Posted on August 30, 2013 AT 07:46pm
The Battle of the Atom is coming! But first, Cyclops and the Uncanny team must first survive a Sentinel attack! The new mutants are in danger once again when a pro-mutant protest turns violent when an unknown force sends a Sentinel to take down the Uncanny team. With all of the training beginning to pay off, but with the powers of the veterans still broken, an impromptu trip to Michigan just got rather complicated. The situation becomes more complex with Agent Dazzler on assignment in Madripoor, attempting to keep an eye on Mystique and a lack of S.H.I.E.L.D. support in the area because “it’s Michigan”, the X-Men are on their own, and likely not going to do too well against this adaptive foe.
This issue has a lot of great things going for it. This story is compelling (and getting even more interesting than it’s counterpart at points), it shows a variety of characters and shows many of those characters being completely awful people (Cyclops in particular). The fact that someone is basically stalking the X-Men as well, sending this super Sentinel after them during completely spontaneous trips across the globe is something that does not bode well going into a time-traveling major event.
Brian Bendis is doing such a great job bringing this book together. He’s created a reason to still care about the mediocre Avengers vs. X-Men with the powers of the X-Men still broken, managed to make some pretty great new characters, and (slight spoiler ahead) brought back a character that has only made one appearance, has no name and has no lines. Bringing this character in as a villain could prove to be an unlikely payoff, as this looks to be the mastermind behind the attacks on the X-Men. This is an issue full of surprises, humor and a big cliffhanger leading into the big Battle of the Atom event next week.
The art team of Frazier Irving and Kris Anka is usually one that doesn’t equal a visually pleasing aesthetic when it comes to past issues of the book, but this issue seems to really show it all coming together. The painted coloring style looks much better this issue, and hopefully this will continue as this is one of the better looking issues of this series so far. The odd look for Cyclops is still there (as well as for Emma and Magneto), but other than that, it’s much improved.
Summary: This book is continually getting stronger, on both a visual and a storytelling basis. With the new event coming and the introduction of a new (old) character, things are going to get very complicated and very interesting i the near future.
Pros: Excellent storytelling, improved artwork.
Cons: Character design is still flawed.
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