So… Wolverine is dead (spoiler), but a team has risen to take his place. Wolverines #1 is their story.
Previously in Wolverines: It is the dawn of World War III. In mid-western America, a group of teenagers bands together to defend their town, and their country, from invading Soviet forces.
NOT THOSE WOLVERINES
If you went into this series thinking it was about the ’80s teen action drama Red Dawn, then you probably didn’t hear the news that The Wolverine is dead – or at least as dead can be until Marvel Studios gets their character back, or until a lull in sales necessitates his revival. And that revival will come, mark my words.
If this is your first time diving into the world of Wolverines – it is a first issue after all – Marvel continues to do a great job by giving readers a heads up of what has come before. I think every publisher should jump on this concept. Granted, it does eat up a page of story, but it also makes new series and issues easier for new readers. When introducing new characters, this is a must have page. Who are these mysterious test subjects? Shogun, Neuro, Endo, Skel, and Junk. We know what their powers are, but can they survive in the outside world? And how soon before their captives (Mystique, Sabretooth, Lady Deathstrike, Daken and X-23) retaliate?
They don’t get a chance in this first issue, as the group arrives back at the Paradise labs looking for something. There they run into the Wrecking Crew, and all heck breaks loose. This issue quickly devolves into page after page of punching, kicking, dismembering, eye plucking, and more, as the Wolverines are taken down one by one. The frustrating part about this issue, isn’t that everyone is fighting – everyone needs a good fight issue every once in a while – but rather the MacGuffin doesn’t appear, and the fate of Wolverine is left up in the air the moment Mister Sinister disappears. Of course that moment also gives us the trigger for his return.
There are a few surprise moments that I didn’t expect to see in the issue, but overall this is a fairly average issue. This is a weekly series, so perhaps things congeal in the coming weeks.
IT’S NO PATRICK SWAYZE
Like the story, the art in this issue is what you expect to see in comic books. I always enjoy seeing what Nick Bradshaw comes up with next, and he does a great job in bringing a massive team fight to the page. The events take place in the destroyed Paradise labs, which gives Spencer and inker Walden Wong a chance to really fill the background with rubble and a lot of what-not. The best parts of this issue are the double page spreads (there are four of them in this issue), that allows the story to open up, and not feel too confined to a regular comic book layout.
As far as the layout goes, Nick doesn’t always stick to the normal square/rectangle format, instead giving us panels at an angle, panels that overlap, and gutters that contain additional “stuff”. This makes many pages feel more dynamic and I hope he continues to do that through this series.
BOTTOM LINE: PICK IT UP FOR THE FIGHTY FIGHTY
If you want to see a team of super humans fight it out and get bashed around left and right, then this is the issue for you. The is filled with little necessary dialogue (except at the very end), so don’t expect any major revelations to be made in this book. Overall, this is an above average issue, with a lot of fighty-fighty action. Pick it up to see the Wrecking Crew and the ghost of a demon ninja telling Shogun to kill Sabretooth.