Sometimes it takes more than instinct to face an enemy. It takes planning, deception and some good old manipulation but will Wolverine's plans be enough to help him face The Pale Girl who's been inside his head already...
Percy wraps this one up neatly. The cleverness in this story is not the conclusion but in it’s telling, jumping back and forth between the now and the then, Percy shows us the set up counterbalanced against the confrontation in the present. The misdirection works superbly as Percy manages to find that fine line of telling an action-packed, rather typical Wolverine story with some superb humor. Again it has to be said, things like the actual ending with Agent Bannister and his daughter are not surprising but rather neatly tied up with really good character writing. Percy is supremely adept at finding the right beats to inject a laugh in an otherwise serious story that manages to do several things that tie it very neatly into mutant kinds current status quo.
The first is by showing us who the real enemy is beyond that of the Pale Girl, without spoilers, this ties the book and this story to what has been happening in several other books most notably Marauders. The second and perhaps most importantly is how it places Wolverine within this new status quo. What Percy smartly does is balance the loner with the warrior who has learned a trick or two over the years, in fact, the manipulation and deal-making that go on in the set up are quite possibly the most entertaining part of the book as again it ties Wolverines actions to other books including Cable and X-Force. Percy’s Wolverine is down for a fight but also knows when he’s outgunned and needs help and it’s that balance combined with Wolverine’s very real humanity and care he shows for his human ally that really makes Percy’s Wolverine a pleasure to read.
The data pages inject an additional layer into the story involving Xavier and Beast which are more straight forward than say Data pages in other x-books but still help make the issue feel like a complete story. Although Percy does leave us the dangling thread of the Pale Woman and there are questions that still need answers although we now know who she was working for.
Then there’s the art. At the risk of gushing, Adam Kubert does not set a foot wrong. Every panel is the experienced perfection of someone that has absolutely honed their craft. Everything works, the double splash memory scenes neatly paneled with present moment panels, the glorious splashes, fans of Storm, Pyro, and Bishop are going to love the action scenes. This issue gets very James Bondesque action-wise and Kubert is up to the task and the dynamism in all the scenes action or more static is fantastic. Frank Martin’s colors are superbly complementary and overall honestly artwise this really is by far and away the strongest X-Book this week as far as I am concerned. Letterer Corey Petit spaces everything perfectly and quite honestly I feel kinda guilty I have no real critique to offer on the art end of things but the issue really is that strong.
Wolverine #3 is an excellently written and superbly illustrated issue that shows Percy's ability to make Wolverine a supremely interesting character beyond the stab and slash we know him for while the art team of Kubert, Martin, and Petit knock it out of the park in an issue with everything I want out of a modern Wolverine story.
WOLVERINE #3 : I Get By With a Little Help From My Friends…
Writing - 9/109/10
Storyline - 9/109/10
Art - 10/1010/10
Color - 9/109/10
Cover Art - 8/108/10
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