I’m going to be honest with you guys: I stopped reading Marvel’s comics when Fall of the Hulks’s story arc wrapped up in 2014, but I have kept up with the universe. Then before Civil War 2 began, I started to read almost all of Marvel’s current titles All-New and Extraordinary X-Men, All-New All-Different Avengers, All-New Captain America, Invincible Iron-Man, Spider-Man, Totally Awesome Hulk, and Uncanny Inhumans. How does this introduce the X-Men universe to new readers like me? Well, let’s see. This review may contain slight spoilers.
For the sake of saving time instead of giving you lovely ladies and gentlemen a detail description of the first issue of All-New X-Men Volume 1. I will provide you with the synopsis of the volume that can be found on Amazon.com or Comixology:
All-New X-Men collects issues, #1-6. The events of this books take place after Secret Wars.
” Hated and feared more than ever, the world is a dangerous place for mutants. As the few remaining X-Men retreat into seclusion, a handful of mutant teenagers refuse to allow their destiny to be decided for them. Cyclops. Beast. Iceman. Angel. The All-New Wolverine. Kid Apocalypse. Oya. Stepping out of the shadows of their predecessors, the All-New X-Men are striking out on their own, determined to write their own futures.”
Does this book do a good job introducing new readers to this version of the X-Men universe? In my opinion, yes, it does. This specific X-Men title focus on the teenage versions of Cyclops, Best, Iceman, Angel, Wolverine, Kid Apocalypse, and Oya. These are characters that I never read in a comic book before and after I read I had a real sense of who these characters are. I learned their individual personalities and I felt like I knew what each were going through. The story arc in this volume was impressive.
The art was really a mix of amazing artwork to a drawings from a 3rd grader. The work was by Mark Bagley, who I can’t say I’m familiar with. It may seem that I am blindly hating, but I’m just passionate about the artwork in comics. Along with the writing, they are the two most important aspects of comics. The problem with the artwork is that Mark tries to cram too much in a single panel, giving great detail to some of the objects or characters in the panel and lacking in others. Look at the bottom picture above this paragraph. The first panel shows a wave of fire coming at Indie. The fire was drawn well, but Idie looks like a stick figure. There are a lot more panels like this throughout the book. I got to tip my hat to the Color Artist, Noland Woodard. The colors in book are bright and vibrant and adds a charismatic tone to the book.
Cyclops- At the start of the volume, we see young Scott Summer haunted by the ghost of his future self. Apparently, the older Cyclops went crazy when the Terrigen bomb was released and did something so terrible that not only caused the X-Men to hate him, but also the whole world to hate and fear Mutantkind. The book never addresses what actually happened; it just says that Cyclops is a mass murder and that he died. Throughout the volume Scott stopped hiding from what happened and decided to forge his own destiny.
Iceman – Bobby Drake doesn’t have a whole lot of Development. The character development that he has received, however, was awesome. Bobby struggles with being homosexual, but it is written in a way that doesn’t seem forced into the story for the sake of diversity. It feels natural and genuine. Though it doesn’t move the story along, it does add more depth to the character.
Angel and Wolverine – If you guys did not know these two are dating. This is probably is my favorite aspect of this book. These two just work so well together, because they use their powers in harmony. Unfortunately, even they have relationship problems. The main problem that they have is Wolverine likes to dive head first in the face of danger, without waiting for backup or coming up with a plan. Laura thinks she is invincible and can’t be killed. After so many times that Angel has been there for her, seeing her come back from the brink of death, he just finally said it was over. In future issues I hope they can come together and make amends, because, like I said before, their relationship as a couple is my favorite part of the All-New X-Men title.
Oya – Indie Okonkwo – Like Bobby, there isn’t a whole lot of character development with her, but the development that she does get is fantastic. Indie struggles with her Catholic religion while she is a mutant. She wonders if God hates her because she is a mutant and different. I love her conversation that she had with God in the church. It’s so personal how strong she feels about her religion.
Honorable mentions – Henry Philip “Hank” McCoy and Kid Apocalypse both get little to no character development. They are frequently seen and are still enjoyable.
You can get a copy of All-New X-Men Volume 1 for $6.75 on Amazon or $10.99 on Comixology