He's back bub and as usual, if trouble isn't following him, he's walking straight into it... Wolverine is now a citizen of the mutant nation of Krakoa where he has found a new measure of peace being a protector of his people. But Wolverine's about to learn that a new nation means new problems and also that some problems never die or stay buried but come back to take a bite out of your peace and quiet...
We get a double dose of the old canucklehead with not one but two different stories from Benjamin Percy. The first story finds Wolverine pulled in to investigate the disappearance of Krakoan pharmacology which leads Logan and his X-Force teammates on a mission to find out who is responsible and put a stop to it. The story jumps back and forth in a nonlinear way, filling the reader in yet still maintaining the mystery.
Benjamin Percy exploits certain psychological truths about Logan Like he’s deep-seated fear of hurting his friends to his deep affection for certain fellow mutants like Jean and Kitty while exploring some new consequences of the new status quo. These consequences take the shape of a new street drug made with missing Krakoan pharmacology and this also leads us to the introduction of a new character investigating this illicit drug called Pollen named Agent Bannister (who I swear to god looks like Jonathan Hickman in the first panel he appears in for a second) and in a cult that’s arisen that worships mutant kind. The character writing is strong and the scenes between Logan and Jean as well as Logan and Kitty natural and organic. This story feels very much of the now and part of the new status quo, throw in some humor from Percy (see Quenten Quire’s crowd surfing moment) some X-force and it’s a thoroughly superb outing.
The writing is made even more enjoyable by the art from Wolverine veteran artist Adam Kubert and coloring from Frank Martin which is beautifully detailed, perfectly proportioned with each character rendered distinctly, I particularly like Kubert’s Kitty and there are several panel layouts that really just make the issue a class affair showing off Kubert’s expertise at what he does. There’s everything from gory bloody violence to heads in duffel bags in this one, throw in a mysterious adversary and a cliff hanger ending and well its pretty much everything one could ask for in a first issue story.
But wait there is more… after that tour de force we get a whole separate story but we switch up artists…
Story two is a little less contemporary feeling than the first and involves a threat Logan comes face to face with from his and mutant kinds past. Yes, there are the requisite elements of the current status quo including Krakoa, Magneto etc but this story looks to the past with a threat coming back to bite Logan and mutantkind in the butt or neck if you like. If you’ve read the preview you’ll know that Omega Red has come to Krakoa and Logan isn’t having it. The animosity between the two is well written and jumps off the page from Percy who writes Logan a lot more
stubborn in this story and characteristically headstrong in refusing and in fact not interested in hearing anything from Omega Red until Magneto intervenes..and that’s when things get got my attention.
Vampires and mutants have an exceptionally long history and in fact some of my favorite X-Men comics involve X-Men and Vampires but its hardly an original concept. Percy does, however, manage to add an interesting spin though and in the process, we get to see some of good old vampire slice and dice, a new vampire hunter character and a very clever pseudo comic science data page on the nature of Logan’s blood which is really the center of this story. All of this ultimately leads us to the return of an ancient enemy who I am sure will be making trouble for Logan and Krakoa sometime in the future!
I really like Victor Bogdanovic’s lines and movement, His style works very well with the horror aspect of this second tale. Great paneling and superb use of black really give the right atmosphere to the story and I have to say whoever thought of switching between black and white between the panels is to be complimented because it works really well in drawing one into the page. Add in Matthew Wilsons moody blues and plenty of arterial red and its a great second piece setting up another story avenue.
Other notes: VC’s Cory Petit’s lettering is tight all the way through the issue. I particularly like how it syncs with the page layout in the opening pages of story one and the main cover colored full red by Adam Kubert and Frank Martin is an impactful and eye-catching show of violence but tempered with the butterfly on our characters hand…which is a nice touch.
it's a double feature with an issue one that showcases exactly why Benjamin Percy is the writer to take us onward into the next era of stories about Marvel's most popular Canadian mutant. Percy obviously loves the character and that comes through in the writing. This combined with top-notch art from Kubert, Bogdanovic and the art teams make it a very solid and promising start to the series that really makes you feel like you got your moneys worth for this oversized issue.
WOLVERINE #1: Brand New Problems and Very Old Problems
Writing - 10/1010/10
Storyline - 9/109/10
Art - 9/109/10
Color - 9/109/10
Cover Art - 9/109/10
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