Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Wolverine & the X-Men #23

Good work, Jason Aaron! The seeds are planted for an eventual Nightcrawler return. I had assumed the Bamfs were hopefully going to tie into something, and now I’m even more sure. With that character popping up at the close of the Frankenstein arc, I think it is fairly safe to say there is groundwork being laid, and that Kurt Wagner at least has a shot to return. Yay!

I think it is safe to say this is now my favorite comic. (Don’t worry, Daredevil, I still love you too.) What puts this book over the top is how well Aaron handles the huge team. I’ve always loved team books, and Aaron’s expansive cast scratches so many itches.

He’s got a ton of classic characters on the school faculty; Storm’s recent arrival adds so much. Seeing Wolverine and Warbird chomping at the bit to slice up Frankenstein, only to be pulled back by the more moral Storm, it’s a great one-panel exhibition on the many personalities on the team. And speaking of personality, I think Jason Aaron’s Wolverine might be my favorite take on the character ever. He’s funny and personable, but still on a hair trigger to pop those claws and hurt people. Seeing Logan this way reminds me why he’s the most popular character in comics (or at least in the top three).

The new students are wonderful too. I miss Broo, but Genesis really fits in the same role quite well. He’s honest and respectful, and giving this guy the same origin as Superman just makes his hokeyness even more earnest. Idie is a great contradiction of violence and piety, and Rockslide writes himself. My favorite of the students is Shark Girl. I was reading this issue with my daughter and she took to the character instantly. She thought it was a Shark Man, and when I told her it was actually a new X-girl, you should have seen her eyes light up.

And Nick Bradshaw. His killer clowns, Frankensteins, and devils look wonderful. I sort of wish his Storm re-design was sticking around, the swimsuit look really worked for her. I absolutely love his Wolverine. Logan is sporting the short-ear look, sort of reminiscent of some Ed McGuinness stuff I’ve seen. I’m not a huge fan of spiky Iceman, I wonder what Bradshaw could do with his sleeker look? That’s not a complaint on the art though; how could anyone not enjoy the Snowball Special?


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