The Future and the Past
Saying that this series has been disappointing is an understatement, as it's been a disaster, even though it's had it's moments. It's a shame as well, as I was really looking forward to this series, and now I feel that it's been a waste, and am losing hope that it will become good.
Wolverine travels to the past to stop Ultron from ever being created, but isn't alone as Invisible Woman (Sue Storm) follows him. Also Nick Fury's team consisting of Captain America, Iron Man (Tony Stark), Black Widow, Storm, Quicksilver, Quake (Daisy Johnson), and Red Hulk (Thunderbolt Ross) travel to the future to stop Ultron, but who will succeed first, if either.
This series just continues to disappoint, and although each issue finishes brilliantly, with the prospect that the following issue will be the same, it still continues to not meet expectation. Brian Michael Bendis has done an appalling job on this series, and I don't really know how, as he's doing a phenomenal job on both Guardians of the Galaxy, and All-New X-Men. I kind of feel slightly sorry for giving negative feedback on Bendis' work on this story as although it's been poor, it's still obvious that he's put a lot of effort into it, which is a real shame. There are however still positives about this issue, as both the future and past sequences were interesting, and the little action we got was amazing, but overall the development of the story continues to be dramatically slow, and at times the story's very dull. I did however also like that there was emotion in this issue, as although the story itself was still very slow paced, and disappointing, the characters emotions were shown perfectly, as you have these people who are generally good natured, but that have had so much taken away from them at the same time, which really shows, as there are characters that are obviously conflicted. I also used to blame the length of this series for it's poor quality, but now that it's over half way it should have picked up, so it's obviously more than that, which is a shame.
The art in this issue wasn't bad, but it wasn't as good a Bryan Hitch's art for the first half of the series. To be honest I wasn't expecting anyone to do a better job that Hitch has, as although he's had the odd moment were his art lacked detail, looking rushed, overall it was phenomenal, and truly amazing. Brandon Peterson, and Carlos Pacheco did however do an amazing job, and the art was brilliant. The detail from both artists was brilliant, as both the character's, and the scenery looked amazing. Overall I don't really know what out of the artwork I liked most, as they both did an amazing job, but I probably have to give it to Pacheco, as his art was much more smoother, and the way he drew the character's emotions was brilliant, and it really gave more depth to the story. That's not to say that Peterson didn't do a good job, as his action sequences were stunning, and the way he drew the futuristic New York City was amazing, but the way he drew facial expressions was a bit weird, and at some points unrealistic.
The past sequence was what opened this issue, and in my opinion that time frame was the best overall. Although the story itself was slow, the actually sequences showed promise, and were very interesting, with the past one being the most interesting. I always thought that it would be anyway, as with the dramatic way the last issue finished I was really looking forward to seeing exactly what Wolverine had in store. The fact that Sue followed Wolverine instead of going with Nick Fury to the future like she was meant to was also an interesting fact, as it showed how important Wolverine's presence in the past is, and that it's more important than stopping Ultron, as Wolverine could unravel all of time and space with what he's planing on doing. This entire sequence was probably the most emotional in the issue, as you could see the hate, and anger in Wolverine throughout, but more so you could see the sadness, and confliction in Sue, as she could see what Wolverine was doing was right in a certain way, but wrong in another.
The future sequence's were also interesting, but not as much as the past, and at times they were actually a bit dull, and boring. I did however like the team that Fury assembled, as even without Sue it was an interesting team, as with characters like Cap, Iron Man, Storm, Red Hulk, Quake, Quicksilver, and Black Widow it's a lot of different skill sets, and personalities, which is interesting. I also found the way Fury reacted to the absence of Sue interesting, as it showed how his plan was going bad right from the start. I did however feel that the progression of this part of the story was a bit rushed, as he gets Quicksilver to go and recon the area, then decided to continue the progression whilst he's doing so. I understand that they want to act quick as Ultron will know that they are there, but it feels a bit pointless to get Quicksilver doing that, whilst moving on anyway.
Hank Pym also featured in the past section of this story, were he was studying Dragon Man, trying to develop his Artificial Intelligence. I found it nice to see Hank in this issue, as with him being the creator of Ultron it's been weird not to have him involved in a story like this. I won't go into details about his involvement plot wise, but it was very interesting, and at times shocking. I also loved the way he acted, as this showed a more confident Hank Pym, who wanted to make the same kind of contribution to the work as the likes of what Tony Stark has.
This issue also featured two versions of Nick Fury, the one that travelled to the future to face Ultron, and a younger version that was in the past. Now the younger version didn't really do much besides unknowingly give Wolverine and Sue transport, but the fact that it had both versions was interesting, and for the younger version to be in the Savage Land at the same bunker that they were in at the present showed that he had it for years. The comparisons between both versions was also interesting, as it was nice to see a younger version of Fury.
This series continues to disappoint, and it's a huge shame, as I had so much hope for it. Although this issue itself has some interesting points, the development of the overall story is still very slow. I wouldn't recommend this issue, or the series, and unless it gets dramatically better throughout the remaining of the series I wouldn't even recommend getting the trade when it's out, as the series is over half way through and hasn't progressed much.