I only picked up 4 comics this week, and when that happens, I skip my first impressions post and go straight to the reviews. On top of that, one of those comics came out 2 weeks ago, but my local shop just got it today. That’s Superman 25. It’s worth reviewing a 2-week-old comic, so that means I only have 3 reviews to write. It’s an easy week. So let’s get to the first of the three new comics I picked up today.
All-New Wolverine 22, written by Tom Taylor, picks up about two weeks after the previous issue. It took that long for Laura to wake up after nearly dying. The previous three issues dealt with an alien virus that attacks organs indiscriminately and seems to be attracted to healing factors. Laura risked her life to save as many people as possible after everyone else’s healing factors gave in, and she collapsed and looked pretty much dead as a result. The infected alien spoke two intelligible words before she died – Laura Kinney, Wolverine’s name. Feeling the need to find out what this is all about, Laura travels to space in this issue.
This is a very entertaining comic, right from the very first page. Gabby and Deadpool becoming friends somehow feels right, and they’re hilarious together. After all, only Deadpool could appreciate a severed finger as a gift. This series as a whole uses guest stars regularly, but it always fits the story well. In this case, we’ve got the Guardians of the Galaxy giving Laura, Gabby and Jonathan the Unstoppable actual wolverine a lift. It’s nice that Star Lord acknowledges the previous time they’ve met. They share a brief yet intelligent discussion about how this whole thing could either be a call for help or a trap. The humour stays consistent through most of the comic, especially with Gabby and Jonathan playing with Baby Groot, but by the end of the issue it gets really tense. The comic ends with the beginning of a big action scene involving a very dangerous alien race at a destroyed lunar base, promising an intense and probably dark next issue.
The art by Leonardo Kirk is great for the most part. Facial expressions perfectly convey emotions, like Gabby’s complete delight when she learns she’s going into space, Laura’s face palm when Gabby tells her she and Deadpool are best friends, and Rocket’s confused look when Laura charges toward the alien threat just after he shouts “Run.” The background detail is always great. There are charts and medical equipment in the hospital room where Laura wakes up. The ship graveyard on the moon by the station seems to have a small variety of ship types. Gabby and Jonathan playing with Baby Groot in the background while Laura and Peter Quill talk is a particularly nice touch. The action feels big at the end, with plenty of aliens swarming the battlefield, Laura looking terrifying when she’s slicing her way through them, and lasers and explosions all over the place. The colouring by Michael Garland and Erick Arciniega is great. The comic is generally bright and colourful, with a half spread of the Guardians reaching the base looking really good with its starry sky. There’s fantastic use of lighting and shadows throughout. A couple panels in the action scene look a bit off with the shading though, as if they were a bit rushed.
This is a great comic. It bridges the two connected story arcs in a short amount of time without the writing feeling compressed, sets up the situation on the moon and kicks off an intense action scene. This series is consistently great at balancing drama, action and fun. Although this issue isn’t as dramatic as usual, it is heavy on storytelling without going too heavy. It still manages to give us a bit of drama, and a lot of potential drama for the next issue. This remains the best X-Men book on the market. It captures the feel where the core characters feel like a family, something that seems to be lacking lately. X-23 fans should be reading this series, and it’s definitely worth checking out for fans of the original Wolverine. I haven’t been reading Guardians of the Galaxy so I don’t know how that series is doing, but this issue may at least be worth a read for their fans as well.
I’m kind of torn between this and Superman 26 being my favourite comic of the week, but for entirely different reasons. Then again with only 3 new comics picked up, there isn’t that much competition.