By Jonathan Hickman, R.B. Silva and Marte Gracia
This week sees the third issue of Powers of X drop. Much like when Hickman’s Avengers and New Avengers books came out, it wasn’t uncommon for we as readers to prefer one over the other. The same thing is happening with Powers of X and House of X. The investment in House of X is higher because it deals with characters we know and love. While Powers of X has been good, it hasn’t been as exciting as House of X, until this issue.
This issue focuses on the year 100, and things really start to hit the fan. Jonathan Hickman has a way of bringing out the best versions of characters. Wolverine plays a prominent role in this issue, and Hickman writes him wonderfully. He reads like the Wolverine from the Dark Phoenix Saga; no nonsense and lethal. The new characters, Rasputin and Cardinal, play a part in this issue as well, and we start to like them a lot more, but the MVP of the issue is Apocalypse. Hickman shows us Apocalypse actually unload and fight, really fight, for his life. Hickman essentially takes every character in this issue, and makes us care for them, including Nimrod and Omega Sentinel. The stakes are high and lives are lost, but your interest should be at an all time high. Powers of X delivers this week with one of the best X-Men issues from Hickman to date.
The pencils this issue are handled by R.B. Silva with colors by Marte Gracia. The pencils in both House of X and Powers of X have been phenomenal. We’re getting Pepe Larraz and R.B. Silva at the top of their game. This issue Silva gives us some more of the same as he shows off his amazing talent. Panels of the battle are stunning, and seeing Omega sentinel as she approaches Rasputin and Xorn rule. She looks perfectly sinister as the shading is handled just right. The battle scenes are drawn well by Silva. Everything is easy on the eyes, and he doesn’t bog down the page with too many things happening at once. The colors by Marte Gracia really shine this issue too. Gracia uses heavy warm and cool colors this issue. In panels where Cardinal is fighting, the cool blue is used to shadow him, which works well. The big scene stealer in this issue color-wise is the red on Omega Sentinel. It’s so vibrant that it draws your attention every time she appears. This issue demonstrates what great pencils and colors look like. Silva and Gracia did an amazing job this issue and it just adds to the greatness of the book.
Powers of X #3 is the issue that will sell you on this book and the series in general. Jonathan Hickman continues his streak of excellent writing as we are left with some answers, but even more questions. The art couldn’t have been better. Silva and Gracia are knocking it out of the park. Modern time travel tales with the X-Men rarely have any impact, but Powers of X #3 nails you where it hurts.