11th Apr2018

Wolverine Wednesday #11

by Ian Wells

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Weapon X #15

Writers: Greg Pak & Fred Van Lente | Artist: Roland Boschi | Colours: Frank D’Armata | Letters: Joe Caramagna

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As someone who owns and has read every issue of Wolverine I have a huge amount of respect for a writer who takes something from the past and uses it. The set up for this story takes its cues from the idea of Sabertooth attacking Wolverine every year on his birthday. A story element established way back in Wolverine #10 (1989). Pak and Van Lente use it for fan service. They actually use it to tie into the on going story being crafted in Weapon X. It is a fresh take on the classic rivalry and I feel we will be getting plenty of examination into the Logan/Sabertooth dynamic through fresh eyes. Expect to hear the word ‘monster’ a lot in this arc. This issue is also a good jumping on point to newcomers to both Weapon X and the Logan/Sabertooth rivalry. The story arc is being sold on the premise of Logan vs Sabertooth. The remaining three members of the team are reduced to the side lines. I feel this is just a case of giving Old Logan the spotlight before Wolverine Prime’s upcoming return. Judging by the cliff hanger ending there will be more going on in the next issue. I like when character development is disguised as all out action. Roland Boschi joins on art duties. I’m not a big fan of his style its a little rough around the edges. His faces look unfinished and everyone has small eyes like Milhouse! Logan looks like he has Action Man hair! I do want to give some praise to the colourist Frank D’Armata. In the issue there is a splash page depicting some Logan and Sabertooth encounters from down the years. D’Armata does a brilliant job in capturing the colour pallets from those era, each one is defined and takes you back to those stories. Its attention to detail like that that make comics worth their price, it shows the creative team care. This issue is another solid start to what I’m sure will be another action packed story arc.

Old Man Logan #36

Writer: Ed Brisson | Artist: Dalibor Talajic | Colours: Carlos Lopez | Letters: Cory Petit

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From beginning to the end this had the feel of an old nineties era Wolverine comic. Ed Brisson is really hitting his stride on this title now. He continues to have a strong hold on Logan’s internal monologues. He has a good eye for action and can move a story a long at the right pace. This arc opens with some basic status quo setting via the internal monologue. It then has Logan assisting a stranger in a bar without any hesitation. It is a Wolverine story trope that happens so often as a reader you question it less than the character does. The story features Kingpin… Sorry Mayor Fisk and Bullseye. With Daredevil being my second favourite character after Wolverine it will be interesting to see him take on the worlds deadliest assassin. I do believe they have never fought before, so I’m invested in this arc already. Brisson recently wrote the Bullseye mini series and like I said does good action so the story should play to all his strengths. Like Weapon X we get a change in art duties. Previous Old Man Logan artist Mike Deodato does provide an absolutely gorgeous cover still though. Dalibor Talajic certainly feels more cartoony compare to Deodato but not like a childish animation. Somewhere between Chris Samnee and Sean Philips (This from a guy who knows nothing about art)! He is less conventional with panel lay outs. Often having panels merge with larger images on a page or having characters in the foreground of a page like they have actually exited the panel. The colouring too is less gritty than previous arcs. If a page is at night the page will predominantly be a dark blue. When the characters are feeling isolated the page is white with no panels. Just the characters trapped in the middle. It will be interesting to see how this arc plays out. With Bendis recently wrapping on The Defenders there is no room for cross over but with Mayor Fisk in Logan’s sight will there be any ripples felt in the Daredevil ongoing?

All-New Wolverine #31 – #32

Writer: Tom Taylor | Artists: Marco Failla & Djibril Morissette-Phan | Colours: Nolan Woodard | Letters: Cory Petit

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With these two issues we get to solid, well told done in ones before Taylor goes into his final story arc on All-New Wolverine in issue thirty three. The two stories are very different in tone and emotional drive but both very enjoyable. #31 sees Gabby taking a much deserved turn in the spotlight. Even thought she teams with Deadpool and Laura comes in at the end it still very much feels like a Gabby solo adventure. There a few genuine laugh out loud moments in this issue. Gabby is Gabby and Taylor has a good handle on Deadpool’s sense of humour. There is a great visual joke so kudos to both writer and artist for pulling it off. With Gabby Taylor has crafted a fascinating character who is always enjoyable to read. This issue offers up everything I love about Gabby. There are the moments when she is just a teenage girl, the moments of humour, the moments where she wants to do the right thing and finally the moments where she is a total badass! Sometimes these border on being very dark and its these contrasting moments that make her so much fun to read. #32 Sees Laura going solo with some help from Amber Griffin who was introduced in the previous ‘Orphans of X’ story arc. Taylor set up a plot point at the end of that arc that lends itself to being called upon at any time in the future. I didn’t expect him to use it so soon but I suppose with creative changes coming up he’s gone for it. I’m interested to see if future writers draw upon at any time. The story also takes some cues from Laura’s first mission with ‘the Facility’ way back when. So again Taylor gets major points for deep continuity cuts. Despite the subject matter the story does have a light-hearted tone. ‘Nazi’ is dropped more than a few times in this issue and you can’t help but feel maybe Taylor has something on his mind. The slight political tilt doesn’t get in the way of a entertaining story with a satisfying conclusion. Again all the trademarks of what has made this series a consistent read are on display. Good action, good humour and well paced. What more do you need from a comic really? I like the art in both issues. I wasn’t previously familiar with either artist beforehand. They are both a good fit for the two different stories being told. Also they aren’t drastically different from artists who have previously been on the series. I know art can be a big turn off for readers no matter how good the story is. So having a similar style throughout a series makes it accessible to new readers and keeps the regulars on side. Lastly David Lopez delivers stunning covers for both issues. Apart from being great images they don’t  spoil the story or set up any false pretences. In summary #31 and #32 are two simple well told done in ones, which in all honesty you could read and enjoy without having read the rest of the series. But why would you ignore such a good book?

 

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