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X-Men comics of October 17 2018

October 17, 2018

Follow me on Twitter (@XMenXPert). So I’ve finally worked up the nerve to email another therapist, since the first one didn’t work out. She didn’t have any openings that fit my schedule. So I’ve tried another one. I keep telling myself I don’t need to see a therapist, but the fact that emailing one is so hard for me kinda feels like proof that I probably should see one. Anyway, hopefully it helps me. But for now, comics!

Astonishing X-Men #16, by Matthew Rosenberg, Greg Land, Jay Leisten, Frank D’Armata, and Clayton Cowles. Piotr’s being tortured, and Ali’s either angry or having an orgasm.

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It’s Greg Land, so it’s hard to tell.

That one guy is a philistine for not liking Dazzler, but that’s admittedly a pretty good burn. Ali pretends to be choking, and one of the dudes opens the chamber, because he clearly doesn’t watch enough TV. Come on, guy. Her escape attempt doesn’t last long, but Hank offers to work for ONE if they spare Ali. Meanwhile, Alex convinces the Reavers to agree to an alliance against ONE. But first they need to dig around in Alex’s brain to find something that’ll help them find where the ONE HQ is. So Havok, Warpath and the Reavers attack the government to rescue the other X-Men. In the process, there are Sentinels, and Colossus pulls a Fastball Special with Warpath. Who can already fly. So there’s fighting and quipping galore. It’s a fun comic. All sorts of poor decisions get made, which is always entertaining. The dialogue if snappy and the plot moves at a brisk pace, with some interesting twists here and there. And then there’s the art. I’m just not going to talk about it, OK? It’s Greg Land. If you don’t know my opinion on him yet, then I don’t know what to tell you. If this series had a better artist, it’d be great. As it is, it’s only OK. Ali’s a badass, Hank is annoyed at people thinking he’s changed sides, Piotr doesn’t get much to do here, Warpath hates everyone, and Alex is a lovable loser. Fun dynamics. Alex is best when he’s happy, or happy-ish. Writers sometimes try to make him serious and intense, but that just makes him Cyclops-lite. He’s better when he’s not that, and Rosenberg takes him about as far from being Scott as possible. Which makes for a better read.

Mr. and Mrs. X #4, by Kelly Thompson, Oscar Bazaldua, Frank D’Armata, and Joe Sabino. Gambit’s been thoroughly searched for any lockpicks. But Rogue had one in her mouth. So he uses it to free himself, and then frees her. They find Xandra nearby, and she switches back from egg form, then uses her telepathy to make Rogue and Gambit look different. Xandra also remains adorable. They steal a ship, which is attacked by the Starjammers. They land, and Xandra knows Cerise, from all the time Cerise spent singing to her as a baby. Xandra offers to fix Rogue’s power, but Rogue refuses, and I really like her reasoning.

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That’s some really good reasoning from Rogue.

I like that it’s all about ensuring Rogue has agency. Thompson rejects the idea of an easy fix for Rogue, or of someone else fixing her, in favour of Rogue figuring it out for herself. Which is definitely true to Rogue’s character. And Gambit is very understanding and supportive and it’s sweet. Then the Imperial Guard attack. And Deathbird shows up. And it’s all very complicated. Another solid issue. Xandra is adorable and I hope we see more of her in the future. (The arc’s not over, we’ll see more of her next issue, but after that, I hope we see her in later stories, and not just in this book.) I do wish we got more Cerise, especially since she was apparently the one who primarily cared for Xandra. The scene where the two reunite is very sweet. There’s a lot of fun stuff, a lot of sweet stuff, some exciting action. And Rogue and Gambit work a a couple. Thompson has really sold me on them. Gambit is really sweet to her and I appreciate that. Not that he’s not also dirty with her, but he knows when to keep it appropriate. And, of course, Rogue is a badass. And I love the art. This issue has a spread of Gambit freeing himself from the shackles, and it looks good. But Rogue beating the crap out of Titan is really cool. He also does such a good job on facial expressions. He and Thompson do such good work together. I love this series.

Old Man Logan #49, by Ed Brisson, Ibraim Roberson, Carlos Lopez, and Cory Petit. Logan is dreaming about his family. The dream turns creepy when he sees them all as corpses. He wakes up naked in the woods, stumbles back into town, and a kid named Joshua helps him into a house to rest up a bit. Maestro sentences the two guards who captured Logan to death. Logan prepares to go stop it, but things don’t go as planned. This issue is better than the last one simply because it doesn’t include any of the implied rape last issue had. That’s a pretty low bar, though. Still, there’s not much to recommend the issue. The dream sequence wasn’t bad, and got creepy at the end, which was cool.

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That’s unsettling.

But the main story? I just don’t care. It’s a story about how people will turn on each other to please their own killer. And that’s done well. I liked that aspect of the story. But Logan and the Maestro are both really boring and I don’t care about them. The art’s great, though. Again, the dream sequence stands out for that, especially that last splash of the dream. I’ll admit that this issue is one where my own biases are probably making me too hard on it. It’s better than I think it is, I think. I just really don’t like Logan, and I’m not a fan of Maestro, who worked really well in the story he was introduced in, but who’s long since worn out his welcome.

X-Men Black: Mystique, by Seanan McGuire, Marco Failla, Jesus Aburtov, and Joe Caramagna. Mystique is on a dinner date with a Senator, and makes him look bad solely for her own amusement. I kinda love that. She ruins a man’s career just to have some fun. But then she gets a bigger score. So the rest of the issue is her being incredibly devious while comparing what she does to art. And man, she is awful. She is just The Worst. And it’s so damned compelling. She’s ruthless, caring about no one. She kills, a lot, and she sets someone else up for the murders. It’s all so she can get some information from Trask Industries, info that’s supposed to be related to Mothervine. She wants to make sure it’s not in Trask’s hands. But in the process, she does some pretty awful things, with not an ounce of remorse. And it’s so fascinating to watch. She’s so devious, so clever, and she puts in a lot of work. She also gets to show how dangerous a fighter she is, but that’s an afterthought. The real highlight is just in watching her work, watching her be different people for different purposes, just to cover her trail. It’s a good demonstration of what makes her so dangerous.

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Cold.

Failla’s art is good. It tells the story, which is exactly what it needed to do. There was no need, in this story, for anything particularly fancy. Just telling the story. It’s not my favourite art style, but he’s good. Man, this story’s chilling and compelling. Great stuff.

And, more of the Apocalypse back-up, by Zac Thompson, Lonnie Nadler, Geraldo Borges, Rachelle Rosenberg, and Cory Petit. Apocalypse is now a caveman, and fights some other cavemen. Still interesting. His mind slips away almost entirely here, and the fight against the cavemen is pretty wicked. It’s a good fight. He gets some good licks in against them.

And it’s not strictly speaking an X-Men title, but . . . Weapon Hex #1, by Bens Acker and Blacker, Gerardo Sandoval, Victor Nava, Israel Silva, and Joe Caramagna. I bought it (digitally) SOLELY on the strength of that pun name. It’s a good pun. I approve. On Mount Wundagore, a group of people is trying to provide Mephicthon with a blue lady to possess. It fails, but Sarah has an idea for their 23rd attempt: An imperfect vessel, grown within Sarah herself. Little Laura has a very interesting upbringing. She’s taught to fight by Hellhound, who seems to be a cross between Illyana and Sabretooth. She kills snakes when she’s two. At 5, she’s made to kill Peter Porker, thanks to a triggering spell. At 18, she fights Elsa Bladestone, leader of a group of atheistic extremists. Honestly, the whole thing is ridiculous and fun. Sarah and Herbert are a great goth couple.

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Bless their little goth hearts.

Sarah, of course, mellows greatly once she has Laura, same as she did in the 616. Spoiler alert: She meets the same fate. But the actual twist at the end of the issue made me very very happy, and all I’ll say is to remind you Weapon Hex is a cross between Scarlet Witch and X-23. Speaking of which, here’s Baby Laura:

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Aw, look at those tiny claws.

Sandoval’s art is a good fit for the story. It is such a weird,  crazy story, and Sandoval just enhances it. The comedy, darkness and drama are all enhanced by the art. I know he’s not for everyone, he does have a pretty strange style, but I dig it, especially here. It really works well. This comic is ridiculous, and it’s worth reading.

And the non-X-stuff.

Unstoppable Wasp #1, by Jeremy Whitley, Gurihiru, and Joe Caramagna. It’s back! Nadia and the agents of GIRL! There’s cuteness and fun and some pretty good drama. And an antagonist that I’m really excited about, and who sets up what might be a pretty dark upcoming story in this series. It’s great. And Gurihiru, of course, are amazing.

Shuri #1, by Nnedi Okorafor, Leonardo Romero, Jordie Bellaire, and Joe Sabino. It’s really good. Nnedi had the difficult task of merging the movie version of Shuri into the comic version. She did a good job. She’s probably more Movie Shuri than Comic Shuri, which is a bit of a shame because I was really enjoying Shuri in Coates’ series, but whatever. Nnedi still writes a good comic. Romero’s art is great, and there’s a flashback sequence that’s especially gorgeous. There’s clearly plans here for Shuri, and I’m very interested in seeing them play otu.

Life of Captain Marvel #4, by Margaret Stohl, Carlos Pacheco, Rafael Fonteriz, Erica D’Urrso, Marcio Menyz, and Clayton Cowles. The Secret History of Carol’s mom. Turns out she’s Kree. And Carol’s half-Kree from birth, which is the real source of her powers. Not Mar-Vell. It’s an OK issue. But I’m more looking forward to Thompson’s run right now.

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From → 2018, Uncategorized

2 Comments
  1. G'kar permalink

    . Well, I had a lot of comics to catch up on anyway Astonishing x men was an ok issue. Life of Captain Marvel # 4 I enjoyed, as to Carol being Half-Kree from birth I’m fine with that. Also, I’m ok with her not getting her powers from Mar-vell probably because I never really care much from him. The affair turned to be a red herring; I did find the stuff with Marie and Joe Danvers kind of interesting they seemed pretty happy together. Until he started getting paranoid about the Kree, then, of course, he started showing his sexism. As I said enjoyed the issue but I do have one little nitpick, I know Stohl wanted to give Carol a Kree name but I really wish that she hasn’t gone with Car-ell because I feel its to close to Kal-el. Anyway, it will be interesting to see what Kelly Thompson does with Carol.

  2. I’m sure that I’d like the writing in Astonishing X-Men, but I don’t feel like looking at Greg Land’s art. It’s a shame, really.

    Mr. and Mrs. X is great. It’s entertaining first and foremost, but that brief argument/discussion between Gambit and Rogue over Rogue’s control of her powers adds so much character depth to it. That moment shows how much they really care about each other, while also digging into Rogue’s insecurities a bit. It’s a brilliant moment that on its own, makes it the comic of the week for me. And it’s been a fairly good week.

    Weapon Hex 1 is fun. It’s too short to really get all that emotional with its origin story, so it focuses more on just having fun with its Infinity Warps. That final page reveal is somehow obvious enough that we all should have seen it coming.

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