Rating: 4/5 – The Phoenix Force is Coming.
by ComicSpectrum reviewer Adam Brunell
I’ve been checking out all the new X-Men titles since IvX and there has been a mix of the good, the bad, and the ugly. One of the comics I’m getting each month is the Jean Grey solo run, and it’s pretty good.
The story is about the time jumped teenage Jean Grey. Though Jean must live in the shadow of the deceased Jean Grey of the future (our present) timeline, she may also have to deal with the Phoenix Force at some point. Writer Dennis Hopeless and artist Victor Ibanez have provided a pretty well done story with great characters, dialogue, and art. Hopeless adds in quips from Jean about her green and yellow uniform, or how she looks like Hope Summers.
In addition to all the fun and action in the second issue, there are also a large number of guest appearances. Who better to supply Jean with answers to how to deal with the Phoenix Force than those that have dealt with it in the past or possible future? Rachel Summers, Hope Summers, Quentin Quire, Magik, and Colossus all appear in Jean’s search for answers on how to keep control while the Phoenix is possibly hunting her down. It was quite interesting to see what Hope Summers has been up to since she pushed away from all the mutants, and pretty cool of Hopeless to toss readers this kind of gem. The only issue I had with Jean asking all these people about being a Phoenix host is that everyone has their own story behind their experience; while some enjoyed the power, some would rather forget what that power did to them. With so many different opinions and perspectives, Jean heads off to locate one last person to talk to about being a Phoenix host. Ibanez provides panels with massive crowds and dramatic angles for fights, and his layouts for Hopeless’s quips are fun.
I’m enjoying Jean Grey as a standalone title, but with any title that has lots of guest stars, there are some timing issues in how all the characters are handled compared to the other books they’re featured in this month. This is a fairly common problem; keeping all these characters in synch can be tough. For people reading all the titles as they come out, it sometimes gets a bit confusing about what order events are happening in when characters are doing different things in different places in different books. But that’s one of the dangers of a shared universe where different creators are using the same characters at the same time. Even with this potential confusion for readers consuming lots of books with mutant characters, if you like lots of mutants, and especially if you’re a fan of the Phoenix Force, Jean Grey is worth checking out.
Reviewed by: Adam Brunell
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