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411’s Comic Reviews: Age of X-Men: Omega, The Orville: New Beginnings #1, More

July 18, 2019 | Posted by Steve Gustafson
Age of X-Man: Omega

Hello and welcome to 411mania’s weekly Comic Book Review! Each week we’ll be serving up a warm dish of reviews (and previews) from Marvel, DC, and anything else that captures our interest. What did you pick up this week? Let us know in the comments.Want to write a review? If you can write at least one review a week, consistently, email me at [email protected]!

Star Wars Adventures #27

Preview by Steve Gustafson

IDW Publishing proudly announced that October’s Star Wars Adventures #27 will debut a three-part storyline telling an untold chapter set between The Last Jedi and the thrilling conclusion to the Skywalker saga, Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker!

Issue #27 will debut a three-part monthly storyline by writer John Barber and artist Derek Charm, featuring the mighty Wookiees. With the New Republic devastated, the First Order launches an attack on the planet Kashyyyk, and Chewbacca takes up arms to defend his people!

“It’s a thrill and an honor to get to tell this story with the amazing Derek Charm,” says Barber. “Chewie’s one of my favorite characters ever, for as long as I can remember. Having the opportunity to tell his story to a new generation of Star Wars fans – and all this leading up to the conclusion to the Skywalker saga — is one of the biggest thrills of my career.”

Charm says, “I’ve been lucky enough to work within a lot of Star Wars eras in this series, but doing something in the current, post-Last Jedi landscape is really exciting. The fact that it focuses on Chewbacca and what he’s been up to between these movies is more so.”

Snoopy: A Beagle of Mars #1

Preview by Steve Gustafson

BOOM! Studios announced SNOOPY: A BEAGLE OF MARS, an all-new original graphic novel in partnership with Peanuts Worldwide, that launches the world’s most beloved beagle on his grandest adventure yet! From Flying Ace to Astronaut in Space, Snoopy embarks on an exploratory mission to Mars in this original graphic novel written by Jason Cooper, illustrated by Robert Pope and colored by Hannah White, and available in stores December 2019.

NASA has shared a proud association with Charles M. Schulz and his American icon Snoopy since Apollo missions began in the 1960s. In May 1969, Apollo 10 astronauts traveled to the Moon with the aid of a lunar module named Snoopy and a command module named Charlie Brown. That was also the year of the first Silver Snoopy Award — given by NASA astronauts to employees and contractors for outstanding achievements related to human flight safety or mission success. Fifty years after their first collaboration, Peanuts Worldwide and NASA entered into a multiyear Space Act Agreement in 2018, engineered to inspire a passion for space exploration and STEM education among students.

In SNOOPY: A BEAGLE OF MARS, Snoopy, the world-famous astronaut, heads to the stars in his most out-of-this-world adventure yet! What mysteries does the red planet hold? Will he find water? Will he find life? Will he find the time to get in a quick nine holes? Snoopy grabs his golf clubs and blasts off for Mars in this original graphic novel from the world of Charles M. Schulz and Peanuts!

“Sharing a love of STEM and space exploration through the beloved Astronaut Snoopy is a great honor for us.” said Craig Herman, Senior Director, Category Management, Peanuts Worldwide. “Charles Schulz inspired generations through his comic strip and characters, and I hope this graphic novel will spark the imagination of many future scientists and space travelers.”

Blade Runner 2019 #1

Preview by Steve Gustafson

The debut issue of the first ever original comic set in the Blade Runner universe, starring an all-new Blade Runner and written by the writer of Blade Runner 2049!

The Orville: New Beginnings #1

Review by Steve Gustafson

On their way to a fleet conference via shuttle, Ed and Gordon pick up a distress signal from a century-old buoy belonging to a Union ship and decide to investigate. Meanwhile, back on the Orville, Kelly tries to mediate when Bortus insists on enrolling Topa into school even though he is only a few months old.

Two things. I’ve never seen The Orville television show and this comic was given to me by a friend who HAS seen the show and is a big fan.

With that said, I found this to be a solid first issue that made me familiar with the characters and set up some interesting possibilities for future issues. It even made me want to check out the show, which is a big plus.

The creative team of writer David A. Goodman and artist David Cabeza impressed me with balancing things for fans of the show and people going in fresh, like myself. The tone and humor was well established and the likenesses were handled impressively.

I’ll admit that I’m more than a little surprised that I enjoyed this as the majority of books based on TV series usually sink on arrival. The Orville gets a thumbs up and a wish for more missions.

Rating: 8.0 out of 10

Wolverine: Exit Wounds #1

Review by John Pumpernickel

Wolverine: Exit Wounds #1. One issue with three stories. The writers include Larry Hama, Chris Claremont, and Sam Keith with art duties by Salvador Larroca, Sean Parsons, Scot Eaton, and Kieth. My expectations were high with such luminaries involved, I was a little disappointed at the mixed bag we got.

First, I’m not sure where the demand for this book came from. I almost feel like they had these stories sitting around and decided to put them all in here. The Exit Wounds umbrella sets up these tales as seminal events from Logan’s life, from the minds of the creators who shaped Wolverine into the popular, charismatic character he is today.

The books creative teams are impressive but never go above delivering a good, not great, story. Wolverine as a character has been mined in so many different ways, it’s tough to find one that hasn’t been done before. Do classic Wolverine stories still exist? Of course. But those are becoming few and far between.

An OK issue for those hardcore Wolverine fans out there.

Rating: 7.5 out of 10

Age of X-Man: Omega #1

Review by Jeremy Thomas

It’s been a hell of a time to be an X-Men fan in 2019. Marvel has been shaking things up on the mutant front, both in the pages of Uncanny X-Men under Matthew Rosenberg and most notably in Age of X-Man, where most of the mutants of Earth-616 were shunted off to earlier this year after a confrontation with Nate Grey that capped off the X-Men: Dissassembled arc.

Age of X-Man has been a somewhat polarizing event, as it’s been so very different from previous big “event” storylines while still feeling to some like just another alternate universe arc. But make no mistake: this hasn’t just been some simple holding pattern to bide Marvel’s time until Jonathan Hickman comes in to take control of the X-Men family with House of X and Power of X. In the pages of the various Age of X minseries, writers like Leah Williams, Ed Brisson, and Seanan McGuire have been telling stories that really matter. They’ve been tales of identity, of what it means to be an outsider, of human connection and what happens when we lose that. There has been less bang for your buck on the explosions scale, but plenty of dives into issues that the X-Men lines have been telling since their inception.

Age of X-Man: Omega brings it all to a head. Zac Thompson and Lonnie Nadler deconstruct the flawed utopia that Nate Grey set up for his fellow mutants, as the X-Men learn exactly where and who they are. It’s not really a spoiler to say that this storyline brings the characters back home. Again, House of X and Power of X have made it clear that’s going to happen. And again, there isn’t a lot of action here. There are a couple quick battles, but the conclusion is more focused on the ideas and bringing the X-Men back into the world they’ve been out of. Not everyone feels the same way about this, and some strongly object to going home. The various standpoints feel real and true to the characters, and the reunions we get are touchingly done.

Enough good things can’t be said about the art. Simone Buonfantino captures the scenes beautifully, with Triona Farrell’s colors adding just the right amount of vibrancy. A zoom out sequence on Glob Herman in the early pages is particularly effective, and the representation of the main characters being confronted with the truth about who they are is simple yet striking.

There’s a lot to be said about the nature of Nate’s world here, and no small number of questions that it raises. One thing that is made clear — and which sets this arc apart from stories like Age of Apocalypse — is that this is not an alternate universe. These aren’t, for the most part, other versions of 616 charaacters. That raises a lot of moral questions about all the non-X-Men who populate the world, and it can be argued those issues are pushed aside a bit too quickly here for the sake of storyline resolution. For the characters we know and love though, it’s important. These people will remember what they’ve been through, and what they’ve been through is pretty major. Characters were cut off from those they love, forced to forget that they ever had that connection. It’s going to be interesting to see where Hickman’s run takes these characters going forward.

It’s always difficult to judge big events like Age of X-Man in their immediate aftermath. Will this be a storyline that leaves reverberations in some form on the X-Men for some time, or be quickly forgotten with a new writer coming on board? The best way I can assess this closure is to say that I hope Hickman takes the characters’ experiences here and uses them in his new vision for the X-Men. That, if nothing else, makes Age of X-Man: Omega a success, and a fitting conclusion to a storyline I’ve very much enjoyed.

Rating: 8.5 out of 10

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