By Brian Michael Bendis, Stuart Immonen, & Marte Garcia
The band of merry mutants are about half way through their newest cross-over, Battle of the Atom. It’s good to see the X-Men stealing some spotlight away from the Avengers, but this event does feel a little underrated. That being said, this has been an enjoyable and exciting cross-over so far.
Last issue ended with a teaser of the future, which didn’t seem too terrible, and we got a quick page of some other future X-Men. This issue focuses on their story, and quite possibly why some X-Men went back to the past. Illyana, young Beast and Iceman have questions, but aren’t allowed to know the answers. Illyana proposes a field trip to the past.
Say what you want about Brian Michael Bendis, but the man can keep a reader’s attention. This story has left readers guessing week in and week out, and he deserves much of the credit. While there isn’t that much dialogue in this issue, the story does progress, and Bendis gives us a pretty reasonable explanation as to why the first batch of mutants went back in time. Bendis does a good job of giving the reader a little bit of knowledge about the future X-Men without giving too much away. Jubilee/Wolverine make a valid point of sending the X-Men home, because the less they know, the better. His writing this issue is very logical and reasonable.
Stuart Immonen’s art has come a long way from when he first started drawing the X-Men. There are several panels this issue that make the reader realize that Immonen is a top tier artist. He is helped by strong inks and a nice coloring job courtesy of Marte Garcia and Wade Von Grawbadger. The panel of the assassination of the president is so sweet, you may want to look at it twice. Immonen is in top form this issue, and X-Fans are reaping the benefits.
Battle of the Atom has been a good arc with six issues down. The writing has been sharp and on point and, for the most part, the artists have stepped up their game. This is a cross-over that has great potential, and with a strong finish, can become a fan favorite.