Rating: 3/5 – A History of the Power Behind Juggernaut.
by ComicSpectrum senior reviewer Shawn Hoklas
Since Fear Itself in 2011, the long-time X-villain Juggernaut hasn’t had his powers. In a weird turn of events, Cain Marko lost the powers granted to him by the ruby of Cyttorak, which then through some heavy plot twists, ended up transferring to Colossus. Flash forward to the Avengers vs. X-Men crossover, Colossus gained a portion of the powers of the Phoenix Force, which he then lost, which de-stabalized his powers. In this latest Amazing X-Men series though, Colossus has seemingly gotten his powers under control while the Juggernaut is still M.I.A. So if you’re still here after that confusing opening, Amazing X-Men number fifteen is the first part of a story titled “The Once and Future Juggernaut” that puts the spotlight on Colossus.
Writer Christopher Yost doesn’t have Juggernaut/Cain Marko appear in this issue, instead focusing on the power behind the Juggernaut, the demon known as Cytorrak. There’s a nice opening sequence that shows a history of Cytorrak from as far back as the year 736, which then jumps forward to the present day. Yost does a nice job of not bogging down the reader with too much of what’s come before, allowing the recap page at the beginning to cover most everything you need to know to enjoy the story on its own. When the ruby of Cytorrak mysteriously calls out to Colossus, Storm has him stay behind, and the rest of the Amazing X-Men head off to investigate. Yost balances the large cast effectively, even though a scene towards the middle felt out of place in order to include more team members.
Where this book misseed the mark for me was in the art. Jorge Fornes, whose work can be found in previous issues of Wolverine and the X-Men has a very flat and quickly pencilled style that makes this book look and feel to me as though it was rushed, even if it wasn’t. The opening sequence mentioned above looks great with the hefty dose of action and loose panel borders, but after that, his character work missed the mark. Colossus’ body while out of costume ranges in size and physique, while his faces is not rendered consistently. Hopefully future issues in this storyline will be heavier on the action which seems to suit Fornes’ style much better than the quieter moments which this issue was full of.
Ultimately, despite a solid opening chapter of a story that will hopefully bring back the Juggernaut that most people know and enjoy, the art fell short for me. I’m invested in these characters though, and while the art wasn’t necessarily to my liking, I’m confident that Yost can still deliver a fun ride while leaving some of the continuity baggage behind. I for one am ready for the return of the Juggernaut, let’s hope Marvel and Yost feel the same way.
Reviewed by: Shawn Hoklas
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