Wolverine: Weapon X #13 Review: Last Bot Standing

Hey, everyone, jrpbsp here… There were a lot of comics last week but due to time constraints, just doing ‘Wolverine: Weapon X’.  Hope you enjoy it.

Wolverine Weapon X #13 (preview)
Writer: Jason Aaron
Pencils: Ron Garney

SPOILERS BELOW…

RECAP: The issue opens with a scene from the future, with a protest against the Roxxon corporation. The company calls out the Deathloks and the demonstration turns into a slaughter. One man fights back, using a adhesive gun and small spider robots. The cyborgs teleport to where Peter Parker is hiding and they take him out with a rocket launcher. For once in his life, Parker is a loss for words, that is just before he is killed.

Back in the present, Spider-Man finds one of the Deathloks and tries to talk to the man. But this is not the former hero, Deathlok, and the creature knocks Parker through a wall. Wolverine and Captain America are still fighting the rest of the cyborgs. One of them is threatening Miranda but Logan stabs him through the chest and then puts his head into a moving train, decapitating him.

Meanwhile reinforcements, in the form of Steve Rogers and the Avengers, arrive to help Bucky. The combined team makes short work of the Deathloks who teleport away rather then be defeated. The heroes pause to assess the situation with Miranda taking charge of a young Wakowski. She tells them about the other potential future heroes that could be targeted and Rogers arranges for them to be picked up and taken someplace safe.

Miranda takes Bucky and Logan to meet the man that will be responsible for making the Deathloks and see if they can get some answers. The man is working as a roadkill remover since he was released from H.A.M.M.E.R. Logan and Bucky question him but the cyborg is well advanced of what he can do. He is just working on dead animals currently. The heroes want to just kill him but Miranda argues that it will change the future and maybe make it worse.

Unfortunately, the Deathlok revives and the body destroys the scientist. Once the creator is dead, the Deathlok body disappears. Bucky tries to call into base but there is no response. Logan picks up an intruder just in time for Cap to intercept a repulsor blast with his shield. The attacker is a new and improved Deathlok module.

MY TAKE: This was an action-packed and pretty exciting issue, that did a good job of advancing the plot and bringing in new elements. It was nice to see the New Avengers and Steve Rogers show up here. Too often these major events and mass killings seem to happen in a vacuum. I am glad they are going forward with their decision to really integrate the titles and the world.

The plot was nicely moved along, as well. We found out who created the Deathloks and learned a good deal more about them. It is nice that they tied the events to the Wolverine: The List one shot and those cyborgs.  I am not sure I agree with the effects of their creator’s death on the time line but it is good that they showed the negative effect of time travel.

There was a lot of good action too. My favorite part was Wolverine removing the Deathlok’s head with the subway train. The cyborgs are pretty powerful but it was nice to see just how effective the Avengers can be. Still, they upped the ante at the end with the super Deathlok which is enough to even give the whole team a hard time.

My least favorite part was the future scenes with Peter Parker. Although he was effective, and there was some interesting ideas showcased here, there was really no point to the scene. We already knew that the cyborgs were dangerous and seeing an older  form of Spider-Man die was not really needed. I am also getting pretty tired of alternate futures and different universes in general.

Still, I did enjoy the issue. It was a fun ride and had plenty of good action with some interesting guest stars. I am enjoying the Deathloks as villains and it looks like they will be around for while. It is not often that we have a decent new character that is a legitimate challenge to Logan. There are only a couple more issues before the series is rebooted, but hopefully they will maintain this level of enjoyment throughout.

Thanks for reading my review for Wolverine Files. I will be keeping to this format for the most part but please keep the comments coming and I will see everyone again next time.

Astonishing Spider-Man/Wolverine #1: Time Lost

Hey, everyone, jrpbsp here… I am on vacation so I might not get to do a review for the coming week. So for now, here is the first part of the ‘Astonishing Wolverine/Spider-Man’ series.  Hope you enjoy it.

Astonishing Spider-Man/Wolverine #1 (preview)
Writer: Jason Aaron
Pencils: Adam Kubert
Inks: Mark Morales w/Dexter Vine

SPOILERS BELOW…

RECAP: The issue opens with a bearded and dirty Peter Parker studying the primitive sky and declaring that this is the end. He returns to his hand-built house where he had been studying the prehistoric flora and fauna. His biggest regret is never knowing who a mysterious woman is.  Someone whose face he keeps seeing in his dreams.

Peter does not want to die alone, so he travels to a valley where the only other person he knows lives. He has avoided the area because the person frightens him and promised to kill Peter if he ever saw him again.  That person is Wolverine.

Logan is in the midst of a fight between tribes. He has adopted a group of smaller ape-like men called Small Folk and they are killing a bunch of larger Neanderthals. After the battle, Peter appears and chastises Logan for messing with the time stream. Logan orders him out but Parker says that they are about to be killed by the same asteroid that ended the dinosaurs’ reign. Peter then leaves and each man prepares for his fate staring at the stars and wishing they had found out what had happened to transport then to the past and why.

A flashback shows Spider-Man swinging through the city while Wolverine is stalking a killer in an alleyway. They are both led to the same bank after the murderer kills himself.  The bank is being robbed by a villain called the Orb. His henchmen are going through the safety deposit boxes when they find a strange glowing item. Spider-Man and Wolverine arrive at the same time to foil the heist and the glowing item falls to the ground. The next moment the heroes are stuck in the past.

Back in his hut, Peter releases all his specimens and and destroys his work except for the statues he made of the woman from his dreams. He questions his sanity as the space rock nears. Wolverine releases the prisoners from the fight and sits in quiet contemplation as he waits for the end. Neither remains stoic for long, Parker tries to figure a way out and Logan gives into his inner rage

Wolverine finds a hidden person in the moments before impact. The odd stranger begs for his life but does not have time to explain who he works for before the meteor strikes and everything goes white. But Peter and Logan are not dead. They wake up in an alternate present where a cybernetic Devil Dinosaur and a group calling themselves Small Folk rule.

MY TAKE: I really wanted this to be an enjoyable issue and there are parts that are very good, but overall I thought the bad outweighed the good. Very little happens, pretty much the entire issue is taken up by Peter and Logan waiting to die. There is some good drama to this but, for me at least, it got old after a while. I did not see anything really new or revealing in their characters and I am not sure I agree with the ultimate breakdown of their personalities. I do not read Spider-Man so I do not know how much science and intelligence plays in his life, but I do not think Wolverine’s ultimate core is the raging berserker.

Also, I am not sure why Logan and Peter’s relationship is being portrayed with such disdain between them. While they are certainly not best friends, they are a lot closer than showed here. They have been teammates for years and had some intimate heart-to-heart discussions but here they seem more like enemies. I could understand if they had a falling out during the issue but they seem to dislike each other even before they had been sent to the past. I am sure this is to add tension and make a story plot out of working together, but it just does not fit.

On the other hand, my favorite part was actually the brief bank heist in the present. The Orb and his henchmen were pretty amusing and added a much needed note of levity to the proceedings. The underlying mystery is interesting as well. I like how the two heroes are being manipulated on multiple levels for the amusement of another party.

The biggest problem was that this was simply too heavy and dense to really suck you in the way a first issue needs to. It is hard to really care about the loneliness and desperation before the plot is even set up. It seems to be an ambitious story and there is definite potential here, but it not realized so far. The next issue, however, looks to be pretty fun. Devil Dinosaur is very cheesy but I like the idea of a robot dinosaur. Hopefully there will be more action and clues to the mystery next time.

Thanks for reading my review for Wolverine Files. I will be keeping to this format for the most part but please keep the comments coming and I will see everyone again next time.

Wolverine: Origins #47: Skaar Smash!

Hey, everyone, jrpbsp here…Here is the second part of the Origins tale, ‘Wolverine: Origins’.  Hope you enjoy it.

Wolverine Origins #47 (preview)
Writer: Daniel Way
Art: Will Conrad

SPOILERS BELOW…

RECAP: The issue opens with Wolverine stabbing Daken with a sword apparently killing him. A man on site reports this to Romulus who orders him to follow the ambulance. The man refuses and Romulus has him killed immediately in a car accident. The ambulance turns around to help those victims since it appears that Daken is already gone.

From a nearby roof Wolverine is watching and has Skaar attack Romulus as soon as he shows up. Romulus had believed that he had already gotten into Skaar’s head days earlier and convinced him to abandon Wolverine’s plan by offering to return Banner to the Hulk form. Romulus believed that Skaar wanted to go fist to fist with his father to prove his worth but in reality Skaar was more interested in matching brain power with Banner.

But Romulus had prepared for this and had a group of Kurds waiting to attack. They are not able to hurt Skaar but they do distract his attention and call upon his rage. Cloak is forced to intervene in order to keep the fight from being a slaughter but once both men are present, one of the Kurds detonates a bomb and blows up the whole building.

Romulus finds Logan and gives him a choice of helping his friends or finishing his rivalry. Logan chooses his friends.  Romulus is interrupted by Daken who was stabbed by a fake Muramasa blade. He says that Wolverine is really playing Romulus.

Wolverine enters the burning building trying to save people but Skaar has it under control. Meanwhile Daken explains that Wolverine has no intention of fighting Romulus. Instead he wants to expose the old villain and bring him into the light where all his power and control will evaporate. Daken does not want this because then he will have nothing to inherit. So he joins forces with Romulus to face Wolverine and Skaar.

MY TAKE: Although this issue is a little bit more eventful then the last one, still not much happens. The entire issue takes place over the course of maybe twenty minutes and the longest scene was a flashback that had little bearing on the current story. Everything between Romulus and Skaar felt like filler that could have easily been shown in a single page or even a few panels.

The cliffhanger of Daken’s death was completely wasted since there has already been confirmation of his survival and Wolverine would never kill him anyway. I am not really sure why the Kurds were present either or how Wolverine, who had enough time to change clothes but not scout the area apparently, would have missed them. If it was merely to show Romulus’ power and influence there are several better examples of that in this issue alone.

Still, this was a better issue in that at least it did feel like the plot was being advanced, if slowly. Wolverine’s plan to not fight Romulus but rather to expose him is smart even if the whole scenario feels overdone these days. The same basic thing happened in a one shot a couple months ago with Mr. X. But at least this seems like it is heading for the final confrontation and that can only be a good thing. Although if his complete plan was to expose Romulus, the whole idea was so convoluted as to make no sense. Where are the reporters and news crews to give the revelation some weight?

As much as I have gone on about disliking the story and much of the series in general, this could have been a pretty good plot. Wolverine building a strike force of heroes to take down an old and powerful foe is something I can get behind. Which is partly why I am very hard on the story, because it really should have been good. As it is, right now I just want to get through the last couple of issues so we can get to the series finale. As slow and bogged down as this story has been, the last two issues can only end on a high note for the overall title.

Thanks for reading my review for Wolverine Files. I will be keeping to this format for the most part but please keep the comments coming and I will see everyone again next time.

Dark Wolverine #85 Review: Father Figures

Hey, everyone, jrpbsp here…this week and next I will be covering the continuing story from ‘Wolverine: Origins’. This week it’s ‘Dark Wolverine’.  Hope you enjoy it.

Dark Wolverine #85 (preview)
Writer: Daniel Way & Marjorie Liu
Penciler: Stephen Segovia
Inks: Cam Smith

SPOILERS BELOW…

RECAP: The issue opens with Daken and Wolverine meeting in San Francisco. Logan is asking his son for help and explains his plan. Logan says he will find Romulus and Daken agrees to go along with it, but that they will settle things between them once Romulus is out of the way.

Later in Ankara, Daken is surprised by his father again. Daken asks if Logan knows where Romulus is, and when Wolverine admits he does not, his son says that Romulus now knows where Logan is because Daken told him.

A week earlier, Daken was in Paris with a woman in a hotel room. He is less than charming and the woman storms out only to be killed by Romulus. The old villain then has a seat and asks for a glass of wine. Romulus wants to know where Wolverine was and what his plans are. Romulus says that he knows that Daken and Logan have made amends in an effort to kill him. Romulus knows that Logan wants revenge but Daken instead wants to be Romulus. Daken believes it to be his destiny but he will not kill Romulus even thought he is right there.

In the present, Wolverine says that he knows why Daken can not kill Romulus. Not because he hates Logan but because he loves Romulus as a father. Wolverine was counting on his son telling Romulus his plans. The villain needed to have Logan’s plans confirmed before he believed them. Wolverine then says he did not tell Daken everything and that the rest will be a surprise.

MY TAKE: It is very hard to do a decent review of this issue because basically nothing happens. Daken and Wolverine meet. Daken meets Romulus and betrays his father. Daken and Wolverine meet again and Logan says he was counting on Daken’s betrayal. That is all there is. This feels like an attempt to stretch out the story to cover both Dark Wolverine and Origins when in truth the story would not have even filled Origins completely.The last couple issues of that story have felt artificially extended already.

What plot that is here is not bad, although there were no real surprises. Anyone that has read anything about these two characters over the last couple of years would suspect that Logan is not going to trust Daken or give him the whole plan. It is pretty much the same plot he used when they teamed up with Cyber. The fact that Romulus trusts Daken is a bit of a surprise but their father and son relationship is well documented.

I know both series are ending soon and I can understand wanting to cross them over, but there needs to be a story behind it. This could have been a couple of panels in Origins and had the exact same effect. Instead we get a comic with huge panels and extraneous splash pages just to fill out the 22 pages. I read the whole issue in just a few minutes and felt cheated of my money afterward. I hope that Origins has some actual story because right now the plot feels stretched so thin it is about to break.

Thanks for reading my review for Wolverine Files. I will be keeping to this format for the most part but please keep the comments coming and I will see everyone again next time.

Wolverine: Weapon X #12 Review: Reaching to the Future.

[DiG here. I am still playing catchup, but if all goes as planned, I might actually get caught up for next week!]

Hey, everyone, jrpbsp here…This week we have the next chapter of the Deathloks in ‘Wolverine: Weapon X’.  Hope you enjoy it.

Wolverine Weapon X #12 (preview)
Writer: Jason Aaron
Penciler: Ron Garney

SPOILERS BELOW…

RECAP: The issue opens with resistance members entering their base in the future. They are led by Commander Miranda Bayer. The squad reports that they were too late and another hero has fallen, this time the Punisher. There is no time to rest, however, as there is an indication that the corporation is making a time jump and the team needs to be there. Their general will not go but the future version of Logan is going to go along despite being without hands.

Back in the present, Wolverine is confronting the young Miranda who reveals she is having visions of the future and knows the Deathloks’ next target. It is Captain America, but not Steve Rogers. Meanwhile, Bucky is enjoying a quiet drink when he is attacked by the cyborgs. They blast the entire area but the new Cap manages to escape through the floor and into the subway tunnels.

Back in the future, Logan and Miranda breech the perimeter of the base. In the present, Logan finds where Bucky is and joins the fight just in time to keep Cap from being shot. The cyborg Logan cuts, heals and blasts through Wolverine’s torso. Another one confronts Miranda but is not able to kill her with its current programming. In fact it acts very strangely until she is pulled away by a young boy who is one of her soldiers in the future. Bucky shoots one of the Deathloks in the head and it stays down giving the group a moment to recover.

In the future, the squad makes it to the portal but it is well guarded. Logan attacks it alone and is taken out, his flesh burned from his bones with acid. His sacrifice buys time though and Miranda readies the explosives and they charge the Deathloks to take out the machine.

MY TAKE: I mostly enjoyed this issue, it is nice to have at least one comic every month where Wolverine is showed some respect  and that actually feels like an accurate portrayal. I have never really been a fan of Deathlok and there is not too much here to change my mind, but it is still an interesting take. If nothing else, I like the fact that Logan and Bucky have a strong and legitimate threat to face that is not the same old villains we have seen a hundred times before.

The plot, however, is not very original. The assassin from the future is a very overdone story as is the girl that knows everything. Still that does not mean it is not entertaining. The plot is well written and there are enough interesting twists to keep things from being too cliche. Having Bucky be the Captain America that is at risk was very surprising after last issue. Everything pointed to Steve Rogers but I think that Bucky actually works better for this type of story.

The characters are well done, as usual, but there is not a lot of development with the exception of the new character, Miranda. I would have preferred to see some different established characters in the future rather then another new creation but I am willing to give it the benefit of the doubt. I am very tired of seeing alternate versions of Wolverine, however, and the death of Logan has been done so many times that it is starting to annoy me. Especially in this case, as no explanation is given as to how or why Wolverine lost his hands and he is killed very quickly. There are very few things that can destroy adamantium, certainly not lasers or the acid that the Deathloks wield. Also, not having hands  seems basically as if it is pandering to the Age of Apocalypse.

Overall the issue was very good though. I generally enjoy alternate universes and and bleak futures are normally fun to explore. The idea of a corporation running everything is not too far fetched and it is nice to see ordinary people standing up to those in power and trying to help the heroes. I am still not quite sure where the plot is going, but if nothing else it has enough action to be a fast paced and exciting read. I would just prefer to see a more established supporting cast. There are so many great characters languishing in limbo that I find it hard to care about new ones. Yet I am enjoying the arc and looking forward to seeing how it all plays out in the remaining issues.

Thanks for reading my review for Wolverine Files. I will be keeping to this format for the most part but please keep the comments coming and I will see everyone again next time.

X-Force #25 Review: The Bigger They Are…

Hey, everyone, jrpbsp here…This week we have the end of Necrosha in ‘X-Force’.  Hope you enjoy it.

X-Force #25 (Preview)
Writer: Craig Kyle & Christopher Yost
Art: Clayton Crain

SPOILERS BELOW…

RECAP: The issue opens with Selene rising as a goddess and affecting all of the magic users of the world. Even with all her power, Selene hungers for more and orders her followers to bring back the rest of the techno-zombie mutants. Blink leaves and teleports all the attackers off of Utopia and back to Genosha.

Meanwhile, Proudstar is using his people’s mystic arts to protect X-Force and allow them to speak with the dead and hopefully kill them. Selene’s troops are starting to question their purpose, especially Mortis. The others are less fearful or even in awe of their mistress. They are interrupted by X-Force who separate to take out Selene’s people.

Wolverine and X-23 take down Senyaka and Vanisher intercepts and holds Blink while Archangel slices her. Rahne fights Mortis and cuts her deeply, but is nearly grabbed by Kevin who sneaks up on her. Elixir confronts his once friend and they fight power to power and it is Josh who proves to be the stronger. He completely destroys Wither until there is nothing left.

James confronts his brother and they fight even though neither of them really wants to. Proudstar is able to best his older brother and give him peace in death. X-Force then moves to confront the former Black Queen while Blink flees with the wounded Mortis in tow. Selene tries to absorb the living mutants but they are immune. The fight turns into a traditional battle of powers and will, and Wolverine and Warren manage to get Selene’s arms partially pinned. Warpath then jams the spirit knife into her heart and she explodes in a burst of light.

While X-Force takes stock, they see all the spirits of the dead departing. Proudstar even sees his brother’s soul ascending and is able to make peace with his death. In the end, Scott and Wolverine meet. Cyclops wants X-Force to stay together and Wolverine says he will stay with Domino and Vanisher. Elixir, James and Rahne are all out for various reasons, and Wolverine says he is taking X-23 out so she can be normal. Still Scott needs his strike team and says that things are only going to be getting worse before they get better.

MY TAKE: This a good, if somewhat anti-climatic issue, that gave us resolution on the total arc but not much more then that. There were very few surprises to the issue, all of the heroes survive, and the enemies that might eventually be allies. There are lingering questions on which of the risen characters are still around but that will probably not be resolved until after the next big event finishes.

The story and the characters are well written, as usual, but there is not a lot of plot. There are a few good character moments, and I was glad to see that Proudstar is finally getting some resolution to his personal issues. Still, most of the story is taken up by fighting between X-Force and their various enemies. The combats were fine but none of them was unexpected. Everything was pretty predictable and well foreshadowed, though, and the ending was never really in doubt. I also wonder how a broken neck was able to even phase Thunderbird considering the healing power the techno-dead possess.

The fight with Selene was definitely the weakest part of the comic. They spent most of the event stressing how powerful and godlike Selene could become and then the team was able to fight her with hand-to-hand tactics. Wolverine and Warren should never been able to hold her so Proudstar could simply stab her with one easy blow. Even with Native magic, which Jimmy has never been shown to possess, Selene’s appearance was enough to take out the most powerful magic users in the world. But once it got to the end, there was no real feeling of threat. Plus her size seemed to really fluctuate, in one panel she is able to hold Warren in her hand, and the next her head is nearly the same size  as Logan’s.

Still it was an entertaining read and I did enjoy the story. I am afraid it will be overshadowed by Second Coming though, especially with the first issue of that story happening on the same day as this conclusion. An event of this scope should have had more importance and been given more focus for the conclusion. This felt rushed and a bit slapped together to make way for the next major story. Even the deaths are already being overshadowed by what will be happening in the near future. And that is a shame because this was a fun and well-done story that deserved to the spotlight all by itself.

Thanks for reading my review for Wolverine Files. I will be keeping to this format for the most part but please keep the comments coming and I will see everyone again next time.

Wolverine Origins #45 Review: Plans Within Plans

Hey, everyone, jrpbsp here…This week we have the latest Origins from last month to review. Hope you enjoy it.

[DiG here as well. My apologies as I play catch from last week — this should have been posted last weekend — more backlogged posts coming as soon as I can get to them.]

Wolverine: Origins #45 (Preview)
Writer: Daniel Way
Pencils: Doug Braithwaite
Inks and Washes: Bill Reinhold & Mike Manley

SPOILERS BELOW…

RECAP: The issue opens with Romulus confronting Ruby. He wants to know Wolverine’s plan. She resists at first, trying to play a game with him, but then he threatens her daughter and she talks. Wolverine finds her a short while later and hints that he knows what happened. Ruby lies but Logan pretends to sniff  out the truth and she panics and attacks him.

They fight and Wolverine gets the upper hand, but he stops to try and reason with Ruby and gets stabbed through the belly for his troubles. Before she can hurt him further, the rest of Logan’s troop shows up. With four against one odds, Ruby does not last long. Soon enough, Skaar gets a hold of her and throws her to Cloak who teleports her back into her cell.

Once she is gone, Wolverine reveals that the whole incident of her betraying them was part of the plan. He fingers a man called The Answer as the brains of the operation. The Answer was apparently trying to use them to rescue Ruby who he loves. He knew that she would betray them though he did not tell Wolverine this little fact. The man who did actually plan the whole thing up is finally revealed once Wolverine leaves. He heads to a small apartment and meets up with Deadpool.

MY TAKE: This was an okay issue and a very fast read. Not much happened in the plot as evidenced by the unusually short synopsis. Most of the issue was the team fighting with Ruby which is a bit of a waste since she really would not have stood a chance even against Wolverine normally. The plot advancement was mostly the introduction of the two new characters. The Answer seemed to be pretty much redundant, he was simply the reason that Ruby was chosen to be the one to spill information to Romulus.

Deadpool is meant to be the real surprise here and if this was a year ago it might have worked. Now it is more of a shock when Deadpool is not included in a plot somewhere. Considering that Way writes both titles, it was only a matter of time until Wade showed up. A year ago I would have been excited to see Deadpool getting more exposure, but now he is in too many books. Not to mention that he is not exactly the planning type, or very subtle, so his appearance does not even make much sense.

I was also a bit confused at Silver Samurai being a part of the group. I know that Logan went to him for help but I thought that was limited to sword training. Considering the fact that the two men hate each other, it does not make much sense for Harada to go to the extra trouble and leave Japan to help Logan. I would have liked to see a bit more of reasoning behind that move rather then just have him showing up here with the rest of the gang.

In the end this issue was decent, mostly because there was not much to it. The fight scenes were pretty well done and they comprised most of the story. It would have been better for the overall plot line if a bit more had happened, still it was nice to see a bit of action. With only a few more issues in this story though, I hope the narrative picks up a bit next issue or the comic series is going to feel very slow and drawn out.

Thanks for reading my review for Wolverine Files. I will be keeping to this format for the most part but please keep the comments coming and I will see everyone again next time.

Wolverine: Mr. X Review: Unfinished Business

Hey, everyone, jrpbsp here…This week we have another Wolverine One Shot up for review, ‘Wolverine: Mr. X’. Hope you enjoy it.

Wolverine: Mister X #1 (Preview)
Writer: Frank Tieri
Art: Paco Diaz with Guillermo Ortega

SPOILERS BELOW…

RECAP: The issue opens with Mr. X remembering his childhood when he experienced a dying woman’s thoughts and it jump started his psychic powers. He then reflects on his history of training and his fights with Wolverine, including losing the second time they fought. Being beaten has made him obsessed with Logan and in the present it is revealed that he has been dressing people up like Wolverine and killing them. He has also been training to match Logan’s berserker rage by fighting actual wolverines. Once he has killed a hoard of them he declares himself ready.

Logan is in a bank waiting in line. It is predictably robbed but he takes out the gun men in seconds with no one being hurt. The teller thinks that Wolverine is trying to steal the money until he produces his Avengers card. A delivery man interrupts the exchange and nearly loses his head. He hands Logan a package and runs off. Inside, Wolverine finds a note from Mr. X and the severed head of a kindergarten teacher wearing a Wolverine mask. X says he will kill the kids unless Logan makes a personal appearance.

Wolverine races to the rescue and finds the kids, in Wolverine masks, dosed in gasoline and X holding a lit match. He threatens to kill them unless Logan gives him what he wants, which is a rematch. They set up a meeting in the hall of warriors at the Museum of Natural History at midnight. Wolverine arrives and is greeted by an arrow from the dark which he prompting deflects. Having passed the test of worth, X attacks him.

The fight is brief though, as Wolverine refuses to unleash his berserk side. Instead he decides not to fight at all. X hits him and then grabs a sword and begins cutting off bits of Logan but he refuses to fight back. Eventually Mr. X falls to his knees defeated. After Wolverine leaves, X receives a call from Osborn asking him to join the Thunderbolts.

MY TAKE: The Wolverine one shots are generally a mixed bag and this is no exception. I am not really a fan of Mr. X so his history did not interest me, but there were some pretty good scenes of his battles and even his monologue had its moments. On the other hand, most of Wolverine’s scenes were pretty cliche and not very interesting. Even though this was ostensibly a Wolverine story, he seemed to be more of a secondary character for the whole issue.

There is very little that is new here, most of these plot points have been done a hundred times. The traumatic death that triggers mental powers, the hard training to take down a powerful foe. Wolverine has foiled bank robberies so many times I wonder why they even let him through the doors. He is obviously bad luck to the entire banking industry. Maybe that is how the delivery men was able find him in a bank since there is no other explanation to receiving a package in a public place.

The ending was original though, and I definitely like seeing Logan using his brains rather then just his claws. The scene was pretty intense too and enough to make any guy wince when he read it. However, I am a bit confused at how that was actually beating X. There is no reason why he can not go back to taking and killing little kids to make Logan fight and there is every reason to believe he would. While Logan might be willing to suffer torture to win, I do not see him letting innocents die because he will not fight.

In the end, this issue had some pretty good fight scenes and interesting ideas but was hurt by an unoriginal plot. It was certainly not bad for a one shot but I found it hard to get into due to my lack of interest in the antagonist. Still it was fast paced and it read well. I was hoping the story would increase my interest in X, but there was nothing that really grabbed my attention. Perhaps a future story will make the character better developed but for now I would have preferred a story with a more established villain.

Thanks for reading my review for Wolverine Files. I will be keeping to this format for the most part but please keep the comments coming and I will see everyone again next time.

‘Wolverine: Weapon X’ #11 Review: Booze and Bullets

Hey, everyone, jrpbsp here… I have not been feeling too well so I missed last week’s review, but I am jumping back to hit ‘Wolverine: Weapon X’ this week. Hope you enjoy it.

Wolverine: Weapon X #11 (preview)
Writer: Jason Aaron
Pencils: Ron Garney

SPOILERS BELOW…

RECAP: The issue opens with a new hero taking his first trip out into the city on rounds. He had been training and preparing for years but his night does not go as planned. He is gunned out and killed almost immediately by Deathlok. The cyborg then moves on to his next target.

Meanwhile Logan and Steve Rogers are catching up. Wolverine is taking Cap on a worldwide barhopping tour to celebrate his return to the living and filling Rogers in on what he missed. Logan has tapped his fellow X-Man, Nightcrawler, as the pilot in return for a promise to attend church in the morning.

The cyborg’s next target is a young couple on their first date. Deathlok confronts them and it turns out that their child will be a hero in the future. Once their identities are confirmed, they are executed.

Logan and Steve are on their fifth bar when they stop for a little heart to heart. Cap says he is glad that Logan stayed with the Avengers and Wolverine admits to losing hope when Rogers fell. They also discuss Wolverine’s love life and the state of mutant affairs before a local gets in Logan’s face about his taste in music. A bar brawl naturally starts. But since they had made it to five bars, Kurt won twenty dollars from Scott.

Deathlok fights his way through a horde of police and security in a hospital to reach his next victim but not even an ax to the chest can stop him. He enters the Maternity Ward and kills the next future hero.

Steve and Logan arrive back in New York the next morning and go their separate ways. But Logan is quickly confronted by an unknown woman who calls him by name and tells all about the Deathlok’s killing the heroes of the future. Naturally Wolverine does not believe her. Meanwhile the final low level target is killed and we learn that there are at least eight Deathloks and they now are all focused on killing Captain America.

MY TAKE: I enjoyed this issue quite a bit, especially the interaction between Captain America and Wolverine. While the Deathlok story line definitely has potential, the real meat of the story is the catching up of the two old friends. This is something we really have not seen before, Steve and Logan just sitting around drinking and talking, and I thought it was done very well. I hope these scenes will be followed up on in either the new Avengers’ series or in this title.

The Deathlok story is meant to be the main part of the arc but it felt like it was the lesser focus here. Still the idea is very solid even if it not the most original  plot and the Deathloks look to be a serious threat. The first sequence in particular was amusing and well done if a bit over the top. I enjoyed the single minded and focused pursuit of the cyborgs and the set up definitely pulled me into the story. The surprise reveal or the army of the creatures does a lot to up the stakes for the next issue.

I did have a little bit of an issue on how similar the plot was to Terminator 3 with the list of people to kill. It also did not make much sense to me that they would start with the lesser targets and leave the primes for later. That simply means that the harder heroes to kill have more advanced warning and time to prepare. Killing the children and the inexperienced heroes could have been done at any time. It would have also been nice to see a little bit more about the characters that are killed so it has more of an impact. Of course that might be addressed later in the arc.

In the end, this was a strong issue, mostly due to Cap and Logan interactions, but still has enough of hook to the overall story to keep things interesting. I am not sure on the use of another mysterious female character but I have not seen enough to judge her character yet. But even with the unknown elements, as long as the characterizations and interactions remain strong, the story will still be very good. I am eagerly awaiting the next issue to see where the plot goes from here.

Thanks for reading my review for Wolverine Files. I will be keeping to this format for the most part but please keep the comments coming and I will see everyone again next time.

Uncanny X-Men #521: Moving the Bullet

Hey, everyone, jrpbsp here… Just doing the one review from last week, so here’s ‘Uncanny X-Men’. Hope you enjoy it.

Uncanny X-Men #521 (preview)
Writer: Matt Fraction
Pencils: Greg Land
Inks: Jay Leisten

SPOILERS BELOW…

RECAP: The issue opens with Emma and Scott scaling a mountain to check on Magneto. He has put up a mental and physical barrier, however, to make sure his work is undisturbed.

Meanwhile, Wolverine, Betsy and Colossus are fighting the team that sent the Predator Xs. Unfortunately, the group has in depth information from the nanocameras and can predict all of the X-Men’s attacks. But then Fantomex joins the battle to and gives the fight a random element. Underwater, Jeffries meets with one of Atlanteans and offers their help to finish the pillar. The marine dweller swims off to get Namor’s consul.

Back in New York, the team is still not impressed with Fantomex’s arrival until E.V.A. blows up their computer and severs the link of data. Without that information on all the tactics, the villains are vulnerable. The three X-Men take them apart while Fantomex shoots their leader in the side of the head. The X-Men finish off their adversaries but the wounded leader releases an airborne virus targeted at mutants.

Fantomex makes E.V.A. save the X-Men knowing his artificial blood will protect him. The virus is a power dampening super flu that is confirmed to be effective for nearly all the known mutants and was designed by John Sublime. Unfortunately, the fight is over and Fantomex has no choice but to let the villains escape in order to save the X-Men. He calls Scott once they are airborne and relays the whole problem including having active samples of the virus retained by E.V.A.

Scott and Emma are unsure what to do about Magneto. His mind appears to be elsewhere and he is showing severe signs of physical distress. They decide to bring in the X-Club for advice. The X-Club considers the problem and comes to one nearly impossible conclusion. Meanwhile, somewhere deep in space, the enormous bullet containing Kitty Pryde changes direction.

MY TAKE: This is a pretty good issue although it travels some very overused ground. The ending has been spoiled too which always lessens the impact of a story. Still, it was well written and interesting enough to hold my attention. I really do like the idea of Magneto being the one to save Kitty. Although it does stretch the boundaries of his power, at least it is logical and a nice way to have him contribute to the team. It is definitely a better explanation then I was expecting for her return.

The fight scenes are not bad either and having the purpose of the nanocameras be to gather information on their moves and tactics is actually pretty smart. Although I would have thought such an important computer would have been off site to lessen its risk of damage,  it still allows for an interesting foe. It is a technological version of a telepath and it does give them a distinct advantage.

I did have an issue with Fantomex’s involvement.  I do not see a reason for him to have ever gotten involved in this. Of course it is no secret that I am not a fan of  his,  so that could just be my bias. But his presence does take away from my enjoyment. Still, to be fair, he is actually pretty decent here if you ignore the sillier aspects of the character. I would have preferred a little more for the X-Men to do, however. They are little more then window dressing in their scenes in New York.

My biggest complaint is with the unoriginality of using yet another anti-mutant virus. We have seen that story so many times and it always lingers on. While this seems to be a different type, it still made me roll my eyes. Especially, coming from a technology based group like this one. Even making it power suppressing nanobots would have been more original. It just seems like the Legacy Virus all over again and that is one story I do not want to revisit.

In the end it was a fast and pretty entertaining read. The New York scenes were the focus and had some great lines despite the virus sub-plot and the focus on Fantomex. Of course the highlight of the issue was Magneto’s quest and Kitty’s very brief return at the end of the issue. She is a personal favorite so I am glad she is returning. I would have preferred her return to occur at a more subdued time rather then being sandwiched in between events.  Still, there is hope that she will have a strong story and a memorable return for her welcome back present.

Thanks for reading my review for Wolverine Files. I will be keeping to this format for the most part but please keep the comments coming and I will see everyone again next time.