Seeing how this is the last Wednesday of a 5-Wednesday month, I didn’t pick up as many comics as usual. At the same time, I picked up more comics than I usually do in the first Wednesday of the month because Marvel is terrible at spreading out their releases properly. Since I only picked up 4, I’m reviewing all of them in full. So here is my first comic review of the day.
I didn’t read the recent Mojoverse crossover with the X-Men. As much as I’m enjoying X-Men blue despite its flaws, and as much as I’m curious about Astonishing X-Men, I didn’t feel like picking up a crossover with X-men Gold, nor have I ever been all that much of a Mojo fan. I get the appeal of the concept, but I’m not a fan. Despite not reading the crossover, it was easy to figure out what’s happening in this issue without reading the recap page.
Written by Cullen Bunn, X-Men Blue kicks off a time traveling story arc for the time displaced original X-Men. When the time stream seems to start acting up, and a couple characters disappear from thin air, without even a trace of their scent according to Jimmy Hudson (Wolverine’s son from the Ultimate Universe and a boring character from what I’ve seen), the team needs to embark on a journey through time. That part of the story gives us an entertaining beginning, with a touch of humour as they randomly land on different points in the X-Men cannon, it doesn’t feel all that exciting yet. I couldn’t tell you why.
Before the time stream shenanigans begin, there are a couple really good character moments. The first is with Cyclops and Bloodstorm (a vampiric Storm from another dimension) sitting on a roof. It’s there where Cyclops realizes he’s got a lot more in common with Bloodstorm than he thought, and it feels like the two of them could develop a deep friendship in ways that the rest of the team can’t form. The other is a shorter moment between Jean Grey and Beast that touches on each of their insecurities. These slower, quieter moments are where this issue works the best. The main story, while fun, isn’t anywhere close to being that good.
The art by Thony Silas might be a bit of an acquired taste, but it’s good. It’s a simple style that kind of feels like the 90’s, but without going too far. There are a fair amount of sharp angles and flat lines, most noticeable with chins and the fairly rectangular shapes in the backgrounds, but when the backgrounds are mostly comprised of city skylines in the distance complete with lights, bookshelves and window frames, that’s fine. And it makes more curved objects stand out more. There’s good use of motion blur in the more intense scenes, and facial expression do a good job at conveying emotions. Rain Beredo’s colouring is great. In addition to the comic being well varied in colour, there’s a lot of great shading work, a bit of a glow appearance around lights, and there’s a reddened panel to emphasize how both Cyclops and Bloodstorm can only see in red, adding to their character development.
As a whole this is a good comic. The character moments are far better than the action, but even the action is entertaining. It does feel good to be reading this series again after temporarily dropping it for the crossover, even if it’s a reminder that this series doesn’t seem to be living up to its potential. Fans of the original X-Men should check this series out.