Monday, May 2, 2011

Uncanny X-Force - Rick Remender & Jerome Opena

I've never really been that into super-hero comics.  Batman is of course the exception to that rule, but if he ever starts shooting lasers from his eyes I might have to reconsider my loyalty.  I'm not sure why I've been steering clear of hero comics this long, but if I had to guess I'd say that the movie "Spiderman 3" played a pretty big role.

Thankfully, I don't hold grudges for too long, so after a short hiatus from Marvel, I was willing to give them another chance.  After reading "Uncanny X-Force," I can't help but thinking I waited too long to get back on board.  Without a doubt this is one of my favorite current series', and one that I think everybody should be reading.

First of all, if you are going to make a superhero team, this might just be the perfect formula.  You've got the tough guy, the hot babe, the wise cracking joker, the leader with an inner struggle that might destroy him, and the French guy.  Ok, well it's an ALMOST perfect formula.  Joking aside, even though I went into the story without a clue as to the mysterious Fantomex (aka the French guy), I found myself actually enjoying his character and how he fit in with the rest of the more well-known players.  Each hero fits into the story, has a unique voice, and plays well off of the others.  Plus it has Deadpool...on a team.  How can you not read that?

Even though Remender is working with an all-star cast, that doesn't guarantee a Grammy.  In the last few months I've read quite a few comics that "could have been awesome."  Great concepts and characters don't always amount to a great comic book.  Fortunately, in this case, Remender knows his way around a script, and has put his amazing cast into an equally amazing storyline.

The first story arc is one of the best things I have read in quite a while.  It is an epic adventure surrounding the rebirth of Apocalypse, and brings the X-Force into some nasty battles against his current horsemen lineup.  It immediately brought me back to my younger days as a kid watching X-Men cartoons on Saturday mornings, and the epic Apocalypse battles from back then.  Of course, as I grew up, so did the comics.  If Remender's version was made for TV they would probably have to leave Fox and go to HBO.  But that only adds to the appeal for this adult reader.

Adding to the "grown up" feel of the story is the amazing artwork.  I really enjoy the look of the series, and the way that Jerome Opena illustrates it.  It is dark and bloody, and goes well with the characters on the team.  They are all killers with messy pasts, and the artwork masterfully reflects that aspect of the story.

While I can't completely say that I've made the jump to being a super-hero junkie, I will say that "Uncanny X-Force" has opened the doors of possibility a little wider.  Due to my love for this series I have already gone out and started to read some other Marvel hero series', which is a pretty big endorsement in my book.  If you are looking for an engrossing story, with one of the better teams of heroes out there, this is definitely the place to start.

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