Friday, June 27, 2008

X-Men: Legacy #213 review

As much as I've enjoyed the direction of this title since the end of Messiah Complex, for whatever reason, this issue didn't grab me quite like it should have. I don't know why, maybe I should have waited a bit to read it, but I'm not as enthused to read this issue like I thought I would be. Not to say it was a bad issue, it was good, but I'm just cold on it for some reason.

Here's the lowdown.

Gambit is fighting those assassin guys in the dessert while Professor X is having a weird mental freak out involving Mr. Sinister in his mind. Just as Gambit is about to get his ass handed to him, Sebastian Shaw comes out to help out in handing out the beatings. While Xavier is freaking out away from the fight, he's captured by a seperate group, who were originally out to kill him but a telepathic suggestion by Mr. Sinister, using Xavier's mind, causes them to change their mission slightly. Shaw is in search of this Cronus thing which is connected to Mr. Sinister, so he and Gambit decide they have common goals and team up. Xavier is taken to some woman called Doctor Mueller, who I'm not remotely familiar with, who proceeds to shoot some new holes into him. Gambit and Shaw invade Mueller's lab and start with the fighting, trying to destroy Cronus before the issue ends on a massive cliffhanger.

Here's what I liked about this issue, the major revelations. Big time revelations. So it turns out this Cronus thing that Xavier's stepdad, Sinister and them all were working on was in fact a way for Mr. Sinister to achieve immortality. Sinister implanted his DNA into a handful of child subjects...Xavier (this is why Sinister is in his mind), Cain Marko, Sebastian Shaw and the crazy dude who died in the last issue. He needed mutant children for the experiment to work. The reason Sinister did this was so in case he died, the Cronus machine would activate his DNA in one of his subjects causing the subject to be possessed by Sinister. However, three of the subjects aren't presently viable. Cain Marko is protected by his mystic powers (didn't know he was also a mutant though I have seen instances where Carey fudges continuity slightly), Crazy dead guy went crazy and died when the process kicked in, and Shaw is protected by something his father whipped up. Doctor Mueller, an old assistant of his from back when with the mutant power to never die (but still grow old) had apparently found this out, took his DNA, stripped out anything that wasn't his mutant genes, injected it inside her and is trying to kill Xavier so she can stop growing old and rejuvenate. Course, with Xavier bleeding to death on the floor, he's in a shitty position to resist Sinister's overtures. The last page is Xavier's body possessed by Mr. Sinister.

So this story is quickly coming to a head. Maybe a tad too quickly. I presume Carey is going to have a long run on this book cause I see how this story could have implications later down the line. I enjoyed watching Sinister deconstruct Xavier's dream. He's always been a manipulative sonovabitch, and Carey clearly likes writing the character most likely to take a leisurely stroll with Satan to compare notes. He basically swims around Xavier's memories, tells him what a piece of a shit he is, tells him it's cause he's oscillating between the man he thinks he should be (the idealized fantasy of his father) and the man who raised him (the abusive Kurt Marko). So after he gets shot, it's just a matter of Sinister whispering a few platitudes into his eat and taking over. A complete moment of weakness on Xavier's part.

I also enjoyed the stuff between Gambit and Shaw. The problem with Xavier is that he's not a character I can follow for such a long time. Taking a break from him is always welcome, even if this is his book now. Sebastian Shaw, who absords kinetic energy, makes a decent fighting partner to Gambit, who releases kinetic energy. Also, having a character who doesn't give a shit and goes around breaking necks is just cool.

Scot Eaton's art is solid. He handles the flashback sequences this issue and does an Adam Kubert thing with raw pencil art but being drawn on cardboard. Honestly, they should just do it this way from now on. The guest penciller thing was cool, but I prefer to have one artist draw an entire issue. Guest artists will slum it when they can.

I was disappointed in the big reveal. Doctor who? Who the shit is this? Not a character I recognize. I don't know if she's new or an existing character, but it did nothing for me. That's the thing that left me cold. She comes out and then I'm reading the rest of the issue wondering who the hell she is and not really concentrating on what happens next cause everything up to that point was pretty tight.

All told, teh art was solid, the story was solid and I'm enjoying the revelations of the issue. I'm thinking maybe Carey is going a bit too fast with this story now. If it goes on two more issues would be okay, but I just don't want to see this arc wrapped in one issue. Also, I'm googling this freakin' Mueller character. She has to be from somewhere, cause if she's not it's gonna totally fuck this story up for me.


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