Old Man Logan #4. I was really looking forward to this comic at the beginning of the week – hell, it was my top pick in Graphic Policy’s Top Comic Picks. I’m sure you can guess by that opening that I wasn’t all that impressed with the overall product; it was good, and it is worth picking up if you’re reading the series, but this issue alone won’t sell you one the series as a whole.
Why? Well to answer that I’ll be spoiling the issue below. If you don’t want spoilers stop here.
With the first arc of this series coming to a close, the stage is set for What Happens Next for Old Man Logan. Featuring both Steve Rogers and Kate Foster, Old Man Logan #4 features some spectacular artwork. Honestly, it’s worth picking this up for the art alone, and were it not for the ending I’d have really enjoyed this comic because if you’ve read Extraordinary X-Men #1 then you’ve seen the end of this comic.
Had the first four issues in this series been released prior to the first issue of Extraordinary X-Men, or had Old Man Logan appeared later in that series, then the ending would have been far stronger. As it was it felt a little… forced. By having the final page of this series essentially mirroring the final page or two of Extraordinary X-Men and I honestly felt a bit cheated by that, but I’m not overly sure why. Maybe if the meeting of the X-Men and Old Man Logan had been a bit more subtly hinted at rather than the in your face appearance, but your mileage may vary significantly there.
There are certainly some nice touches here that highlight the differences between the dead Wolverine and the very much alive Old Man Logan; where one was an honourable man who’s word was his bond, the other is a jaded shell of the hero he was. With Old Man Logan Jeff Lemire has, so far, done a great job in highlighting the differences between the two; and despite being given a second chance at a new life, Old Man Logan is still very much broken by what happened to him before he arrived in the current Marvel Universe. If anything the first four issues tell us that while this man was Wolverine at one point, he isn’t anymore. This is an entirely different clawed mutant, and Lemire has forced that realization upon us by having Old Man Logan come face to face with a past that was never truly his. It’s a brilliant scene that is then lessened somewhat by the ending to the issue.
My issues with the ending aside, I really enjoyed the first part of Old Man Logan #4, specifically the panel layouts and the art on the two double page spreads of Old Man Logan facing off against Steve Rogers were almost worth the price of the comic alone. That the rest of the comic couldn’t compare to that sequence is a little bit of a shame, but it’s not entirely unexpected; those two pages are probably some of the most interestingly laid out fight scene panels that I have read from Marvel in a long, long time.
Although I had problems with this comic, it certainly wasn’t terrible. When you look at the first four issues as a whole package (especially if read prior to the start of Extraordinary X-Men) then you’ve got a solid start here that drops off from the consistent quality of the first three and a half issues drastically toward the end. Now that this series has caught up, so to speak, with the X-Book, and established Old Man Logan is aware where he is isn’t his past, it’ll be interesting to see which direction Old Man Logan takes in future issues.
Story: Jeff Lemire Art: Andrea Sorrentino Colors: Marcelo Miaolo
Story: 7 Art: 9 Overall: 8 Recommendation: Read