UNCANNY X-MEN #1 / Writers: Ed Brisson, Matthew Rosenberg, Kelly Thompson / Penciler: R.B. Silva / Inker: Adriano Di Bendetto / Colorist: Rachelle Rosenberg / Letterer: VC’s Joe Caramagna / Cover Artists: Leinel Francis Yu, Edgar Delgado / Marvel Comics / November 21, 2018
Bigger Team, Bigger Story
The weekly X-Men adventure continues with not only a bigger creative team featuring modern Marvel greats Ed Brisson (Old Man Logan), Matthew Rosenberg (The Punisher, Multiple Man), and Kelly Thompson (West Coast Avengers, Rogue & Gambit), but possibly the biggest X-Men team lineup ever: a record 21 members, including founders like Jean Grey, Iceman, Angel, and Beast, to the younger, though not necessarily new X-Men like Rockslide, Armor, and Pixie. So far, the story is handling the large cast well enough, but we’ll see if the three writers can handle this enormous cast for the next eight issues. They’ve successfully introduced a lot of different plot lines that seem interesting, like Storm’s power trouble, whatever Jamie’s doing, Beast looking into stuff without telling anyone, the young X-Men (But how can Rockslide still be a teenager he first appeared in 2003?), and more ideas that I hope don’t get forgotten or misplaced in the long run.
An X-Story for X-Fans
Our trio of writers has shown they could write the X-characters before in Thompson’s Mr & Mrs. X book, Brisson’s run on Old Man Logan, and Rosenberg’s work on Multiple Man, Astonishing X-Men, and New Mutants: Dead Souls. This has put story so far is all over the place, Madrox is going around like a crazy person, teams are separating into groups for different missions, the young X-Men are… being young X-men. This has a lot of potential and gives room for a large range of characters to grow: A way for Psylocke to get used to her new old body, to develop Jubilee as a mutant again , and there’s Cannonball… being Cannonball. The characters and overall story seem to flow well, but there are definitely characteristics to each personality that feel like the specialty of a particular writer. For example, Madrox scenes feel like Rosenberg, while Jean and Iceman feel like Thompson, and Brisson is… I don’t know, the dinosaurs?
One plus or downside to this story so far is that it assumes the people reading are X-Men fans. This can be a pro and a con because it means we have a story that X-Fans can just read, understand, and appreciate, but new readers will wonder who some of these characters are (Of course they should know Rockslide, he’s been in X-Books for 15 years), and some returning X-Readers may wonder why Psylocke is British again. Either way, this story is still in its early stages and mixing an abundance of references that may or may not become a proper story.
Three writers telling a story can be hard, but beautiful. They can get in each other’s way or they can complement each other in every scene and make this classic superhero team into a modern marvel, no pun intended. The massiveness of this story reminds me of DC’s 52 and Batman Eternal, weekly events that were also written by multiple writers, which also gives the reader a chance to play guess-the-writer. To guess again: I have a gut feeling all the Jamie stuff is Rosenberg, while the Young X-Men and Jean feel like Thompson, and Brisson must be Beast. I’d be interested in a deluxe edition or director’s cut of this that tells us. Even though I can feel the separation of styles in some points, these writers, so far, meld together really well and truly understand these characters. This gives me high hopes for the rest of the series, and so far the book, awesome looking with huge, kick-butt fight scenes, has a lot to work with. The story so far has been set up with eight more issues in this arc to tell this tale.
Verdict: 3.5 out of 5
P.S. Dear X-Writers, I apologize for my obvious concerns over Rockslide, but please develop him to be more than just a background character. Give him purpose. Please.
Oh, is this a bio? I better tell people who I am and what I do, right? Well, that’s easy I’ll explain that I’m a writer of sorts who goes under the alias of Nobody, but my friends call me Kade because that’s my name. Check out some of my short stories on Tapas.io under Social Cues of Mythology.