It may be a little late but it’s an All New Uncanny X-Piles! That’s right folks, we are back to deliver our batch of X-Title reviews for your mutant loving pleasure! Unless you’re not a mutant lover, and in that case you’re probably spending too much time getting you Bolivar Trask cosplay ready than reading this. So, for those that are mutant and proud sit back as The Comic Book Clergyman, Spider-Man Geek, and Infinite Speech return for your All-New Uncanny X-Piles!
Brian Michael Bendis is great at wrapping up a story. This X-Men vs. SHIELD saga has seemed to drag on for a while, but this issue puts a nice bow on it.
Cyclops’ X-Men have brought trouble to the Jean Grey School once again, this time in the form of Sentinels and Helicarriers that are not being controlled by SHIELD. Once again, this thrusts all the X-Men back into unity again to fight off the attackers. We get to see the Jean Grey kids and the Xavier school kids in action here against this gigantic threat, and it’s really wonderful to see the dynamics.
In addition, Bendis brings Dazzler back into the fold after her recruitment as SHIELD’s mutant liaison and then victim of identity theft by Mystique. Dazzler is actually pretty awesome in this issue, as she is madder than hell. “Get me a Walkman!” That was a nice line that dates Dazzler pretty well.
The true hero of the day is Hijack, who was kicked off the X-Men by Cyclops. He comes back and totally redeems himself (although I was kinda pissed that Cyclops exiled him in the first place). Hijack seems to be one of the stand-out characters from this new group of mutants and to see him triumph was fun.
The mystery to who was behind the SHIELD Sentinel attacks was both unsatisfying and satisfying. SPOILER: It was Dark Beast the whole time. Because he was just in Astonishing X-Men recently, it was strange to see him show up again in this way. The surprise was a bit of a let down. However, the Hank McCoy of the AoA finally meets his demise in this issue, which was a relief. I’ve always found him to be superfluous in the X-Men world, and now that we have young Hank around, and present Hank who is becoming increasingly morally ambiguous, Dark Beast needed to go. Plus, having him killed off in an issue that Chris Bachalo drew makes a nice connection to the Age of Apocalypse.
I hope Bendis is working toward re-assembling the X-Men. This issue shows why it just makes sense. Personally, I’m tired of the conflicting camps and want to see these teams, especially the younger mutants, interact with one another. Maybe the upcoming “Last Will & Testament of Charles Xavier” will make that happen. -JJ
The greatest mutant custody battle since Cyclops vs Apocalypse for little Nate Summers continues in ‘Bloodline’. Jubilee has been trying to keep little Shogo safe but now his father has come to the X-Mansion for his son. He wants him back by any means necessary and he’ll go through the entire team to get it.
In what has been a solid story arc so far Bloodline seems to really falter in this issue. The story itself jumps around quite a bit but the transitions aren’t too clear. This makes it annoyingly confusing at times and really disrupts the storytelling. Wood is also establishing The Future (Shogo’s dad) as a formidable opponent but with the way the story is presented here that part might get lost. There is some pretty decent relationship building as we also get a look into Storm and her daughter, Kymera’s Throughout all of this the backup story by Wood is still pretty fun helped balance out the not so entertaining moments of the main story.
The art by Buffagini moves the story quite well and is pretty solid. The only sequence that doesn’t seem to look as well is during Jubiliee and Beast’s conversation. Most of the panels look flat and there was just so much blue that it just bored the eye. Doesn’t Beast work in a well lit lab anymore? For the backup story, Briones does fine work but the fact most of the story is in a plain Danger Room we miss out on some potentially good artwork.
Hopefully things turn around in this series because there is a lot of potential for some really great stories that don’t have to focus on the marquee X-Men all the time. -IS
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