Posted on February 13, 2013 AT 07:16pm
Brian Michael Bendis is embarking on another X-book, complementing his current run on the spectacular All-New X-Men. This series follows the other side of that coin, focusing on wanna-be mutant revolutionary Cyclops and his team as they attempt to regain the respect and rights they feel the mutant race deserves. The team jump from place to place, grabbing new mutants as soon as they appear and attempting to recruit them to the cause. This is a nice concept, but of course, if there wasn’t conflict, this wouldn’t be an X-book, and this series starts things off with a bang, in that respect.
The issue begins with what Scott Summer has been known to do since the events of Avengers Vs. X-Men: Save The Mutant Race. A major flaw is exposed in this issue, with flashbacks taking up most of the story coming from a pretty reliable source, retelling the tale to S.H.E.I.L.D. Director Maria Hill. While the events of the issue may surprise you, this much is for sure: this is a good read, but in comparison, All-New X-Men is the more entertaining book. This series may wind up taking that spot over, but thus far, Cyclops, Magik, Emma Frost, Magneto and the newest mutants aren’t as much fun as the fan favorites over at the Jean Grey School For Higher Learning.
Brian Bendis is a terrific writer. He’s taken the X-Universe to a whole new level with the two flagship books he’s taken on after his run on Avengers, leading to a new and exciting continuity that has done nothing but amaze thus far. With this inaugural issue of the third volume ofUncanny X-Men title, Bendis tries to flip the notions of the biggest names in the universe, as he always does, revealing a brilliant flaw or unknown motive in many characters reader thought to have figured out. He makes an interesting attempt at this, though the big reveal at the end of the issue doesn’t exactly surprise as much as it should have.
That could have been due to the artwork, however. Pencil and color artist Chris Bachalo does a valiant job here, but has many inconsistencies to make it a completely worthwhile effort. On a page by page basis he does a great job, but as far as the content of the characters he falls way short. While Magneto looks terrific in his new costume, his fellow X-Men Magik, Cyclops and Emma Frost look just the opposite. Magik seems to have no pupils on a few pages, Emma Frost looks as though she’s a teenager instead of her mature and vibrant self, and Cyclops looks like a badly-done Judge Dredd rip-off. While this look will eventually become something of the norm most likely, first impressions matter, and in this case, the costume design for the characters (save Magneto) leave a bad impression on the title.
Summary: If the terrible costumes and odd story framing can be gotten past, there is some great content in here. Unfortunately, those two things are pretty difficult to get over, and it leaves something to be desired from the book as a whole. The story should kick off into some major action soon, but thus far, Cyclops and crew will have to settle with being number two on the spectrum of current Bendis-written X-Men titles.
The Good: Solid Story And Premise
The Bad: Poorly Framed General Plot
The Ugly: Atrocious Costume Design, Most Notably On Cyclops
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