Major X #1
Inside the mansion, a mysterious Major X and a Beast look-a-like are battling X-Force in the X-mansion, the victors going back and forth. Wolverine joins the fray which allows Cable to gain the upper hand.
During the questioning of X, however, a Deadpool shows up (this one with…shoulder pads). He’s looking for Major X but by then X-Force has regrouped and together they all take on Deadpool…and start losing.
But suddenly ANOTHER Deadpool shows up, this time the one from the reality we all know (without shoulder pads). With his help, the other-Deadpool is defeated and Major X faces X-Force to explain why he is there. He removes his helmet to reveal himself…
So Rob Liefeld has returned to the franchise that made him a superstar.
I’m not exactly sure what I was expecting with this series. I know what I’m expecting from the fans. A lot of vitriol. Either I compliment his work (in which case the Liefeld haters jump down my throat) or I criticize it (in which case I get accused of getting on the anti-Liefeld bandwagon).
And there’s some truth to the Liefeld defenders. He gets so much flak for not being able to draw and ripping off characters, but let’s face it, he saved New Mutants from cancellation and ushered in the 90’s era. In fact, so many people won’t even give this book a shot because it’s from Liefeld.
I’m here to say that those people are wrong.
It’s not because this is some amazing book, blowing my mind, leaving my jaw on the floor as one of the best books in recent memory. It’s not, it didn’t, and my jaw is just fine.
But let’s face it, with what Liefeld has contributed to the X-Men mythos, it at least deserves a read.
But the book itself is plagued with virtually every problem Liefeld has ever been accused of having…except maybe drawing feet. There are plenty of feet in this book and they’re drawn just fine.
But problems with perspective have always plagued Liefeld’s drawing and this book is no exception. Some of the action scenes make no sense, there’s way too many teeth in peoples’ mouths, zero backgrounds, etc (although one could argue that last is just an artistic license so that’s not a real big complaint).
And the story is about as blah as you can get. Major X isn’t given much in the way of backstory other than being some badass from a future which was being erased. We have a Wolverine with no explanation and no real reason to include him (and yet no other X-Men). And the big reveal is about as cliché as you can imagine (and something I could guess at before the book was even released).
Even as I started compiling my thoughts for this review, I tried to not get too nit-picky. Yes, I’m a comic geek, and most reading this are comic geeks, but it still doesn’t do anybody any good to get so bogged down by small details. But when it’s so blaring, so in your face, so obvious, and when the major protagonist is so uninteresting, it’s hard not to. There are so many inconsistencies with what actually happened in New Mutants #98 (the story this spins off of), not the least of which being that the X-Men were off in space and X-Force wasn’t branded until X-Force #100. It’s as if Liefeld just included his favorite members and ignored the rest.
Still, this isn’t without its redeeming parts. Liefeld, as always, draws action dynamically. It’s exciting…like watching a Michael Bay movie. His close-up faces are great to look at, and the opening splash page is beautiful with the mix of pencils, inks, and outstanding colors.
And I do thoroughly enjoy how he does successfully mix in some scenes right out of Deadpool’s first appearance, including Cannonball’s takedown of Deadpool (although in this case he takes down the not-Deadpool) and the real Deadpool’s arrival on a mission from Tolliver.
Still, it’s not a good book. And that saddens me. While I don’t think that Liefeld deserves some of the criticism (and definitely doesn’t deserve the outright hate), I was genuinely hoping for more. I was hoping to see some sort of improvement 25 years later.
Still, at least Major X didn’t have ANY pouches.
If you’re already a big Liefeld fan, you’ll probably enjoy it as much as any of his other works. If you can’t stand Liefeld, you’ll hate it. And if you’re like me, and recognize Liefeld’s work for what it is, and hope that maybe he’s improved over the past 25 years, you’ll be sorely disappointed.
Major X #1: No More Pouches At Least
- Writing - 5/105/10
- Storyline - 3/103/10
- Art - 7/107/10
- Color - 8/108/10
- Cover Art - 3/103/10
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