Benjamin Percy never ceases to amaze with his sheer understanding of the X-Men, their personalities, and their relationships to each other.
This issue of X-Force opens with Logan, Gabbie and Daken finally getting along and understanding that they all have something in common: being Wolverine. A crowd gathers round them as they spin a bottle between the three of them. At first I thought Logan and Daken were about to make out and things were going to get weird, but in an even sicker twist, the bottle lands on Daken and he pops his claws on his own head. Of course this means nothing for a Wolverine, as they all have enhanced healing factors — But who really is in danger of dying on Krakoa? More on that in a moment.
First, we pan out to a beautiful volcano swim-up bar on Krakoa. This place of dwelling for the X-Men is more than just a home, it’s a vacation spot. This two-page layout is beautifully designed like a Where’s Waldo puzzle, illustrated by Joshua Cassara. Can you spot your favorite mutant and what they are doing at Krakoa’s resort island bar? I can find mine. Just look at the upper right hand corner — Mr. Sinister is sitting there, still in his fabulous thigh-highs, while a shadowy figure caresses his shoulders. I love this new X-Men universe so, so much.
But not everything is as perfect as it seems on this island. In the last issue I covered for X-Force, Domino was dealing with the PTSD of being skinned alive and used as a lab rat. She was then forced to fight hundreds of clones of herself before dying in Colossus’ arms — but it’s okay! She can resurrect on Krakoa, and she can come back chipper than ever! Great, right? Maybe not so much.
Sage asks Domino what it was like to be reborn, since Domino seems unusually ecstatic about being alive. Domino reveals that she can’t remember anything of what had happened to her, nor being skinned alive. She is aware that it happened, but that part of her memory had been removed so she could resume living her best life. Tessa tilts her head. She knows something isn’t right. She questions this, and I am so excited to see where that goes. Unfortunately, we don’t get to hear her further thoughts on the subject as they are interrupted by a great cameo by one of Mr. Sinister’s many lovers, Gorgeous George, throwing Black Tom Cassidy across the bar. Sage takes a break from her conversation with Domino to kick some ass. It’s fantastic. I love her. Sage will always be one of my favorites — smart and bad ass. She stands up for all of us computer nerds.
Meanwhile, Beast commandeers the X-Force team (there seems to be a lot of that going on) to investigate a problem in Terra Verde, a location they had previously encountered. He chooses Wolverine, Domino and Kid Omega to investigate, and it’s such a fun team up. These teams Hickman’s new world of X-Men gives us are just perfect in every way. There is a moment where Logan also questions Domino’s chipper attitude, and like Tessa, sees that as a problem.
Once again, their conversation is halted because what they find is a horrifying infestation of vines tangling around the city and merging with the people within it, including the President. The vines are covered in glyphs and they are holding no mercy in overtaking the X-Men team now that they have set foot on Terra Verde.
In our final panels of this X-Force issue, we see Beast grabbing Black Tom Cassidy because now it’s time to shine and save the day. Everyone gets a chance to be a hero! After all, they are all fighting for one common goal: Their survival.
This issue is beautiful in every way. If you are not reading this current run of X-Force, you are making a mistake.
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