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Weekly Comic book reviews #12

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All the previous weekly comic book reviews can be found here!

Hi and welcome to another instalment of comic book reviews.

In this weeks roundup we have the big X Event of Age of X and also the anniversary comic of Marvel turning 80 years young and also over on the D.C. side of things we have the critically acclaimed mini series of DCeased. Read on for the reviews true believers!

The all new all different X-Men after reality changes for the mutants!

Age of X-Man – Marvel X-Men Mini Series 3 month event

Written byVarious

Drawn by: Various

The recent run of X-men, particularly over the past year has certainly been met with the ups and downs to say the least.  Despite trying to shake things up and provide all new and all different teams and storylines, nothing really seems to have stood out to really make the X-Titles be as important and meaningful as they once were and so here we have the next big storyline in Age of X.

For those who remember Age of Apocalypse, one of the most famous storylines in X-Men history this is not too dissimilarand almost feels like a spiritual successor to that series.  

Nate Grey AKA X-Man, one of the most powerful mutants on Earth has what can only be described as a mental breakdown and decides the world would be better without X-Men and so utters the famous worlds of ‘No more X-Men’.

From this point all X-Titles (with the exception of Uncanny X-Men) come to an end only to be replace with five, 5 part mini-series with an Alpha and Omega one shot issue starting and ending the storyline.

The plot summed up is that Nate Grey creates an alternate reality where mutants still exist in the world but the humanshave their minds tweaked so that they are oblivious to mutant powers being used.  In this world there is one thing that has been forbidden and that is love.

Each of the six storylines can all be read separately but all intertwine to some degree and all do follow a similar format of the mutants being unaware of this new world until cracks begin to show and suspicion arises and then this leads to the breaking free of this false world.

The books are:-

The Marvellous X-Men – The main X-Men team in this series and one of the standout titles – The X-Men in this book are the viewed as perfect heroes in a perfect world.

NextGen – Another great title spotlighting the younger mutants with strong vibes of Wolverine and the X-Men series from a few years ago, it’s got action and plenty of humour.

The X-Tremists – A band of mutants who protect people from threats they won’t even know existed – they are an undercover secret group preventing dangers.  

The Amazing Nightcrawler – in-between juggling his duties as one of the Marvellous X-Men, Kurt Wagner is the Hollywood movie star but things take a turn for the worst when a secret only Nightcrawler knows is exposed and puts the lives of those around him in danger.

Prisoner X – this book spotlights the mutants who have broken the law in the perfect mutuant paradise and so they are sent to the Danger room prison – a penitentiary filled with the roughest and meanest mutants who don’t fit into X-Man’s utopia.  The standout title and the most action and drama of all the books.

Apocalypse and the X-Tracts – In this series Apocalypse is the leader of a cult gathering more followers each day.  With Nate Grey having created a utopia for mutants, where nobody knows love. En Sabah Nur is the hero who has risen up to lead a rebellion against X-Man’s oppressive way of life and teach the ways of family and romance.  A fun read with a heartfelt storyline.

Overall each story is strong enough to warrant the 5 issues per series even if a couple of issues in each of the series can feel a little slow paced but I feel the scripts are strong enough andparticularly Age of X-Men Omega delivering an excellent payoff that the event deserves.

The art overall is strong with nice detail and sharp pencils though I did feel Prisoner X slightly could have done with more detail in the art and a neater look to the pencils but as a whole the visual aspects of the books are really good.  

It is an exciting and fun ride with all the titles being very enjoyable. I won’t score the individual series as I feel each needs to be read to appreciate the full story.  This isn’t as successful as Age of Apocalypse but I don’t think it ever set out to try to be compared to that despite the similarities in terms of an alternate world.  Nate Grey has always been one of my favourite X-Men and this story does him justice with a great story and satisfying ending.

Score out of 10:-

Story – 8

Art – 8

Overall – 8

The historical 80 years of marvel but does it justify the price tag?

Marvel 80th Anniversary special 

Written by: Various

Drawn by: Various

Marvel comics reaches its milestone 80th Anniversary this year and as part of the yearly celebrations, the have released this 80 page special.

The difference with this unique one shot title Is that each page is a single story told by a writer and artist and each is based on a single year of the 80 years history of Marvel, ending with 2019 (and even a sneak peak of 2020).

This is a clever and fun way of celebrating with my famous writers and artists who have been part of Marvels history at one point or another over the years.

The concept is good but sadly does quite pull off.  The majority of the 80 single stories just don’t have enough room to allow any chance of a meaningful story, which is understandable considering it is one page per story.

I actually found myself quite bored with several of the stories but it is good to see some excellent artwork, with the likes of Alex Ross, Chris Bachalo and Todd McFarland adding their skills to stories.

It may be a collector’s item in the future due to the sheer volume of writers and artist but as an enjoyable read I am afraid we will have to wait for another anniversary special to come along before justifying £10 on weak, empty stories despite great artwork in most of the pages.

Score out of 10:-

Story – 3

Art – 8

Overall – 4

What happens to heroes when the world is about to end? DCeased answers that question!

DCeased – 6 issue mini series

Written By: Tom Taylor

Drawn by: James Harren

In this 6 issue mini-series by everyone’s favourite writer of the moment, Tom Taylor is a fantastic else worlds story that asks the question, what would happened if the world was over taken by a zombie like virus… including the worlds Super heroes and villains.

The story starts were a mysterious techno organic virus is lands on Earth, the virus turns people into mindless crazed flesh eating zombie like creatures and is contracted electronically including TV, Social media and phones.

The virus spreads to 600 million people and it falls on earths heroes to tackle the issue while dealing with the undead viciously infected.

While the premise may sound fairly familiar to anyone who has a seen zombie invasion movies over the past couple of decades, Taylor writes a great spin on the genre.

Some wonderful covers are on display for all of the five issues of DCeased including #4 above!

The script is wonderfully written and with pure heart and passion.  Taylor clearly had so much fun with the idea and cast of characters and each issue flows perfectly.

An extra couple of issues wouldn’t have harmed flesh the plot out more and would have helped to provide more depth in the ending but overall I found the entire story completely captivating.

The art by Harren is also very well done, for some reason I did find issue 1 was much better than the rest of the issues art wise with more detail and neatness to the pencils but each issue is fine in it’s own writes in terms of art.

If you’re after a series that is pure excitement, with good cliff-hangers after each issue and a story with high impact and emotion (the conversation between Superman and his Jon in issue 5 is enough to melt the toughest of any heartstrings), then be sure to give this book a read.  It’s highly recommended.

Score out of 10:-

Story9

Art: 8

Overall: 9

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