By Tom Taylor, Leonard Kirk, Cory Hamscher, Michael Garland, and Erick Arciniega
While Marvel recently has been under fire for changing their universe too much, you’d be hard pressed to find someone who doesn’t think that X-23 as All-New Wolverine isn’t a fun ride. Through 22 issues, the series has gotten consistently better, and on top of that, it was a natural fit for Marvel and didn’t feel like a forced move. As the alien disease gets wrapped up on the ground, Laura goes into space to find out the cause of the virus.
Tom Taylor has really gotten into a comfort zone on All-New Wolverine. There is a natural flow that comes from each issue, and it all builds off of the previous installments well. One of the best things about this series is the progression of Gabby as a character. This issue she becomes besties with Deadpool, which if you’re not hoping for a team-up issue between them, you probably hate fun. Taylor seems content on having Laura team up with every character in the Marvel U. This issue and arc, we have her teaming-up with the Guardians of the Galaxy as she, Gabby, and Jonathan look for answers about the alien virus. All the Guardians are written well here and the only slight down side is that this was a first issue, so much of it was set up. Taylor should have you excited to see what happens next because this is a series that consistently produces quality story arcs.
The pencils this issue are handled by Leonard Kirk with inks by Kirk and Cory Hamscher, and colors by Michael Garland and Erick Arciniega. Kirk’s pencils are pretty standard stuff here. His lines, helped by his and Cory Hamscher’s inks, are smooth and there really aren’t any bad panels in the book. If there was one gripe, it’s that there isn’t a big “wow” page or panel. There is, however, a hilarious page where Star-Lord and Laura discuss how she’s changed as a person, and in the background of the panels, baby Groot, Gabby, and Jonathan play. There is also a fun panel where Rocket sniffs Jonathan to determine if he’s a good guy or not; luckily he checks out. The colors by Michael Garland and Erick Arciniega are well done. There is a page where the team arrives on the alien planet and we’re treated to a heavy dose of nice reds and dark blacks. The pencils, inks, and colors for this issue are all handled fairly well. Nothing will leap off the page at you, but it’s all done nicely and will add to your enjoyment of the issue.
All-New Wolverine is arguably one of the best X-books on the shelf. Consistent writing and solid art help this book remain a good read month in and month out. The character work that Tom Taylor has done on Laura will have lasting effects on her character moving forward, and she’s come out of her shell under his pen. If you’re an X-23 fan, this series is a must read.