Can my thoughts on a book be considered unbiased if I got the book cheap in a sale? I’m not sure, but it’s a factor in the discussion. I read some of Ed Brubaker’s X-Men comics but that’s about it since Grant Morrison’s run for recent X-Men stuff. I will always have an affection for the mutant books – I grew up on the Claremont run – but I don’t really think about them any more.
My reason for trying this: Matt Fraction was part of the team that bought us The Immortal Iron Fist, which was amazing; Terry Dodson is a fabulous artist, especially for superhero books that have women in them; I was curious and it was cheap (I am honest, if nothing else).
There’s a lot going on in this trade paperback – the X-Men are now based in San Francisco, Colossus is getting over heartbreak by punching Russian mobsters (NB: it’s a ridiculous coincidence that the gangster in San Francisco was the same man in Peter’s home town threatening his father), Beast and Angel are looking for super scientists to solve the mutant problem, Scott and Emma are still going but with interesting tweaks to their relationship, ex-mutants are turning up at the compound looking for refuge. However, it’s all rather enjoyable and feels modern and new, which is how it should be with the X-Men. It’s drawn beautifully by the Dodsons (did Fraction deliberately do the issue in Cyclops’ mind with all variations of women he’s ever looked at just for the Dodson art?) and Fraction has a nice feel for the mutants, and I love the little data dump beside the first appearance of the character; it’s a cool touch.
The annual wasn’t as quite as enjoyable – Mitchweiser’s art is a bit scratchy, Acuna’s smooth art in the flashbacks is all right but verges on the cartoony in place, and the story seems to be a justification for plot developments in Dark Reign, something I haven’t been following.
Summary: overall enjoyable, and I’ll take a look at the next book (unless it’s all Greg Land art).