House of X #6
By Jonathan Hickman, Pepe Larraz and Marte Gracia
This week we wrap up the last issue of House of X. This is the series that has more mainstream appeal to new audiences since it essentially focuses on the X-Men right now. While most of the heavy lifting from the series has been handled, there are still a few threads left hanging from Jonathan Hickman that need explained. This issue wraps everything up, and gives us a glimpse into what to expect afterwards as well.
With most of the major action settled, House of X #6 was able to slow things down and focus on the future of Krakoa and the mutants. Jonathan Hickman establishes his council, with the exception of one secret member, and we deal with the politic of the island. The first order of business is handling Sabertooth, who killed humans several issues back when he was trying to escape. Hickman shows us that Professor X knows that this is a delicate situation. We know the punishment has to fit the crime and set the tone for anyone who may do this in the future. Hickman comes up with a plan that is interesting, but will of course not be permanent. What’s really interesting about this issue, is seeing all the different characters, hero and villain, interacting at the council and actually agreeing. Hickman gives characters like Apocalypse and Mr. Sinister great voices as the talk with Exodus and Professor X. Hickman sets us up for a new era of X-Men, and sends us out on a note that will make you smile. The ending of House of X #6 puts the mutants in an interesting place that will make for amazing stories going forward.
The pencils this issue are handled by Pepe Larraz with colors by Marte Gracia. Larraz is fabulous on pencils, as usual. During the trial of Sabertooth, the vicious mutant gets nasty. Larraz shows several telepaths attack his mind, leaving him mentally out and drooling from the attack. It’s a great panel, and one of the most humbling moments for Sabertooth. Another panel that sticks out, is one where Xavier tells Sabertooth his punishment. We see the angry reflection in the X’s on the professor’s helmet. Larraz does a masterful job on this issue, as he has with every book in the series. The colors by Marte Gracia are essential to the issue. Gracia makes the pencils by Larraz pop with his vibrant coloring. The minor differences, like the blue coloring of Mystique and Nightcrawler, stick out in this issue. As mutants celebrate on Krakoa, Gracia layers so many different colors into one panel, it’s fun to just look around and see the variety. Everything from fireworks to shades of green from light can be seen here. It’s a difficult panel to color, but Gracia rocks it.
If you’re an X-Man fan, you’ll walk away from this series satisfied. Jonathan Hickman has put the X-Men back on top of the Marvel universe again. The pencils and colors for the series were top notch too. House of X #6 is a great bookend to a great series.