renchamp's Excalibur #82 - Life Signs Part 3: The Tainted Light of Dawn review

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All My Hatin'

Would you like to know a secret? The only reason to read Life Signs (part two of the Phalanx Covenant) is to learn that Douglock is but isn't Doug Ramsey and Warlock, that Warlock's remains were used to usher in the next generation of sentinels/human evolution, and that Forge's powers are supposed to be cooler/deadlier than the lay reader has thought. That's it. Jumbo issues and hologram covers and all.

This story centered mostly on Douglock's motives as a broken off member of the Phalanx. What that entailed was a back and forth dialogue between Cannonball and Wolfsbane (in every stinkin' issue) as to how they could or couldn't trust Douglock. This was old by the X-Force chapter of Life Signs. It also centered on Forge having his mutant power overridden so as to do the Phalanx's bidding. All this contained was a discussion on the spirit of humanity versus doing what comes naturally.

My beef, I think, is that these plot points could have been done very well in two regular sized issues. As it is, this was a crossover. Three teams were involved but most of the characters simply hung out in the background. There was no need to have brought everyone together (sure, there was the whole "end of the world" thing, but it felt hackneyed). No action. Too long. Not paced well. This part of the Phalanx Covenant was a disaster.

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