Monday, June 4, 2018

X-Men: Red Annual #1 Review - Marvel Monday

Writer: Tom Taylor
Artist: Pascal Alixe
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Release Date: May 30, 2018
Cover Price: $4.99
Review by: Jon Wayne

Despite being knee deep in a truly epic story of his run on X-Men Red, Tom Taylor has decided to use this annual to throw it back a little bit to before this title started. When Jean Grey was brought back earlier this year in the five-issue miniseries, Phoenix: Resurrection, many clamored to see Jean’s reunions with various X-Men. Regrettably, we didn’t really get to see that – until now. 

The story opens to Jean talking to someone off panel about how the world is now vs. how it was when she died, and she vows to actually make the world a better place. Then we move to her reuniting with many of her old friends, realizing who had passed – including Scott and Logan – and all she missed – including two superhero civil wars and constant fighting amongst the various teams of the Marvel Universe. We get some symbolic meta-critiques on Marvel from Jean’s narration here, before getting some funny banter between her and Old Man Logan. 

Nightcrawler then takes Jean to do the rounds and meet critical people. First, she meets Rachel Summers - Jean’s daughter with Scott from another timeline. Those two get a nice mother-daughter scene on a full page spread with great art before Jean asks to visit another young mutant, this time its Laura and Gabby Kinney! If you’re a fan of Gabby (AKA Honey badger!) this set of pages is simply a treat. It’s clear Taylor both knows and loves Laura and Gabby, and I’m so glad he gets to keep writing them even with All-New Wolverine ending a couple weeks back.

Then we follow Jean, Rachel, and Laura as they go to meet with Black Bolt. Art is simply fantastic here as Jean confronts the inhuman King over the role he played in Scott’s death. We get a surprisingly heartfelt sequence of pages as the two converse, which I won’t spoil here. As we close out this annual, we see that the person Jean was speaking to at the beginning of the issue was, in fact, Scott’s tombstone. And the final two pages give us an amazing reveal that will 100% guarantee tie back into the main story, and I can’t wait to see how.

Really great issue all around from Tom Taylor and co. The art is par for the course for this series so far, which is phenomenal. A couple panels here and there looked a little off, but otherwise, it was spot on. The story itself is something I know a lot of people wanted to see back when Jean was brought back, so everyone got what they wanted. But you also get to see a little bit of Jean’s thought process in how she put together her team, and particularly why she wanted Laura and Gabby with her.

Bits and Pieces:

I Loved this book and if there weren’t some other gems to come out this annuals week, it would be my book of the week.


1 comment:

  1. X-men Red has really been on fire! It was an issue that I didn’t think I need but after reading it, really glad I picked it up.