There does appear to be a thing as too much when it comes to how much Logan/Wolverine is in a story, and X Lives of Wolverine is very much treading all over that line. While there is a lot of great art that showcases the various eras of Logan’s life, the overall reasons for what is happening are elusive as the story is told in a disjointed way as it tries to expand or wrap up a lot of dragged out X-Force plotlines.
Do you like random time travel plots, where someone is trying to kill a person either in their past or by wiping out their family line? Do you like books that are just chock full of all the well-known eras of Logan/Wolverine? Well then, X Lives of Wolverine is probably the book for you.
This is a book that truly I’m having a hard time of what to make of it. While X Deaths of Wolverine is looking to be more of a present-day somewhat follow-up to Inferno (mixed with long-simmering X-Force plotlines), this book seems very much to be a continuation of many long-simmering X-Force plotlines and a lot of Wolverine/Logan nostalgia mixed in for good measure. Not that this is a bad thing, it’s just hard to really put a finger on this book and classify it.
Ben Percy is heavily mining the eras that folks know well from Logan’s life from Team X to his history with Itsu (Daken’s mother) and his young past in Canada while adding moments to them that weren’t fully seen or as explored previously. Much of this story is told out of order as we see where the last issue left off with the Team X stuff but before and around that are a hodgepodge of the aforementioned other time periods of Logan’s life. There is still no indication at all how Omega Red gets to the point of having this new body-snatching ability through time, or why he’s only choosing to go/or forced to go after Xavier/Xavier line at times where Logan happens to be alive and nearby.
The delayed explanation doesn’t take away from the story. It’s just a whole lot of Logan being thrown at the audience in the most Logan way. While much of it is striking imagery, I could have gone forever without a Logan sex scene with Jean watching on that ends up with Logan intertwined John Lennon and Yoko Ono style with an Omega Red possessed Itsu.
Josh Cassara and Frank Martin do a spectacular job at bringing these various eras of Logan to vivid life with the same delicate detail and roughness as the first issue. While the spread mentioned above with intertwined lovers is more than one needed, it’s brought together in a way that is truly memorable and striking. Martin’s colors are similar across the various eras but there are notable differences that make each distinct time period stand out from one another. As with the previous issue, there is a muted sense to the flashback style tones that keep them from mixing with the present-day pages which have a bit of a brighter pop.
Cory Petit keeps up with matching the different tones of this book with lettering that changes for characters and their way of speaking, a return of Omega Red’s creepy black bubbles when he’s possessing folks. We get a whole lot more really out there fun and colorful SFX across these pages. Especially on the very brutal action-packed pages.
Overall, this is a fine storyline, but there is definitely a bit of a disjointed feeling about where this book is going/at compared to its currently running sibling series. That matches somewhat to how House of X/Powers of X was run, but it doesn’t feel the same. There are only three issues left of this half of the story, so things will need to pick up story-wise pretty soon.
X Lives of Wolverine #2 is now available in print and digitally from Marvel Comics.