This is a great issue! I truly enjoyed the two stories in this stand alone issue 8 of Wolverine and the X-Men. The cover gives away the surprise ending of the last issue. Fleeing the casino planet with Quentin Quire Logan gets zapped by some odd beam. Once in the spaceship he finds his legs are twisted out of shape! HOW his bones are admantium the indestructible metal! Well this issue explains it all. In the meantime Logan is stuck being headmaster from a wheelchair. Sound familiar?
Credits, can’t go on without the credits. First the Dedication – The issue was dedicated to the memory of Mike Pandel. The rest of the credits are as follows: Jason Aaron, Writer; Chris Bachalo, Penciler/Colorist; Tim Townsend, Inker; Rob Steen, Letterer; Irene Y. Lee, Production; Jordan D. White, Assistant Editor; Daniel Ketchum, Associate Editor; Nick Lowe, Editor; Axel Alonso, Editor in Chief; Joe Quesada, Chief Creative Officer; Dan Buckley, Publisher; and Alan Fine, Executive Producer.
All images are the property of their owners I reproduce them here under the Fair Use Doctrine of the copyright law for commentary and critique. No more than three pages total from any one issue is reproduced.
First the art, I had trepidations with the return of Bachalo as primary artist. I did not like his launching of the series. I still don’t like his fight scenes. However his other scenes have been decluttered and are better. Logan’s tie doesn’t curl over his shoulder like a greyhound tail that has to poop. There is improvement and I get that this style is for a younger audience than me. It’s still overly stylized for my tastes, has photo backgrounds I don’t like, and occasionally the glowy outlines that annoy me show up. BUT over the first few issues this is a vast improvement. I read it and enjoyed it. I didn’t cringe once.
The cover is one of those that’s visually effective but never happens in the book. Logan talks about being rolled into a fight but it doesn’t happen. He doesn’t don his X-Force costume. He is wheelchair bound. That’s about it. I feel it’s a bit dark in printing and more contrast would make it pop.
As for the stories there’s two going on. One is about Logan’s legs and needing to get the matter transducer thingy to fix them. The Bamfs have broken Hank’s transducer. Hank sets out to borrow one from his SWORD girlfriend at her space station. The kids get wind that is what the Headmaster needs to fix his legs so with Quentin’s help they are off to get that one from the casino.
Hanks doesn’t meet his paramour Abigail but instead gets into a space battle with Sabertooth. OMG Sabes is back here and running with the prepubescent HellFire Club. Sabes said the way to get the Jean Grey School For Higher Learning was to go for the heart of the school. I’m still not clear as to why these brats want to destroy the school but oh, well. They determine the heart is Hank and off Sabertooth goes to get ‘im.
**Please note my full on rant about how I hate that Sabertooth is back from the dead is partially here and partially saved for the Wolverine Vol 4 Sabertooth Reborn arc.**
This is a good story we learn that the kids are behind their school and their headmaster. Logan learns a good lesson from them under the leadership of Angel (Warren). The battle of Beast and Sabertooth is a nice twist on the usual battle between Logan and Sabes. The dialogue throughout is snappy and true to the characters. I enjoyed it immensely but was very sad to see the Avenger vs X-Men big event crap comes in to disrupt what had developed into a fun and enjoyable title. This title was bringing back all I loved about the X-Men back in the day, the school aspects with the adventure and fun. My full on rant about that will be in my next Comic Comments. Let’s just say we are stuck with it until at least issue 17.
You know what is coming next – Spoilery comments on pages and panels.
Here we learn how Logan’s legs got twisted despite being coated with unbreakable admantium. I love how he won’t call in any of Scott’s people in to help. I can’t imagine he’s forgiven Magneto for all the torture he’s put Logan through over the years any way. I love the chatter between Hank and Logan in this scene. I don’t know but I am a sucker for the down time moment. I think it’s there the friendships are formed then the ties are hardened to unbreakable in battle.
Also I like how this page is framed and the art here works for me. EXCEPT the photo background that’s overexposed and blurred in the first and last panels. BUT I do like the x-ray of Logan’s broken leg there on the left of the several panels. So as I said I’m liking this more than his first turn on this title.
This made me laugh. I can imagine the cursing that Logan was mumbling while trying to deal with having accidently shredded his own wheels. Little does he know at this point that the students have gone on a mission to help him! Also it’s endearing to me that he dresses in a shirt and tie to teach, very old school proper of him – just how James Howlett was raised.
Meanwhile in the other story Hank makes it to the SWORD station to find Sabertooth there beating up on Abigail. They face off and Sabertooth points out the staleness of him going after the girlfriend to get to the man. It’s a sad ‘women in refrigerators’ ploy (if you don’t know what that is Google it and learn about women in poorly written comics). So much so I hope this will be the last time I see it used by him if he must be back. Sadly I fear it’s become a required trope in the minds at Marvel.
Here’s the finale page. Well for me at least there’s more in the comic.
Previously in this issue Warren aka Angel under the delusion that he is a real angel not just a mutant with wings tried to heal Logan but it didn’t work. (Thank goodness the headmaster has a healing factor.) That’s what Logan is referring to in this page. But no Warren, Logan’s old teammate, has a more important lesson to teach. Believe in your students headmaster, believe that they too can help you because children are the real miracle you are protecting here. Also it can be taken that the school, the staff and students all pulling together to help one another are what they must believe in, the miracle. However that’s to be torn asunder by AVX crap. So I’ll go with my first take. (psst that’s the transducer to fix Logan’s legs there on that panel in purple with Logan’s profile)
We also see the end of the battle where both Hank and Abigail survived as well as defeated Sabertooth again. The twist here in addition to going after Hank and his gal pal. Is that Hank’s gal pal winds up kicking Sabes ass. She’s not going to be put in the refrigerator! Also both of them survive to laugh again while holding each other together.
So that’s it. Until next time when we tackle the first 2 book arc of AVX that comes in this title.