10th Apr2019

Wolverine Wednesday #24

by Ian Wells

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Bit of a short one this month, as Wolverine related books aren’t at a premium. I’m still refusing to pay any attention to Wolverine Infinity Watch as a matter of principle. For the future I am planning on dissecting how Wolverine’s return has been handled in the pages of Uncanny X-Men. Currently I am absorbing the required issues digitally and want to put something together in one bundle rather than issue by issue. As the issues have been out a while there will be spoilers as a dissect how his return is shaped and if there are any contradictions/compliments to what has occurred in the pages of The Return of Wolverine.

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Dead Man Logan #5

Writer: Ed Brisson | Artist: Mike Henderson | Colourist: Nolan Woodard | Letters: Cory Petit

I am in two minds whether I liked this issue or not. It was rather action heavy, but still had a cohesive plot running from beginning to end, but it all felt over very quickly. A lot of plot points laid out in the first four issues come to a head here. It felt a little strange as there are still seven issues left! So I guess this maxi series will be in two, possibly three parts. Considering how much of a big deal Mysterio was made to be in the previous issues and the original story, the conclusion to his arc was a hollow. There are a few minor plot holes in the story and a few instances where things happen rather conveniently. So why ending some major plot points so early in a series does bring some trepidation it also leaves plenty of excitement for the coming issues. I have said before a good Wolverine story should have questions, answers and more questions. Brisson lays a few nuggets that hint and the potential direction for the rest of the series and it seems good stuff, I’m certainly on board for it anyway. I am really enjoying the dynamics of the characters that have assembled over the five issues. Hawkeye is a given for being involved and in this issue he is the whipping boy for the X-characters, which is funny. Its good seeing Forge as he has been massively underused since the 90′s. Jubilee shows a lot of attitude in this story and it feels like now she is not a vampire anymore Brisson is exploring a character she could have always been. Then there is Glob. Have I mentioned I love Glob? These characters play perfectly into the hands of both Henderson and Woodard. I can imagine them both just love receiving scripts for this series and then just going to town on art duties. The action heavy nature of this issue allows them to cut loose. Hydra agents, Glob and Jubliee’s yellow are all eye catching colour pops amongst the action. With Logan and his team laying siege to a Bond villain style base by moonlight Woodard complements the setting and action with brilliant colouring choices. They are a dream combination they deliver everything you want from an action heavy comic. Colourful villains, well paced action that flows and a variety of interesting panel layouts. Between them Henderson and Woodard do the best bullet riddled Logan out there! I’m guessing we may see a few more of these before the series reaches the end. All in all very enjoyable stuff. It has created a double edged sword though because while I am now looking forward to the next issue I don’t want to wait for the one after that and the one after that! I’m greedily want to know how it ends but at the same time am I enjoying all the pieces being put into place to get there.

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X-23 #10

Writer: Mariko Tamaki | Artist: Diego Olortegui | Inks: Walden Wang | Colourist: Chris O’Halloran | Letters: Cory Petit

The X-Assassin story arc wrapped¬† up rather well in this issue. Like Dead Man Logan it took a very action heavy approach to reach its outcome. The main antagonist was perhaps a little over hyped and therefore dispatched with rather easily amongst all the action. Of course his diabolical schemes are out in the world now so there are plenty more adventures for our duo to go on. Out of the two story arcs so far this was definitely the strongest. But at the same time it would make a nice change of pace if Laura and Gabby weren’t on the hunt for X-Gene tampering villains. I know that was the MO of the series set up in the first issue but maybe just an arc off. I made the throwaway comment last month that at times Laura feels like a supporting character in her own series and potentially Tamaki is treading a fine line between this becoming a problem. Laura has been around for years now as either X-23 or Wolverine and I think having her own steady ongoing series would be a great place to explore her character more than we are currently getting. So while the stories are entertaining and very consistent I would like more! I want to see interactions with in the mutant community, particularly at the school. Having Beast as a part time co-star has been a good touch, there are more mutants out there though. In the two story arcs there has always been one or two scenes of Laura and Gabby in their apartment. It is a nice recurring theme and gives the series a sitcom vibe. Another recurring theme and I confess it has taken me all ten issues to spot it is that Laura provides all the action and Gabby provides all the emotional touch stones of the story. So far it is working but again the series is called X-23 and at some point Laura needs some alone time. The art work does play brilliantly into Laura being front and center of all the action. When reading it all the action flows from panel to panel, Laura’s movements grab the eye and guide the reading. It feels like a lot of effort went into choreographing the action sequences. Again I have to make mention of Olortegui’s amazing facial expressions. Whether it is maniacal villains laughing or Gabby showing pure joy at running headlong into battle everyone is brilliant. It makes it ironic that he does such a good job on keeping the face of the robot/clone so cold and lifeless. The action gets quite graphic at one point as Laura is out numbered. While it does portray blood and the realism of Laura’s heroics it is done in a way via the colouring that it isn’t to OTT and keeping with in the tone of the series. A great issue all round. The art for has been the high point of this last arc and I really hope Olortegui sticks around. As the series has gone on Tamaki has definitely grown with these characters and I am looking forward to the next chapter which ever story angle it decides to follow.

 

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