Benjamin Percy has been weaving vampires into Wolverine since the start, and this week, Logan is all about stabbing some vamps. Dracula has stolen Wolverine’s blood which makes nightwalkers into day walkers, but they need more blood to figure out how to make it permanent. Meanwhile, Omega Red is working with Dracula who has an island of his own in Chernobyl.
This issue opens in Minneapolis where Wolverine is taking out some vampires who have made their way across America. It’s a good stinger opening to remind us Logan really hates vampires, and not just because they kill innocent people. This issue is much more complicated than that and that’s where it works the best.
Percy utilizes Beast and the X-Force, C.I.A. of Krakoa, to turn this from a usual berzerker full frontal attack by Wolverine and make it tactical. Percy continues to render Beast as malicious and borderline evil, which is always enjoyable. This plays off Wolverine, a badass who kills, but he’s not that kind of a killer. It’s interesting to see how Beast is perfectly fine with making evil choices and we get to see one play out via dialogue via a data page. The insight into a monster is also done in an interesting way with Omega Red, who comes off as a bully and victim here.
This issue also revealed a side of Wolverine that touches on old bonds. This helps make Logan feel worldly and gives the book an espionage feel.
Scot Eaton pencils this issue with JP Mayer on inks and Matthew Wilson on colors. The art can get a bit rough and simplistic. Facial expressions and action can look great in one panel, but rather unfinished or awkward the next. It pulls you out of the story from time to time. The dark and uninteresting color choices don’t help, either.
A key example of the art pulling you out of the book is when Dracula is introduced. He comes in dramatically and well posed, but little details like the spikes on his shoulders look unfinished and too simplistic compared to the ruffles in Dracula’s coat. On the same page, Omega Red is cast in yellow as he slashes at baddies, but blue in other panels, yet the brightness is stylistic rather than realistic. It doesn’t jell.
Wolverine #11 is enjoyable enough but doesn’t pull off a great issue. The art can look unfinished with muddy colors, the opening has action but doesn’t progress the story beyond a reminder Wolverine hates vampires, and none of these elements come together well enough. There’s good spy stuff going on and Percy excels at writing bad guys like Beast and Omega Red. Whether that’s enough for you is your choice.
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