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Thursday, October 15, 2009

Comic Review - Dark Reign:The List - X-Men

Dark Reign - The List - X-Men
Publish Date/Year
Creative TeamMatt Fraction & Alan davis

This Is more of a Namor story than X-Men but because he is technically an X-Men, hence the title.

Norman Osborn, Director of HAMMER, has declared war against Namor & Atlantis after Namor & Emma Frost betrayed him and the Dark Reign Cabal. His weapon – Marrina, Namor’s ex-wife, a former member of Alpha Flight, who has been turned into a giant (is 300 feet big enough?) sea-monster (because of he alien hybrid origin) that preys on Atlanteans.

Having no recourse but to swallow his pride and seek help from the X-Men (who now resides in the abandoned Asteroid M, floating off San Francisco’s coast), they devise a plan to address the problem. Most of the visceral action of Namor vs. Marrina happens off panel.

The issue ends without any real resolution to Namor & Norman’s situation other than Namor sending a message to him by flying to his office a la Superman and Lex Luthor.
Art What can I say about Alan Davis that hasn’t been said before? His work is consistently top-notch and under-appreciated. He delivers solid work every single time without skipping a beat. To some degree, his work, like George Perez’s & John Cassaday’s, is more consistent than even J Scott Campbell’s or Jim Lee’s altho’ their work is much sexier.

His composition/layouts, detail to lighting and bodily/facial expressions are flawless.

Additional CommentsIt is a great 1-shot to be read independently from the Dark Reign or The List issues. It’s also a great primer for fans or casual readers to pick up on what’s happened before in the Marvel Universe:
- Alpha Flight
- Marrina’s Marriage to Namor and her eventual monstrous transformation
- How Namor and Emma Frost betrayed Norman (Utopia Storyline)
- Why the X-Men’s HQ is now on Asteroid M

It was really good to see many of the older X-Men (pre-2000) back in action as a single team – Cyclops, Colossus, Nightcrawler, Wolverine, Iceman, Angel & Psylocke.

I think this issue marks the beginning of a new era for the X-Men because as a fan, I had been kind of lost and disappointed with how the X-Men series had been developing (from House of M until now). Time to prime myself by catching up on my Astonishing, Uncanny & adjective-less X-Men.

There is a 2nd story in the issue: a reprint of Matt Fraction's first published work for Marvel: a Wolverine story. Guess this is a rather fair way for Marvel to justify their cover price of USD3.99. So far, the List issues have been pretty strong with good stories and art. This one is no different. A solid, albeit quick, read.

Pre-Order your 33% discounted copy here:

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