After nearly two years of Quentin Quire being an unrepentant jerk, it finally appears that he’s going to find some perspective that leads him down a different path. Sure, he’s still Quire, and will still be a jerk. But X-Force #19 sets him towards being a different sort of jerk.
This feels like a culmination of Quentin’s character arc so far in the series. It’s the sort of growth that the character has long needed. It comes from Benjamin Percy, Garry Brown, Guru-eFx, and Joe Caramagna.
Xeno’s weaponized Kid Omegas have Krakoa held in their terrifying grip. Quire is the only one who can stop his twisted clones. However, he’s about to get help: Jean Grey isn’t going to let him endure it alone.
This issue is such a mixed bag that it’s kind of hard to talk about.
On the story side, this is a fun culmination of Quire’s story. Percy gets that the character has been in a state of arrested development but also that he needs to remain the character that people love. He’s an asshole and he needs to remain an asshole… at least a little bit. By using an action story, Percy helps him grow, and literally making the villain the most toxic part of himself makes the metaphor literal in a way that works.
However, on the flip side, the art struggles. Brown is a good artist, and I’ve liked work of his in the past. It doesn’t land here at all though. His characters are awkward, and severely off model. Jawlines are large and jagged, limbs are positioned strangely, and perspective is often off. I think Brown is going for a horror vibe (which is what he’s known for) but he’s not able to balance the superhero elements with the horror elements very well.
This isn’t a bad issue, but it is pretty weak in the overall scope of the series. I’m not quite sure where it went wrong, and I don’t want to make guesses. However, I think ultimately its going to be a blip on the series.
X-Force #19 is available now from Marvel Comics.
An interesting story is bogged down by art that’s a tonal mismatch and isn’t up to the series’ previous standards. It’s not bad but it could be a lot better.