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Uncanny X-Force #19.1 - Ghost Reunion Review

4

Remender and Billy Tan turn everything on its head in the introduction to the upcoming Age of Apocalypse series.

What if everything we know was backwards? What if William Stryker teamed up with the mutants to save the human race? This idea will be explored in the upcoming Age of Apocalypse series and it begins here.

The Good

The concept is really great; take everything we know about mutant and human relations, turn it all on its head and see what happens. What if William Stryker was simply trying to save the human race, like Cyclops has done in the current X-Men series? It's a really neat idea which is introduced in the point one issue of Uncanny X-Force. But is it well executed? Yes and no.

There are definitely things aside from the overarching premise that I enjoyed about this issue. First off, Billy Tan is the penciler and it's great to see him working with Rick Remender. Tan definitely captures the grimness of this universe through the landscapes in this issue. It has a post-apocalyptic feel that is reinforced through the washed out and darkness of the colors. The art is really well done. Stryker's movements are fluid and he feels completely different than we have ever seen him before.

The group of characters that were hand-picked to be a part of the upcoming Age of Apocalypse series is definitely interesting. However, it is rather unfortunate that the team we see at the start of the issue isn't the one we end with.

Remender packs a powerful punch and the fact that this doesn't feel like a regular "point one" issue is both a good and a bad thing. Good because he takes a lot of liberties, there's a lot of plot development and he does hook the reader and leave them wondering not only how the world got to this point, but also where the characters will go next.

The Bad

So, a lot happened in this issue. Having a lot of things happen in an issue isn't necessarily a bad thing, although it does make it hard to follow if you are only first being introduced to this universe. Generally, a series launch doesn't start in the middle of all the action; the reader is usually brought in gradually. Slowly. This doesn't happen here. New readers may experience a shock when they first pick this up because Remender simply throws you into the story, he definitely does not hold your hand throughout.

The Verdict

There's great art in this issue as well as some seriously powerful moments, but I was not blown away. Remender is pretty good at bringing the reader along and building up a lot of action. If there is going to be a devastating loss, it isn't something that happens instantaneously in the first issue. It's gradual. It's a process. At least that's what I was used to throughout his X-Force series. However, instead of building up, he hits you hard with a lot of casualties. Character deaths aren't always a bad thing, so long as they are justified, so I will be holding out to see if the deaths we see in UNCANNU X-FORCE 19.1 are indeed justified in future issues of AGE OF APOCALYPSE. Good issue, and an interesting way of introducing a new story, albeit not what we might be used to. I'm not sure if I am sold on the AOA ongoing yet, however.

18 Comments
Posted by danhimself

I'm kind of disappointed that the new AoA book isn't going to be about the AoA X-men...or a team of mutants at all for that matter...also reading an AoA book without Madureira's art is going to be hard....I'm still super excited about it though...weird huh?

Posted by The Stegman

Frankly...i'm tired of AoA

Posted by Powerzone789

@The Stegman: i cant get enough of it, i cant wait to see wher this is going

Posted by brucecapell

This premise should lead to some interesting developments. I'm in for the moment.

Posted by jsphsmth

I love hopeless battles against overwhelming odds like The Magnificent Seven and Demon Knights, so this sounds like something that I will enjoy. I don't have high hopes that it will be a great series, but it should be a good one.

Posted by Mumbles

the art was a real surprise in this book. clean storytelling. never really cared for billy tan before this issue,(which at first glance on the last name tan, i assumed it was phillip tan,lol) but looking forward for future work from him. hopefully on x-force

Posted by RainEffect

Question! Who is the guy with the sweet mask on the front cover, to the left (our left) of Sabretooth? Not the fat lad in the background, the guy in black.

Edited by pspin
Posted by longbowhunter

Not a bad issue, but all my favorite AoA characters are dead now. With AoA Nightcrawler on X-Force I dont really feel a need to read the ongoing spin off.

Posted by cobra88king8

I don't know how I feel about this. They killed off a majority of the AoA members I cared about and the series hasn't even started yet. I'm probably gonna check it out when it starts but if the first issue doesn't catch my interest I'm probably not gonna cary on

Posted by brucecapell

I have a feeling@RainEffect said:

Question! Who is the guy with the sweet mask on the front cover, to the left (our left) of Sabretooth? Not the fat lad in the background, the guy in black.

Donald Pierce aka Goodnight

Posted by Mayo88m

I think there is a lot more wrong with this comic than too much going on. I like Remender and all. So far his run on X-Force has been amazing. There is always a but though. BUT, this first "introduction" to AoA is garbage I thought. Someone has already mentioned that all the interesting characters are gone. That's one of my biggest gripes especially considering how a certain Master of Magnetism couldn't handle another certain metal clawed adversary. I thought that was absolutely ludicrous.

Oh, AND the bit that harkened back to House of M... I know they put a spin on it, but that's kind of a huge retread considering the fallout from it in the normal universe is still ongoing, and it didn't much make sense to the timeline either since the doctor said Jean was the one who gave them the idea to use it, and from what I could tell she had only just come back. The timeline may be a little advanced, but I didn't see anything to show otherwise, and the way she talked at the beginning they had actually just came back from 616. So yeah, that's pretty impossible. Bleh, I kind of want my money back on this one. Can we get back to the regular X-Force now?

Posted by The_Hero_Without_a_Name

@Mayo88m: I don't see how your angry about that for one thing unlike 616 Magneto, AoA Magneto was never de-aged so he is an old man who has fought most of his life and your complaining he lost to Wolverine with Apocalypses power...

Also did you not read the last issue of Uncanny X-Force it shows Jean and Sabertooth returning to AoA from 616

So yeah other than House of M most your complaints don't make any sense.

Posted by DATNIGGA

Solar hulk: Its a good day to smash..... its um ok i guess lol

its just magneto's gone Apoc & nate arent there main mutants depowered & trask is suppose to be the hero? wth

Posted by yteez

When the Black Legion invades the human city AoA's version of Sentry can be seen saying "braaaains" while probably eating some. Guess this shows that's where the 1st marvel zombie came from but I hope the new series has nothing to do with that whole thing.

Edited by Mayo88m

@The_Hero_Without_a_Name: They JUST returned. The others say that they got the idea to use Wanda to depower them from Jean though. So... how did they get the idea, AND implement a full grown clone, based on something she had apparently told them about, if she had only just returned? That makes perfect sense. Yes I read the last issue, I said in my last post that they seemed to have just returned. Maybe you should read it again.

I'll concede that Megneto maybe should have lost, but still it's metal. I'm not big into battle scenarios like others so I never really speculate stuff like that. Also, I'm not angry I'm just stating my dissatisfaction.

Posted by drkBEAST

@Mayo88m: In an earlier issue of Uncanny X-force, when Dark Beast takes the X-force into AoA dimension, remember? I'm sure she was combing they're minds with telepathy to see if they were deceiving her and came across the fact that in 616 universe Scarlet Witch genocided-ded mutants.

Posted by luckydomino1

this issue was good i really like it make me want to pick up age of apocalypse or at least read it to find out what else happens