By Cullen Bunn, Marcus To, Rain Beredo
X-Men Blue has an odd relationship with the X-Men fandom. Some fans love it and consider it a fresh take on the X-Men, and others hate the younger versions of the original five X-Men from the past and refuse to read it. What makes this recent story arc interesting is that there is a new team and the original five X-Men are hardly in this book anymore. It’s almost like X-Men Blue is being pulled in two different directions with two different casts. Having said that, there is no denying that Cullen Bunn is a huge X-fan and he knows his history. As we continue on to chapter 5 of Cry Havok, things start to take shape and alliances start to crumble.
There should be no doubt that Cullen Bunn loves Magneto. He wrote his solo series, which got great acclaim, and he continues to write him well in X-Men Blue. This issue starts off with a flashback between Polaris and Magneto. Bunn does a fine job of showing us Magneto being a good father, and being tactical. We then move to a battle between Magneto and everyone else. The parallel Bunn uses to show Erik being a father, and then him attacking and viciously fighting is effective. As readers we see both sides of Magneto and we have to question if he’s ever changed at all. Bunn does give us a couple of pages of the original 5 X-Men and Venom in space, but those pages take away from the current story and disrupt the flow of the book. Blood Storm continues to be a great character under Bunn’s pen as well. She’s been very useful in this run and usually has one of the best lines in every issue.
The pencils this issue are handled by Marcus To with colors by Rain Beredo. To’s pencils are pretty good here considering that most of the issue was action. Panels of Magneto using his power against the enemy work well with the force that To uses to draw. Punches to the face and lightning bolts coming from the sky look great on big splash pages. The colors by Rain Beredo are great this issue. There are a few panels where Magneto is overrun and he’s down on the ground. Beredo uses a steady dose of blue, each panel gets more colorful as Magneto gets more power, until we see him unload on the enemy. While there was a lot of cool blues used this issue, the reds from Armor when she attacks or greens from a time platform also stand out.
Oddly enough, X-Men Blue seems to have gotten better since it ditched the younger versions of the original X-Men. This has become an exciting book that has many twist and turns. Cullen Bunn continues to give fans what the want story wise, and using characters that are often overlooked is a huge bonus for fans. The art has consistently been good with this series, and this issue continues the trend.