By Gerry Duggan, Matteo Lolli and Federico Blee
We’re entering a new era of X-Men unlike one we’ve seen before. Jonathan Hickman has streamlined everything with his 2 part story House of X and Powers of X. Last week saw the release of Hickman’s X-Men, and this week brings us the second book, Marauders. Each book has a distinct feel so far, and Marauders completely leaves the island of Krakoa all together. What awaits the team on the seas is unknown, but the book has an interesting premise and a good writer at the helm.
Gerry Duggan has grown as a writer at his time with Marvel. He’s been on high profile books, written the Uncanny Avengers and even written an event. We now have the privilege of having him on an X-book. There are many things that Duggan does right this issue. The first being the mystery of why Kitty is unable to go back to Krakoa. This will be at the center of the book for a while, and it’s an interesting plot point. Duggan also picks a fun team to use, Pyro being back is a welcome addition. Duggan plays on the relationship between Emma and Kitty as well. This is a little continuity that started all the way back in Joss Whedon’s Astonishing X-Men. Their relationship has grown into a mutual respect, but it remains one of the more fun elements of this issue. We get a couple of pages with Bishop where he is investigating a strange occurrence, a mutant who disintegrated as he attempted to go to Krakoa. This is another interesting aspect of the first issue. We have to wonder if this is a nod to fake crimes being reported or if it’s something deeper. Duggan has written an interesting first issue and planted many seeds (pun intended) to keep the reader guessing what will happen next.
The pencils this issue are handled by Matteo Lolli with colors by Federico Blee. Matteo Lolli excels this issue in a couple of things. First and foremost, his facial expressions are great. As Kitty attempts to enter Krakoa and gets denied, the look on her face says it all. Another area that Lolli shows great strength is the backgrounds of his panels. Whether it is a city or the island of Krakoa as Kitty passes by on ship, the backgrounds look amazing. The colors by Federico Blee help accentuate the characters in panels where the background encompasses a large portion of the page. Blee uses a wonderful color palette that is light a fun as you flip through the pages. Gorgeous blues and greens can be seen on many of the pages throughout the issue. The art in this issue allows this book to more of a fun adventure than a serious, dire circumstance book.
Out of the couple of X-books released, Marauders has a very different tone and feels lighter than Hickman’s X-Men. Gerry Duggan has a way of making most books fun and enjoyable, and he’ll most likely do that with this series. The art was very well done and the colors popped off the page. Marauders is a different X-Men title than we’re used to, and that’s a good thing.