While X-Force infiltrates Xeno, Hank McCoy is dealing with the barest minimum of repercussions for his latest bout of megalomaniacal villany. With all of this squabbling and espionage, can any of the team survive?
I’d like to start this review by expressing my sincerest admiration for Robert Gill’s art. The opening panels, featuring a close-up of Domino getting the opposite of the Pleasantville makeup job, are almost breathtakingly beautiful. His clean lines, detailed backgrounds, and general artistic mastery would make this book an enjoyable read all by themselves. GURU-efx’s colors add flavor and depth, filling out the lived-in feeling generated by this world.
As I’ve mentioned before, Benjamin Percy is an underrated writer. He thinks like a novelist, utilizing pacing and sprawl to generate the highest possible impact from his stories. His character work was absolutely spectacular in this issue. Colossus’s inspired (heh) cry for help was a highlight, as was the team’s decision to give Hank the silent treatment and defer completely to Sage. One must wonder why McCoy is still on the team, but I suppose that he’s embedded too deeply within the fibers of Krakoa to ever be truly rooted out.
Xeno’s bespoke bodies business is horrific, in every sense of the word — sending shivers up the spine in both a Cronenbergian and a Hegelian sense. And now Henry McCoy has inadvertently armed them with the secret to Krakoan resurrection. This cannot end well, and I look forward to watching the inevitable train wreck.
I did have one small quibble with the storytelling on display: the fact that the plot hinged on makeup. As I said, the scene was beautifully composed, but given the almost ubiquitous prevalence of both image inducers and Mystique-DNA-based shape shifting technology, why was Neena so dependent on using skincare products that weren’t even waterproof? Does Percy not watch Drag Race, because that’s a show that Deadpool almost definitely watches and he did her makeup.
The fact that the plot hinged on the facts that 1) Domino was using makeup rather than any of the other technologies available to her and 2) that makeup was water soluble was the sloppiest writing that Percy has indulged in to date. The fact that this sloppy writing really is very, very minor only highlights the overall extremely high quality of the writing throughout the rest of the series.
In short, this was an action-packed, beautifully drawn, incredibly well-written installment in a story that has never disappointed. I cannot wait to see what happens next.
X-Force #36: Always Buy Waterproof Makeup
- Writing - 9.5/109.5/10
- Storyline - 10/1010/10
- Art - 9.5/109.5/10
- Color - 9.5/109.5/10
- Cover Art - 10/1010/10