Storm and the Brotherhood of Mutants #1
Five years after the destruction of Arakko, the last free mutants are scattered throughout the galaxy, but Storm isn't the kind of goddess who takes annihilation lying down. Can she and her brotherhood infiltrate Sinister's secret lab, steal his Moiras, and reset the timeline before it's too late?
When you have a group of writers working together to tell a story that spans ten centuries, you have to compress things a little; this story opens with a Star Wars-style opening crawl, cheekily recounting the events between Storm’s confrontation with the Secret Sinister Quiet Council and the final destruction of The Broken Land. The story reads like an issue of an arc that we are picking up right before the bloody end, having missed everything else, and this is absolutely intentional. I can’t get over how effectively that opening crawl set the tone for what followed.
Ewing had a choice between writing an illustrated summary (perhaps allocating a page per year) of the first decade of this hellish timeline — the technique that Gillen used, to great effect, to launch this event— or he could give us a draught of actual story, with a plot, character motivations, and a tantalizing glimpse at what comes before and after. Ewing, to his great credit, chose the second method.
We glimpse Storm as a warrior who has been pushed to her limit, struggling with a few close friends (and a secret enemy) to save the world. We get a taste of who she has become, which is beautiful and terrible.
But this is not Storm’s story. Or rather, it is not just her story. She is being manipulated by someone else, someone who will burn down the universe to protect the one person she loves, even if she has to deliver the keys to reality itself to Sinister.
The tone is less horrific than I was given to expect, despite (or possibly because of) the references to the destruction of Alderaan and the deeply bleak Rogue One feel of the book; this is an adventure story/space opera. It’s fun, a ride that will (absolutely) move your heart, but it will do so as much from the twists in the plot and the resulting rush of adrenaline as from the violence inflicted upon characters for whom you care. This story functions as a thrilling roller coaster rather than a tragedy, which is a feature, not a bug.
Paco Medina’s art is ideally suited for the flavor of this space adventure. He slipped up a few times with the costuming of the Quiet Council during the flashback to Storm’s discovery and confrontation, but his fluid, action-packed panels were otherwise perfect. Jay David Ramos provided appropriately dark, gritty colors, with the only light emerging from energy beams, lightning, or explosions. Ariana Maher’s lettering was perfectly done.
This was a strong start to the dark timeline this event is exploring. Action, adventure, tragedy and love exist here in perfect balance. It's going to be difficult to wait for issue two.
Storm and the Brotherhood of Mutants #1: I Would Do Anything For Love (But I Won’t Do That)
- Writing - 9.5/109.5/10
- Storyline - 9.5/109.5/10
- Art - 8.5/108.5/10
- Color - 9.5/109.5/10
- Cover Art - 10/1010/10
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