Laura is on a mission to track down more info on the scientists who made her. Gabby is on a mission to figure out when their birthday is so she can get cake. Their missions may not be aligned, but they are in for a world of trouble concerning a certain group of telepathic mutants.
So what’s it about?
Read our preview.
Why does this matter?
Mariko Tamaki has taken over these characters and hasn’t skipped a beat, which should make Tom Taylor fans very happy. The combo of the goofy Gabby and the deadly serious Laura is a delight and continues here.
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
This issue opens with a message about superhero death and origin that rings very true. Some might die, and yet, are they really dead? Mutants, in particular, have a dicey past when it comes to this (just look at Jean Grey coming back to life recently) and it’s even stranger when you think about super healing mutants like Wolverine. Or, in this case, her name is X-23, and her mission in this issue gets a bit sidetracked. Tamaki continues to write the Laura/Gabby pair very well, but a deeper meaning about what it means to be a clone is being explored well. We don’t know yet why this series is called X-23 and many fans aren’t happy about that, but I suspect we will find out soon enough.
As you can tell from the cover the Cuckoos are the antagonists in the issue and their current plan to resurrect their fallen sisters continues here. It somehow ties into the world of Laura and Gabby though it’s not yet clear how. This issue moves the plot forward ever so slightly, but the character interactions keep things interesting enough.
The art by Juann Cabal continues to be quite strong and expressive. Gabby has a lot of spunk and Cabal’s art never skips a beat in that regard. There are also some very inventive visual ideas used in this issue. In a scene where Laura is tracking someone, we get a beautiful transition of a map app blending into the location the pin was dropped. The pin hangs over the church and is then used a little bit later as Laura gets closer to the location. It’s a neat visual that I’m sure some movie director will crib eventually.
It can’t be perfect can it?
As I mentioned above the plot barely moves forward in this issue. It’s becoming clear the plot isn’t the most complicated and is being drawn out a bit over this arc. As long as the fun character interactions continue that shouldn’t be a problem, though. There’s also a deeper meaning that has yet to really emerge. You can sort of hint at where it is going but nothing certain has been said yet which is slightly annoying.
Is it good?
Laura and Gabby have one of the most electric dynamics in all of comics and that continues so very well here. The plot may be moving very slowly, and the main point of the narrative still unclear, but it’s a great ride if you love these characters.