Writer: Dennis Hopeless
Artist: Mark Bagley
Jesus, that spray-painted ‘X’ is over the wrong fucking cast.
So just to warn anyone reading this before I begin, I have a specific approach to my review style which is pissing and moaning in order to provide humorous commentary. (Results may vary; sometimes I’m just being a prick.)
If you like anyone or anything related to this comic book enough to defend it, probably don’t read this because I’m literally just bitching with this one.
My first issue with this series is the premise and the idea that the original X-Men have anymore story left.
One of the things that surprised me about Bendis’ final issue X-Men was that he didn’t wrap up the ‘All New X-Men’ storyline; a feeling which now has devolved to disappointment considering the original X-Men in the present has four plot points:
1. Them being fish out of water as they are people from the past.
2. Them encountering their futures, both as the X-Men and individually.
3. Their quest to get back home.
4. To act as substitutes for their dead/nearly-unwritable future selves.
As of now, the first two have been exhausted, the third is essentially on hold until someone figures out that this storyline has lost its flavor, and quite frankly, I think we’ll all survive with an absence of the angst parade known as Scott Summers and Jean Grey…oh and the other three.
So, given that these plotlines aren’t active/interesting anymore, it’s fair to say that the original X-Men are now at the same storytelling level as the 50-something X-Kids, and considering the diversity of personalities and backgrounds that’s come through with the present-day X-Students, do we really need to hear the stories of this specific cast:
Wow, I’ve never had a better reason to use this GIF:
Like if I wanted to read about a bunch of white teenagers being lame and suburban I’d go read Archie, but, thanks to this book, I feel like I already have.
However, as if to prevent this criticism (which nice try but no), the team’s cast has been X-panded to include three other young X-Men; each of them questionable. Let’s review:
1. X-23- Now admittedly my issue with X-23’s current portrayal as sarcastically quirky isn’t the fault of Hopeless but a baffling trend in writing her that I think started with Bendis; shocking I know with him and his diversified character voices.
But like how the fuck did we go from her cutting herself in the X-Bathroom because she can’t deal with her emotions to her telling Angel that his “old-man ringtone makes [her] stabby?” Moreover, it’s ironic that I find the bathroom scene infinitely less painful to read.
While it’s cute that she’s decided to take on Wolverine as her codename, if she’s basing her new codename on who’s she’s ripping of the most then her codename should really be Buffy Summers.
Like call me crazy but I feel like there’s a disconnect here:
And just know that the first person to comment citing this as believable character development gets a kick in the balls… with X-23’s claw foot. Yeah, totally because girls who were raised to be assassins and nothing else are sooo clumsy.
2. Kid Apocalypse- Ugh, this character and the core cast are just a cautionary tale in what happens when the original creators leave plotlines lying around.
[Edit: This part was written literally one day before (this was announced)].
3. Oya- Quite honestly, I don’t really know who this is because I stopped paying attention to the X-Teen books once they canceled one of the most amazing teen X-Books ever (New X-Men) in favor of the critically acclaimed Young X-Men. From there I’ve always harbored ill-will to any teen character/book that’s come ever since because in my eyes they’ll never measure up to New X-Men.
Also, I stopped reading Wolverine and the X-Men when I realized that they took Quentin Quire and essentially turned him into Plankton from Spongebob Squarepants.
Honestly, my only sampling of Oya was when she was first introduced as a self-loathing Christian, and frankly, Wolfsbane is all I can take of that and I can barely stomach her bullshit as it is.
As for the actual content of the issue beyond itself, I don’t have a whole lot to comment on considering the plot is, for better or worse, your generic superhero story arc.
I do have to comment that I’m less than pleased to see Mark Bagley on an X-title as he’s literally in my top 5 of least favorite comic artists despite the fact that this issue has proven that he’s gone away from some of the shit that he does that pisses me off. However, it only takes one of these cheesy expressions to remind me of my dislike:
Like I immediately want to see any character wearing this expression have their head chainsawed off.
Also, the approach to writing the characters definitely feels like someone’s dad attempting to connect with today’s kids; it just comes across as disgustingly wholesome and visibly straining to be “hip.” Like when this scene with the deceptive camper happened:
All I could think was A. What was the point of this? B. Did he come up with this thinking, “Hey, didn’t the kids like this in that Harry Potter TV show?”
In summary, All New X-Men is not my kind of X-Book by any stretch of the imagination; it’s certainly by no means the worst X-Book ever, but it’s definitely proof that the “All New X-Men” team is played out and just needs to be wrapped up.
And that’s the first and last time I’ll discuss this incarnation of All New X-Men, join me soon as I delve into the first three issues of Extraordinary X-Men.