Writer: Matthew Rosenberg
Penciller: Greg Land
Inker: Jay Leisten
Colour: Frank D’Armata
Cover Art: Greg Land, Frank D’Armata, and Jay Leisten
So in the last issue of Astonishing X-Men, Havok and his team of misfits are on the run from the law because that’s what happens when you attack a military outfit–intentionally or otherwise (and whether or not they actually deserve it).
In this issue, Dazzler, Colossus, and Beast have been captured and are dealing with super-awful experiments. Dazzler almost gets killed for…being herself (Herself is awesome, by the way. Totally badass), but is rescued by the equally amazing Beast in a trade-off. Meanwhile, Havok and Warpath cut a deal with the Reavers, seeing as the Reavers have people trapped by O.N.E. In the exciting cliffhanger, we learn why the X-Men can’t have nice things.
Hint: There’s usually a Summers involved.
I have to say that I enjoyed the artwork quite a bit. It was stark and contrasting, accentuating the inherent humanity of The X-Men while focusing on the inhumanity of both the O.N.E. mooks and the Reavers. A great deal of color and intensity (especially on Dazzler’s part) juxtaposed against the colorlessness of the background art put the conflict of ‘the hope of the characters’ versus ‘the hopelessness of their situation’ on display, and it was magnificent. Kudos to the artists and colorists.
The sheer amount of time spent on exposition is a little offputting even as it is expected. The last issue before the conclusion of an arc should be full of little details and explanations to tie up the proverbial loose ends before the exciting climax of the conclusion issue, but in this instance, it felt a little forced. The story has been amazing so far and they did the ‘tying up’ of plotlines quite well.
The snark and one-liners were on point, though. Definitely amazing.