Wolverine: Evolution Premiere HC: Evolution Premiere Hardcover – 14 Nov 2007
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Top Customer Reviews
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.Read more ›
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Wolverine vs. Sabretooth is a feud that kicked off in comics back in the 80's during the X-Men crossover The Mutant Massacre. According to their history they had fought off panel before that (which was told in a flashback in Wolverine # 10 much later). During The Mutant Massacre, Sabretooth's alliance with the Marauders reignited their blood feud. This rivalry was very big back in the 80's and early 90's and it can be argued that it had a higher level of interest than even Spider-Man vs. Venom, although I would take Spider-Man's conflict over these two any time. The point is, Wolverine vs. Sabretooth in any form sold books which has made it one of Marvel's most popular rivalries of all time. Wolverine: Evolution written by Jeph Loeb brings this feud full circle and at the same time, provides more background of things we didn't know expanding on the bigger picture. It appears that Wolverine and Sabretooth's battle has been going on for at least 100 years, and not only did they not have control over their hatred for each other but this thing is a lot bigger than those two. This TPB collects Wolverine 50 - 55.
It's no secret around this time Jeph Loeb had been on a slump and the feedback for this story has been mixed. Many point to Loeb's choice of narrative style as the problem as he blurs the line between present and past quite often which screws with the pacing, and the central theme all boils down to Wolverine's memories as he tries to understand what is going on. One name constantly pops up to him and it's Romulus, and he wants answers in which Sabretooth doesn't want to give him because it appears that he's afraid of this person. How can this be? Sabretooth isn't afraid of anyone to the best of Wolverine's knowledge. Loeb's entire story is centered around this with various ideas coming into play pushing the story. Therefore, the main plot is the fight between these two with various things thrown out there as some sort of cool down.
Now if there's anything I like about this story besides the battle is how Loeb pays homage to various story elements in the Wolverine mythos, from Sabretooth murdering Wolverine's lover Silver Fox on to their "first" encounter with Wolverine taking him on at the Hand's request. There is even mention of the Mutant Massacre and this stuff is good reading for those whom followed these storylines over the years. There's also possible background on the origin of mutants as a species, plus we still get to see some of the fall out of M-Day which took place in House of M. Some of my problems with his approach is that the ending becomes far too predictable and the only suspense is how it's going to turn out. Loeb does his best to deliver more than a knock down, drag out fight between the two but it all depends on the reader's digestion of all this. I was satisfied with this for the most part yet it felt bitter sweet though, as the story ends in an all too common way leaving Wolverine with new questions despite getting all of his memories back in House of M.
I'll give this book more credit, and it's because I think casual fans, mainly the action type are going to enjoy this battle. There is so much going on making both Wolverine and Sabretooth really cool characters as they rip each other apart. Sabretooth even breaks Wolverine's neck at one point, and he has to fix himself. This is the way their battle should be portrayed, a brutal trade off between two savage beast.
Simone Bianchi strings together some nice artwork for the most part, and alongside Andrea Silvestri and various colorist, they put together some very nice inks and half tones. It's on the glossy side, somewhat close to the oil painting style at times. The action is very violent with the ending being about as brutal as the thing could have possibly gotten. Some of the backgrounds have nice detailed settings with Japan clearly standing out from Africa. I've heard that the splash pages can be hard to follow. I never had a problem and I been through this many times over the years.
Wolverine: Evolution is far and away from Jeph Loeb returning to form. The story does hit with me but I agree that his writing can be harmful to the pacing; at the same time, flashbacks during battles is nothing really new with Wolverine, however I will admit that it has been done better. I mainly recommend this to Wolverine fans. It's at least a decent read but I don't think it's necessary to follow the Romulus chapter in Wolverine: Origins.
Pros:Bianch's artwork, some cool brutal action
Cons:Pacing issues are the main thing here