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Review Group: Wolverine: Weapon X #1

Written by John Martin on Tuesday, April 14 2009 and posted in Reviews
young neil had the pick for new comics shipping April 8th and he selected Wolverine: Weapon X #1 by Jason Aaron, Ron Garney and Jason Keith.

The Review Group is a collection of posters who get together each week to discuss comics and post our reviews for a comic that we each take turns selecting.  Our threads can be found in The Outhouse’s Newstand forum and is open for anyone and everyone to participate in.

How much wood would a wolverine chuck if a wolverine could chuck wood?  Yeah sorry, I got nothing this week.  It's probably best if we jump straight into the reviews...

Review by thefourthman

 This comic is like last week's comic just kind of there, but maybe a little less readable. The art is just okay too.

Story 5
Art 6

Overall 5.5
Review by amlah6

I don't really have a lot to say about this week's book. It's a Wolverine comic with the typical kinds of Wolverine stuff happening and nothing about it really stands out. There's a bit of Wolverine being Wolverine and some setup for the arc. Nothing about the issue justifies the existence of another Wolverine ongoing series

The art in this issue was a huge improvement over what Garney was doing on Skaar but still falls a bit short of his work on Amazing Spider-Man during Civil War. The colors felt a bit more muted than they probably were meant to, but that's maybe an issue with Marvel's printing process.

Story: 6.5
Art: 7.5
Overall: 7

Review by MrBlack

I flipped through this one in the store. It was an interesting setup (I'd like to know what's up with the radioactive green claws on the new guys), but, as Wolverine himself admitted in the story, we've been through this song and dance before. The story was well executed by Aaron, and the art was nice, but it just didn't grab me at all.

Overall: 5

Review by Chubbles

I liked this issue but as Fourthman was saying it's not different enough nor really bringing that much of an exciting concept to make it stand out. Jason Aaron is a very, very good writer and I have no doubt this book will be the best of the Wolverine ongoings but is that enough to make it a great read? Probably not. I liked the art and the dialogue was pretty good. I liked the scene with Wolverine on the subway and I haven't seen Maverick since probably the 90's if I recall correctly. This will no doubt be a great jumping on point for someone who sees the Wolverine movie and gets back into comics but for those of us regulars it's probably not enough for us to get excited about.

Story 6.5
Art 6.5
Overall 6.5

Review by King Impulse

On the way home from my comic shop today, I realized something. I've been reading comics for two years now, a little bit over in fact, and this is the first one I've bought with 'Wolverine' on the cover. I do consider myself a fan of the character, but I was never tempted to read his solo adventures for one reason or another, so here we are, my first exposure to Wolverine solo.

Jason Aaron knows Wolverine. The opening narration about Colombia could be handed to someone just written plain, black on white and if they were familiar with the character, they'd know it was Logan. I really like the idea that although he's a world famous superhero, he's still partial to getting drunk and passing out on the subway, Aaron seems to be showing us that Wolverine is a superhero in spite of himself, as he says in his conversation with Maverick "Tried settling down before. Never seems to take." Logan doesn't have some driving trauma like Batman, or the guilt of responsibility like Spider-Man, it's more like duty, if life gave him the opportunity to give it all up, he would in a heartbeat, but there's always one more thing that needs taken care of.

That leads us into this story, Roxxon have gotten hold of the Weapon X files and used it to create a team of mercenaries with Wolverine's abilities, so once again, Wolverine feels the need to investigate and that's pretty much where the issue ends. It's not action packed, and there's nothing we didn't know from interviews, but the issue's strength is the characterization. Aaron's greatest gift as a writer is his ability to cut to the core and distill what makes a character awesome. Ghost Rider is a dude with a flaming skeleton that rides a flaming motorcycle through the desert. Black Panther is the most efficient warrior king in the world. And Wolverine? Wolverine is the best there is at what he does.

Ron Garney never seems to get the respect he deserves, he's done amazing work on A-List titles like Captain America and Amazing Spider-Man, and yet no one ever mentions him when listing artists. He's the quiet workhorse of Marvel's stable of artists, turning in strong art to little acclaim, even though he deserves it. Hopefully this'll change things. A lot of artists aren't suited to the lack of an inker, they look unfinished, but Garney pulls it off admirably matching strong action scenes with equally strong facial expressions and character moments.
Overall, it's a good first issue for introducing someone to who Wolverine is and what he does and shows promise for Aaron's run, but could have done with a bit more.

Story - 7
Art - 7
Overall - 7

Review by starlord

Say what you will about the mutant with the berserker rage but there's one thing that almost everybody can agree on. You can't pick up a Marvel book without seeing him somewhere in it.

I went into this story with no expectations at all. My first thought was that it was just another way for Marvel to get four extra dollars from me, without doing much other than having Logan chop people up, tell us what he's best at doing, and reminding us of his long and tortured past. And after reading it twice I can say that this book did not disappoint me at all. It was everything I was expecting and even less.

Granted the art was well done, though the coloring didn't really jump out at me, but the story felt like nothing more than a rehash of a rehash of a rehash. I get it, Wolverine is bad. He's mean. He's a loner (who seems to be in every group book Marvel owns), we all know this. If somebody doesn't know it, I'm sure they could pick up any one of ten other books that he appears in (including several of his own).

On the plus side, as I stated, it couldn't disappoint me because I got everything I was expecting.

Story: 2
Art: 6
My Score: 2.5

Review by Punchy

Story - Snikt! It's Wolverine time! Ahem, anyway, what we have here is the first issue of a new ongoing Wolverine series, and yes, I know we already have 3, and it's just a movie cash-in and yadda-yadda, none of that matters as long as the comic is good, and with Jason Aaron and Ron Garney behind Weapon X, you bet your ass it's good.

We open up in Colombia, where ubiquitous evil Marvel corporation Roxxon is up to no good, killing helpless villagers with the aid of mysterious assassins with glowing Wolverine claws. This opening scene is effective for a few reasons, mainly it is Aaron's Wolverine narration, you know it's Logan from the off, before we even see the character, Aaron has him nailed (of course you should all already know this from 'Get Mystique' and 'Manifest Destiny'). After this opening, we finally get some Wolverine action, in the X-Men's new home city, San Francisco, a young woman is mugged on the Tube, but is saved by Wolverine, this is all standard stuff, but it is presented in a new and interesting way, we all know that Wolverine is the drunk underneath that newspaper, but Aaron waits until the last possible moment before revealing it, in a typically bloodthirsty fashion, and then, just to set this book apart even more, he then shoves a gun up a mugger's backside, not quite as good as what Bullseye does in this week's 'Dark Reign: Hawkeye', but close. I wonder if Aaron is setting this woman who was saved as a supporting character, she is a reporter after all, can she help Logan investigate Weapon X? She seems quite vanilla now, but Aaron is adept at fleshing out characters who at first seem slight, take a look at Scalped, the character focus issues in that book are fantastic, and maybe he will do the same with Melita Garner.

Now the real meat of the story, Wolverine meets up with Maverick, who tells him that Roxxon has revived the Weapon X program where both of them were messed with, and Logan goes to investigate, discovering that he isn't dealing with one problem, but many! These scenes were interesting, I loved the juxtaposition of Wolverine exploring this new Weapon X faciltiy and flashing back to his days there, these single panels were very effective, telling the reader a lot, but not in a ham-fisted way. Plus, we get the return of Maverick! He's always been a favourite 90s guilty pleasure of mine, it's good to see him back, and hope he has more to do in the book than just tell Wolverine stuff.

In addition to the main story, we also get Official Handbook style recaps of both Maverick and Weapon X's histories, which are useful and enlightening, and an preview of Jason Aaron's upcoming Ghost Riders: Heaven's On Fire mini-series, which looks amazing, so it's a good package, and overall a great book. Yes, there may be a glut of Wolverine titles, but when they are as strong as this and Old Man Logan, does it really matter? Aaron nails the character of Wolverine in a few pages, sets up a few possible supporting players, and a strong central storyline for this opening arc, what is the deal with these new Wolverines? Why do they glow? Are they stronger than our guy? All questions I'm eager to see answered. This was an excellent if a little slight first issue, and I hope it will take Jason Aaron from Vertigo cult favourite to a big hitter.

Art - Ron Garney is a very strong artist, and he's been improving by leaps and bounds lately, I remember his work on JLA a few years ago not being nearly as strong as this, I can see Andy Kubert in there, and John Romita Jr too, but he still has his own distinct style. As is important for a book which stars a character with knives on his hands, he handles violence and blood very well, the scene where Wolverine chops the mugger's hands off is a good example, he also has enough chops to tell a story without Aaron's words, like when the mugger runs out of the train, or the flashback panels expertly showing history in one shot. I can't really think of a better artist for Wolverine, especially since he's not handling him in the yellow and blue this time, plainclothes and X-Force costume only. I hope we get to see him do a Patch/Madripoor story.

Best Line - It's a toss-up between 'A whole lot of killin' that needs to be done, that's what the hell I'm looking at' and 'If you were me, you'd drink too' Wolverine dialogue is fun!


Forget about the myriad other titles and the movie, and just enjoy a solid Wolverine comic with great art for what it is.

Review by Daringd

SNICKT! Well this was a pleasant surprise. I only picked this up for the OH review group and I’m very happy I did. This is what Wolverine is about it’s not like Way’s Origins book nor is it like Millar’s Old Man Logan run this is something fresh and very original. Lot of stuff gets set up and I am looking forward to see where Jason Aaron takes it. Ron Garney killed it on art. Well worth my $3.99


Review by doombug

Hmmm, now this was interesting. We get perfectly in character Logan as well as a nice cameo by an old cult favorite character. My only complaint is the heavy handed and very obvious twist that I believe is the name of the arc. There is going to be a whole troop of Wolverine wannabees.

We'll see if this does for Wolverine what Invincible did for Iron Man.


Review by 48THRiLLS

I am pretty indifferent with Wolverine, I don't buy his solo books (except this Old Man Logan arc which has been balls awesome) cuz I get enough of a fix with him in New Avengers but I don't get too riled up about him being around in so many books... and indifferent is how I felt about this book. I think Aaron tells a fine story, I think if I was more of a Wolverine fan I would have liked this more. Garney's pencils seem to fit much better here than they did on the first couple issues of Skaar that I read. I am not too familiar with the Weapon X stuff or the Maverick character but Aaron does a good job catching up newbies, yeah it may be tied a bit into the movie but can you blame Marvel?
Essential reading for big time Wolvie fans and newcomers but maybe not so much for the casual.


ART - 8


Review by SuperginraiX

I'm not anti-Wolverine. I think he's incredibly over-exposed but, at the same exact time, I love seeing him hanging out with the New Avengers. I just think it's funny that he's also hanging out not only with the X-Men but with X-Force and in three or four solo titles in any given month. The guy has way too many full time jobs and I hope he finally saves up the money for that operation he wants.

I do have tendencies to not really enjoy the character but not in the same way that I hate Punisher. I frickin' hate the Punisher. I actually sort of like Logan. Sort of. He'll never be on my favorite comic characters list but, when he's not acting as a writer's whatever-you-call-a-Mary-Sue-if-you-haven't-actually-created-the-character, he's not a terrible character. I just started reading comics in the nineties where everyone had their own comic with some version of Wolverine on the team so he was even more overexposed than you can imagine nowadays.

I think that's mostly my problem here. The villains are all glowy green clawed copies of Wolverine. Hello nineties. You look very familiar.

The fact that it's movie related doesn't really bother me. Milk that market. If someone gets excited about the movie and wants some Wolverine comics, let's give 'em some Wolverine comics. We all know that in a comic that's basically milking off the movie you're going to get in elements of that movie, so in Weapon X we're gonna see that adamantium chamber and probably some other movie characters looking awfully like their movie counterparts. Is Maverick in the movie? If he is, he's probably similarly dressed. If not, I still give kudos for using the character. He's an old favorite. I even have every issue from his nineties series.

Logan's got way too many costumes. He's getting more like a Barbie doll with every team he joins and needs new threads for. I see his brown and orange suit just got snatched up by his son in Dark Avengers, so he's down to two suits but I'm still waiting for a New Avengers costume (still, two suits for a super-hero is still more than you usually see and he just stopped wearing the brown and orange recently). The suit he wears in this issue (which is his X-Force suit, right?) is probably my new favorite. It's traditional in style but the color scheme is a lot less cheesy than the yellow you usually see him running around in. Very appropriate suit for a movie look book.

Ron Garney's art hasn't looked this good in quite a while. I find him hit and miss since his Captain America days but I still enjoy his art more than I don't. This issue is really good in the art department.

The writing... doesn't fare so well. Like I said, it's the attack of the nineties Wolverine wannabe's. It's not like Marvel doesn't alreay have enough Wolverine clones running around. We don't really need more. The subway scene is great stuff and any Maverick appearance is welcome. Still, it's hard to justify 3.99 for this. I get enough comics where it's hard to justify 3.99, I don't need another! Razz

For now, Wolverine: Weapon X is a just above average book and that's bouyed up mostly because I like good art.

W:WX, you get a 6. I just can't get excited about green glowy clawed Wolverine wannabe's.


Review by guitarsmashley

That issue was ok. I'm kind of glad I never ordered it in my box of comics. Art was great but the story lacked.



Review by young neil

I've always found myself reading Wolverine on and off depending on the creative team, as I love the character but can't stand it when it's badly written. I know its overly-stereotypical to love Wolverine but eh, sue me. So I was really excited when one of my favourite writers was coming into a comic that focused on one of my favourite characters. Now this is an obvious movie tie-in and and a motion to make more cash out of it, but if it's written well and keeps me coming back, I'm all for it.

So this week's review group pick was the first issue, a brand spanking new #1. The story arc is titled "the adamantium men" and to paraphrase, someone has gotten the weapon x plans and is making new versions of Wolverine. The writing is spot-on, right down to Wolverine getting drunk and passing out on the subway. As I heard mentioned before Wolverine has always been a hero in spite of himself, and never sees himself as one. The dialogue between Maverick and Wolverine was very strong, and makes me want to read more up on the character, what there's a bio in the back of this very comic, terrific. I must say that was the first time I've actually taken much time to read the backmatter in a mainstream marvel book.

That's another thing with a book titled 'weapon x', you have a multitude of characters at your disposal, in theory, using characters already established to create new and interesting storylines. It seems difficult but the first issue left me with high hopes.

Just a quick question. That was Garney on art? This is the best I've seen him in ages. Suited the book one hundred percent. I also loved the Kubert variant cover.

Wolverine is either a hit-or-miss comic depending on the writer to me, and I'm glad they've created a new series where solid stories can be told without Dark Reign gettting in its way.

I'm glad I added this to my MOC order, I was a little apprehensive at first but this has me willing to stick out the first arc at least.

Story 7.5
Art 7

Overall 7.25


That gives Wolverine: Weapon X #1 a group score of 6.40.  I suspect that Hugh Jackman is going to be rather disappointed.

For further discussion about this issue and our reviews, feel free to join us in this week's thread ( found in the Newstand forum where you are also invited to join the group by posting your own review.

thefourthman has the pick for April 15th and he has selected The Strange Adventures of H.P. Lovecraft #1 from Image Comics.  Look for the new tentacle filled thread after it becomes available Wednesday morning to join in on the fun.

The Strange Adventures of H.P. Lovecraft #1


When an ancient curse transforms young H.P. Lovecraft’s darkest nightmares into reality, the timid writer becomes both an unwitting god of destruction and the only person who can battle the evil he’s unleashed into the world. One part biography, one part horror pulp, one part fugitive thriller and you have... one weird tale indeed.



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