Spoilers for the new Wolverine comic-
Wolverine has lost his accelerated healing factor. He’s been defeated and mocked by his arch-nemesis Sabretooth. Where does he go from there, and does it really demand a relaunch? Either way, here it is, my breakdown of the “pretty cool” vs the “pretty lame.”
New costume: It’s supposed to be function over form here, hence the armor that can supposedly “take a nuclear blast,” so why leave the face open in cliché superhero outfit fashion? – pretty lame
External claws: I suppose the character would want to use a similar fighting style, so they kind of “make sense” in universe, and sure someday there will probably be a scene where whatever they are made of isn’t good enough, and he has to pop his own. That’ll be great to mine for drama, and this is understandable, but – pretty lame.
New team: Wolverine is running with a team of supervillains, because he was made an offer he couldn’t refuse. We’re told in solicits and interviews it relates to revenge on Sabretooth, but they can string that along for a while, it’s ok. In the meantime Wolverine is leading this team of younger, less experienced villains. He’s hooking up with one, re-enacting fastball specials with another, and getting the benefits of some extra abilities from the last. Can he keep them from breaking too bad? Can they keep him alive? Wolverine at this point is basically a reformed villain anyway, and they have a lot they can learn from him. – pretty cool.
Scar: I’m torn here. It really stretches my willing suspension of disbelief to accept that his healing factor is completely gone, I have to go on thinking that it’s still accelerated vs. normal humans, just not as strong as it was before. This doesn’t help that. It could be a great way to tell which stories take place after “Killable” though, especially company wide, so if done right, this could be – pretty cool.
Training session with Black Widow: I don’t care how infrequently he uses them, he should know his way around guns already, plain and simple. In the past he’s always been portrayed as a master of pretty much every killing art. He did lose some of his fighting techniques because of Dr. Rot, so maybe that explains this too, but why guns anyway, what about all his samurai past, is he THAT pissed off at swords? – pretty lame.
Killing a dude: So after Logan and his team rescue a Hand ninja (supposedly from Sabretooth’s organization) one of Sabretooth’s supposed representatives is revealed to actually be a reporter. Wolverine then appears to shoot and kill him. This is your cliffhanger and mystery to wonder about until next issue. We know Wolverine didn’t actually kill a good guy, so the question is what part of this situation is faked/false/etc. They just explained that Wolverine agreed to only non-lethal crime though, and he went out of his way to make sure his team did too. So unless they are doing a complete fake-out, this is more awkward than intriguing, and also – pretty lame.
Lack of drama: We started the issue with Wolverine established on the team of bad guys, which means we flashed past some events. They flash back to a conversation with Storm, and while it isn’t an all pleasant one, after the drenchingly melodramatic “the Wolverine is dead” line from the last volume, at least we’re spared the melodrama of how he must “leave the school for good.” That does make this whole thing feel more like a side mission than a real change of character (and let’s face it, he’s in too many books with different agendas for that road to have worked anyway) but taking out all the drama, well, takes out all the drama. Pretty much everything in this issue is said and done for the sake of exposition anyway, but beyond that it doesn’t seem to have much meaning. – pretty cool and pretty lame.
My overall rating: 3.25 out of 5
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