Iceman #7 continues the reunion arc of the original Champions, as well as continues Bobby’s new romance with Judah. Oh, and Bobby kicks major Sentinel ass. So, is it good?
My thoughts on this issue are a bit contradictory: a fair amount happens, but I wish there had been more. This is due to the fact that we get developments regarding a lot of different plot threads, but none of them receive large amounts of page-time on their own. As far as the Champions reunion goes, they really tear it up in battle with the Sentinels. Seeing this team in action again fills me with nostalgia for old comics I’ve never even read before. The original Champions have often been the butt of jokes due to their odd lineup, but Sina Grace and Robert Gill do a great job showing that they click well and can be a great group in their own right. Unfortunately, they don’t get much page-time outside of the battle. It makes sense that Bobby is the central focus given that this is Iceman and not Champions, but when the reunion only lasts for two issues it’s hard not to feel disappointed.
Romance-wise, Bobby and Judah have some cute moments in this issue. The pair seem to be taking things slow and that’s likely for the best, but again, the lack of dedicated page-time is a bit of a bummer. They’ve hit it off charmingly thus far and I hope subsequent issues will develop their relationship further. One aspect of the issue I didn’t feel disappointed in was its action. Once again, Grace and Gill show Bobby utilizing his powers in ways we’re not used to seeing, and it’s nice to see the character be portrayed as an actual badass, not just someone with untapped potential to be powerful.
Artistically, Gill does a solid job on this issue. My main qualm is that some of the characters’ faces are awkwardly rendered at times, but when they’re great, they’re great. The cast here looks very human–I believe that their expressions match the emotions they’re supposed to be feeling, and that they are indeed interacting with one another. This isn’t a comic where the art looks flat and detached. Gill does a particularly good job in the opening action scene, where his Sentinels look both classic and imposing. Colorist Rachelle Rosenberg also continues to deliver strong work, especially where Bobby’s ice form is concerned. Sometimes less effective artists have made Bobby look chalky white and non-reflective, but Rosenberg actually make him look like, well, an ice man.
Overall, Iceman #7 is a good time. The artwork continues to be solid, there’s a good “oh s--t” moment or two, and it’s nice to see Bobby spend some time with a supporting cast that doesn’t consist of fellow X-Men. On the down side, there are a few iffy faces throughout, some of the jokes don’t land as well as others, and the story could have used a little more room to breathe. Even if the arc had just lasted for one extra issue, it would have been nice to ensure that Judah and the Champions received their due. Nonetheless, this was a good issue that’s certainly worth checking out.