In the world of professional wrestling, you always have to watch your back. Your tag team partner might one day turn heel, your longtime ally may be harboring resentment. So what does AJ Styles do when someone he counted as a friend turns to foe? Find out in WWE #24 from BOOM! Studies, on shelves now!

WWE #24 ReviewWWE #24 REVIEW

Writer: Dennis Hopeless, Bill Hanstock
Artist: Serg Acuna, Kendall Goode
Colors: Doug Garbark
Letters: Jim Campbell
Cover: Marco D’Alfonso
Publisher:  BOOM! Studios
Release Date: January 2, 2019
Cover Price: $3.99

Previously in WWE: Last issue, A.J. Styles, the WWE Champion, held a grueling match against Universal Champion, Brock Lesner. The Champ vs. Champ match was at Survivor Series and Styles put up a valiant effort, ultimately failing. Little did he know that a college and fan was in the wings, watching the match, and making plans of his own for the WWE Champion.

WHY CAN’T WE ALL JUST GET ALONG!

November 19, 2017, in Houston Texas at the Toyota Center, Survivor Series 2017 took place. Every main event focused on a Smackdown Wrestler taking on a Raw wrestler. Backstage one wrestler, Shinsuke Nakamura, focused on one match, AJ Styles versus Brock Lenser. Afterward, Shinsuke greets his friend and fellow competitor as the WWE Champion returns backstage, offering his gratitude for such a phenomenal match with rooftop pizza. The two superstars sit on the roof of the Toyota Center, eat pizza, and remember their matches. As they remember their own match in Japan, Shinsuke tells Styles it was a near perfect match, and how he would enjoy competing against The Phenomenal One again. Styles agrees, but with the caveat that he doesn’t have much say in the number one contender for his title. Shunsuke tells him not to worry, he will take care of that. Two months later, he does. At the 2018 Royal Rumble, Shinsuke entered the titular match at number fourteen, eventually eliminating Roman Reigns to win. His prize, the championship match of his choice. He chose to battle for the WWE Championship against AJ Styles, keeping his word to Style, and setting the two up for a match at WrestleMania 34 at the New Orleans Superdome. The match was epic, with the two warriors giving it everything they had, but AJ Styles eventually triumphed by pinning his opponent in the middle of the ring.  Styles held on to the Championship title, and Nakamura, in gratitude for the amazing match against a good friend, kneeled in front of Style to present him with his belt; moments before nailing him with a low blow and dismissing him with a “You’re Welcome.” Styles, infuriated by the after the bell blow, hunts for Nakamura in vain.

Later, during a taping of Smackdown Live, Styles is looking to continue his reign as Champion as he battles Daniel Bryan, a match in which Nakamura interrupts with another attack on Styles, again calling out, “Your Welcome.” as he cost the Champion the match.

Why as his onetime friend turned against him and how far will AJ be willing to go to get his revenge? It’s a battle of the ages when Shinsuke Nakamura battles AJ Styles at Money In The Bank! Can he cash the check?

BRINGING THE NUCLEAR HEAT AND THE SATISFYING POP!

I was a wrestling fan for years, watching Memphis Wrestling back in my young years and all the major promotions that sprang up in subsequent years. I have an autographed photo of Jerry “The King” Lawler in my office and I occasionally still talk wrestling with my close friends. This, however, was my first wrestling comic book and I have to say, it was fun! Writer Dennis Hopeless (All-New X-Men, Spider-Woman) takes a real-life wrestling storyline, the Styles/Nakamura feud, and adds another layer to it, all while keeping it kayfabe and entertaining. It is so satisfying, almost like watching a behind the scenes show, that you can almost see this as how. The characterizations of the wrestlers are great and ring true to their professional personas while adding a layer of drama behind the scenes. Basing it all around the real events of the ring makes for a satisfying story, and the entertainment level is wonderful. Serg Acuna (WWE: The Lunatic Fringe, WWE: Then. Now. Forever.)) provides the art and does a wonderful job of capturing the likenesses of the WWE Superstars. His figures are dynamic and fluid, having a sense of weight and speed that mirror their onscreen escapades.

There is a short two-page pack up story as well. “One True BFF” is written by Bill Hanstock (WWE) and illustrated by Kendall Goode (The Doorman, The Pride). It tells of the odd friendship shared by Superstars Nia Jax and  Alexa Bliss, with the two describing their points of view with the narration passing from one to the other as panels illustrating various points in their careers. It is it is a very effective storytelling technique and despite having not seen them wrestle, I can say it was very interesting. The two have different visual styles and the idea of them being besties seems like it would be a classic case of opposites attracting. An entertaining, if short, read.

BOTTOM LINE: A GREAT BOOK THAT PIQUES MY INTEREST FOR MORE

Wrestling has a lot in common with comics. Both mediums involve telling the stories of people who push themselves to do great things and sometimes suffer defeats before obtaining victory. This issue does just that. It gives you the hero, AJ Styles, as he deals with a bitter betrayal from a friend, Shinsuke Nakamura. It is a great story and shows another side of something that became a major storyline in the wrestling world.

WWE #24 has a lot of heart and excitement, leaving you wanting to see more of these four-color matches.

WWE #24

80%
80%
A Great Book

WWE #24 has a lot of heart and excitement, leaving you wanting to see more of these four-color matches.

  • Writing
    8
  • Art
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  • Coloring
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About Author

Back in February of 2008, Stacy Baugher wrote his first article for Major Spoilers and started a solid run of work that would last for over two years. He wrote the first series of Comic Casting Couch articles as well as multiple Golden Age Hero Histories, reviews and commentaries. After taking a hiatus from all things fandom he has returned to the Major Spoilers fold. He can currently be found on his blog, www.stacybaugher.com , were he post progress on his fiction work as well as his photography and life in general, and on Twitter under the handle @stacybaugher . If you're of a mind, he also takes on all comers with the under the Xbox Live Gamertag, Lost Hours. He currently lives in Clinton, Mississippi with his understanding wife, and two kids.

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