Here we go, part three of the ten part “Battle of the Atom” crossover. I praised the first two chapters in my reviews for being well paced, ambitious in scope and having gorgeous art. This part of the story follows two young X-Men on the run, Jean and Scott. Can author Brian Wood keep the action and excitement flowing with this issue? Is it good?
X-Men #5 (Marvel Comics)
The X-Men have to formulate a plot to track down the renegade teenagers; time for a team huddle! The X-Men split into smaller groups, because well, that’s what superhero teams do in comics. Storm, being the bossy-pants she is tells her team members and equals Kitty, Rachel and Jubilee that they need to stay and hold down the fort in case Scott and Jean are to return while she boards the aircraft for the big exciting adventure. What a meanie!
They just got screwed over. They’re babysitting and not even getting paid for it!
Staying with the three X-Ladies are young Bobby and Hank, because there’s no way they would want to escape the school and not have to go back in the future. Meanwhile, Storm leads a team of X-Men both future and present to look for Jean. On that mission we see the psychic dream team in action, Jean and Xavier. Next up, we visit another, smaller group of X-Men: Jean and Scott. They are stealing some clothes from a backyard which just happens to have clothes that are just their size hanging from a clothesline. Who even uses clotheslines anymore?
I’ll just let the whole neighborhood watch as I change because god forbid my boyfriend and future husband would see me in my underwear!
They’re a cute little couple and their banter is pleasant to read as they motorcycle on down a highway. What’s even more fun of an interaction is that of Jean and Rachel over leftover Chinese food. Even after specific instructions to stay home, the pair decides to chase after Storm and her team of X-Buddies. Couldn’t see that one coming!
I’m not going to spoil the rest of the issue for those of us who haven’t read it but I will say that there is an expected yet interesting confrontation, rather than the bombshell ending that we should expect from every issue of a crossover.
In review, this issue is very necessary to the story. It not only moves the plot along but provides us with some quality entertainment. What I didn’t much like were the numerous plot conveniences. Brian Wood is one of the best writers out there, he just can’t afford silly mistakes. Jean and Scott just happen upon a nice motorcycle in tip-top shape in a run-down, poor neighborhood? I think not. The dialogue is stellar and he gives a nice voice to all of the future X-Men, which is something I admire. Had he only focused on the present and past X-Men it would have defeated the purpose of having the future ones there in the first place. He has new and interesting characters and he is using them well.
I am new to the art of David Lopez and have to say I’m not a fan. While it’s not bad and is well-toned there are panels that just don’t look right. For example, in a number of instances Lopez just neglects to draw a face on characters:
- Solid installment in the crossover that keeps the story progressing
- Some great moments and dialogue
- Chock full of plot conveniences
- Not enough of the cover team
Is It Good?
Yes it is, but nothing more than good. Frequent plot holes and predictable twists in the story hold this issue back from being great.