Saturday, May 12, 2012

X-Men Legacy: Aftermath TPB

These bridge trades are always a bit odd. X-Men: Legacy needs some time to catch up from two recent X-crossovers, Second Coming and Age of X. The first couple issues of this trade deal with the first, and then the last few issues all deal with the fallout from Age of X. Mike Carey wrote Age of X, so those chapters make a lot more sense and entertain me more than the first couple issues.

In the aftermath of losing his hands, Hellion’s actions are under review. Cyclops and some of the other X-Men are worried that Hellion is turning bad. They’re worried after he used excessive force in taking down erstwhile X-Man Sentinel Prime. (That’s her name, right? The Indian lady from the beginning of Carey’s run?) I don’t know Hellion at all, and I’m not a huge Hope fan yet. For me, the most interesting part of this story is seeing Random, the mutant hit-man, working with the X-Men. I wouldn’t have guessed he’d be a hero, but here he is.

I do find the idea of a powerful telekinetic missing his hands to be pretty interesting. If you can manipulate everything with your mind, why do you even need those primitive things? Hellion doesn’t see it that way yet, but I think there is a lot of potential with the character after that development.

I like seeing the fallout from Age of X in the rest of the trade; it’s worthwhile to see Carey wrap up some of the interpersonal strands he’s created. When given the chance to forget what happened in the alternate world, most of the X-Men choose to forget it, the time is just too painful. But Frenzy wants to remember the time she was actually a hero, and involved with Cyclops’ alter ego of Basilisk. Now I’m starting to see how the character was softened up for her appearances in the current Legacy title.

Carey also puts the Gambit/Rogue romance to bed for a bit. Gambit is certain of his feelings for Rogue, but he tells her he’s going to back off until she’s sure. I guess that’s leaving Magneto a nice opening to try and get back on the scene. (I’m firmly in the Gambit camp, he’s a much better match.)

It’s too bad that after such a dramatic cover, the interior art is so much weaker. Paul Davidson is OK, but his art is a bit generic, almost like the DC house style. Harvey Tolibao typically puts a weird reflective sheen on the faces of too many characters. Are their skins all made out of metal?

Rafa Sandoval is more solid, but I’m not a huge fan of his work either. I think Carey’s best work on the title has been with Chris Bachalo and Scot Eaton. Too bad Carey didn’t ever get matched up with a top-tier or more classic artist.


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