By Fabian Nicieza, Iban Coello and David Curiel
As we near the end of Age of Apocalypse, we start to see the finish line for this tie-in. This was a huge issue and it set us up for a doozy of a finale. All the characters are in place and the conclusion should be a very exciting end to what has been a very good mini. As the age comes to a close, this issue provides us with some great moments that lead us to an unlikely villain.
You really can’t say enough about what Fabian Nicieza has done with many of these characters in his career as a writer. He knows how to write the X-Men, even if they are alternate universe versions. The stakes were high this issue and Nicieza did not disappoint. Some important characters were killed and it made sense. Nicieza has everything plotted out and everything is happening for a reason. Another cool thing this issue has going for it is that going into the fifth issue we still have no idea who Burner is. This is just another little mystery that Fabian has cooked up for us in this book. This was an issue that flipped the script a little bit as well. We have all of our characters, heroes and villains, fighting the virus to stay alive now. They are still fighting Apocalypse too, but they also have another threat facing them. While there are some familiar alliances (Cyclops and Wolverine) things are a bit more complex than that. Fabian Nicieza has done an incredible job writing this series.
The pencils this issue were handled by Iban Coello with colors by David Curiel. Coello takes over for Gerardo Sandoval and he actually does a very fine job. Sandoval could be hit or miss and often exaggerated characters bodies, but Coello definitely tones that down this issue. The first page of the issue sets the tone as Coello draws a well known character exploding from the legacy virus. Coello draws this very eerie and David Curiel’s colors give it an extra creep factor. Coello also has some very cool panels as Havok spoils the team up of Wolverine, Cyclops and Burner. He busts in looking for a fight and Coello draws him standing confidently with his chest lit up. David Curiel has an awesome panel with a silhouette of Havok and Burner standing opposite each other. Burner’s head is lit up and Havok’s left had is as well. These are great panels that stand out in a reader’s mind. This is the best the art has been all series.
You could honestly make the argument that this Age of Apocalypse mini-series has been one of the better written X-Men books in a while. Fabian Nicieza really has done a great job with this cast and title. The voice many of these characters have has been spot on. The art has improved a lot this issue and Iban Coello has shown he can ball. The conclusion should be another wonderful trip down memory lane.