What’s up everyone! Welcome to Beyond The Panel. Coming at you today with talk about the debut of Hellions #1! With most of these X-books, we primarily tend to look for where they fit in the grand scheme of Dawn of X. That is how one would measure what these books have to offer. Some you can see purpose immediately, though Hellions? This one gets you thinking because just about anything could come from a series where they are focusing on the troublemakers and misfits who apparently need a sense of direction to keep them on the right path.
Now normally with a new #1 like this, the first thing I would do is question how accessible this book is for a new reader to pick up. In the case of Hellions, I would actually say that this is one of those books where you will want to be aware of what is going on in the mutant world to be able to jump into this problem free. It wouldn’t make sense for you to pick up this book and have your hand held through everything that should be known before going any deeper into the exploration of this Krakoan nation. If you were to chance it, you could simply try to jump in with the knowledge that this is one of those books where they try to make the mutant villains useful. There’s always one like this. So right now that book is Hellions.
That said, the big question is how a team like the Hellions comes to be during these times of paradise. The lead was well executed. I could have imagined a lot of ways in which they pulled this off, but the actual approach was smart for the balance struck between introducing this cast of characters and justifying them put together. What I enjoyed most about the approach taken was the fact that not all of these mutants are those everyone would instantly know. We were met halfway given a proper introduction and what each of them must have done in order to catch the eye of the Council the way that they did. Even then, the way this team passed was allowed by the Council was satisfactory. Especially when someone like Mister Sinister would have had to give a good speech to convince anyone that something good could come out of putting the troublemakers to work.
It was also worth the pages used to both address where Kwannon fits into this, and where the line is drawn for a team like this. Obviously Kwannon was going to be added as a safety measure, but even then they needed to plainly explain what rules were set for allowing a team like this into the world. A great idea overall towards creating a guideline for the kind of obstacles this team will tackle along the way.
This issue by the end if more of a lead to their first mission, but this is one of those cases where introductions and laying the foundation for the story and plot mattered more than anything else. It mattered that we knew whether or not we should be bracing ourselves for what could go wrong with Sinister leading this team, that we knew the Kwannon we were dealing with who agreed to playing babysitter, and what we should prepare for from this first mission when some of us already knew ahead of time that Madelyne Pryor of all mutants would be involved.
When it came to the artwork, I was excited that even with a book like this they were willing to offer an art team that could knock you off of your feet. The impression with this book is that it will be action-packed. Stephen Segovia is an artist who fits perfectly with a book like that. Not only does he do well enough when it comes to drawing characters with personality, he does even better when it comes to delivering on action scenes. Every scene where this art team captured the dangerous tendencies of these mutants, the scenes were met with a fluent transition between panels, and intensity from what these mutants could do. Which brings me to the colors from David Curiel. Not a bad choice either when with a team like this you would expect that things are explosive, and even flashy. Aside from this, the settings for each scene were stunning. I was caught off guard by the detail and atmosphere they put into the world around these characters.
I don’t know if it’s good to be bad, but Hellions #1 made the statement that it pays to keep your enemies close. This will be the Dawn of X book to look forward to if you want a story that is not only action-packed, but one that will keep you guessing at every turn. Nothing should ever be trusted to be straightforward when Mister Sinister is involved. Him or even this band of misfits thrown together.