raven575's The X-Men #15 - Prisoners of the Mysterious Master Mold! review

Sentinels...more like Crap-inels

Now I give Stan a little bit of credit for the start of this issue, but only because he found a slightly new way to cram a "training session" montage down our gullets.

So the last book left off with the group standing outside a complex that was raising out of the ground, but this one starts with them on top of it with the ground going all wonky? I think they forgot to include a small piece of the story here.

How in the hell did they go from 50 feet away from the, rising out of the ground, super headquarters, to standing on top of it falling all over the place? Fast forward to the part where they have a brilliant idea to form a hockey puck shaped merry-go-round and then launch it to land on top of the fortress? Wait? I thought they were already on top of it. This is why movies have an establishing shot as the beginning of a scene. It helps the viewer understand where everything is in relation to other stuff.

So the hockey brigade gets caught along with Angel who was, what? Was he spotting them or something? What would he have done if they were off target? The answer is nothing, because Angel is a mostly useless character.

Then, I get angry again. Once again, Stan contradicts something he wrote in THE VERY LAST ISSUE. I know I quoted this in my last post as well, but...

"My mental power is useless against a mechanical brain!" - Professor X

Well apparently Stan wrote himself into a corner with that because this issue he says, "Though I cannot control the mechanical brain of a sentinel -- I can still strike it with a bolt of mental energy!" - Professor X

Seriously!?! I just want to get into a time machine go back to October of 1965 (which is when I'm guessing Stan wrote then since it was published in December of that year), find Stan Lee and slap him across the face while yelling at him to BE MORE FUCKING CREATIVE! Also, I would add in something about cutting back on the amount of times he uses exclamation points. If you haven't noticed, he uses them A LOT. Seriously, this page which I'm referencing has either a question mark or exclamation point for EVERY though/speech balloon. Some of the sentences even use two exclamation points at the end, because when your characters yell every single word that comes out of their mouth, the only way to get MORE emphasis is to add more exclamation points...or bold the words.

So he knocks out robots with mental powers...whatever. Then we get a short back and forth between the X-Men fighting Sentinels and an origin for Beast, and let me tell you...Beast's origin is lame. He had big feet and was athletic, so he was sort of a social outcast...whooptie freakin' do. You who else is a social outcast, at that age, and at level. EVERYONE. Pretty much everyone gets bullied by someone when they are young. Now granted, I didn't get pushed in front of a moving vehicle when I was 10 years old...it took until I was 16 for that to happen. Sorry, I just don't feel sad for the tortured football star. That's right, he was a football star. Look, another thing he shares in common with Professor X.

Stan needs some new ideas.

Blah, blah, blah...more fighting, the X-Men are down and that's the end of the issue.

Final Thoughts: I swear Stan uses the same formulaic way of creating stories for this book, and maybe he used it for other books too, but I have yet to read other classic works by Stan. He sets up the story with a training scenario, then there is a small conflict, some fighting and a simple resolution. Now this is the first story in this series that has spanned more than two issues, but he could have done so much better with adding more meat to the story and skipping the episodic, routine bullshit. Add more background and depth to the villain. Find out more about the reaction of the outside world to this development. They were on Television when this all went down, for God's sakes. I'm sure the public has to be freaking out a bit. Anything but the same standardized story plot, but if you are going to stick to the same thing...at least stretch (see what I did there) that formula across the three issues, not repeated three times.

TLDR: Stan sucks as a storyteller, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE change writers soon and Trask is about to be pulled apart like a wishbone.


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