ageofhurricane's X-Men #26 - Open Contract, Part Two review

Gischler Still Has A Long Way To Go

So it's the third and almost, final part to like the third Vampire based story-arc the X-Men have ever witnessed, nothing exactly special about this one and to be honest, there wasn't anything exactly special about Curse Of The Mutants, we only got two Vampires out of that and only one of them can call themself a Vamp' till today, still, granted Victor Gischler isn't exactly one of the best writer's the X-Franchise has ever had, he's managed to impress me quite some bit since the Regenesis movement, so true believers, here goes.

Following from #25, Storm has sent half of her team to face some of Marvel's most deadliest mercenaries and can I just add, I LOVE that this book is actually living up to it's purpose in socialising with the rest of the MU, granted, there's still more to be done. Storm, Jubilee and Psylocke, along with Raizo and Inka take a look through The Forgiven's computer system in order to take an closer look at the fight's occuring outside as well as the state of the Chinese Island they're on (another ode to the fact that this is the X-Men's more international team compared to the usual American missions.). To be honest, the REALLY good parts of this issue where characterization occured were the scenes between Domino and Deadpool then the scenes between Jubilee, Storm and Raizo, everything else looked as if it happened because someone told Gishler to do it. Like, Colossus once again only show's up for like a page to knock back a whopping tank but then gets shocked by the guy who was controlling it, in #25 Colossus knocked down a massive door in the opening pages of that issue which revealed a lair of viscious looking Vampires, since #25 that's all Colossus has been doing, knocking things down, I'll give Gischler credit where it's due as he did give all the team members their fare share of speech and panel time in the Regenesis arc but I'm not impressed now, Warpath's scenes are quite upsetting, he punches a guy in the face and then get's punched back as if he's about to lose the fight when he's much more than that and that's the EXACT same thing that happened last issue, Psylocke barely has a role to play throughout the past three issues of this arc, it's silly, she should be Second in Command of this team yet that side to her was only shown during the Regenesis arc, and at the end of the issue she get's taken by surprise for what reason i have of yet to know.

The Good

I'm a major Storm fan so Ororo being able to lead a team in the X-Books pleases me to no describable extent, Gischler's doing her justice in terms of characterization (AT TIMES) and power level throughout, he even allows her to state more than once that she leads the X-Men, I like that. When Jubilee turned into a Vampire I wasn't exactly pleased with the new transformation and didn't exactly pay so much attention to her after it, now ? It's fantastic, her reaction towards Ororo's sense of hostility towards The Forgiven who are now her new found family is quite a shocker, she's definitely not the Jubilation we knew, she's grown up and she kicks much more ass. Never read X-Force so i never got that much from Domino to determine whether I liked her as a character or not, obviously she's one of the many characters who is favored by Gischler, the whole "I'll go on a date with you" thing was hilarious, loved it. The art for this series has been complete win so far, in fact I'd say that's one of the reasons I still get it, I'm in love with Jorge Molina's artwork, it's perfect for a book like this and I can't wait for Conrad's again.

The Bad

Yes, Gischler does not know that much about the X-Men and he's even stated that himself so we should take it easy on him but, no. I'm really disappointed with Psylockes portrayal thus far, it's poor and doesnt exactly reflect on what's been happening in Uncanny X-Force, a title which more or less shows us what's happening to the REAL Betsy, even Gillen's managed to make good work of that, Gischlers still slacking behind, what's worse, he's not even sure if she's a telepathic or telekinetic and if he does think of making a verdict, he'll remind us all that everything he does is editorially driven. The same can be said for Pete and Warpath, Warpath especially, I'm not even going to go into detail as he's one of the many one-page-characters in this issue.


Yes, a lot of bad things have been said about Gischler and his series as a whole but you'll need read the actual issues themselves to decide. I for one like this series and the solicits for April and May have me highly intrigued, no more Vampires thats for sure which is a seriously good thing for X-Fan's alike, the issue in itself was slow at the start but ends with an extremely shocking conclusion which should make for a very big bang for #27's opening concerning Jubilee. Jubilation is definitely a true member of the Security Recon Team and she's making that clear. 3.5/5.


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