By Brian Michael Bendis, Mahmud Asrar and Marte Gracia
This was a highly anticipated issue of All-New X-Men for several reasons, but mostly because it crosses over to the Ultimate Universe. While Miles Morales has met other members of the 616 Universe already, this is his first time meeting the time displaced X-Men, which is exciting. If anybody is capable of making this arc fun and worth reading, surely it’s Brian Michael Bendis.
It’s become apparent that Bendis likes to pair up the different characters from the books that he writes. Earlier this year there was a team up between the Guardians of the Galaxy and the All-New X-Men. Now we have Ultimate Spiderman and the time displaced mutants meeting. While the cross over with the guardians was fun, this one may have more of an impact on the Marvel Universe as a whole. One of the things Bendis does well this issue, is giving panel time to every character. Jean may have had more than others, but everyone got a little moment to themselves. Another interesting thing Bendis did was allowing all the members to be sent to different parts of the Ultimate Universe. Jean was in New York with Miles while X-23 ended up crashing a football game. All the destinations were fun and it will be exciting to see how the X-Men manage to get out of their predicaments. While this was a set up issue, it was well done by Bendis and should please fans of the series.
The art is handled by Mahmud Asrar with colors by Marte Gracia. Last month, Mahmud turned in a subpar performance, but his work has taken a step up this issue. One of the more memorable scenes is a full page of Miles Morales life in the Ultimate Universe. Asrar does a nice job of showing Miles’ history and the grey tones by Gracia look wonderful. Asrar is also impressive on the background and scenery for the other characters as well. The Savage Land looks great as Warren flees from an unknown assailant. While there are some panels that lack detail and could be better, Asrar has taken some good steps forward this issue.
This is a good start to what should be a very impressive story arc from Bendis and Asrar. The script is good and the art is on the upswing, which is never a bad thing. Who knows, maybe by the end of all this, Miles could be a member of the All-New X-Men.