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Call For Reviews: X-Men Forever Annual

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nietoperz
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Postby nietoperz » Sat Apr 24, 2010 6:13 am

Punchy wrote:My store had plenty of old Claremont X-Men back-issues, all for £2, so I just chose the one with the best cover:

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So I'll get a review of that up later this week-end.



That's the first part of the Mutant Massacre storyline, IIRC. Quite the jumping-on point, though (and I know I'll get howls of protest about this) Claremont was already past his prime at this point.
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Postby Punchy » Sat Apr 24, 2010 6:15 am

nietoperz wrote:That's the first part of the Mutant Massacre storyline, IIRC. Quite the jumping-on point, though (and I know I'll get howls of protest about this) Claremont was already past his prime at this point.


I've never read this period of X-Men, I've got a massive gap from when Byrne left to X-Men #1 with Jim Lee.

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Postby Muppetesque » Sat Apr 24, 2010 6:21 am

Punchy wrote:I've never read this period of X-Men, I've got a massive gap from when Byrne left to X-Men #1 with Jim Lee.


You missed a few good runs then: The Claremont/ Paul Smith run is great as is Claremont/ Romita JR. I *think* the issue you got was the last of the two of them.

Then Claremont/ Silvestri.
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Postby nietoperz » Sat Apr 24, 2010 7:10 am

nerdygirl wrote:You missed a few good runs then: The Claremont/ Paul Smith run is great as is Claremont/ Romita JR. I *think* the issue you got was the last of the two of them.

Then Claremont/ Silvestri.


I think the book was pretty good (if over-wordy, of course) until about #200, and then it started to go downhill a bit. By the time the team were in Australia and all the Bend Sinister nonsense happened it was pretty much unreadable.
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Postby Punchy » Sat Apr 24, 2010 7:15 am

It was an OK issue, kind of a calm between the storms, the previous storyline had a big fight with the Hellfire Club and Nimrod, and the next issue is the start of the Mutant Massacre.

There were some good character bits here, but it there were like 3 different 'Mutant Equality' speeches, 2 too many.

Magneto as head of the X-Men is stupid though.

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Postby nietoperz » Sat Apr 24, 2010 7:19 am

Punchy wrote:There were some good character bits here, but it there were like 3 different 'Mutant Equality' speeches, 2 too many.



Claremont's characters are incapable of shutting up.
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Postby thefourthman » Sat Apr 24, 2010 9:09 am

nietoperz wrote:That's the first part of the Mutant Massacre storyline, IIRC. Quite the jumping-on point, though (and I know I'll get howls of protest about this) Claremont was already past his prime at this point.

I got that hardcover in my read pile... I figured anything where mutants get massacred has to be a good thing.

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Postby Starlord » Sat Apr 24, 2010 11:58 pm

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I look at this cover and what really fascinates me is the physical evolution of Rogue. As the years went on she actually got younger and prettier. When she first appeared and even in this cover (years later) she always struck me as much older than most of the other X-Men and not very attractive.

Thank God Remy came along and was able to soften her up... and deage her.
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Postby Punchy » Sun Apr 25, 2010 6:22 am

Uncanny X-Men #210 - 'The Morning After' - Claremont, Romita Jnr, Green and Oliver

Story - Much like the 'All-New, All-Different' X-Men were brought together by Krakoa, the living island, a natural disaster has effected this week's Review Group for me. The Icelandic Volcano has meant that there are no comics in the UK this week, and therefore no X-Men Forever. So instead I've decided to review another Claremont X-Men, any Claremont X-Men really, I wasn't bothered which, so I just chose this one based on the cover. It's a bad-ass cover for sure, but unfortunately this is kind of an average issue, really just a breather, setting up future stories, in particular, the famous 'Mutant Massacre'.

This issue mainly features a series of character moments, you have the mysterious Marauders hunting down some Morlocks, setting up the crossover, you've got Dazzler being bitchy, Rogue hunting for Phoenix II, Magneto being offered membership of the Hellfire Club, Shadowcat and Colossus rescuing Nightcrawler and Storm and Wolverine working out some leadership issues. Because I hadn't read the previous issue (which was the X-Men Vs Hellfire Club and Nimrod, say what you want about older comics, but they do exposition the hell out of you), a lot of this character stuff was lost on me, I was just confused about why Magneto was leading the team, and how there could be an X-Men book with only one page of Wolverine. I did like how the original X-Factor kind of hovered around the book, with most of the characters thinking that they were Mutant hunters and not actually the original X-Men.

Claremont's writing was mixed here, there are some of his usual quirks and problems, over long dialogue, clunky descriptions of character's powers, and I counted at least 2 passioned mutant equality speeches. But there were also more subtle moments, and even some humour, 'don't you dare fight in here -- This is Bloomingdales!'. I don't know if it was intentional or not, but it had me chuckling.

Overall, this was an odd issue, I enjoyed it on the whole, partly out of... not nostalgia, because I wasn't born when the issue came out, but from that nice feeling you get from reading an old comic, transported back to another time and place, I was in the 80s, I was experiencing the X-Men in their pomp, and Claremont in his, it was interesting to visit this period I've read about and know about, but never actually read. Part of that even comes from the ads, the pimping of the New Universe, Gumby, all that stuff, glorious.

But really, it was an issue in which nothing much happened, and there were some bad moments. Maybe I should have picked a different issue.

Art - The art here comes from John Romita Jnr, one of the best Marvel artists of all time, but this is 80s JRjr, and he's not quite at the level he's reached today yet, part of that may be due to the old-fashioned colouring, it makes his art look flat, even compared to the cover, it looks washed-out. I did also notice that at this time (1986) his art isn't as distinctive as it is now, you can still clearly see it's him, but it's smoother, and actually more reminiscent of his dad's work.

Best Line - 'Gentlemen! Gentlemen!! Don't you dare fight in here -- This is Bloomingdales!!!'

7/10

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Postby S.F. Jude Terror » Sun Apr 25, 2010 10:05 am

X-Men Forever Annual #1

Fantastic Issue! First of all, the art in this one was just beautiful. X-Men Forever, while featuring some talented artists, has been very rushed at times and suffered from revolving writer-itis, which causes it to lose some consistency and hurts overall (though it is still awesome, of course). Seeing an artist like Takeda take on Claremont's writing is a sight to behold.

The story was satisfying on several levels. For one, of course, it fills in some gaps between Uncanny X-Men and X-Men Forever, but it also explores some concepts from Uncanny that we never got to see, and thanks to what occurred in the twenty years between Claremont's Uncanny and Forver, never will. For instance, Wolverine becomes an assassin for The Hand, if only for a few pages. This was, of course, something Claremont had intended to do with Logan before his run on Uncanny ended, but once he got back to Forever, had already been done by Millar in Enemy of the State. This was obviously a nod to that, and a hint of a storyline that might have been.

The big story, of course, was the relationship between Logan and Jean, hinted at and teased in many issues of Uncanny, but never brought to resolution. Here, Claremont finally brings it to a head, the issue ending with a kiss between the two, with Jean stating that she was making her choice. The moment is bittersweet of course, as we know that Logan will soon be dead, and the romance a tragic one, and this gives the moment conflicting layers of emotion. Another hint of something that might have been.

I didn't see any problems with the dialog that some others did, though of course I recognized Claremontisms when I saw them (We've no one to save us but ourselves!) To me, they're charming, reminiscent of a more innocent time in comics.

X-Men Forever has been firing on all cylinders, and anyone who hasn't been reading should really pick this sup in trades. Like anything by Claremont, the longer it runs, the better it gets as subplots are piled upon subplots and multiple storylines start to come together after simmering for ten to twenty issues. Hopefully, this series will continue for as long as the original Uncanny run.

10/10
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Postby Mr_Batman » Sun Apr 25, 2010 2:09 pm

To put it simply, I have been saving my money for free comic day and all the epic sales.

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Postby guitarsmashley » Sun Apr 25, 2010 4:35 pm

just flipped through it....oh man jude...you have bad taste in comics.
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Postby Zero » Mon Apr 26, 2010 2:51 am

I've been picking at my Dodgem Logics all weekend, and if you want a big review I'll run one off tomorrow. Not sure how many pictures I'll be able to scrounge up but we'll see.

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Postby ****** » Mon Apr 26, 2010 7:19 pm

No time for review Dr. Jones!

X-Men Forever Annual #1

Nice simple stand alone story. More of a refreshing throwback than the continuity porn that we experienced last time around with XMF. I liked the art a lot. Pretty, pretty colors.

Story: 7
Art: 8
Overall: 7.5

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Postby ****** » Mon Apr 26, 2010 10:08 pm

Gonna be busy tomorrow so I'm doing this early, but I can add any other reviews that get posted.

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http://www.theouthousers.com/content/view/7720/176/

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