on 13 November 2007
Here we have a title that tries quite hard to be important and overshoots the runway...
Basically, the story focuses on what could be the final clash between Wolverine and Sabretooth. Sabretooth being my favourite Marvel character, and the rivalry between these characters also being my favourite, I felt it my duty to buy this book (having only glanced at Wolverine Issue 55 in the past).
Well, where to begin? Bianchi's art would probably be the best place to start, it's nothing short of gorgeous and beautifully detailed, making each fight between these characters (and of course there are a lot of those throughout this book) as exhilarating as the next. And the dialogue itself is not that bad either, or at least, both Wolverine and Sabretooth remain in character. However if you are keeping up with any other X-men titles, the problems with the writing become glaringly obvious pretty quickly.
The book opens with Wolverine challenging Sabretooth at the X-mansion. If you have been following the X-men storyline however, this makes little sense. Yes, Sabretooth was being held at the mansion for a while (as seen in X-men: Supernovas), but never living comfortably as he's shown here. Well, maybe the X-men gave him a break? We can only speculate. However small this mistake may be, it's a prime example of how Loeb seems to be making things up as he goes along.
So the book focuses mainly on Wolverine's amalgam of memories and flashbacks, and where Sabretooth ties in with all this. Somehow we are presented with the fact that, since it's been established that the two are not related that perhaps they are descended from a species of wolf men. Personally though, I'd always considered Sabretooth to be more closely linked with wild cats, his name being the first clue. This can of course be dodged by saying "Yeah, well, it's just a name." Yes, the two have similar looks and mutations. So why not have them descended from a species of wolf creatures? Then Sasquatch, Feral, Thorrn and Wolfsbane show up, and it's suggested that they too are related to this theory. Not sure how though. Not sure it matters either.
Which is pretty much how I felt about this whole book. I enjoyed it, essentially, because the art was fantastic and on the surface the dialogue seems good too. The fight scenes between Wolvie and Sabes are all pretty intense but in the end I just felt as though none of what had been revealed throughout really mattered.
Something BIG happens to Sabretooth, Wild Child makes an appearance and comments on how the fact that Logan has black hair and Creed has blonde is supposed to mean something (again... how?) and a new enemy is revealed. But it all feels a bit like a drunken dream then a storyline that actually fits into the X-canon.
However, despite the flaws in storyline this book contains some... interesting (for want of a better word) revelations that could be considered quite important if you want to understand the characters better, or they could, conversely, ruin the character entirely for you. Either way, it seems as though a little (however small) amount of this storyline will have some effect on other X-titles, therefore I consider it worth the read. IF what happens to Sabretooth weren't such a big deal, I'd recommend the book more because the storyline might have been able to stand up on it's own without effecting other storylines in the X-universe, and thus we could pretend it never existed. As it is, I'm afraid it doesn't.
on 20 February 2008
Jeph Loeb is a talented writer, and the pace of this story is pretty good, the characterization is also very good. However, the plot is all over the place. Sabretooth gets involved in the story at a point he is an unwilling member of the X-men, however this story doesn't fit with X-men stories that came out around the same time. minor point I know. Also it establishes the fact that wolverine is not a mutant but a different species entirely, as is sabretooth, wolfesbane, feral, thorn, sasquatch and any x-men related character that is a bit hairy and has claws. Also many of these characters were depowered and were no longer mutants after the events of house of M. something that the writer attempts to explain at least. Still despite being a continuity breaking story the pacing and action are all well handles, and it is an entertaining read. The art is fantastic.
on 17 November 2007
I dont wish to use this review as a critique on other reviews of this book, but to be quite frank, some of the gripes about this book are completley unjustified. There are a few confusing moments, (sabretooth at the mansion in particular), but if your willing to overlook these and go with the flow the story provides so much insight into wolverines origin/evolution that this is essential reading. As an X-Men reader of 20 years, i'm sick and tired of just being given half truths and explanations for Wolverine, but this actually feels like it's got some substance. This isnt the greatest comic i've read, the art is often confusing and misleading, the dialogue patchy, but the sheer amount of 'wow' moments deserves the 4 stars.