Astonishing X-Men Omnibus
- Just like the New X-Men Omnibus, it was great to go back and reread another phenomenal chapter in the X-Men saga. Picking up not long after the end of Grant Morrison's New X-Men run, Joss Whedon's Astonishing X-Men sets out to reestablish the X-Men in the eyes of the world by literally "astonishing" them. Whedon nails the characterization of these characters pretty well. Scott is Scott and Emma is Emma but you can really see why these two work so well together. Even more outstanding is Whedon's depiction of Kitty Pryde and her relationships with those around her, especially Peter and Emma. I won't lie to you, the final interaction between Kitty and Emma still brings a tear to my eye every time.
I remember when I originally read this series, I was a little disappointed that Whedon didn't tackle traditional X-Villains. Upon rereading, I honestly believe that is one of this series' strengths. Whedon does such a great job blending his new characters into the fabric of the X-Universe that you don't need Magneto, Mr. Sinister, or Apocalypse to balance them out. They stand on their own and they are just as dangerous as those who came before them.
Artistically speaking, John Cassaday fluctuates but he stays pretty solid throughout the entire run and having a full 25 issues by the same artist, especially an artist the quality of Cassaday, is an absolute blessing. There are times when I feel like Cassaday has topped some of his best Planetary work and other times he falls a little bit short. All things considered, the art in Astonishing X-Men definitely blows the art of New X-Men out of the water. In any case, just like Morrison's New X-Men, Whedon's Astonishing X-Men is another must have for any X-Men collection.