AJ Styles sees a path to Wrestlemania, but must get through multiple title matches to get to his dream bout. The problem? He doesn’t have to be pinned in these matches to lose the belt…
WWE #24 opens up with AJ Styles’ champion vs. champion match against Brock Lesnar at Survivor Series 2017. Following that insanely fought defeat at the hands of The Beast, the story continues through AJ’s renewed feud with Shinsuke Nakamura, culminating with their bout at Money in the Bank 2018.
Dennis Hopeless does a stellar job showcasing both Styles and Nakamura not only for their in-ring work, but for their deep understanding of the game, slightly weighted toward Styles on the in-ring work, and toward Nakamura as the psychologist. Arguments can be made as to who exactly was responsible for the success of the angle, but it took both men to pull off one of the best modern feuds in sports entertainment, and it’s impossible to separate one performance from the other.
Series regular artist Serg Acuna is back on pencils, bringing his insanely accurate likenesses and crazy action sequences. Shinsuke Nakamura is an especially hard character to hit, with his seemingly boneless contortion, odd posture, disjointed ambulation, and wide range of facial expression. Acuna kills it.
The backup story by Bill Hanstock and Kendall Goode throws a spotlight on the odd couple relationship between Nia Jax and Alexa Bliss. These shorts don’t usually have a lot of depth, with only a couple pages to tell a story, but this is a quick, interesting piece on the complex relationships many WWE superstars have to manage between their on-screen rivalries and real life friendships.
WWE #24, BOOM! Studios, released 02 January 2019. Written by Dennis Hopeless, illustrated by Serg Acuna, color by Doug Garbark, letters by Jim Campbell. Backup story One True BFF written by Bill Hanstock, illustrated by Kendall Goode. Cover by Marco D’Alfonso, Bobby “The Brain” Heenan action figure variant cover by Adam Riches, 25th anniversary connecting variant cover by Brent Schoonover and Nick Filardi, George “The Animal” Steele variant cover by Rahzzah.