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4.3 out of 5 stars
4.3 out of 5 stars
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I've been an X-Men (and especially a Wolverine) fan since the late 80's. Unfortunately, I was never able to find the now classic "Wolverine" mini-series. Not until this book came along. This is really the first comic where the authors explore the human side of the man called Logan. Always considered an animal which thinks with his claws instead of his head, now we see the popular X-man beaten in battle, have his heart broken - only to come back triumphant. This book is a must for all Wolverine fans but I recommend it to those who want to find out what makes this little Canadian tick.
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on 2 August 2011
`Wolverine' collects issues #1 - 4 of Wolverine and issues #172 - 173 of the Uncanny X-Men.

In the first story Wolverine travels to Japan to reunite with his lover Mariko Yashida, who has mysteriously not responded to his letters and phone calls. Upon arriving Wolverine finds himself battling against Japanese crime factions and assassins in order to liberate Mariko from the clutches of her villainous father Shingen. Wolverine's two love interests Mariko and Yukio are a great inclusion to the story. While Mariko represents Wolverine's human side, Yukio represents his animalistic side. Wolverine knows that in order to be with Mariko he must attempt to change, whereas Yukio accepts his seemingly true animalistic nature. This causes immense inner turmoil within Wolverine as he struggles to choose between embracing the beast within or attempting to retain some remnants of his humanity. It is very hard not to feel sympathetic for Wolverine as he is a man who loses control of his temper at ill-timed moments but who is afraid to change ultimately for fear of failure and rejection.

The two Uncanny X-Men issues follow directly on from the previous Wolverine story. In this story the X-Men travel to Japan to assist Wolverine in taking care of some final business. These two issues also give a brief look at some of the X-Men's own problems they were dealing with at the time. Cyclops was struggling to cope with the loss of Jean Grey and Storm was having trouble controlling her powers. Storm's story is undeniably interesting but ultimately appears to be simply an excuse to give Storm a new outfit and haircut. Cyclops' story gives a brief but startling glimpse into how obsessive he really was after Jean Grey died, even going as far as dating Madelyne Pryor; a woman who bears an uncanny resemblance to Jean Grey (no pun intended). Unfortunately we only get a brief glimpse into the X-Men's lives, which is a shame because the stories are genuinely interesting. However this TPB is primarily a Wolverine tale and Wolverine's story continues and concludes well in these two X-Men issues.

During fight sequences backgrounds often consist solely of bold primary colours that divert attention away from the background and focus attention on the characters on page, in order to keep the sequence simple to follow. I find that many contemporary comics sometimes have too much detail during action sequences which can make it difficult to focus on what is going on. The Wolverine TPB performs the opposite and strips the fight scenes down to its bare essentials making continuous movements and actions much easier to follow. Text is short and snappy during action sequences, highlighting the increased pace and thought process of Wolverine as he slices and dices his foes.

The layout and size of each panel is also very well crafted and accommodates what is occurring on page very well. The opening panel for example, which shows Wolverine hanging off the edge of a cliff, has a narrow width and long length that showcases the height of the cliff. Text is laid out on the page so that the eyes are forced to scan down the whole page while reading, allowing the eyes to take in the entire image.

Overall, `Wolverine' by Claremont and Miller is a superbly crafted comic book with an excellent story that provides greater insight into Wolverine's character, showing his human side as well as his animalistic nature. I found Wolverine's own story to be the more interesting of the two stories and it definitely gives a lot more depth to Wolverine's character, showing that he is not simply a device to provide X-Men comics with action but can also be the centre piece of his own story. The two X-Men issues were also a good inclusion into the TPB as they allow Wolverine to seamlessly blend back into the traditional X-Men comics, which keeps the pace moving and allows the Wolverine's storyline to conclude and the next storyline to begin without interruption. For anyone looking to dig deeper into Wolverine's character this comic is a must-buy.
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on 14 March 2013
Claremont and Miller's full on back story for the man called Logan.
I got this in my teens and it holds up well even today. Also features 2 parts from following xmen issues that tied up this story arc.
Miller's influence is very present in the script and direction of the story. The hard boiled characterization could be straight out of Sin City. Claremont's deft touch with dialogue works well and he's not overshadowed by the slam bam artwork.
Joe Rubenstein's inks add a nice dimension to the look of the book. His contribution shouldn't be overlooked.
If you like Ninja's- BUY THIS BOOK.
If you like chop-sockey- BUY THIS BOOK.
If you like Wolverine- BUY THIS BOOK.
Hugh Jackman's favourite Wolverine story and the inspiration for the upcoming Wolverine movie. A true classic that has stood the test of time.
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on 10 November 2013
Thirty years on from purchasing multiple copies of the original four issues that comprise this 1982 Frank Miller/Chris Claremont mini-series, this solo Wolverine tale is a good attempt at delving into Marvel's 2nd most popular character but it ultimately falls short in establishing Logan-san as an archetypal hero in the same mold as Batman or Spider-Man.

The loss of a parent/guardian or parents, in the case of Batman, are the most powerful motivations in a hero's psyche. Spider-Man is driven by feelings of guilt and Batman driven by vengeance. Wolverine only has his amnesiac past , his berserker rages and his in-built Adamantium claws that can cut through almost anything to attract the attentions of readers.

In one scene in this story, Wolverine restores the loose pebbles in an ornamental garden back to a state of order, a metaphor for his own rage driven, chaotic temperament; it doesn't quite work. It tries to be a profound Lone Wolf & Cub moment but doesn't pull it off too convincingly.

Another weak point here is the villain, Lord Shingen. Despite Wolvie being drugged on their first encounter, this sadistic and surprisingly skilled fighter defeats Wolverine in both of their encounters, with Wolverine resolving the final stalemate in a none too noble manner.

Writer Chris Claremont returned to this plot line in the X-Men comic itself a little later, circa issues 170 -172.

There are positives, though - Frank Miller's pencil art (inked by Joe Rubinstein: not Miller's best inker. That'd be longtime Daredevil collaborator, Klaus Janson). The opening scene tracking the careless bear hunter is fantastic and er,, the original comic covers, especially #1, are all terrific!

If you're coming to this from seeing 2013's The Wolverine, this story and artwork will seem a little unusual but this is decent Wolverine fare. It's not brilliant, hence my 3*** rating, but it's good enough.
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on 1 June 2013
Great stuff. The definitive Wolverine story!

But for just a few quid more you can buy this

It includes all 4 issues of the Miller/Claremont story plus loads of other classic Wolverine stories so it MUCH better value for money :)
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on 12 September 2012
Logan heads to Japan to be with his love, Mariko, only to find she's been married off by her drug lord father to a rich and powerful, but abusive, husband. And someone's trying to kill Logan of course. Cue extensive fight sequences involved ninja weapons, swords and ... snikt.

Chris Claremont's story is pretty linear with Logan tussling with one group of foes before being knocked into another group and then being knocked back, etc. etc. This book showed that there are only so many silent fight scenes a reader can absorb before it becomes dull. You know Logan can't die so there's no tension, it's just waiting until he takes out whoever he's fighting.

Frank Miller's art in the first 4 books is really good, and he provides at least one iconic image of Wolverine sans mask grinning and popping his claws. You can also see the beginnings of his Sin City style being tried out in this book as he experiments with shadows to tell a story than rely on shading or colours.

There are 2 issues of "Uncanny X-Men" included after the initial 4-issue story arc to conclude the Logan/Mariko storyline but throws up other storylines involving the X-Men that you need to buy other X-Men books to see how they end (for some reason Storm getting a hair-cut is a big deal. Ah, the 80s... readers didn't ask for much did they?).

"Wolverine" is a pretty tedious read for anyone who's read this character's other books. There's the detail on Logan's true love Mariko but other than that it's non-essential reading for general readers of comics. It's all action with no real interest in how it'll all turn out (as if it's going to end any other way than the expected!). Good art though.
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on 17 November 2013
For me, I really loved the artwork of Frank Miller, along with Chris Claremont writing. I really got back into this comic book saga after purchasing this in the Panini Marvel Pocketbook edition. For me Frank Miller will always be synonimous with Daredevil in the 1980's, the way he told the story of Daredevil's struggle with his personal life and battle against crime is one of his best achievements in the comic book industry. To finally reread the Wolverine saga now drawn by Miller and written by Claremont who in his own inimitable way has helped breathe life in to the marvel comic universe is breathtaking. To be honest I cannot fault this comic book, it ticks all the boxes and is a well drawn and written story. Thanks Frank and Chris , this graphic novel is a must addition for any true classic comic book fan.
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on 21 February 2008
This book along with the dark phoenix saga, is a must for any Marvel comic fan.

The art work is rich and the arch of the story is compelling.

I believe that this book, should be rated as highly as Return of the Dark Knight by Frank Miller.

For those who are interested in learning more about what catapulted Wolverine into a genre defining character look no further than this graphic novel.
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on 6 July 2004
I am a big Wolverine fan and found this book an excellent way to get a bit of depth to the character that we all know and love. Some classic stories skillfully drawn and creatively written.
A must for any fan of the ol' canuckle-head!
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on 2 April 2013
This is a real classic. It really gets to the heart of Wolverine as a character and uses him brilliantly to explore the theme of the battle between feral nature and the rational, compassionate man. Wolverine is crushed, physically and mentally, before finding the strength to reform and come back stronger and better than ever before. The sensetivity to the Japanese setting is perfect, not trying to force a Western viewpoint over things and instead using it to lift the story and help give it body. The only downside is the story is a little short. Still, better that than it became self-indulgent and bloated.
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