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X-Men: First Class #15 & #16

A Reviewer Double Shot!

Reviewed by From the Zodar Zone

 

X-Men: First Class #15

Written by Jeff Parker
Penciled by Karl Kesel
Inked by Val Staples
Colored by Blambot's Nate Piekos
Lettered by Nathan Cosby
Edited by Mark Paniccia
Published by Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $2.99
Rated All Ages
Release Date August 20, 2008

 

Jeff parker is joined by Karl Kesel to tell the story of the X-Men's first encounter with Medusa.

 

Unlike the Marvel Adventures titles that take place in their own Universe, the First Class titles are set in the 616 standard Marvel Universe's past. This issue takes place at some point while Medusa was a member of the original Frightful Four, but before she remembered that she was a member of the Inhumans.

 

Kesel's art here strongly reflects his recent Kirbycized style on Jack Kirby's Galactic Bounty Hunters. It's appropriate since Kirby did the earliest issues of X-Men as well as the Fantastic Four issues that are referenced here.

 

Both the art and the story flow quickly at a fun pace that is perfectly timed for the story being told. It's followed up with another one of the delightfully cute Parker and Colleen Coover short.

 

X-Men: First Class #16

Written by Jeff Parker
Penciled by Patrick Scherberger
Inked by Craig Yeung
Colored by Val Staples
Lettered by Blambot's Nate Piekos
Edited by Mark Paniccia
Published by Marvel Comics
Cover Price: $2.99
Rated All Ages
Release Date September 17, 2008

 

If two years ago someone had told me that a series starring the original five X-Men would be one of my favorites, and that I would feel sad for comics as a whole to see it end, I would have told them to find another sucker. I've been a big X-Men fan since picking up Uncanny X-Men 275 during Chris Claremont and Jim Lee's run, but, aside from Beast, I've never found the original five to be very interesting. Reading the early Uncanny X-Men issues, the original X-Factor series, and almost all the origianl uncanny five's other appearances did nothing to change my opinion of them over the years.

 

Not until Jeff Parker made them fun. Over the course of the eight issue miniseries, the Special, and the 16 issues of this series, not only has every character gotten a chance to shine, but even when they weren't in the spotlight none of them were treated as an afterthought.

 

Readers have also gotten excellently handled guest appearances by various other characters. From Marvel Girl being mentored by the Invisible Woman, to the brief inclusion of Machine Man on the team, every guest appearance has felt like a natural extension of the story instead of the cliched "thrill of the month."

 

This issue itself is less an X-Men story than it is a Marvel Team-Up, and I don't mind in the least. Iceman leaves in a huff, teams up with the Human Torch, and together they steal some villains from Spider-Man. With quick dialog and a laugh on every page, Parker keeps the read quick and entertaining. Scherberger's art compliments it wonderfully by injecting every panel with dynamic energy and an eye for interesting angles. Not the greatest issue of the run, but still something that shines some joy in an otherwise dark market.

 

I'm saddened that this issue is the last of the regular series (it's followed up by a Giant-Size special in October and another miniseries next year) because the world of the X-Men just became a lot less fun.

 

Rating the Issues

 

#15

Story: Overall 7
Concept - 5 out of 10
Plot - 5 out of 10
Dialogue - 8 out of 10

Art: Overall 7
Style - 7 out of 10

Storytelling - 8 out of 10
Color/Tones - 7 out of 10

Importance: Overall 5
To the Title - 5 out of 10
To the Company - 4 out of 10
To the Medium - 5 out of 10

 

#16

Story: Overall 6
Concept - 5
Plot - 5
Dialogue - 8

Art: Overall 7
Style - 6

Storytelling - 7
Color/Tones - 7

Importance: Overall 5
To the Title - 5
To the Company - 4
To the Medium - 5

 

Look Inside Issue #16

 

 

 

 

Reviewer Bio

 

Name: Jeremy Wiggins

email: zodarzone@hotmail.com

 

Been reading comics: for 18 years.

 

Review Bio: I clearly remember running home from school to plop my butt down three feet from the television to watch the first episode of Transformers back in 1984. Since then they've been the main focus of my nerdom and I continue to collect the comics and figures. I started collecting other comics in 1990 so right off the bat I was there for the big X-plosion (sorry) of X-Force #1 and X-Men #1, the creation of DC's Vertigo imprint, and the birth of Image. Since graduating from OSU in 1999 with an English degree, I've had a couple of different jobs but most have, of course, been in customer service. I'm finally getting to the point in my collecting where I'm moving away from completism (and hoarding things that are no longer good) to following creators that I enjoy.

 

Favorites: Guardians of the Galaxy (new and old), Weapon X by Barry Windsor-Smith, Fantastic Four, runs by John Byrne, Walt Simonson, and Mark Waid, Thor, runs by Walt Simonson and Dan Jurgens, Small Favors by Colleen Coover, Blue Monday by Chynna Clugston, Owly by Andy Runton, everything by Adam Warren

 

Website: zodarzone.livejournal.com

 

Page last updated on November 9, 2008

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