By Ed Brisson, Dylan Burnett, Jesus Aburtov, Juanan Ramirez and Brian Reber
Straight out of the pages of Extermination is the newly assembled X-force book. There seems to be a shift happening with Marvel and mutants lately where, not only are they getting more recognition, but they’re also going old school in concepts and costumes. This series wasn’t much of surprise since the pieces were set in motion by the ending of Extermination. There is a lot to be explored though with young Cable, and Ed Brisson, the man who brought him to the present, is in charge of fleshing him out. Strap in tight, because this isn’t the 90’s X-Force that you remember reading as a kid.
Ed Brisson did a great job writing Extermination, so it’s nice to see him be able to build on some of the seeds he planted in that mini-series. There is a lot to like in this issue, the line-up being the most important. Seeing this group of mutants together is as much fun as seeing the original X-Men together. Brisson uses each character wisely with the exception of Boom-Boom who didn’t show up for the mission. What’s nice about what Brisson is doing with this book, is that X-Force is being tough again. Shatterstar and Warpath are actually stabbing people. It’s nice to see these edgier characters get back to being a little edgy. Young Cable has been working with Deathlok, which has some funny moments in the issue. What Brisson does right with young Cable, is that he is still young. He makes mistakes and things don’t always seem to go right for him like they did with his adult counterpart. We also get a back up story with Boom-Boom, which shows us why she missed the mission, and truth be told, it’s was very good and very B00m-Boom.
The pencils this issue are handled by Dylan Burnett with colors by Jesus Aburtov. The back up story is penciled by Juanan Ramirez with colors by Brian Reber. If we’re being honest here, the art is the biggest problem with the issue. It’s not bad, but it is a different style than what many mainstream comics have. A comparison would be that it resembles Humberto Ramos. The biggest gripe is that some panels characters have long faces and look too skinny. This can be seen as Warpath and the gang battle guards in a building in New York early in the issue. Burnett does well in the action sequences in the issue. As the team closes in on Cable, Shatterstar, Domino and company attack. Shatterstar slides his blade into a villain, which looks great. Burnett is a good artist that just needs us to get used to his style. The colors by Jesus Aburtov are dark and gritty, which is what the book calls for. We get to see blood, which is cool, and the contrast of dark and light panels work. We go from a dark panel in a warehouse to images with lighter backgrounds of the team attacking. The art in the back –up by Juanan Ramirez and Brian Reber is very good. It has a Stuart Immonen feel to it, and is neatly drawn. Reber of course kills it on colors, like he always does.
X-Force was a surprise hit this week. Ed Brisson has made this team of old friends feel fresh, and they have a new path and mission. The pencils and colors were fine enough, but I look forward to seeing how they grow as the series progresses. X-Force was my favorite book this week.