Free Comic Book Day 2009 (Wolverine: Origin of an X-Man)

Hey, everyone… Welcome once again to the weekly (or more) review of your friendly Wolverine issues. This is a special bonus review of Saturday’s FCBD Wolverine title. So settle in and enjoy this exclusive bonus content!

FCBD Wolverine cover FCBD Wolverine Origin of an X-Man
(preview | thread)
Writer: Fred Van Lente
Art: Gurihiru

SPOILERS BELOW…

The issue opens with James Hudson trying to convince the Canadian military to send an untried Wolverine on a mission to a small town after a military team disappeared. No one is quite sure what happened to the town and everything including aliens is being considered. Eventually he is successful and Wolverine is sent to Harbordale to find out what happened to the place. He ignores most of the briefing instead reading about memories and researching his own issues. Once he arrives and finds the town covered in metal, he is all business.

First believing that this is an alien invasion, Wolverine engages some small robots and defeats them. When they call for help, Wolverine allows himself to be captured in order to study the town better. It seems like the entire place is coated in metal and being built to show average human scenes. There are energy lines fueling the robots. Escaping, Wolverine destroys some of the lines to buy himself time.

When he runs into robot that looks like a seahorse, he is able to figure out what is happening. Following the smallest line he traces it back to the source where he finds the original team has been converted as well. Disabling them he finds a sleeping mutant. Waking the man, Wolverine discovers he is Madison Jeffries whose power is to restructure of inorganic materials.

He was using the town to help him recover from post-traumatic stress. The seahorse in Greek is hippocampus the part of the brain that regulates memory. The whole town was being remodeled to Madison’s past. Waking him freed all the people and Wolverine was able to take him to get help from James Hudson. The issue ends with Wolverine beginning his iconic fight with the Hulk and Wendigo.

MY TAKE:  This was obviously an all ages title which is not necessarily bad but tends to hurt the story. You know no one is going to be hurt and everything will work out fine, which is always something of a stretch when you are focusing on Wolverine. That being said the issue was better then I was expecting. The story was a nice little adventure and helps to establish Wolverine and Alpha Flight to new readers and can even potentially fit into continuity.

The plot was simplistic but not irritatingly so. It follows a simple mystery and search and rescue story but it has some nice scenes. I particularly enjoyed the opening where we see James Hudson trying to explain all about Wolverine to a bunch of generals. I felt their disbelief was amusing and realistic considering how secret Wolverine’s life was. I would not expect anyone to suddenly start trusting him with their safety.

There was not a lot of action as expected but it is always nice to see Wolverine using his brains rather then just his claws to solve a problem. Tying it into Wolverine’s own lost memories was interesting as well. Of course it had to include a little bit of learning for the young readers but it did not feel too tacked on. It was nice to see them use an established character in the mystery as well rather then just throw in some random or new mutant to have taken over the town.

The art was cartoony and clunky feeling, but no worse then any of the other all ages titles I have seen. All in all, this succeeded with what it was trying to do, be a good story for young people and give an interesting if basic story for the fans.

Thanks for reading my review for Wolverine Files. I will be keeping to this format for the most part but please keep the comments coming and I will see everyone again tomorrow for the weekly review!

Facebook comments:

  1. Very well-considered synopsis and review, jrpbsp. I’m glad this issue fulfulls its intent, and it sounds like a nice, interesting story to attract new readers. Keep up the good work!

  2. Thank you very much for the kind words. I’m glad you liked the review.

  3. Your reviews are very entertaining. Thanks for working on these.

  4. It’s my pleasure to do the reviews. Just glad you guys are enjoying them.

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