Monday, September 10, 2018

X-23 #3 Review - Marvel Monday


Going Cuckoo

Writer: Mariko Tamaki
Art team: Juann Cabal, Nolan Woodard, and VC’s Cory Petit
Covers: Mike Choi & Jesus Aburtov 
Release Date: 8/29/18
Cover Price: $3.99
Reviewed by: Jon Wayne

While I’ve enjoyed this series so far, it hasn’t met my expectations in a few areas that I made note of last time. Particularly its lack of urgency in picking up the pace, but also in not really addressing why Laura reclaimed the X-23 mantle when much of her recent history has been about putting that part of her in the past. Will we get that answered? Will the pace pick up? Let’s dive in and find out.


The answer to both is sadly no. By the end of the last issue, the Cuckoos had kidnapped Gabby and Laura was hot on their trail. By the end of this issue, Laura owes a guy a new van because the Cuckoos (psychic clones of the ever-scheming Emma Frost, lest anyone forgets) are smarter than she thought, Dr. Marks is still a semi-evil scientist even if she was being mind-controlled, and a beautiful set of splash pages towards the end. 



There is a fun enough Easter egg when Laura is scrolling through her contacts for those who’ve been following her journey for the past few years in All-New Wolverine, but then that brings to the forefront that we still don’t know why Laura has abandoned her father’s moniker (he’s not back yet folks!). We kind of get a reason when Laura confronts Dr. Marks, but it basically equates to “I’m X-23 again because Marvel is too uncreative to give me a new name.” Otherwise known as a cop-out. As someone who’s been pretty invested in Laura ever since a friend recommended All-New Wolverine, it’s tough for all that development to disappear “just because.”



Cabal’s art does really shine here. Some panels are out of this world amazing. His work meshes near perfectly with the wide array of colors that Woodard utilizes. They’re a dream team for this book and a necessary component that’s helping keep things afloat while Mariko Tamaki takes her sweet time in developing the story.

Bits and Pieces:

Juann Cabal’s art truly carries this issue, and honestly has carried the series so far. Don’t get me wrong I love our Super Sisters together, I am rooting for this book and I want it to do well. I’d love nothing more than to get a monthly dose of Laura and Gabby, but they need a compelling story for their iconic banter to be built around – it can’t be the only thing going on. Our lead duo being separated in this issue highlights how little this series has going for it apart from the sisterly dynamic. I didn’t hate this issue, but I didn’t have any fun either. My score reflects that.

6.3/10

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