite, off-panel at that. He basically ignored their romance. How dare he. That background romance made me care more about Glob than any other writer has ever managed, at least since Riot At Xavier’s. (It was hard not to love Glob when he lit himself on fire and declared himself the Inhuman Torch.) So, mixed feelings. And yay for Cecilia showing up! Always happy to see her, and she was handled well here. Could’ve done with a touch more snark, but whatever. Still loved seeing her. In fact, can we make this book about Cecilia Reyes treating people and the weird kids getting dates? Just cut out Logan and make it about those two things. I would read that. You’re damned right I would read that.

And non-X.

Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #32, by Ryan North, Derek Charm, Rico Renzi, and Travis Lanham. As shown in the Marvel Rising comic, Doreen is teaching computer science to high school students. And she looks different, in Charm’s style. This is going to take getting used to. I miss Henderson. I loved her on this series. Nancy looks different, too. Prettier. I don’t like that. Charm makes Nancy look too cute for my tastes. Anyway, Doreen and Nancy worry about Kraven potentially slipping back into bad habits, since he’s a good guy with them, but a villain the rest of the time, so they decide to just hang out with him to be good influences. And we get the return of the Kra-Van! Hurrah! And Kraven in street clothes, and not gonna lie, Kasual Kraven is kinda sexy. So Doreen, Nancy, Kraven, Ken, Tomas, Mary, and Brian go to an Escape Room. And antics ensue. And Brain Drain wears a tux. It’s a fun comic. The writing is as fun as ever. But, I don’t know . . . it’s going to take time to get used to the new art. It’s still got a lot of charm, it’s just not the charm I got used to with this series, you know? He does draw Brain Drain in a tux, though. Charm’s Doreen has a very androgynous appearance. She looks like a girlish boy. Which is fine, she’s still cute, I am all for girls who look boyish, but she’s not really familiar to me now, somehow. She’s not curvy enough, that’s for sure. Sigh. I miss Henderson.

Exiles #3, by Saladin Ahmed, Javier Rodriguez, Alvaro Lopez, Chris O’Halloran, and Joe Caramagna. The Exiles are on a world ruled by talking dinosaurs with big guns. Then Atlantis meets the ’60s. Hippie mer-people! And we learn a bit more about Khan’s backstory, when she mentions her kid and husband being killed. Aw, Khan. Poor Kamala. Also: Morph! MORPH! Exiles Morph! Yay! For a page. I wish he’d joined the book, the team feels incomplete without him. He’s the best. Next, WWII world, with Captain Pegmerica, and Becky, who immediately flirts with Valkyrie, and this is good. It’s a fun issue. Lots of fun. Valkyrie and Becky flirting is delightful. Neither of them speaks like a normal person, and their clashing speech patterns are offset by the attraction being physical anyway. Neither cares what the other is saying, they just wanna hook up. I look forward to more issues where Valkyrie flirts with women. Captain Peggy’s cool, too. I guess she’s in that Marvel Puzzle Quest game? I don’t play it. Anyway, she’s cool, what little we see of her.

From → 2018

  1. My main takeaway from Domino #2 is, if you’ve hired at least 2 mutant mercenaries to run security for your floating casino, and said casino contains Sentinel-themed slot machines (?), the least you could do is unplug them for the night, maybe throw a sheet over them? It’s not much to ask. Oh, and David Baldéon’s action beats are a lot easier to follow here than in #1, which was really about my only problem with his art before now.

    Exiles #3 continues the greatness, though I kinda wish we weren’t charging through realities quite so fast. Would’ve loved to see more of Hippy Namor and his weird coked-up fever dream utopia. Elsewhere, Valkyrie being flirted at rather than doing the flirting herself was surprising (not that I mind), and Wolvie hiding behind a rock during a fight because he’s scared officially cements him as Best Possible Wolverine.

    • Given how cheap the casino owner seemed to be, I think renting a sheet would have been more than he was willing to pay.

      And Valkyrie was definitely flirting back with Becky.

  2. In general, Cullen Bunn’s writing seems to go back and forth a lot. Sometimes he’s great, and other times, he’s just ok. From what I’ve heard of X-Men Blue lately, it’s just ok. It makes me kind of glad I dropped it a while back. It’s still better than Gold though.

    Pretty much the entire Search for Wolverine feels like a poorly planned cash grab. Especially when most of these “Search for” minis don’t star any of the characters closest to Logan.

    Domino Sounds like it’s a good comic though.

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