Comic Thoughts: X-MEN Vol. 4, issues #7-8

Comics and MangaKristina PinoComment

In case anyone's wondering about my jump from Issue #4 to #7, I skipped Battle of the Atom because I'm not reading any of the other related books that tie into it, so it would have been kind of pointless.

When I stopped reading, I had been left with some team members communicating to each other about their problems, and Jubilee's day off with Logan and the baby. Issue #7 is the beginning of a six-issue arc, and the little roster at the opening of each book changed to accommodate Monet and Karima (removing Rogue and Kitty). Monet and Karima are new characters for me, and I still don't know much about them beyond what I'm seeing in these two issues: the former is telepathic, and the latter is a super cop.

Though I'm not too hot on the art (new artists! pencils by Terry Dodson and Barry Kitson, ink by Rachel Dodson et al, Colors by Jason Keith), I can get used to it. Some of the panels look fantastic, and have this great, detailed artwork with lovely textures and depth. Then there are the panels where the figures are only barely defined. It doesn't really flow well, at least not to my eyes. But like I said, I'll just get used to it. The Dia de Muertos look on Ana Cortes/Yuriko Oyama made up for a lot of my gripes in and of itself, so there's that.

I also like where this story arc is going. It ties in to what's been going on, and presents a whole new set of antagonists comprising broken women who need something that'll bring their bodies, powers, whatever, back to where they want them to be. The cast could have gotten really huge (kinda like the team of humans that are working on the book, holy moly), but I like that a few X-Men dropped out of the narrative to make room and keep things simple.

Some things I'm interested in finding out in future issues:

Jubilee's connection with Monet

Monet's story leading up to her "retreat"

Rachel's "thing" with Sublime

Why Sublime went to Cortes in the first place (there's a reason, but I'm interested in his actual intentions)

Some things I'm really happy were emphasized in these issues:

It's not OK to humiliate people for being different

It's not OK to use a friend to "get back" at someone who hurt you

Admitting there are problems goes a long way towards group harmony

And now, I kind of wish I'd held off longer so I'm not left wanting to read the next four issues so badly.