X-Force #17 Review: Time to Kill

Hey, everyone, jrpbsp here…I have all the big Wolverine titles this week so let’s start with X-Force. Hope you enjoy it.

X-Force #17 cover X-Force #17 (preview | thread)
Writer: Craig Kyle and Christopher Yost
Penciler: Mike Choi and Sonia Oback

SPOILERS BELOW…

RECAP: The issue opens with a brief flashback to the events before Messiah War, with the Leper Queen about to kill Boom Boom. Laura arrives in the nick of time and shoots the Queen dead before collapsing herself. H.A.M.M.E.R. breaks in immediately and take possession of Tabitha and X-23 routing the former to a hospital and Laura to an interogation facility.

We flash briefly to Rahne and Hrimhari spending a blissful moment in each others arms. It does not last, as they are rudely interrupted by three frost giants looking to kill the Wolf Prince.

At the U.N., Trask and Lang are trying to convince the members to sponsor their new anti-mutant force the Mutant Response Divison. Trask is being controlled by Bastion remotely.

Interspersed with this is Surge and Hellion being brought to the U.N. already infected with the Legacy virus and primed to explode. Hellion manages to fight back but is subdued. Wolverine and his group arrive and Logan killers Hellion’s holders while Josh cures him of the virus.

Nori panics and bolts. Wolverine tries to send Warren after her but Archangel is lost to blood lust. Logan has to stab his teammate to get him to focus enough to go after the girl. Archangel manages to grab her but she is pretty close to exploding. She is brought to Elixir who braves her electricity to try and get close enough to touch her.

It ends with Domino waking up where she fell in the future and worried about Tabitha. She stands for a moment before she sees a huge electrical explosion hit in the distance.

MY TAKE: This is a good issue and as much as I have enjoyed the Messiah War it was nice to get back to the main plot again. While I never really believed that Boom Boom was going to be killed off it was nice to see her being saved after months of wondering. The story is good and it moves along very well with lots of action and blood as you would expect from this series.

There were no real surprises here. Tabitha’s survival was expected and we knew from the previews that Laura would be captured. Although Surge’s fate is left up in the air and is seemingly tragic with her being only inches away from Elixir, I cannot really find myself worrying too much about her dying. The ending appears to be more of an attempt to add tension then really question her ultimate survival. Especially with three other team members at ground zero with her.

The characterizations were good as always. I particularly liked Laura’s incredible determination and ruthlessness along with Wolverine’s leadership and fast thinking. Josh was also well done, showing just how much he cares about his friends and former team mates. I am still not sold on Warren’s sudden berserker tendencies but it is nice to see his dark side finally be addressed.

I do wish they had given a bit more background in the story since we have had a several month break from the plot. While the recap page is useful I prefer to have everything I need in the actual story. As it was I was a bit pressed to remember exactly what was happening at the U.N. that Logan and his team needed to protect.

My only other complaint is the seeming need to constantly end each issue with a cliff hanger. While this is a trend in action stories, I do not need to be hit over the head with a ‘Read next month for the exciting continuation’. I want to be driven to read the next issue due to the story and plot not to see if a favorite character lives or dies. That sort of ending always feels a bit exploitative to me.

But both of those are minor complaints about a book that continues to deliver a good story wrapped in great, blood-soaked action. While the plots are not super complex, we are given a broad scope of truly heinous villains and bunch of over the top heroes to carve their way through. This comic has filled an action niche in the X-Titles that I never realized was missing and I hope it continues for a long time.

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 next time.

Facebook comments:

  1. I didn’t read the events with Surge as a whether or not we’re supposed to question her safety. She’ll clearly survive.

    No, what I saw was something else entirely. They’re mere feet from the UN, where Trask is giving his anti-mutant speech. Just then a mutant bomb will go off directly outside? It’s a ploy by Trask to cement his anti-mutant ideals.

    Whether or not that was obvious to the reader or not, I cannot say, but I read the cliffhanger in an entirely different way. Not as “I wonder if Surge will live?”, but rather “I wonder if X-Force can keep Surge’s explosion under wraps in order to not play into Trask’s plans?”

  2. Well is she explodes at all they are shown to be universally lethal. Everyone who’s power overloads to that extent has died as a result. That was the cliff hanger I was referring in that scenario.

  3. I understand. I just don’t think that with Elixir there, and given the fact that Surge is relatively important that they’d kill her of at all (or at least in this scenario).

    The more pertinent questions at the time for me was whether or not this will be viewed as yet another terrorist attack. This could very well be the shot the cements Trask’s march on San Francisco that brings Dark Avengers/Uncanny X-Men to pass.

  4. No I think it’s pretty logical and obvious that everyone is going to survive. They saved Boomer and she is definitely a minor character at this point. But it seemed, to me at least, like they were trying to build up the ‘Oh noes, will everyone die?!’ tension.

    Either way it will be interesting to see what happens next issue. If nothing else we get a nekkid Laura on the cover. ;)

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