The previous issue of Uncanny X-Men was enough to melt this guy’s heart. Some people had complaints about a certain something involving the loss of Rahne, but it was something that honestly didn’t bear enough weight on the story to truly acknowledge. We lost an X-Man, and it never gets easier when you understand the kind of lives they live.
Now with that said, I have loved the unpredictability of this book, but this was the first time where I was a bit thrown off by what felt messy. I was expecting a bit more focus on the loss of an X-Man, or maybe even the fact that Wolverine already somehow decided that this mission was not for him. However, that was not the case here. Just as quickly they jumped into the next target on their list, and they weren’t even up their in those that you really wanted to see. I’m sure that most of us were looking forward to more pressure given to figuring out why the X-Men have suddenly forgotten about Emma Frost of all mutants.
Instead, we get one disaster after the next for the X-Men. I mean I get it, sometime later this year they are giving their attention the the stories that are really supposed to shape the future of the X-Men in the Marvel Universe. Though doesn’t mean that this has to turn into another chaotic chapter in their lives where everything goes wrong and the walls have to continue being torn down.
The villain they did manage to run into was definitely one they would have inevitably run into, but I don’t think it should have happened quite like this. I try not to have expectations about these things, but when you are moving higher up the list, you would think there would be a grander encounter than what we actually got. I suppose that could all be a matter of perspective given everything that went wrong in a matter of two battles. The kind of loss that they took this time around was definitely a shock, but at the same couldn’t help but feel like it wasn’t deserved. When I say this I mean it felt too obvious that they were looking for another opportunity to knock this team down a peg.
My biggest disappointment was definitely the fact that there wasn’t much to see about Emma Frost or Mystique in this issue despite the two being plastered on the front cover. Normally that is what creates anticipation for the readers, and anything less than what they see is pretty much misleading in my opinion.
What didn’t help was seeing a change in artists as well. One of the things I couldn’t help commending this book for up to this point was the quality interior work. The last thing I wanted was to flip open to the first page and see that they decided to change things up at such a crucial point in the story. I wouldn’t say this new art was a step down, but it was easy to get used to what Larroca was giving us up to this point.
The struggle is fine, but with this chapter of the X-Men I for one hoped that there would be a bit more fighting back than being struck with more failure than they have already suffered. Uncanny X-Men #18 is the first that came up short, and the last thing we should fear is that this is the start of a downward spiral.