X-Men Forever #6 Review: Dangerous Games

Hey, everyone, jrpbsp here…Continuing from last week here are a couple more reviews starting with ‘X-Men: Forever’.  Hope you enjoy it.

X-Men Forever #6 cover X-Men Forever #6 (preview)
Writer: Chris Claremont
Penciler: Paul Smith
Inker: Terry Austin

NOTE: Wolverine does not appear in this issue.

SPOILERS BELOW…

RECAP: The issue opens with young Ororo and Lockheed in the Danger Room control center watching Kitty, Gambit and Kurt playing baseball with the trash from the wreckage of the training center. Cyclops arrives and is not happy. While he is lecturing the others, ‘Ro tries to fly and ends up summoning a mini tornado. Nightcrawler and Kitty try to save her but she ends up flying into Scott which serves to end the wind.

Meanwhile Sabretooth and Xavier have a talk about Kitty and his presence in the mansion. Creed confronts the Professor about his lies and obviously makes an impact. Beast and Jean also have a little heart to heart about Wolverine and Beast’s discovery of mutants dying young.

Scott pitches in to help clean up the wreckage but the room activates on its own. Kurt teleports young Storm out and Kitty phases with Lockheed but none of them can get back in. Scott and Remy manage to fight the room and get the main door to open before they are hurt.

Remy and Ororo are thinking about leaving the mansion but Cyclops convinces them to stay. Kurt and Kitty have a talk about Logan’s death and the changes in Kitty’s body and she tries to accept them. The issue ends with Fury coming to Xavier to show him a new threat, something that has smashed tanks flat in South America

MY TAKE: While not a bad issue, this was the weakest of the series so far. It is pretty much a completely forgettable transition issue where the characters attempt to make sense of the new status quo. In fact even though I had read it only a week ago I had to reread it from scratch to fresh my memory on what had occurred in the issue.

A little bit of action in the Danger Room is put in to try and keep it interesting but it is sandwiched among constant two-party discussions that do very little to keep your interest. Most of these conversations offer little real insight into the characters and are put in to bridge the gap between the 616 universe and the new team Claremont is forming.

My biggest issue is with the personalities. Although none of them is blatantly off, most of the characters seem to be skewed enough to be noticeable. In fact several times, most noticeably with Scott and Gambit, they seem to be bipolar changing their minds and personalities from one moment to the next. In the worst instance in a few panels Gambit goes from wanting to leave the mansion to convincing Ororo to stay.

Beyond that very little happens. Dialogue is one of Claremont’s strong points but it was rushed and overdone here. I am all for having the characters reflect and absorb massive changes and in fact it was greatly needed. But it seemed very rushed with characters accepting, on the surface at least, body alternations and death in just a few panels. I think it would have been best to leave out the bits of action and make this purely a reflection issue so the characters could interact on a deeper level.

Normally I do not mention the art but I was really not a fan of the way the characters were drawn here. The faces looked like a nightmare sequence in a cheesy cartoon, way over done with huge eyes and noses. Storm, Xavier and the Beast were the worst. In one panel Xavier looks like Caliban the Morlock crossed with an evil lawn gnome. It is strange since pretty much everything else is drawn well which only makes these characters stand out in a really bad way.

In the end this is a mediocre issue. But I am still enjoying the series and I think we have a very strong foundation and I am looking forward to the next issue and story arc. This story was pretty much a necessity to bridge the series but was rushed and borderline schizophrenic. Yet it is still not a bad comic, just pretty forgettable. Still if it leads to a strong and united team with the type of stories highlighted in the first five issues then I am all for it.

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 agree that this issue was all over the place. It was more like the Claremont I know and loathe, unfortunately. As opposed to the classic Claremont I felt was returning with this title.

    There’s not much to be said about this issue, as you’ve stated, it’s a transition issue with some of Claremont’s patented X-Men family baseball fun moments he puts in from time to time. Mostly forgettable.

    In fact, one could say it was almost entirely pointless. We didn’t need this explanation as to why characters were sticking around. They could have simply said “6 months later” (or what have you) and let us fill in the blanks.

    There was a couple of pages in the story I absolutely loved though. The scenes with Sabretooth rattling around the mansion and talking with Charles.

    I thought it was a neat use of who Creed is as a mutant, sniffing out the locations of his fellow mutants. And then drifting into an introspective about how he feels Logan is laughing at him from beyond.

    This scene is transitioned well when we go from a thought bubble directly to a text bubble with Sabretooth figuring out that everything he has been thinking, Xavier has been listening in on.

    The two begin arguining, in what I felt was the most in-character moments of the issue, about how Logan was Xavier’s friend, and his opinions and familiarity were earned. Whereas Victor has no such privilege. To which Sabretooth responds that he really doesn’t care.

    I could go on and on about these two pages. I really loved that interaction. At the end of the day, it was really the only saving grace for me for the issue.

    And thus far, it looks like Sabretooth may turn out to be Claremont’s most endearing character. Though I can’t say that’s really surprising, as when he wrote the character in New Exiles, it was by far his best of the bunch.

  2. While I agree on Sabes once again there has been little reason for the sudden change. But oh well I am slowly abandoning the fact that this was supposed to be 616 related and treating it like Ultimate or Exiles. I have seen flashes of real brilliance from this series so hopefully this was a necessary evil and we’ll be back to good stories next issue.

  3. Oh yes, Sabes is definitely shoehorned into the role. No doubt about it. But even knowing he’s being portrayed as toned down to squeeze him onto the team in place of Logan, his scenes, especially in this issue, are some of my favorites.

    I also really liked how he was drawn in this issue. While the majority of the characters seemed to be mutating throughout the artwork, Creed looked just about right in his bits.

  4. I would have preferred just leaving Logan in his role but Sabes does work well as a replacement and adds more edge to it.

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