X-Men: Forever #5 Review: Very Limited Lives…

Hey, everyone, jrpbsp here…For my next exciting review we have ‘X-Men: Forever’. Hope you enjoy it.

X-Men Forever #5 cover X-Men: Forever  #5 (preview | thread)
Writer: Chris Claremont
Penciler: Tom Grummett
Inker: C. Hamscher

SPOILERS BELOW…

RECAP: The issue opens with Gambit and the young Storm under fire. Remy tosses the child off the bridge to keep her from being shot. Rogue is able to catch her before she hits the water and Nightcrawler deals with the squad of shooters.

We then see Cyclops’ team showing up just in time to save the elder Storm from her Consortium compatriots. The group takes the men down quickly but it is Storm who kills the last one who is trying to use her as a shield. She is then able to summon her winds and escape to the skies.

S.H.I.E.L.D. shows up quickly to take into custody the agents that Nightcrawler defeated while Jean attempts to read the minds of the other group. Sabretooth is able to sniff out a secret door which leads into a warehouse with water access. S.H.I.E.L.D. shows up again and takes control before the X-Men have a change to look around. Cyclops wants to protest but he is called back to the mansion by Hank on an urgent matter.

Fury is living up to his name questioning everyone around him in the wake of the Consortium revelation. He is informed that the plane that was transporting Cortez has disappeared.  We then see Cortez who is being handed over to Consortium troops by his S.H.I.E.L.D. captors.

Back in the mansion Beast tells the others that both the older and the young Storm identically match every scan they have ever done on Ororo. But that is not all, Hank has also found some old files in the system that indicate that mutant’s own powers burn out their bodies and it is impossible for them to live past the age of sixty. The rest of the team is shocked that Xavier kept this from them but despite their anger Fury convinces them they are still needed as X-Men for now.

The issue ends with a small memorial for Logan where Scott confronts Jean about her feelings and she admits that she loves Wolverine and not him. Scott vows to keep Xavier’s dream alive and despite everything he wants to set things right.

MY TAKE: I am not sure what it is about this series but it seems to suck you right in. Looked at objectively I do not know why but it remains one of the most entertaining and fun new series I have seen in a long time. The characters are done well and even though some of the plot points do not make much sense it still manages to read very well.

That is not to say that the issue and the series do not have problems. The biggest one so far has been pacing. So much is being thrown at us so quickly that it is hard to care about any of it. For example the big reveal in this issue, coming on the heels so many other huge plot points, made me unable to feel any real outrage. Now it is a clever idea and I can understand the X-Men being upset but it just seems less important. It also struck me as a bit too much like Decimation in that we have yet another doomed mutant race scenario.

While the characters are starting to get back in their roles, there is still enough odd behavior to be noticeable. Sabretooth playing nice and Scott pretty much shrugging off being dumped by Jean are good examples of this. I am sure Claremont is attempting to make a base line for his series but as a long time X-Men fan, some of his interactions are hard to take seriously.

About the only other problem I had with the comic was in the coloring. Jean’s hair looked very pink for a lot of the issue and several other colors just did not seem to have come through correctly. Of course that could have just been my issue but it was noticeable.

But none of those problems really detract from the entertainment value of the series. Claremont has managed to hit a note that is both modern and retro and over the top without being silly or stupid. It is a hard balance to find and yet he is managing with each issue so far. If he can keep up both the tone and the plots then I expect he will have a very long run on this series.

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.

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  1. I’m also very drawn in by this series. I’m currently reading the old claremont uncannys all the way through (currently up to just before inferno) and let me say the old issues are very impressive. No rosey glasses needed.

    As for x-forever… I’m somewhat miffed by this whole age is bad for mutants problem. Firstly, I feel that the x-books have been somewhat littered with older mutants. Some of them claremont creations, most not. His big relevation that mutants don’t age well seems very out of place in a greater x-continuity that ends at x-men #3 and resumes at x-forever #1. The hope was that claremont’s world would be consistant through these books. The problem with that thought is that it’s immediately proven not to be the case with the exclusion from the series of half the characters featured in x-men #3. Claremont has openly said that he will not incorperate or acknowlage the work of other writers in his x-forever run… I thought that meant just for books that were released after he left.

    Well, the second problem is that we are now confronted with the ugly and disturbing process of wondering how old the x-men are. This is something marvel seems to really enjoy not addressing, since a large portion of their characters originated as teenagers in the 50s/60s. Numerous old x-men books have angel, iceman and beast hanging out in greenwich village beat poetry cafes. Even if we ignore the old stuff, just looking at x-factor, scott is old enough to have a son and x-wife. Should we assume that all mutants older than scott are at risk?

  2. I changed my view early one to take this series completely out of 616 and look at it like Exiles or AoA as a totally separate continuity. It is all that males sense. As for the age thing I do not expect it will come up much. You still have Xavier kicking around and he is obviously much older then the X-Men. It might be an excuse to kill off a few characters but I don’t think it would be any one in their late 20s/early 30s like Scott.

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