Rating: 5/5 – This comic made me care about the Toad!
by ComicSpectrum reviewer Hank Johnson.
I believe that Jason Aaron is one of the most versatile writers of this generation. He has a very impressive range of comics under his belt ranging in style from the grim and gritty Scalped to epic fantasy in Thor God of Thunder. Tucked away amongst Aaron’s much heralded and critically acclaimed series is Wolverine and the X-Men. Issue #41 marks the penultimate issue, and one of the series best.
This issue focuses on the relationship between Husk and Toad that has been one of the most interesting facets of Aaron’s run. What I liked best about the story is how Aaron was able to take the character of Toad and turn him into someone I actually enjoyed reading about. The evolution in his character was compelling and realistic. Aaron did an exceptional job of getting an emotional pay off without having anything feel forced or contrived.
Artists Pepe Larruz and Todd Nauck do a great job conveying the emotion of the issue without losing the artistic tone of the series. Some of the layouts in this book were truly exceptional. Both artists complemented one another and added to the overall quality of the story.
This book had some many wonderful moments, especially for readers who have been on board for the whole series. Each page bought a smile, a tear jerk, or a silent cheer for one of the most put upon characters in the marvel universe. This issue is a shining example of what comics can do that prose stories can’t. Writers and artists collaborating to creating an emotional experience that resonates beyond the page. If you told me at any point that I’d actually be shedding a tear for Toad, I’d have laughed uncontrollably. Yet, here I am after reading this issue wanting to read more about Toad!
Overall, this book is an excellent example of what a talented creator can accomplish when given time to let his or her storylines come to fruition. From issue number one, Wolverine and The X-Men has been at the top of my stack and I am upset to see it end next issue. Aaron was able to produce some of the best of the X-Men since Chris Claremont’s transcendent run in the 1980’s. If you haven’t read an X-book since the 1990’s, check out this series and this issue in particular.
Reviewed by: Hank Johnson
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