Whilst the two flag-ship X-Men books are more concerned with a war of words than old-school superhero action, there is still one title that’s not afraid to get a little kick-crazy, and that’s Wolverine & The X-Men.
In this issue, The Hellfire Saga’ nears it’s finale, and Jason Aaron and Nick Bradshaw treat us to a non-stop thrill-ride of a comic, featuring some very large-scale violence. The bulk of this issue is made up of a Kaiju-sized fight between the Jean Grey School’s Krakoa and a bunch of evil, Volcanic Krakoas. And oh yeah, Iceman has built himself a giant Ice-Voltron to help out. Yeah, it’s as awesome as it sounds. We even get to see Wolverine and Krakoa do a Fastball Special, which is pretty damn impressive.
But there are more intimate fights here too, as Quentin and Idie attempt to escape from the Hellfire Academy alive and in one piece, which is pretty difficult when you’re face to face with the all-powerful Snot. I also really liked the small scene where Toad cannot fight back against the insane Husk because he loves her too much. In amongst all the silliness, Aaron always finds the heart of these characters. Of course, there’s still plenty of silliness, the one-page sequence with Doop and Lady Mondo was absolutely stupid and hilarious. She tries to break his mind with her avant-garde cinema, but Doop just barfs out his home movies from 1994 and does the same to her. I love Doop, and I love how Aaron has managed to make him work in a mainstream X-Book.
Also very exciting here is the imminent downfall of Kade Kilgore. His plans are all falling down around his ears, his teachers are being defeated, and he spends most of the issue being savaged by Broo whilst his friends stand by and do nothing. But at the end, he still thinks he’s won. We as readers know that Max Frankenstein and Manuel are stood behind him with guns, so it looks like he’s just gone mental, but could there be more to it? I can’t imagine the Hellfire Club will be defeated this easily, these guys have been the villains of this series (along with Cyclops) since the very beginning, I expect Aaron has a twist up his sleeve for #35.
This was a ridiculously fun issue, and it really surprised me, I did not expect to see hot Krakoa on Krakoa action, but I loved it. Nick Bradshaw’s cartoony art is still a great fit, and this book is always a delight.