Brandon Borzelli’s Geek Goggle Reviews
With the first two chapters of the Age of X story shipping this week it seems reasonable to review them together as a double feature, especially since they are both written by Mike Carey. The Age of X storyline brings a lot of action in the opening pages but then returns to the character centric story that Carey normally sticks to it. As is the case with X-Men Legacy title, the focus stays with Rogue. The Age of X holds most of the characters to their usual Marvel Universe versions with a few twists. As promised, Carey isn’t revealing how this else-world story was kicked off but there are a couple of obvious clues that pop up. Overall these two issues were a good start to the storyline.
The opening is the battle. It’s the 1000th day of the war and the mutants are protecting their turf yet again. These first ten pages or so provided a lot of action and they allow the reader to get to know these new versions of the mutants. The battle is wrapped up with a death. At this point Rogue enters the battlefield.
Carey has always shown a strong skill at writing Rogue. What he does here is he turns Rogue into the Reaper. When a mutant is on the verge of death Rogue enters and absorbs their memories so that they will always live on in her mind. It’s very creative and provides an extra layer of isolation for Rogue from the other mutants.
The first issue ends with the mutants finding Kitty Pryde. It seems she is a mutant that isn’t supposed to find her way into the fortress. Magneto puts her in a holding cell. After Rogue learns of this she decides to take action.
The second issue is almost entirely a character study of Rogue. The issue presents Rogue’s internal struggle about what her role with the mutants is and it shows how she is capable of being a renegade almost at a moment’s notice. She’s strong willed and has no problem disobeying orders. This look at her is exactly what the story needed. Now that the crossover has one, very established voice the story will flow much easier. Some of the other characters are expanded in this issue as well but it is very much a Rogue story.
The artwork is strong across both issues. The first issue has a lot of action allowing the art team to flex its muscles. On that strength the issue is a great companion to the story. The second issue is much more character focused and therefore the art team is used more for reactions and emotions. They both present very good stories visually.
One of the drawbacks with this crossover is that Carey isn’t giving away the story’s origin in the opening issues. It’s a leap of faith and so far it’s holding my interest. The cast is big making getting to know the characters difficult, but if the story stays Rogue centric then it probably won’t matter. Carey has a good story cooking here and I think any fan of the X-Men would enjoy this Age of X storyline.
3.5 out of 5 Geek Goggles