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Returning To The X-Men: Powers Of X #4

It’s been nearly six years since I last picked up a new X-Men comic with any real consistency. The last series I read with any regularity featuring the merry mutants was Jason Aaron‘s Wolverine and the X-Men. Which apparently ended around six years ago. It’s fair to say that I’m a little out of touch with that side of the Marvel Universe (though I have been following both Old Man Logan and Dead Man Logan, but those series didn’t really involve the X-Men as much as a team book would). More than a little, honestly. A lot has happened in the six years I’ve been away, and since I barely pay attention to solicitations I have missed most of it.

But with Johnathan Hickman steering the X-Men in a new direction with both House and Powers Of X, I thought this might be a good time to start reading X-Men comics again.

But how easy is it to jump back in relatively blind after more than half a decade away? Join me, and I’ll tell you.


Expect spoilers as I try to make sense of the comic.


At this point in the story, as we tip the bridge and start the journey to the end, it’s pretty easy to follow along with the story in general. There are still moments that have me wondering what I’ve missed in the last six or so years, but they’re fewer and farther between at this point which means that as the series has progressed it has been less alienating to new readers.

Which makes sense, honestly.

If you weren’t able to follow a story at this point then you’d have to wonder just what in the hell you’d been reading for the past eight comics/

Powers of X #4

The only real struggle I had with the issue was the nature of Mr. Sinister’s appearance. Issue is a strong word, because I had always seen the character as a darkly sinister scientist, not what we saw here. Still, I’ve long accepted that there are things I don’t know because it has been a long time since I’ve read about certain characters, and this wasn’t enough to throw me away from the story.

Otherwise, the comic is a easy enough to follow, acting as a place for readers to learn more about how the Krakoan home for mutants came to be, and the depths of Xavier’s plan over the years. It’s a needed exposition issue (especially for the person wondering whether this was talked about before the event began), and certainly a welcome change of pace after the death heavy House Of X #4 last week.

The artistic team of R.B. Silva (pencils), Adriano Di Benedetto (inks) and Marte Gracia (colours) remain strong, giving the comic a bold yet classic look across each page, breathing a vivid life to Hickman’s story.

“You see I know how you humans love your symbolism, almost as much as you love you religion. And I wanted you – I needed you – to understand… you have new gods now.”

Magneto, House Of X, #1 p.47.
I keep leaving this image and quote in the column because, for me, it’s emblematic of the series as a whole. It’s Hickman, through Magneto, setting the stage for the future of the X-Men.

Powers Of X #4 was a great change of page for the story, and consequently builds the anticipation for House #5 after last week’s comic. We all know that somehow things will be resolved to a new status quo (after all the solicitations that I have seen are pretty clear about that), but how has yet to be revealed.

I can’t wait to see what’s going to come our way next week.


Will I understand next week’s installment in the saga, House Of X #5? Do I regret skipping six years of X-Books? Am I ever going to find out how Xavier is walking again*?

We might find out next week. We might not.

Marvel provided a FREE copy for review purposes, but I read the comic in print from my LCS.

*The answer is yes, but it made no sense when two of my friends told me individually last week, but it basically boils down to “comics being comics” which I’ve kind of accepted with an air of nonchalance.

Review: Venom #18

Venom #18

Absolute Carnage” continues within the pages of Venom #18 with lots of action and some solid humor.

Donny Cates gives us a comic that feels like it stands on its own with the “Absolute Carnage” event. Dylan and Normie Osborn are still with the Maker as we learn about Sleeper. But, the focus is on the Maker who we all know is up to something more than he’s letting on.

Cates is able to mix humor and action to deliver a comic that feels like it’s solidly paced and just pure entertainment. This is a comic you can pick up and just enjoy, no thought needed. Just enjoy the experience.

That’s helped by the art of Iban Coello. There’s something that fits so well with this issue as far as the art. Along with Rain Beredo’s colors and Clayton Cowles’ lettering, it all comes together for a visual treat. The style and choices are entertaining and there’s a cute innocence in the art that belies the more horror nature of the underlying story. Instead the art style plays towards the humorous aspect of the story.

Venom #18 is just a solid comic. It does what it needs to do and does it in an entertaining way. There’s solid jokes in both dialogue and visuals and together it all creates a comic that feels like part of an event and not at the same time.

Story: Donny Cates Art: Iban Coello
Color: Rain Beredo Letterer: Clayton Cowles
Story: 8.15 Art: 8.25 Overall: 8.2 Recommendation: Buy

Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: Powers of X #4

POWERS OF X #4

Writer Jonathan Hickman continues to weave his reshaping of the X-Universe in Powers of X #4. The issue slows things down a bit lifting the veil on details of some of what we’ve seen.

The comic returns to its time jumping premise taking us through the three eras exploring X-History and future history. We witness the deal between Mr. Sinister and Xavier and Magneto, Doug Ramsey meeting Krakoa, and the future dealing with Phalanx.

Hickman takes the first two to fill in gaps in the story he’s telling. It adds some details and depth in a way. The Sinister interaction is interesting in some of the details but as a whole, the character is at odds with what we’ve seen. This Sinister is a bit more playful and spirited reflecting the version we’ve seen in recent years as opposed to the more serious scientific version originally introduced. One could explain this by the use of various clones but that too feels more like a recent addition than something from when the character was first introduced.

What’s interesting as well is we get further hints that Charles Xavier isn’t a hero in this story but something more nefarious. It’s his vision but as we see, he takes actions that are questionable at best. It’s a theme that has gained prominence over the years and continues here.

What stands out is the hint at future plotlines. Pages are used for a rumor checklist that seems to be more about what’s to come than anything else. Some o it is easy to decipher, some of it is drama, and one is groan-worthy.

R.B. Silva‘s art is fantastic. Along with color from Marte Gracia and lettering by Clayton Cowles the comic is beautiful to look at. Each segment has such detail to go over, you linger on pages. And, each segment is so different from each other but it still flows nicely. The team delivers has really thought through design and the use of color to set the tone of each time period and segment. Furthermore, Tom Muller‘s design continues to add a level of detail in the comic that makes it feel as much a sourcebook as it is a story.

Powers of X #4 feels a bit dialed back compared to the last few issues that upped the action. It adds some detail, some needed, some not. What the comic does is world build and deliver a unique experience and vision for where the X-Men have been and where they’re going.

Story: Jonathan Hickman Art: R.B. Silva
Color: Marte Gracia Letterer: Clayton Cowles Design: Tom Muller
Story: 7.5 Art: 8.5 Overall: 7.5 Recommendation: Read

Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: The Wicked + the Divine #45

“At every occasion, I’ll be ready for the funeral.”-Band of Horses

The Wicked + the Divine #45

Like the David Bowie song, five years is all we got with The Wicked + the Divine, and writer Kieron Gillen, artist Jamie McKelvie, and colorist Matthew Wilson go out on top in WicDiv #45, which is set 40 years after the events of the previous issue. It’s a thoughtful issue in the vein of The Sandman “The Wake” and is a fantastic character study as Gillen and McKelvie show what happens when the Pantheon grows old beginning with the much guarded secret of the final cover.

The entire issue happens at Cassandra’s funeral and wake so it’s fitting that the first big reveal is that she and Laura ended up married after a relationship with Eleanor. Speaking of Eleanor, it is so strange to see Lucifer as a senior citizen, and McKelvie does a fantastic job with all the wrinkles, crow’s feet, and other accoutrements of age for a group of characters that I, at least, thought would all flame out in their twenties. But, no, they get to live and reflect on life and relationships beneath the eaves of Valhalla, which has been turned into a National Trust site. There is continuity in the earlier Daft Punk/futuristic elements of Valhalla, but Wilson uses a more muted color palette in keeping with the somber occasion.

One of the most beautiful elements of WicDiv #45 is the interweaving, naturalistic conversations about the characters’ relationships as Gillen and McKelvie do a more graceful version of “Where are they now” with a good mix of grid layouts and wider panels. We get the last word on Zahid and Valentine with the brief return of Baal’s Nathan Fairbairn colored fresco as Zahid wistfully talks about how they have never been or will be with such a force like Baal. It all comes to a climax with Cassandra giving her own eulogy hologram-style, and what, in lesser creative hands, could be a pop-joke about the exploitation of Tupac or Prince turned into a wonderful final analysis of the Pantheon from the sharp, yet loving mind of a journalist turned goddess turned mortal.

The Wicked + the Divine #45

Although there are remarks about Laura being Cassandra’s “vice”, Cass’ final speech shows that she has become a little sweeter in her old age and that the conflict and drama of the two years of the Pantheon didn’t even matter to the end. When she calls Umar, who was feeling pretty down in his dialogue and missing Cameron something fierce, the best person she had known, it resonates emotionally because she isn’t the kind of character to hand out compliments willy nilly. She even gives Eleanor, one of the people she detested the most, the kudos for basically going hard and being the best embodiment she should ever be. Luci was the catalyst for me taking a Milton seminar in undergrad and, by extension, writing about comics academically so that series of panels landed hard.

After remarks on all the remaining Pantheon members, Kieron Gillen flexes his writing muscles and Jamie McKelvie’s flexes his facial expression and gesture ones for a poignant monologue on aging, which is honestly what WicDiv #45 is all about. There was the high energy, passion, action, and fandom of the early arcs supplemented by the greater context of the specials and “Mothering Invention” finally culminating in the Pantheon realizing that they could opt out of the millennia-long cycle of death and rebirth as ordinary humans. (Except Aruna can play the fuck out of a double neck guitar.) This issue shows the product of this mortality and has some awesome group hugs as the death of Cassandra causes surviving, former Pantheon members to come to terms with their mortality.

And because of how much Gillen and McKelvie have fleshed out this cast of characters over five years, The Wicked + the Divine #45 is an easy comic to self-identity with, especially when Laura faces the reader, does a final 1-2-3-4, and there’s a fade to white. Getting old is something that both scares me and is something I’m in denial of, and seeing characters that I felt like I grew up with wrinkles, long happy marriages, and stories of the past makes it a little more palatable. For a series that had a fairly large body count and had some dark relationship dynamics, this happy ending is a delight and an ode to building relationships and craft your own destiny and story to get a little bit meta.

This is a bit obvious to those of you who have been following me on my WicDiv reading/reviewing/interviewing, and yes, living journey the past five years, but The Wicked + the Divine is my favorite comic of all time. Sure, Sandman and The Invisibles are up there, but with WicDiv, I got to go on the journey each single issue, or step, of the way and theorize, weep, celebrate, and even build friendships along the way. It’s a book that’s always been about the big ideas like life, death, the creative act, but always had time for the little things that make life great like puns, pops, literary allusions, and fantastic costume design from Jamie McKelvie.

Even though I’ve been in denial since Monday when I read the final issue, The Wicked + the Divine #45 is the perfect ending to the series with Kieron Gillen, Jamie McKelvie, and Matthew Wilson’s carefully crafted words and visuals on aging, looking back, and looking to the future. This is a comic that has engaged both my head and heart. Like Ananke, and in this issue, Cassandra say, “I love you. I love you all. I’ll miss you.” This comic will always have a beloved place in my heart, and I look forward to rereading, reminiscing, and recommending it into the decades to come even as I begin to look like the characters in this issue.

Story: Kieron Gillen Art: Jamie McKelvie 
Colors: Matthew Wilson Letters: Clayton Cowles
Story: 10 Art: 10 Overall: 10 Recommendation: Buy

Image Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Returning To The X-Men: House Of X #4

It’s been nearly six years since I last picked up a new X-Men comic with any real consistency. The last series I read with any regularity featuring the merry mutants was Jason Aaron‘s Wolverine and the X-Men. Which apparently ended around six years ago. It’s fair to say that I’m a little out of touch with that side of the Marvel Universe (though I have been following both Old Man Logan and Dead Man Logan, but those series didn’t really involve the X-Men as much as a team book would). More than a little, honestly. A lot has happened in the six years I’ve been away, and since I barely pay attention to solicitations I have missed most of it.

But with Johnathan Hickman steering the X-Men in a new direction with both House and Powers Of X, I thought this might be a good time to start reading X-Men comics again.

But how easy is it to jump back in relatively blind after more than half a decade away?


Expect spoilers as I try to make sense of the comic.


The explosive ending of House Of X #3 promised a follow-up issue that was going to be notable in the series for one reason or another, and Hickman wasted no time in letting us know that is exactly what we’re in for with House Of X #4.

House of X #4

When it comes to the point of this column, exploring whether a new reader can effectively just jump in with the current X-Event with only enough X-Men knowledge to recognize a few characters, well the answer is a clear and obvious yes when it comes to this comic. Simply because the issue is wall to wall action with very little plot beyond the X-Men accomplishing their mission whatever the cost.

And ultimately that’s where the main draw for this issue lies; the cost of that mission.

Above and beyond that, there isn’t much else to this comic.

Oh, the reverberations will be felt at least until the next issue, but the cost will be refunded based solely on the solicitations for the books to come after this event; which honestly leaves the book feeling a little hollow, but it’s still an enjoyable issue on the surface. And certainly not one you need a ton of X-Men knowledge to enjoy.

Which makes this issue a bit of a conundrum; although I enjoyed the story within, having seen the solicitations cheapened the impact of the comic significantly. Though not as much as the in-built Deus Ex Machina established earlier in the event. Still, it’s an enjoyable book and one that’ll likely prove integral for the event going forward.

“You see I know how you humans love your symbolism, almost as much as you love you religion. And I wanted you – I needed you – to understand… you have new gods now.”

Magneto, House Of X, #1 p.47.
I keep leaving this image and quote in the column because, for me, it’s emblematic of the series as a whole. It’s Hickman, through Magneto, setting the stage for the future of the X-Men.

Will I understand next week’s installment in the saga, Powers Of X #4? Do I regret skipping six years of X-Books? Am I ever going to find out how Xavier is walking again*? Did I get the right release schedule?

We might find out next week. We might not.

Marvel provided a FREE copy for review purposes, but I read the comic in print from my LCS.

*The answer is yes, but it made no sense when two of my friends told me individually last week, but it basically boils down to “comics being comics” which I’ve kind of accepted with an air of nonchalance.

Review: House of X #4

House of X #4

The assault on Mother Mold continues in House of X #4 that ups the action and the body count. When it comes to emotion and action, writer Jonathan Hickman delivers with this issue. While it’s entertaining, the issue also rings a bit hollow. We know the series coming next and he’s created a Deus Ex Machina in Moira X to undo anything in the series.

And that’s a lot of the frustration at this point. Hickman ups the body count but we know it’ll all be undone at some point. The question is when and to what extent.

House of X and its sister series Powers of X feels less like the next X-epic and instead Hickman’s version of the manga All You Need is Kill. Mission failed? Head back in time and try it again! While many might think Hickman’s hook is original, it’s not. All he’s done is used it to make sense of the rather convoluted history of the X-Men.

Still, House of X #4 delivers some emotional moments as characters die. But, even those emotional moments are about as deep as a Michael Bay film. We even got a spin on the “I’ll die so you can live” moment that Bay loves. It adds to the “popcorn film” shift Hickman has made in his last couple of issues. The issue is Bruce Willis in Armageddon in comic form.

The art continues to be amazing. Pepe Larraz‘s pencils with color by Marte Gracia and lettering by Clayton Cowles pops on the page. The character designs are amazing and it’s the art that drives the enjoyment of the issue. The art brings the big-budget action to the screen in a sense.

The issue is driven by the action and whether Cyclops and his team will complete their mission. But, with Hickman’s hook in Moira X it doesn’t matter as things can be done over and over. The fear of finality is taken away. Along with knowing the series that are next, the deaths in the issue ring rather hallow. House of X #4 leaves us with a comic that’s an inch deep on inspection. While enjoyable, it rings rather empty in the end.

Story: Jonathan Hickman Art: Pepe Larraz
Color: Marte Gracia Letterer: Clayton Cowles Design: Tom Muller
Story: 7.0 Art: 8.5 Overall: 7.0 Recommendation:
Read

Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Returning To The X-Men: House Of X #3

It’s been nearly six years since I last picked up a new X-Men comic with any real consistency. The last series I read with any regularity featuring the merry mutants was Jason Aaron‘s Wolverine and the X-Men. Which apparently ended around six years ago. It’s fair to say that I’m a little out of touch with that side of the Marvel Universe (though I have been following both Old Man Logan and Dead Man Logan, but those series didn’t really involve the X-Men as much as a team book would). More than a little, honestly. A lot has happened in the six years I’ve been away, and since I barely pay attention to solicitations I have missed most of it.

But with Johnathan Hickman steering the X-Men in a new direction with both House and Powers Of X, I thought this might be a good time to start reading X-Men comics again.

But how easy is it to jump back in relatively blind after more than half a decade away? Join me, and I’ll tell you.

There’s nothing in Powers Of X #2 anywhere close to as spine tingling as this moment from House Of X #1. Full quote below.

Expect spoilers as I try to make sense of the comic.


Much to my surprise, I was expecting to read House Of X #3 last week, not Powers Of X #3, and it wasn’t until I opened the comic that I realized just how much I had been looking forward to the comic.

If you’ve been reading the entire series so far, and by that I mean everything under the House/Powers Of X banner then you’ll have absolutely no problem reading this comic. That said, you can also get away with just having read the House series. I’ve noticed that this seems to have more of a focus on the Now of the Marvel universe, and consequently is actually a little harder for me to follow who is who (unlike the future focused Powers Of X that starts everybody off on the same footing), but House Of X has a more cohesive story that works alone or intertwined with the sister series.

House Of X #3 has got perhaps one of the most classic X-based story tropes (or at least one of the things I attribute most to the X-Men): Sentinels.

I’m not sure whether it’s because of the X-Men: Animated Series and that amazing theme music, or some of the earlier comics I read featuring Sentinels (despite reading X-Men issues across decades because of reprints, Operation Zero Tolerance was one of the first stories I read as it happened, once I was finally old enough to get to a comic shop a city away from my home town in England), but for me the X-Men’s classic enemy has always been those giant extermination machines.

And so it is, for the first time in a very long time, that I got to watch the X-Men in action, on a deliberate mission rather than reacting to threats to a school (the Jean Grey School from Wolverine And The X-Men). I’d forgotten how much I enjoyed that.

What I didn’t remember was how creepy Professor X is when he looks kinda like Ultimate Reed Richards.

Then you have the near-religious language of Xavier… and it feels like a crack in the veneer. That we might be finally seeing the villain in the story, but I think that might just be my feelings around Xavier bloody walking again. And being creepy.

Yet again, the mutant language and bonus pages return, which add a far more interactive layer to the comic than you would otherwise expect if you have the time, patience or google ability to translate it. I have none of these things yet, but I’m fond of the option that Hickman has provided us.

This issue showcases the X-Men at their most efficient. We get to see the team plan and begin to execute an operation – and crucially, we see the reactions to that. It’s a really interesting turn of events and one that I am pleased to have read in print.

“You see I know how you humans love your symbolism, almost as much as you love you religion. And I wanted you – I needed you – to understand… you have new gods now.”

Magneto, House Of X, #1 p.47.
I keep leaving this image and quote in the column because, for me, it’s emblematic of the series as a whole. It’s Hickman, through Magneto, setting the stage for the future of the X-Men.

There’s also another fantastically quotable Magneto line in this book;

“For you to die, you would have to be forgotten…”

Magneto, House Of X, #3 p.5

I feel like eventually, this column will just be full of Magneto quotes, but I am oddly okay with that. I hope you are, too.

I can’t wait to see what’s going to come our way next week.


Will I understand next week’s installment in the saga, House Of X #4? Do I regret skipping six years of X-Books? Am I ever going to find out how Xavier is walking again*? Did I get the right release schedule?

We might find out next week. We might not.

Marvel provided a FREE copy for review purposes, but I read the comic in print from my LCS.

*The answer is yes, but it made no sense when two of my friends told me individually last week, but it basically boils down to “comics being comics” which I’ve kind of accepted with an air of nonchalance.

Review: Venom #17

Venom #17

Venom #17 drops the series right into “Absolute Carnage,” the event spreading from the Spider-Man titles. It’s also a follow-up in some ways to the one-shot Absolute Carnage: Separation Anxiety.

Venom is off with Spider-Man attempting to stop Carnage’s plan but that leaves his son/brother with the Maker. Yes, the Maker, the evil Reed Richards from the Ultimate Universe. Some of the issue is hinted at in Absolute Carnage #2, also out this week. And having read that first, I really wanted to know what happened in this issue. What’s entailed is pure action with a style that’s reminiscent of films of the 80s and 90s. Quips. Guns. And just solid action moments.

Writer Donny Cates delivers fantastic pacing and energy in this comic which is one piece of the bigger puzzle of the event. On its own, it doesn’t quite stand but in the bigger picture, it’s great. There’s a good mix of action cliches that just makes the comic work and makes it fun.

The art by Iban Coello is fantastic. The color from Rain Beredo and lettering by Clayton Cowles, it all comes together to really stand out and pop. There’s also some solid page layouts that are really interesting towards the beginning of the comic. Venom is a series as a whole that has consistently solid artwork to accompany fantastic writing.

Venom #17 is a great comic as part of the event. For those not checking that out, it doesn’t quite work. But, there’s still something to it in that being stalked/horror story way. Cates is consistently delivering an interesting Venom and even in an event tie-in finds new aspects to add depth to his world.

Story: Donny Cates Art: Iban Coello
Color: Rain Beredo Letterer: Clayton Cowles
Story: 8.0 Art: 8.45 Overall: 8.1 Recommendation: Buy

Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: Absolute Carnage #2

Absolute Carnage #2

Things are looking desperate in Absolute Carnage #2. Venom and Spider-Man are surrounded by Carnage and his horde and that’s even before we get to Miles Morales’ story.

Writer Donny Cates continues to deliver an event that brings a tinge of horror to the Spider-Man universe. Carnage is on a mission to resurrect the symbiote god and he’ll need to kill a lot of people to do so.

What Cates delivers so well is the feeling of desperation. Spider-Man and Venom are outnumbered and know it. That feeling of people overwhelmed is projected to the reader nicely. There’s a sense of drowning concerning it all. That experience is repeated quite a few times within the issue. And that also leads the first problem.

The issue delivers some of the events we see in Absolute Carnage: Miles Morales #1. While it comes off as the “Reader’s Digest” version the two stories don’t quite line up in all of the details as far as what’s show in each. Some of that may be chalked up to different perspectives but it stands out. Also, the spin-off’s depiction of events feels a bit superior to this abbreviated take.

The art by Ryan Stegman is pretty solid. With ink by JP Mayer and color by Frank Martin, it looks really good. It’s not all perfect. There are moments where Stegman’s style doesn’t quite match the “horror” vibe of it. And, in one particular panel, Pete’s facial expression doesn’t quite match the moment. Stegman’s style is usually fantastic for Venom and Spider-Man but here it misses the tone a bit. What does hit the vibe is Clayton Cowles‘ lettering which just nails Carnage’s “voice” so well. It stands out and emphasizes the terror in every scene he’s in. It’s a perfect match of a lettering style to a character.

Absolute Carnage #2 is a good entry in the stand out event. The issue has some flaws but those are minor compared to the entertainment.

Story: Donny Cates Art: Ryan Stegman
Ink: JP Mayer Color: Frank Martin Letterer: Clayton Cowles
Story: 7.75 Art: 7.75 Overall: 7.75 Recommendation: Read

Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

Review: House of X #3

House of X #3

The fight for the future of mutantkind continues in House of X #3. Jonathan Hickman‘s rewriting of X-history and the forging of its future is going full throttle. Cyclops puts together his strikeforce to take on Mother Mold and the battle begins!

Hickman continues to shift more towards a more traditional X-Men story as the issue is full of action and suspense. Gone is the philosophical worldbuilding and instead, the focus is on the battle. There’s still worldbuilding in the continuation of one-page excerpts that define aspects of the story.

While the action is entertaining, the characters still feel a bit off. An exchange between Magneto, Professor X, and Cyclops feels cold. Professor X continues to seem more like the colder Magneto than his formerly teacher-ish self. The banter between teammates too isn’t quite as quickfire as needed. Instead, most of the dialogue is focused on the crew manning Mother Mold. It’s the most interesting of the bunch in that storyline.

Where things get a bit punchier is a second story involving Sabretooth. He’s standing trial in a human court and special prison. But, he also gets counsel in the White Queen. What she says is the most intriguing and delivers a bit more details in what Hickman has set up. It’s also a concept we’ve seen before, a pattern we’ve seen numerous times in this event. But, it has lots of potential for future storylines and also helps tie up some outstanding issues involving the X-Universe’s involvement with the rest of the Marvel Universe.

One of the major draws is the art by Pepe Larraz. With color by Marte Gracia and lettering by Clayton Cowles, it stands out. This is some of the best looking X-Men comics in years. The framing of scenes and design of “sets” are above everything else. There’s just an energy about it all and a flow to the art that enhances the action. Add in the design elements of Tom Muller and you have a beautiful comic to look at and an action-packed comic to read.

House of X #3 is the most traditional of Hickman’s X-Men entries so far. It’s all about the action and the battle to come. With Cyclops in the lead, we get some of the more expected banter between teammates though dialogue as a whole feels sparse, This is one that’s about the visuals taking you along for a rocket ride of an issue.

Story: Jonathan Hickman Art: Pepe Larraz
Color: Marte Gracia Letterer: Clayton Cowles Design: Tom Muller
Story: 8.45 Art: 8.5 Overall: 8.5 Recommendation:
Buy

Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review

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