Rating: 4/5 – A Reflection of an Earlier Time…Which is Great!
by ComicSpectrum senior reviewer Shawn Hoklas.
I’m a big fan of the X-Men from the nineties. Not only did we have some historic comics like Jim Lee’s X-Men number one that went on to sell over a million copies with it’s multiple interlocking covers, but we also got an X-Men animated cartoon that at the time was pretty fantastic and helped catapult the X-Men into toy stores everywhere. It was a good time to be an X-Men fan since that was probably when they were at their peak in terms of popularity. Not necessarily their best, but their most popular. X-Men ’92 is a new series spinning out of the Secret Wars event that embraces all that was good, and bad about the X-Men in that era!
Writer Chris Sims and Chad Bowers must have been fans of that time period, or they did their research as this first issue feels as though it was actually produced in 1992. The exposition is heavy and so is the dialogue. On the first page alone, the images are cluttered with caption boxes and dialogue as the X-Men team relax from their latest adventure by participating in a friendly game of Laser Tag. Those looking for a deep and decompressed story like those in the current X-Books won’t find it here. It’s supposed to be this way as this book rides the line between having a serious story, and still embracing a writing style that hasn’t been popular in years. Sims and Bowers nail the character traits that were popular at the time including Wolverine calling everyone “bub”, Jubilee speaking slang, and Cyclops taking dramatic turns from one scene to the next.
Not only does the writing style match the times, but so does the art by Scott Koblish. The X-Men are in their classic nineties costumes with the blue and gold. The scowls on the villains show lots of teeth, and most characters have a lithe and lean look to them. Koblish packs the panels with characters and there’s an energy to the page with lots of effects highlighted by bright colors and swirling pencil lines.
If you weren’t a fan of the X-men in the 1990s then this book may miss the mark with you. It’s intentionally written and drawn with that time period in mind. I personally loved it as it brought back a lot of great, and not so great memories of that era with a story that’s still entertaining despite the high level of exposition and heavy handed dialogue. X-Men ’92 is trying to be a product of its time, it just happens to be of a time that took place over twenty years ago. And that’s perfectly fine by me!
Reviewed by: Shawn Hoklas
https://comicspectrum.com/ Covering the full spectrum of comics culture