By Jonathan Hickman, Matteo Buffagni and Sunny Gho
If you’re reading Jonathan Hickman’s X-Men, and you’re familiar with his writing, then you know he’s building something big. We dive into the 6th issue this week, and Hickman ties up some loose ends for us, while also giving us more seeds to think about. The great thing about this series is that so far, each issue is self contained, but not necessarily wrapped up. Issue #5 focuses on Mystique and where she fits into all of this. She was on the trip to take down the Mother Mold in House of X, so clearly she is someone who is important to the mutant population. What she wants in return for her services, well that’s interesting as well.
The great thing Jonathan Hickman does when writing this series, is that he paints our good guys gray. This issue we see Magneto and Xavier, two of the saviors of the mutant race, exploiting Mystique to get what they want. Hickman writes Mystique as an intelligent mutant too though. She is willing to play ball, but ultimately, she has her own agenda. Hickman fills in some gaps from House of X too. If you recall when Mystique is on the ship to take down Mother Mold, she says she got turned around. This is pretty uncommon for Mystique since she knows what she always knows what she’s doing. Hickman expands on this page and why exactly she got turned around. With Hickman, it always makes sense and it was planted from the beginning. Hickman also gives us some very good insight into the relationship between Destiny and Mystique. This will definitely play out in the pages of X-Men and will be exciting. I can’t wait to see where it goes as I’m typing this. This was a great issue by Hickman.
The pencils this issue are handled by Matteo Buffagni with colors by Sunny Gho. From the opening page of this issue, we can tell it’s going to be eerie. This is based on the colors and pencils from Gho and Buffagni. Seeing Destiny’s creepy face, colored darkly, sets the tone for the issue. One challenge Buffagni had was having to redraw the pages from House of X. His pencils looked perfectly fine as Mystique is blown out of the airlock. Buffagni also has a really good panel where Mystique is yelling her demands at Xavier and MAgneto. We can see the anger and hurt on her face as she makes them. The colors by Sunny Gho are amazing as well this issue. Mystique’s blue skin and red hair are perfect. They catch your eye every time you see them on a page. There isn’t much to complain about art-wise here. Both Buffagni and Gho bring their A game to this issue and it shows.
X-Men has been a great series for building up the train wreck that is coming. Jonathan Hickman has written another great issue that shines a light on the manipulation going on in Krakoa. The pencils and colors are top notch and help the story telling immensely. Hickman is redefining the X-Men.