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April 30, 2014

The All-New Uncanny X-Piles 165

Hey X-ophiles! We are only a few weeks away from X-Men: Days of Future Past. Perhaps you have been away from the fold for a while and in anticipation of the movie, you are wondering what’s going on in the X-books these days. Well, look no further! Oh wait, this week we got a flashback Wolverine story and an alternate future story. Never mind. Enjoy the reviews from SpidermanGeek & the Comic Book Clergyman anyway!


Cover_Savage_Wolverine_017Savage Wolverine #17
Writer & Artist: Richard Isanove

Some of the best Wolverine stories are the most tragic, and this one is no exception. Over the course of the last few issues, we have been treated to Richard Isanove’s beautifully rendered take on a past Wolverine story.

Logan is at his best when he’s got his back against the wall, but what Isanove does extremely well is put his back against the wall along with a helpless family. When Logan is used as the defender of the weak, he is really compelling. Yet where Isanove has pushed this story has been really tragic.

It seems that being friends with Logan is not in anyone’s best interest. In 1933, Logan has strong ties to a family, but when the family crosses paths with some really bad gangsters, Logan is made their protector. However, lest you think this story has a happy ending and everyone comes out unscathed, you’d be wrong. Every part of this story arc has had Logan fail somehow at his job of protecting the family. Everywhere they go, death and destruction follow them. This issue is the conclusion to the story, and while it ends on a satisfying note, it’s not altogether happy.

Seeing Logan as flawed, imperfect, and not being the best at what he does is a welcome status quo. Isanove does a perfect job of characterizing him in this story, and I want to see more of this Wolverine. The villains in this story are truly scary because they are just normal, and really bad guys. You don’t always need super powers to make someone deadly.

On top of the excellent story, Isanove’s painted panels are simply beautiful. This book just looks beautiful. He doesn’t spare the violence either, as there are some scenes that are just difficult to view.

This book has had little to no buzz, but is going to make a fantastic hardcover or trade. This story should have been the real “Origin II,” as it depicts Logan in a vulnerable and growing state in his history. Marvel needs to take note that these types of Wolverine stories, done by Isanove, could make a great series of graphic novels for everyone’s bookshelves. –JJ

Rating: 8.5/10

Cover_Uncanny_Avengers_019Uncanny Avengers #19
Writer: Rick Remender
Artist: Daniel Acuña

After Wasp’s capture and Havok’s escape, Eimin gathers the X-Council to plea for final action against the rebellious mutant. After much discussion and plot exposition, Cyclops and Storm lead the operation to take down Havok. Meanwhile, Havok meets with Thor, Kang and a selection of time-displaced villains known as the Chronos Corps who have been who have been plucked from their own dying timelines. The group is now on Planet X, tasked with breaching the Tachyon Dam to go back in time, save the Earth and consequently, the other timelines.

Rick Remender has been crafting quite the epic in his Uncanny Avengers book. This story might even be too large to contain in a single title, but I will not be one to complain because having such an event take place without feeling obligated to fork out cash for useless tie-ins and one-shots is a welcomed change.

Remender manages to tell this story while making us sympathetic to both sides here. Without a doubt, Eimin is as nuts as they come, but you find yourself seeing the rest of the X-Council’s point. Planet X is their world now, and they want to do what they can to preserve it. They have built lives, bore children, etc. Then over in Havok’s camp, Remender makes sure that we as the reader understand the motivations of the Chronos Corps and why the mission to restore the timeline is so important in regards to the “big picture”. I even found myself not faulting Kang for doing what he had to do to ensure that Havok succeeds in doing his part.

I’ve typically always liked Daniel Acuña’s work. He has a unique signature style and I respect an artist that can handle every aspect of his craft. Acuña’s Inks are particularly sharp here and I’ve always been a fan of his panel layouts with certain characters protruding from the boxes here and there. They are used sparingly and to great effect. The artist’s color work is also fantastic and seems stronger every time I’m privy to his latest stuff. The time-displaced villains all look great too, and I loved seeing Iron Man 2020, Dr. Doom 2099, and symbiote May Parker again.

The bottom line is that Rick Remender’s Uncanny Avengers title might not be everyone’s cup of tea and can be quite confusing for anyone being dropped into the middle of this current story, but if you’ve been reading from the get-go, chances are that issue #19 offers a very satisfying piece to the current act’s puzzle with Acuña’s beautiful visuals and Remender’s great grasp on the way each character should and are handling the situations they find themselves in. And hey… I don’t think anyone died in this issue. Bonus! –SG

Rating: 8.5/10


What did you think about this week’s X-books? Let us know below! You can check out more X-Piles right here!




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