Review: Death of X #4

death_of_x__4It’s the first true battle in the upcoming war between the Inhumans and Mutants this issue finally reveals the fate of Scott Summers aka Cyclops!

I’ve generally been down on a lot of Death of X which overall still feels like it’s a very small part of a story as opposed to something that’s really self-contained. And in some ways it is that small part. The story is what happened in the gap from when the Marvel Universe was reset again.

Since that kick-off fans have been left wondering the fate of Cyclops which has been hinted at and teased but never fully explained. We knew he wasn’t around and it was pretty clear he died, but there was enough leeway another fate might have befallen him.

And we get our answer here in a story that has enough twists to keep things interesting.

But, beyond the death of Cyclops, and a few other characters throughout this series,  what I think is most important is that by the end of this comic the X-Men are being positioned back to where they work best a philosophical idea as much as characters and action. While I don’t want to spoil things there’s an interesting back to basics feel about this comic which gets things back to “ideas.” When the X-Men began it was a series about the idea that mutants and humans could live side by side in peace. Over the years that has ebbed and flowed and by the end of this comic the declaration is made we’re getting back to the philosophy at their core. It’s a declaration as much to the reader as it is a foreshadow of things to come.

death_of_x__4-4The comic is good in that it answers at least one of my questions, why haven’t the X-Men just destroyed the clouds, but it also leaves some things open like why there isn’t even more of a fallout from the events in this series. It feels like things are a bit short and not resolved enough. For instance, another character sacrifices himself here for the greater good of mutants. You’d think that might come up somehow? Maybe things will now that the cat’s out of the bag?

But, for the issues I had with the storytelling the art is just a complete slide from what we had been seeing (which already had issues). There’s one panel in particular that has Emma Frost looking more like Beak. Artist Aaron Kuder had some troubles with character design that’s not consistent and at times atrocious. It’s one where I’m actually scratching my head trying to figure out what happened and what went wrong. But the art had me struggling.

The comic answers questions and foreshadows things to come, but it also leaves a lot of unanswered questions (how has Magneto not seen more of a backlash?). I have no idea if those holes will be filled, but the four issue series does what it set out to do, set up the conflict to come in the next big even, tell else who has died, and provide the fate of Cyclops. It does all of that, I just wish it did a bit more too.

Story: Jeff Lemire, Charles Soule Art: Aaron Kuder
Story: 6.65 Art: 5 Overall: 5.8 Recommendation: Pass

Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review