August 16, 2010

The Uncanny X-Piles IV

Welcome back to The Uncanny X-Piles, where each week X-junkies Andy and Jeff review the latest X-books! Unfortunately, this week we missed out on one book, X-Men Forever 2 #5, due to complications in getting a hold of the issue. I’m sure many of you will lose sleep over this. So check back each week as Jeff and Andy romp around in the Danger Room!

Dark Wolverine #89
Writers: Daniel Way & Marjorie Liu
Artists: Stephen Segovia & Paco Diaz

Here we are, part III of the FrankenCastle-Dark Wolverine cross over story, where Frank is trying to enact his revenge on Daken for cutting him up in the Dark Reign: The List: Punisher one-shot. Basically Castle has Daken on the ropes and is about to blow him away when Wolverine shows up and tells Castle he’s got to defend his kid, even if he’s a punk ass. A battle ensues…which was awkward at times. Sure, the art was cool in this issue, but there was a really weird moment where Wolvie is all pissed off and charges at Frank. He looks like he’s flying at him really fast, but then he swipes with his claws and… he chops the tips off of three of Frank’s fingers. Yes, the tips. Right. Here he was, charging and leaping at Castle full boar, yet somehow he manages to pull off a finesse swipe that nips the the tips of Frank’s digits. This is supposed to be a ferocious attack from Wolverine? And the worst part? He pulls the same move again a few pages later! Yep, he’s playing possum and then we hear “snikt,” see a menacing grin on Wolvie’s face, and then he slices off the tips on all the fingers of Frank’s other hand. It was almost comedic. Yet, somehow, these little cuts were able to cause FrankenCastle enough pain to affect him, when the beating he took from Daken didn’t really phase him that much. Also, Wolvie was missing his claw sheathe things on the back of his hands in some panels. I know I know; it’s nit-picky, but artists should know better than to leave those little metal nubs out! Still, all this silly stuff aside, it was a good issue and the art was pretty. Things end bad for Frank, and I feel like I may be getting my wish of “FrankenCastle no more!” once this little event is wrapped. -AL

Ultimate Comics Spider-Man #13
Writer: Brian Michael Bendis
David Lafuente

I love this series. I think Ultimate Spider-Man was one of the best Ultimate titles since its inception, and when the whole “Ultimate Comics” relaunch happened a little over a year ago, this book has maintained its integrity, and has even gotten better. The Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends direction has been a highly entertaining one to see play out, and even though our boy Iceman doesn’t get much face time in this chapter, it certainly seems like he will in the next issue. Bobby Drake and Johnny Storm have been buddying up with Peter, not only living with him at Aunt May’s house, but also attending Peter’s high school. Plus they team up while doing superhero stuff.  In this issue though, Peter’s been captured by the Chameleon(s?), and they aren’t making it difficult to figure out that they know he’s Spider-Man. The issue ends with one of the Chameleon’s taking Peter’s Spider-Man stuff (since he’s walking around with Pete’s face on) and going on a crime spree as Spidey. This of course ruins his image in the public eye, and it’s now up to Iceman and The Human Torch to rescue their friend and set the record straight! …which we’ll see in the next issue. -AL

X-Force: Sex & Violence #2
Writers: Craig Kyle & Chris Yost
Artist: Gabriele Dell’Otto

For all of you who think I’ve been pretty down about the X-books, I’ve got a surprise. This week was GREAT! I guess the title of this book says it all. Kyle and Yost once again prove that they can pull together all the things that I personally love in a comic book–violence, great character dialogue, humor, attention to continuity, obscure characters, action, and “romance”–and do so seamlessly. This issue picks up right where last issue left off. Wolverine and Domino are in big trouble, thanks to Domino. For someone with luck powers, she sure knows how to step in it big time. Not only do the duo have the Assassin’s Guild and the Hand after them, but a slew of C-list Marvel villains like Boomerang, Black Mamba, Clay, Bushwacker, and even a couple I had to look up on the Marvel Database! Of course, none of these guys has what it takes to defeat Logan or Domino, but it sure is fun to watch them try! The funniest moment was Logan slashing up Razorfist while Domino made jokes about him the whole time. This story is just working on so many levels, from the unlikely sex scene dropped in the middle of the book (which is somehow believable with these two characters) to the “Odd-Couple”-play-offs between them. Dell’Otto’s paintings are just astounding and worth all the time it took for this book to come out. He makes every panel pop with all the killing and seduction a comic book can hold. The only way this book could have been better is if they just made it a MAX book and included everything they wanted. It’s kind of like watching Pulp Fiction on TBS where they’ve censored all the graphic parts. I wish that Marvel had kept Kyle and Yost on an X-book after Second Coming, as it’s their books that have kept me excited about the franchise. How great would it be to see them on a MAX X-Force book? One can only hope!

X-Men #2
Victor Gischler
Artist: Paco Medina

It took me a second to get into this issue, as I felt like the first page was missing. Wolverine and Colossus were immediately doing something and it felt like I missed something, but later we find out that they had been sent during the day to find some sleeping vamps. Despite this one minor bit of confusion, I was immediately drawn into Logan and Piotr’s dialogue, which somehow Gischler has nailed in his first go with these characters. Their conversation during the ensuing fight was like Gischler had been writing the X-Men for years. Then he threw Storm into the mix and felt like for the first time in a LONG time, I had my X-Men back and doing some awesome stuff! Gischler obviously knows his X-Men well and isn’t afraid to mess with the mythos. There’s a fantastic part where the classic Fastball Special doesn’t quite work out as planned, and it was hilarious! I’m kind of indifferent about Blade, but his appearance is not contrived, although his inclusion so quickly into the gang might have been. I liked how both mutant and vampire sides are explained in this issue. The vampires are really after Wolverine (isn’t everyone?) so they are using Jubilee to get at him. And the X-Men’s strategy on fighting the vampires is kooky and full of trouble, which makes me hungry for more. This plan simply cannot work out well! As always, Paco Medina doesn’t disappoint. His style is so sleek and clean and is so reminiscent of the John Byrne-Neal Adams style, but more updated. Overall, this is the X-Men book I’ve been waiting for. Forget the Five Lights…bring on the Vampire War! -JJ

For all things X-Men, click here!

Andy Liegl

Jeff Jackson



  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Jacob Spiwak and Jacob Spiwak, Comic Attack. Comic Attack said: Check out this week's edition of THE UNCANNY X-PILES! #comics #marvel #xmen […]

  2. I think you not getting X-Men Forever is a sign that we should not review the Forever books. Forever.

  3. @ Jeff – Amen!

  4. lol

    I would have covered it, but my store sold out before I could grab it. Notice how upset I am.

  5. Sold out? Did they order only 2 copies?

  6. We only ordered 1 for the shelf. The rest were subs!

  7. Billy

    I’m really enjoying the new X-Men series. I think its really well done for a first time X-Writer.

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