X-Men v3 Issue 4
Well, it's now past the halfway point of this arc, and I have to say, it's so lackluster. I mean, I feel like this shouldn't be the main X-Men book, which an uninformed buyer might think it is. With just decent writing and good art, it isn't bad, it's just not something that seems like it'll have any lasting impact on the X-Men and it's almost as if this entire thing won't matter come the second arc. I wanted a lot more from this, I wanted something that could prove that comics and vampires mix well when shaken up a bit, but instead all this has been is flat. I wish I could sing praises, but aside from some cool character moments, this story just doesn't matter to me anymore and I'm excited for the end of it all.
The issue opens with Madison Jeffries explaining the massive vampire related attacks that are occurring to Cyclops and Emma Frost. Teams of two are sent out throughout the city to combat vampires, including one of Blade and Angel. After busting up a vampire attack, they discover a vampire hideout. Meanwhile, newly turned vampire Wolverine is loving being a vampire when Cyclops calls Xarus on the video-screen, and after declining an invite by Xarus to join them, finds out Wolverine is a vampire and that they're coming for the X-Men. Naturally, the issue ends with Cyclops telling everybody to prepare as Xarus gathers his forces to attack.
Okay, short and sweet, the problem with this book is that I know it's just not going to impact anything at all. There are so many ways you could make this book even cooler than the premise of X-Men fighting vampires. Just off the top of my head I can think of three, Gambit becoming infected and dealing with the presence of Death that lingers within, Archangel getting infected and dealing with his own presence of Death, or have Storm deal with the vampires in a larger sense along the lines that she did in her special with Gambit a ways back. I mean, aside from the scene with Cyclops being an awesome leader, it's just not really moving fast enough and I'm ready for the next arc with Spidey in it, so we can have something that will hopefully live to it's premise. Plus, I don't buy Wolverine as a vampire for half a second. Next issue he'll turn into a human and slice up all the vampires and I'll pretend to be surprised. At least with Jubilee there is a chance that this'll effect her long-term.
Art is great for the most part, it's just not right for the book. I mean, Paco Medina can draw incredibly well and his run on Deadpool was tremendous work that any artist would be proud to have on their resume. The only problem is, while his work on Deadpool I look back on fondly, the tone of X-Men doesn't indicate the need for his clean and cartoon-like art. I just wish he were still on Deadpool and we had somebody like Chris Bachelo on this book, but we get him next arc (Why he didn't do the book from the beginning I'll never know). Oh, and the Adi Granov cover. Gorgeous. It's simple, but it works incredibly well and is the kind of cover that should grace the trade cover and all promotional images because it perfectly encompasses the premise of the book.
Overall, I'm disappointed but I'll stick it out to see how the story ends, and I'm excited for next issue to finally cut to it and do something. It's about time for something to matter. 3 out of 5.