If there was any way to get more eager than ever before for what comes next? It was the note this creative team left things on at the end of Marauders #2. Kate could have become a lot of things, but becoming a captain of a ship and the Red Bishop? That is right up hr alley! She looked good with the power and authority in her hands again. Now like I said last month, today I looked forward to what follows after the foundation was set in the second issue.
This issue caught me off guard. It was a complete departure from everything else which unfolded from the previous issue. When I say this, I mean having a strong shift in focus. The first two issues spent more time putting the Marauders together and propping Kate up to take her seat as the Red Bishop. This one took a step back to take things from the perspective of Sebastian Shaw. This was unexpected, yet at the same time welcomed for those of us who probably haven’t seen enough of Shaw in current years. It has been a long time since he last held power like this, and there was no better time than now to remind us of how that influences the way he carries himself. I was actually surprised when we were given the opportunity to walk a mile in his shoes on Krakoa and see a different version of him than what is shown to Emma Frost.
With that said, the real question was who was being reborn on the cover of this issue. The answer to that was shocking when the last thing you also could have prepared for was Shaw bringing back someone close to him. This was another welcomed surprise considering not many would have found interest on their own to discover what familial bonds someone like Shaw holds.
What makes this issue spent well on the Shaws was creating an understanding of what obstacles Emma Frost and the Marauders will face down the road. We already knew that Sebastian and opposing nations would be problematic, though by the end of this issue we come to learn exactly what we should brace ourselves for as he has big ambitions towards taking control of the Hellfire Club. You could say that nothing about these developments are anything other than predictable, but it goes without saying that we were all prepared for trouble the minute those like Sebastian were counted as unquestionable allies. Where it truly mattered was how they would start trouble for everyone.
Now the only question this issue leaves you with is when this chapter takes place. In most of the books so far we see the aftermath of Xavier’s assassination, then this one comes and he’s back alive and well. This isn’t too important in contrast to everything which unfolds in this issue, but these things do tend to catch your attention when these books are apparently progressing on the same lapse of time.
Being that this issue dialed things back a bit, there wasn’t too much that you would say stood out in contrast to the previous two. Not a problem of course, because this is a great time to see that this art team could handle more consistency than anything else. Especially when you have an issue like this which is more character driven. It mattered to see Sebastian Shaw from a more natural standpoint. One where we could see how he presents himself as the Black King, and a father. It was very interesting to see how he goes from looking modest, fighting back expressions of regret, and struggling with refraining from showing vulnerabilities through his body language. Now, I would be crazy not to talk about what really grabs your attention. That being what Hellfire Bay looks like. That was a spectacular rendering of what amazing things Krakoa can do to accommodate even those who have a taste for the finer things. The blackspire, diamond pillars, red growths, it was all very fitting for what this branch of the Quiet Council is supposed to represent. Just when you think you’ve seen everything this island can offer, there’s something new to marvel at. The artists they have chosen for many of these books deserve so much credit for what they continue to give to our exploration of this world.
Compared to the first two issues, Marauders #3 was a fast read. Though it was one worth getting this early in the series to further set the stage for everything that is to come once the story has really hit the ground running. For as much fun as we hope to have, there is going to be real problems to deal with, and that does not exclude the problems from within.