Comic Vine Review

15 Comments

All-New X-Men #30 Review

5

It’s been a cavalcade of pain and misery all of X-23’s life, so perhaps a vacation is what the doctor ordered. Meanwhile, Emma Frost and Jean Gray finally throw down.

The Good

Last issue we saw Angel and X-23 ride off into the snow together (X-23 being fiercely against being carried, the duo stole Cyclops’ motorcycle) and this issue picks up days later. We get glimpses of what the two have been up to, and it looks like it’s been just what they both needed. We also see the two of them actually talk about what’s brought them together and they don’t come to any kind of concrete consensus, a notion I found surprisingly refreshing. Superheroes, especially those in the X-books are known for bed-hopping around and even when two wind up staying together more long-term, it’s rarely clear exactly what attracts them to one another beyond the physical. Brian Bendis looks poised to address this, and the fact that no concrete answer is presented at the moment isn’t at all out of character: we ARE dealing with teenagers, after all. The character development continues as we return to the school for some psychic, and combat, training between Emma Frost and Jean Gray and here things escalate. The ultimate resolution, however, is as unexpected as it is apropos and opens the door for some new, interesting storylines and developments later in the series. We even catch a glimpse of Kitty’s ultra-long distance relationship with Peter “call me Star-Lord” Quill. This issue gives these characters a chance to catch their breath and develops new, interpersonal relationships of all varieties and the characters are so well-written that, despite the many focal points, nothing feels rushed or thrown together.

Sara Pichelli’s linework is nothing short of amazing. The characters all look detailed and unique (particularly with the Cuckoo’s new looks) and the facial expressions are clear and detailed enough that this could have been a completely silent issue and the basic ideas and feelings would have still been communicated. The level of detail Pichelli achieves in every panel is nothing short of amazing, particularly with certain pages’ panel layouts. Marte Gracia brings a surprisingly dark palette to a story that is extremely light-hearted, but the darkness doesn’t clash with the tone. Part of that is because, while the colors are dark, the visuals themselves are still incredibly crisp and clear, and by the end of the issue, things have lightened significantly, matching the tone of events perfectly.

The Bad

I’m having a hard time coming up with things to dislike here. Every now and then, particularly in the middle of the book, the colors look a little drab. Most especially in the Gray/Frost scenes, but even then it’s only a panel here or there.

The Verdict

It looks like we’re going to get into another crossover with the revelation of Professor X’s Last Will and Testament, so I’m glad we got this break to develop these characters and give them some new ways to interact. The unexpected resolutions, the unlikely hook-up and the continuing flirtation all come together, never feel forced, and make this book dramatic without being dour. Bendis has got something really, really great set up here and I can’t wait to see how he continues to execute on it.

15 Comments
Edited by MadeinBangladesh

Yea, this was great. Finally some happy X-Men moments.

Posted by HushoftheWind

yay this was definitely a fun read. I don't mind X-23 being a HAPPY teen for once, hell should deserve after all the crap she's been through. Kinda figure Jean and Emma would bond, hopefully we'll get more of that dynamic as time goes on. So far Uncanny, X factor, and All New are definitely the go to X books to read.

Posted by sparty-dbq

Ever since Laura joined this book, every issue has made me miss Marjorie Liu's X-23 series more and more.

Edited by sophia89

I loved this issue,esp the part when jean and emma were training!

Posted by StarBrand1

Loved it. I really didnt mind the break from the madness of all the evil mutant stuff. Seeing x 23 and angel together was awesome too. All new x is my favorite bendis title right now

Posted by Owie

Really enjoyable character issue. The only thing that bothers me with X-23 and Angel is that it makes her and Cyclops' mini-infatuation look like a silly retread (but a retread in the past, if you see what I mean). I think Angel is a better match for her somehow.

Posted by frank_malone21

Really loved seeing X-23 actually have some kinder, gentler moments rather than always being the misunderstood killing machine. I love her character and appreciate the tough path she has had to walk and I hope the series continues along the path of featuring more of her and develops her even more so. I also love the innocence yet awareness of the younger Jean Grey especially with no Cyclops around for her to cling onto, almost seems as if she's coming into her own with each issue and makes me really appreciate the development of these already established characters but now I feel I'm seeing them in a different light. Also loved the "Legendary Star-Lord" issue 1 tie in with Kitty Pryde.

Posted by TheAcidSkull

"I've been through some stuff"

This is X-23 talking. She said "I've been through some stuff."

Oh Bendis you unbelievable hack.

This gets a 0/5 from me, because it's what it deserves.

Posted by Ambaryerno

Bendis still doesn't capture X-23's manner of speaking, but the gist of what she had to say was otherwise in character. Given how out of nowhere the idea of Warren/Laura was (though it seems to have been handled nicely) I can't help but wonder if this is a plotline that was intended for her and Teenaged Scott that was derailed when Tyke went into space, so Warren was subbed in instead.

Also, I wish someone would poke the colorist with a cattleprod and remind them that her eyes are green. They've been off ever since she joined the book.

Posted by Teerack

I'm glad they didn't have sex and just talked and had fun last night. I was worried Bendis might rush this, but I think Warren and Laura are a great combo and is the kind of personality she needs to balance her after her last boy friend being a guy like Hellion.

Posted by brinkthemoviemyfavoritemovie

This issue was so great! Agreed on the awesome Frost/Grey scene, and just the really well-done facial expressions in general. The quality of art on most X-books has gone straight to hell, but not this one, it seems like.

Posted by kai200995

It's a great issue. That's so true about the X-men couples, after the 90s era, they would pop up with no type of substance. Think that's why Jean&Cyclops, Colossus&Kitty, and Rogue&Gambit are so valued.

The Cuckoos are telekinetic?

Edited by Hassun

The absolutely atrocious characterization of X-23 continues.

The X-23 Bendis is writing is a terrible Wolverine knock-off, EXACTLY the thing she should never ever be. His own little sniktbubette.

I'm starting to fear that Craig Kyle and Chris Yost truly are the only writers who can write a decent X-23. All I can hope for is that they get the character back and completely ignore this sad pile of trash and pretty much everything X-23 that has been written by anyone other than themselves.

I didn't even know Marvel condoned underage sex. Or does this get a free pass because good old Joe Quesada wrote this character as a child prostitute?

Let's all cheer for Laura "I fuck on the first date" Kinney.

It sickens me that this book sells so well.

1/5 - The art is good.

Posted by mickeymayhew

This issue was so great! Agreed on the awesome Frost/Grey scene, and just the really well-done facial expressions in general. The quality of art on most X-books has gone straight to hell, but not this one, it seems like.

totally agree; all but Uncanny and All-New have dreadful art - what happened to the days when the X-titles only had top-notch artists?

Posted by UltronMk7

Nice character development here. The Grey/Frost showdown was awesome. I think I prefer them as adversaries overall. I loved the brotherhood arc, so this was a much slower issue, wouldn't give it 5 stars, but overall it was still good. Nice to get a little deeper with these characters.