The penultimate issue of James Asmus’ Gambit really brings things back around to the core question of the whole series. Is Gambit a hero or is he a thief? Or can he be both? It’s a compelling question to be sure, and Asmus does a sterling job of exploring the two sides of Remy LaBeau once again and showing just how cool of a character he can be.
The issue opens with Gambit trapped down the bottom of a well, tied with an ‘unpickable lock’ and about to be drowned by his father. But of course, Gambit is more than a thief, and he uses his mutant powers to charge the water in the well and explode his way to freedom in what was a pretty awesome moment.
It turns out Gambit wasn’t really being executed, it was just a test, a way for Gambit to prove that he is worthy to become leader of the Thieve’s Guild. Oh yeah, that’s the hook here, the Thieve’s Guild is in danger of splintering and losing it’s honour, so Gambit’s dad and Fence want him to take over and leave the X-Men behind. Gambit is of course conflicted, but first, he has to deal with his rivals for the throne, including a dickish ‘Technomancer’ called Nil. In order to prove himself, Gambit has to do to Nil what Nil did to him last issue, and steal his ‘White Whale’, his biggest robbery, which in this case, is an heirloom that his father has locked up with him in High-Security Jail.
Asmus once again gets to write a scene where Gambit gets to look like the supreme bad-ass by breaking into the Jail, one of the best things about this series is getting inside the mind of a master-thief, and it’s given this book a different feel to your average superhero title, as most of the time, Gambit is not exactly being heroic. Of course, it all goes wrong and Gambit is double-crossed, and left face to face with.. Borya Cich, bringing things right back to where it all started.
It’s a shame that this title is coming to an end next month, but it looks like Asmus has been able to tell a complete story. Although, there’s a whole mess of new concepts and character’s introduced here, so I bet he could have gone on longer. But still, next issue will close the book on Gambit and Cich, and hopefully answer the question of just who Remy LaBeau is.
Clay Mann provides all of the art for this issue, and it’s always awesome when he draws a full issue, he’s just perfect for this character, he even makes the purple costume look good. After his run on this title, I’ll definitely be on the look out for what he does next for Marvel.