Wolverine and the X-Men #36 (Marvel)

WolvX-Men36

Rating: 4.5/5 – Best X-Men storyline in years!

Seriously, I can’t remember the last time I was excited to read the next issue of an X-Men comic book.  People who know me know that I’m not the biggest X-Men fan in the world.  Don’t get me wrong, I was there for Giant-Size #1, Uncanny #94, and on up for many years up into the 200s, but life intervened, I slowed down on reading and at one point picked up an X-Men comic after not reading one for a year or more and had no idea what the heck was going on.  Lots of intricate plot points, characters from who knows where that were not introduced or explained.  This was a corner of the Marvel Universe that has always been rich & rewarding for the dedicated fans and I’ve usually found it to be kind of unwelcoming to the casual reader that was not really studied up on their X-lore.

I’ve popped in every now and again over the years and tried to get back into the X-verse, usually to be driven away in short order feeling lost trying to follow all the details.  My latest attempt is with the current crossover/event “Battle of the Atom“, of which this issue, Wolverine and the X-Men #36 is Chapter 5.  I’ve been really pleased overall with the series so far.  Just via osmosis I have a general read on most of the characters and situations in the X-Men corner of Marvel.  The good thing about Battle of the Atom is that the writers of each chapter have been weaving a interconnected story that flows very nicely from one book/chapter to the next, telling a single continued story that is passed off from one team and picked up by the next with ease.  Each chapter adds an additional layer of understanding and each chapter has contributed a twist that makes reading the next something I feel I have to do.

This is comics done right.  I feel like I’m given the information I need to know in each issue as I move along, although I don’t think this is a storyline where someone should jump into a middle chapter.  Either start with Chapter 1 and catch up or else wait for the trade.  I’m eagerly awaiting Chapter 6 in All New X-Men #17 next Wednesday.  I can’t remember the last time I was actively looking forward to an X-Men comic and that is the highest praise I can give this series.

Reviewed by: Bob Bretall – bob@comicspectrum.com
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