Comic Vine Review


Uncanny X-Force #9 Review


Broken hearts. Psychic beasts. Indelible scars. (And swords, and guns.)

The Good

Let's talk about the cover to this book for a second. We'll get to the story stuff soon. That cover is sexy. Not because it's Betsy's uncovered, tattooed back -- which is also sexy -- but because it's art-within-art. Story in painting in tattoo in comic cover. Artception. It's a wicked cool look, and it's also incredibly spot-on with Betsy's relationships with Fantomex, Cluster, and Weapon XIII; they're all an indelible part of her now, even if she doesn't want them to be. And tuning out the sound of the tattooing with her earbuds? Hello, metaphor.

The dialogue in this issue is dripping with emotion, and, at times, razor-sharp in the way only a lover scorned can speak. It's not just the Fantomex-Cluster-Weapon XIII-Betsy relationship polygon at stake, it's lives -- everyone involved has been pushed to their breaking point, and all are a slight negative moment away from murder. So, y'know. Typical breakup stuff.

The demon bear is just pretty flipping cool. He's drawn in a sweeping, almost-shapeless way, which just makes him look extra demonic (the claws and teeth don't hurt, either). Betsy doesn't know what he did to Weapon XIII, we don't know what he did to Weapon XIII, but...something happened, and it's probably serious (and just open-ended enough that he could come back, of course). And it forced an ultimatum with the others. Neat and tidy, and terribly messy, all at the same time. Ah, romance.

Whew. So that all happened. Closing out the book, we get a peek at what's to come. Bishop is having a royal freak-out, and there's some nightmarish stuff in the works. Bonus: The Revenant Queen looks ominous, and I'm sure she'll be a menacing force, but she also gets some extra credit for using Belle & Sebastian lyrics as the password to her lair.

The Bad

This is a personal preference thing, and probably not a big deal to most, but I prefer text messages as caption boxes rather than balloons. The lettering shift near the end when Betsy is texting Ororo is slightly jarring.

The Verdict

UNCANNY X-FORCE has taken a departure from the "typical" love triangle arc found in comics, but while it's been a wild, almost surreal trip, it's also been astonishingly honest. Love is complicated. Rejection hurts. People don't always feel the way you want them to feel when you want them to feel that way. And, when you're a metahuman with deadly abilities, it's even more of a mess. I'm almost sad to see this arc come to a close, because even though the Revenant stuff looks scary and interesting, it's not going to be the same as this passion-filled super-soap-opera.

10 Comments Refresh
Posted by ThePRez

one of the best cover of the week.

Edited by MadeinBangladesh

I really liked the last two issues a lot, I hope this is just as good. and whatever happened to the rest of the team?

oh yeah, awesome cover :)

Posted by Renchamp

This is the issue I am most excited for this week. I am glad to see that we get back to the original story (though this relationship thing has been a thing of terrible beauty).

Posted by Raiden1106

You certainly can't deny that's damn fine cover

Edited by apg103

I like the cover.

But who listens to an ipod while getting there back tattooed ?

Posted by MissJ

@apg103: I would. The worst part about getting tattooed is that sound. It's like a dentist's drill.

Posted by victorcheenoanleu

I'm glad someone liked this cause I thought it was $%^+! If I wanted soap opera-drama-romance I'd read a Stephanie Meyer novel. Almost, just almost dropped this off my pull list if it hadn't been for the way it ended. I still have hope for this book but it's quickly diminishing.

Edited by bigboi100000

make sure the Roids didn't shrivel the nuts into peas.

Edited by CTG

@victorcheenoanleu: Sadly, I agree.

While I didn't care for this particular arc, it could've been helped a lot had we seen what the other team members were up to. The first couple issues of this series got me hooked due to the art (oh man that art), the dialogue and the whole "Mutant Ninja Noir" themed action.

This part arc had none of the above. It would've been served better as a miniseries, graphic novel or prose.

Posted by victorcheenoanleu

@ctg: Couldn't have said it better. Most of all what really bothers me is that they sold this with Spiral on the covers & she's the one who we've seen least of. The Psylocke story obviously fits because we do need closure as readers to what happened between her & Fantomex, but the name of the book is "Uncanny X-Force" not "Psylocke."