Callisto receives an invitation to see the White Queen, where she is offered a new role of White Knight. Her first duty, to meet the Marauders on Island M, where she informs the crew their Queen hasn’t arrived at Krakoa yet. As she then goes on to relay her decision to Masque and the Morlocks, Bishop heads to Madripoor to find what happened to Kate. His investigations lead him to boarding a boat under Verendi control even as a fishing net brings up an alarming discovery in nearby Madripoor Bay. Finally at a meeting of the Quiet Council Sebastian Shaw makes a point of mentioning the empty seat, forcing Emma to insist all is well, even as she pointedly undermines the Black King. That may just be checkmate Sebastian.
Shore Leave: The art is once again crisp, clean and flawless this issue, ideal for the depiction of the golden age the mutant community finds itself in with this new Utopia. The clean lines of Emma’s palatial digs are perfection, as is the fantastically grand appearance of Callisto, wielding her daggers in her inimitable style. Even as the art team changes it doesn’t diminish the dynamic style we have seen in the past but rather takes it and ensures a smooth seamless transition. All of which is in no small part down to both Stefano Caselli and Edgar Delgado, as not only the imagery fits perfectly with the voice of the story being told but also the colouring matches that of all that came before from Lolli and Blee. And as the script between Emma and Callisto sizzles with potential tension, so does every page of dialogue and action laden drama. Be it the meeting with these two diametrically opposed powerful and strong women, or the dramatic scene as Bishop capably weaves his way into the mysterious ranks of Vernadi and confirms the Mutant Laws don’t preclude violence. Bishop the hardass tactician.
Not Letting The Cat Out of the Bag: And yet another ambiguous and yet perfectly pitched cover from Russell Dauterman and Matthew Wilson. I admit to some trepidation at the fact it takes the removal of Kate as leader to allow Callisto to shine and also allow the rest of the team some measure of glory in the spotlight. And the deliberate way of avoiding revealing her fate and leaving readers hanging is killing me. But it allows so much development of other situations. The kiss between Christian and Bobby, which was everything. Emma doing what she does best, not only rubbing shoulders with Callisto but later in her interaction with Shaw, her words dripping with potential consequence. And then in Callisto’s chat with Masque, informing the reader what is going on with the Morlocks, as well as giving a plausible reasoning for the Marauder name. Watching Gerry Duggan knowingly referencing the past is reassuring as he nods to not only Callisto’s time as a model, but also the long history and the grudging respect displayed between her and Storm. And I loved the hilarious throwback to their very first confrontation in Uncanny X-Men #170, with Nightcrawler and Colossus swapped out for Pyro and Bishop.
Read Between The Lines: Thus proving Storm is ambidextrous it seems, perfect for an ex thief!! My only other concern with this issue was Lockheed, I don’t think I could handle him being dead. The tip off text message gives me hope that Kate had some prior warning about Shaw and at least faked being trapped to enable her to work under the radar. So I have a strong feeling that Kate will pop back up just when Shaw thinks he’s pulled off whatever plan he’s concocting and trip him up. As indicated in the sarcasm laden response of Emma at the Council meeting. What I really want to know is who is this informer? Someone who knew Kate from DC, which brings Days of Future Past to mind. And the datatext page gave us a lot of information, as well as the internet chatter giving us the knowledge Callisto and Masque were at least overheard. And is it possible any of the other posts have some significance regarding the Morlock inhabitants?
Places Please: Also it looks like Pyro in Savage Avengers #0 and Kate in X-Men/Fantastic Four #1 possibly happened before all this? Placing occurrences within timelines are always a vexing conundrum I find. There is one little inconsistency between this arc and the current story in Black Cat #7-8, where Wolverine is confronted by Kade Kilgore in Madripoor, who claims there not to be interested in Krakoa, just Wolverine. Can he be lying or is that a case of the writers there not knowing what’s going on over here?
The true magic is that Duggan and his team manage to keep the focus diverted from the end of last issue without even hinting at the outcome. And yet still manage to tell a compelling story with many other intriguing threads.
Marauders #7 Knives Out, Knights In
Writing - 9/109/10
Storyline - 9/109/10
Art - 9/109/10
Color - 9/109/10
Cover Art - 9/109/10
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